When I was a teenager, I went through many dark days where I felt I was at my end. I didn’t know the Lord yet, and I felt totally alone and misunderstood. The way I dealt with that angst and frustration was to wreck things… And myself.
I would throw CD’s at the wall so that I could use the sharp edge to hurt myself. I would rip up clothes and schoolwork, almost anything in sight, to release the pain that was unbearable. I controlled my eating to the point of weighing 95 pounds because it was the only thing in my life I felt I had control of. These were dark, horrible days. Ones that I can’t think about without weeping, feeling totally detached that the hurting, messed up little girl was actually me.
Tonight I was reminded of those days in a moment of feeling desperate. I am struggling right now with needing to be alone, but not getting the chance to be. Being a single mom, I am responsible for every minute detail of mine and my children’s lives. Someone is sick? I’m on it. Someone needs my help to explore a new interest? That’s me. Someone painted red nail polish all over the bathroom and everything in it? Still me! And that pile of dishes is my constant reminder that I am alone. I know I have the Lord, and I have no doubt that He is making a way for me, even in this run-ragged season. But I am alone in the sense that every physical need of my family falls on my shoulders. And it feels like the weight of an elephant right now.
I hit my wall tonight. I have not slept in a few nights and it’s been a busy few days. I had a moment of needing to be alone. Like, k guys, I know I’ve been saying I need some alone time for three months but right now I really mean it!! Well I didn’t get it. My kids still needed me and they didn’t catch on that I was serious. I sent them upstairs and lost it. That little girl that felt trapped came back and I was at my breaking point. Now, praise our good God for rescuing me long ago from ever wanting to hurt myself or rip my belongings to shreds. That part of me has healed and I have Him alone to thank for breaking those chains. But I did need to let off some steam. Before I knew it, every paper on my desk was now in the kitchen. Notebooks hit the cupboards and to-do lists hit the floor. Golf clubs got thrown clear across my yard and bounced off my shed. Thankfully my neighbours are all a little crazy at times too, we give each other grace.
You guys, it felt so good to be ok with not being ok. It felt so nice to take off that mask and lose it for a few minutes. It felt so great to cry out to God and tell Him that this is too much for me right now. That I have nothing left to pour out and that I literally cannot do one more thing without Him. To just say over and over again “Jesus, help me”.
And then to feel that peace. That quietness of knowing that God is right here with me. That I am not alone and that I don’t need to “do” right now. I can just “be”. This is the peace that surpasses all understanding.
This all happened in the last hour and I am back to being ok. My perspective has changed and my frustration is gone. Tomorrow will be a day filled with new mercy from the Lord, and He will be my strength. I will be able to tend to my children and keep my home. The notebooks and golf clubs are already cleaned up and I actually started my dishwasher during my meltdown (Rage cleaning? Is that a thing?). I will wake up to some clean dishes and will make my family pancakes and we will move forward. I will tell my children that I’m not perfect and that I 100% need Jesus to keep it together, and that they do too. I will tell them that I love them immensely and that part of needing to be alone with God is so that I can be a better mother to them. Tomorrow, everything will be ok.
I realize that this is super personal and may quite possibly change the way you see me. But I know there are others out there struggling. From one broken woman to another, I want you to know that God cares about you, He has not forsaken you, and He has more than enough grace and mercy to cover these rough days. Lean into Him, tell Him your heart and then be still. He is there. He hears you and sees you. You are never alone.