Sometimes I think I have spent half of my life just trying to survive. There has always been a feeling of aloneness.
I was a change of life baby, always reminded how I was not planned for and frankly not wanted. I never remember ever being validated. My talents were never nurtured, nor was I shown affection from my parents or told I was loved.
I am not sharing this to blame them, who knows what they experienced in their own lives to be that way, nor am I looking for sympathy, I am just stating the truth of a life that shaped decisions as I was seeking what everyone of us longs for, love.
Anyone who has heard my story can see the ways this manifested itself in my early life. It was not pretty.
Growing up in the sixties, free love, free sex, etc., I was ripe to get pulled into it all searching for true love and freedom of which I knew nothing about. Instead of freedom, this life ultimately led me to my deepest bondage.
I became pregnant as a teenager and was thrown out of the house, disowned by family – a validation of all I had felt in my life growing up, that feeling of being in the way, not belonging and a burden. They were finally rid of me. That’s how I felt.
Coerced by my father who cut me off from everything, I gave in to his pressure and had an abortion. This further validated my feelings. I was
unworthy, unwanted and unloved. Worse yet, in a quest to please those who rejected me, I aborted my unborn child.
Of course nothing changed in regard to acceptance, it only led me deeper into my destructive behavior marrying an addict who treated me badly. It was what I believed I deserved. How could anyone love me?
So why do I share all this? Because although I have found the mercy of God and know the truth of my dignity, I still have my “un” moments. I think most of us do.
I still carry the wounds of those years. I still have days I struggle to see my goodness, and I still beat myself up at times when I am having an, what I call, “un” day. Unloved, unwanted, and unworthy. These are the tools the devil now uses to try to get me to turn from Christ. Deep seated wounds used to try to get me not to believe in the love and mercy of God.
These feelings are so ingrained in me that hardly a day goes by that at some moment I do not catch myself putting myself down. The difference of course is that now I am never alone in these moments, I know Jesus and Mary are with me and I know these are the lies of the devil.
I think I will probably experience these battles throughout my life on earth. It is, as St Paul says, my “thorn”, but by the grace of God I have learned that even though I can still “feel” these things at times, I “know” they are not true.
I often speak of levels of healing that correspond to our spiritual growth. As we grow in the love of Christ He brings us deeper into our woundedness. It would be impossible to look at such deep pain without first knowing His love for us. As our love grows and we venture deeper, so does our healing.
Sometimes it can be a tough battle against despair. I have come to know my “self” so I can see the patterns the devil uses. I have learned through Christ’s love to embrace my “self”, to correct my “self” and to turn my gaze off of my “self” onto Him and His love and mercy for me.
It is in doing this that I have learned to take my “uns” and plunge them into the flames of the Sacred Heart of Jesus there to be consumed by His love and mercy.
We all have battles we will fight during our time on earth, but there is a huge difference when we are not fighting them alone. At the foot of the cross Jesus gave us Mary Our Mother to accompany us, help us in battle and lead us always to her Son.
The battle has already been won by the One who came to “un” do sin and death by His suffering, and resurrection in order to redeem us! That’s one “un” I can’t live without! – TB