there are days…

until i turned 30 i never hated a day of the year.

no dates were avoided, overlooked or dismissed. i enjoyed them all. in addition, my empathy was on permanent hiatus. i lived in a perfect little bubble that allowed everyone, including myself to believe that my life was ideal. a healthy marriage of more than 10 years. heightened levels of self confidence & independence. powerful goals and expectations. happy, happy, happy.

i masked my troubled life to you and to myself by dumping my energy & emotion into other things…

my children. they are truly amazing, well-behaved, intelligent gifts of joy. my small little design shop did grow into a successful business. the friendships that sought me and knew me when i could barely recognize myself… & they continue to reach in deep to pull me out of the darkness.

  romans58

 

i still cannot fully explain how it felt when i ran into the brick wall that one night last winter. the reverberations unraveled me. that for my entire life i had stood up for, fought for, packed up and moved for, given up my identity for, reduced my desires to non-existence for, accepted mediocre for… was for nothing. pointless. absurd. my life was a big failure.

 

that was a hard day.

it took months & months & months, but…….  it was a good day. it meant that i could be free. it meant that i too was broken. i could understand & give empathy. it meant that my path was changing and i would be at the mercy of God’s control; since i had lost all control. it meant that i would be free of being used for someone’s gain. it meant that i could learn how to live away from co-dependency.

journey

 

i stayed quiet. i smiled through it. i could not accept the failures, flaws, the explanation, the story that truly is behind the story.

i pretended to be strong while my insides turned black and sticky with tar. my heart sunk. i blamed myself. i hated God. i yelled & cried & demanded an answer. why me, God? did i deserve this? did my children deserve this? what did i do wrong?

i continued to smile.

then someone spoke. an unthoughtful, mouth-gaping, full-of-shock comment that spun me inside out and upside down. it was the very realness that literally snapped me out of the world i was in and launched me gasping for air into my true reality.

Do you think you are as perfect as your parents taught you to act?

with stunned silence, i felt the large gulp forming in my throat preventing me from speaking or breathing or responding. i wasn’t sure if i should defend myself & my childhood with vengeance or cry and fall to my knees admitting my defeat.

my parents taught me to be strong. to succeed at whatever my heart desired. to be honest & just & loyal & loving & caring. to represent our family name with pride & dignity. they encouraged me to look ahead and learn from my past. they encouraged me to seek the rock solid Christian faith that i had developed over the years; my walk with Jesus and the testimony that was forming amidst the battle.

 

lewis

i dug in. i dug in deep.

a paradigm shift began in my heavy and hurting life… and i slowly crawled out.

i am strong. i am courageous. i can & i will.

choose

 

some days are harsh. they are reminders of days past that strike a chord. they are dark, deep pits of unfriendly brokenness. difficult, choking reminders of decisions, actions, abusive words and changes that altered the life course.

my head pounds, my belly seeks no sustenance, my mind closes in on the date and i overlook the moment.

these days are fleeting. being replaced by joy, wholeness, contentment, miracles, stories of truth & memories that smile.

i look ahead.

sometimes

 

i am better right where i am than i was 1 year ago. far better than where i was 2 years ago. i see progress, hope, potential. i feel happiness & joy.

choosing to appreciate the small things. choosing to uncover the darkness to let in the light. choosing to remove the toxic to make room for the healthy.

 

like

 

 

there are days… part 2.

Comments

  1. Love you sweet friend! Inspiring words that at times I think we all need to hear from someone that loves and cares for us! You’re a rockstar!

  2. You’ve been in my prayers constantly, Aimee; prayers for peace and courage in the face of changes. I don’t know the details but I don’t need to… Blessings to you, friend. Xo

  3. With tears in my eyes I read this, knowing that you are the strongest person I know. God has SUCH plans for you in this, Aimee, and I love every ounce of this post. Proud of you!

    • girl, you are amazing… truly. your friendship, your listening ears, your gentle words of wisdom, your care & concern over me and my children. i am truly touched by your friendship and thankful daily for your part in my life. thank you.

  4. My dear little one, I wait with you for all this hurt to be over. You are strong and you will be stronger. You are precious and you will be tested and from the fire you will be a diamond. Your wings have been clipped but you will fly again and you will soar… you just wait and see. I love you and so proud of the woman God is creating.

  5. You are truly a special woman. I know God has great plans for you. He is allowing you to touch my life and I am incredibly grateful for that. There are so many questions that we cant answer or even begin to comprehend while we are going through the darkness, but I hope that as you continue to emerge and find your strength, that you will be able to reflect at some point and see why God redirected your path. Joel 2:25

    • you are a blessing. you have truly breathed fresh life into some of my tired, sore & hurting moments… i am honored to be a recipient of your peacefulness and encouragement. see you in October! 🙂

  6. Stephanie says:

    Yes. All of this. I’m so proud to call you my friend.

  7. This touches me, it has been me…it is me. Keep strong sweet one, your Heavenly Father holds you with tender love and a fierce grip.

    • Katy, Your words swiftly remove the breath from my lungs with the reminder that others feel the pain, impact and hurting moments as I have. I am so sorry for being able to echo my words… harsh, cynical reminders of where we are. God’s fierce grip is on you as well – continue to look towards Him. I’m sorry!

  8. Your words express exactly what my heart has uttered for years! Thanks for posting!

    • Thank you for sharing Barb. I am sorry for you too can resonate with the hurt I’ve shared. I do hope you have been peace… that there is hope for an end to the vicious earthly cycle. May you sweetly rest your eyes and hold fast to God as you go through the moments as I do.

  9. Strength I wish I had right now good luck lovely post ✉

    • thank you for stopping over & for sharing. you DO have the strength and you WILL succeed; focus on surviving today so you can be free of the burden forever!

      • I just wanted to say thanks to you all for your inspiring comments!, I am going to the hospital tomorrow and it may turn out to be Cancer? So as you can imagine I’m scared I’m 41years old and I have just Married my husband Bazz after 10 years together I have lost my Mother and 2 Nephews and a niece my heart aches for them especially now though I feel them watching over me, God please give me the strength to get through the illness I’m facing as right now I look pregnant but I’m not and it could be colon or stomach Cancer I don’t have anyone to talk to about this as my husband lost his Father to Cancer he knows what we’re facing but we’re avoiding the conversation God Bless all those who are suffering I will pray for you all please if you catch this post pray for me thanks Amy God bless you and your strength in you’re Friendships.
        Thanks Sarah Jane

        • i have thought of you often Sarah Jane and have prayed for you — i am so sorry for the hurt & the struggle you are experiencing in this life; may you find comfort and safety in our God that promises to never abandon you.

  10. God whispered my life into your ear. . . . . . .

    His WISDOM, our willingness.
    His STRENGTH, our willingness.
    His GRACE, our willingness.
    His BLESSING, our JOY.

  11. Sheila Agaba says:

    I am going though a tough time right now and this article blessed me because it expressed every thing I needed to express! Thank you so much

    • sheila, i am so sorry to hear you’re going through a difficult time… but am thankful that you read my words (that sometimes take a long time to be expressed) and they offered you some peace. may you be richly blessed through these trials; that you turn the hurt & sorrow into joy & peace.

  12. Beautiful words. I think I may come back and re-read it from time to time. Thank you.

  13. I sobbed as I read this. Tears that have been pent up for far too long. I could have written this story. Not as eloquently as you, but the same story. Thank you for putting into words what I have been working out in my heart. Somehow it feels good to have it down on paper.

    • oh Jan, i am so sorry for your hurt and loss & sadness. your sweet words tonight are a gentle reminder that i am sharing and growing and learning with purpose. thank you for letting me share on this quiet little online space… there is plenty more story to be told; but for now, i am thankful that these words are helping you.

      my heart aches for you friend.

  14. as I was sitting in my car, tears streaming down my face thinking of how challenging things are in my life right now, I was sent a link from Pintrest to your blog. I have read this a dozen or so times and have cried until I can shed no more tears. This post so beautifully and completely expressed such a large part of my existinance right now. I thank you for sharing such a well written post and for being so open about what you were feeling. For I have felt the same way. A 10 year marriage, facing similar challenges, and trying to find the strength to keep moving. Again,
    Thank you

    • Andria, My heart hurts for you tonight. I feel sad and torn when someone can resonate with my story — my hurting, awful, destructive and terrifying story of a family split apart, of disease and turmoil… but I know there is goodness, grace — God’s grace. mercy. joy. peace that comes each morning knowing that every day He gives us enough to get through each moment, each day. May you find comfort in James 1 – that as we face difficulty, and our faith is tested – that we persevere. Dry up your tears my friend, you are loved. You are not forgotten, you are not set aside, you are not overlooked. You are loved.

  15. I have experienced these same feelings. Over and over again for years. But I have come to see them – to really, honestly look at them for all they are and all they are not – and ultimately see them as an opportunity for God’s mercy and grace. And this is freedom. Freedom from all the shoulds, from all the doubts. To honestly see myself, my feelings and to boldly choose (daily, moment by moment) to know and to believe that I am not a slave to them. I can feel them. I can experience them. But that they too shall pass. They will not last forever. And this is a fight. A good fight that I think we all face. Thank you for beautifully sharing with such honesty and openness, and for offering the space to share. It is always a comfort to know that we are not alone.

    • Oh sweet Beverly, the words you shared are deeply stinging those inside, hidden parts of my heart as I can only imagine the hurt you’ve experienced.. with such healing and faith to share these kinds of words. I love that you proclaim, “they will not last forever”… because it sure does feel on those days that I will not heal. Thank you for sharing and allowing me to feel less alone tonight.

  16. Haley Mae says:

    Reading this all the way from Washington state. Your words are so moving. I found this on Pinterest and everything you said is exactly what I needed to hear. I especially loved when you said, “choosing to appreciate the small things. choosing to uncover the darkness to let in the light. choosing to remove the toxic to make room for the healthy.” I had heard someone say today that our mind is like an ongoing twitter feed. We have both good and a lot of bad coming into our minds constantly. That even though we don’t want to have the evil words pounded into our brains, there is no unfollow button. Choosing to listen to the good and ignore the bad is the only way to start getting a healthy mind. A holy mind. At first it is the hardest thing ever and then it gets easier and easier. I don’t exactly know what you are going through but your words have touched me and they are exactly what I needed to hear in my situation. Thank you so much for writing this and putting your words out there for us to read and learn from. Hope you have many blessings and keep growing strong in yourself.

    • hello Haley Mae – thank you for stopping by & sharing. your words are a reminder for me to keep sharing, to be open, to be willing to let God use this story for His glory. i am still hurting, still fighting, still suffering through the loss & the continued hardship of this journey… but you’re right, working to ignore the bad will become habit and become easier. & it’s easy to fall (see another post on my blog called “Fire”) as life continues and impacts us and hurts us and breaks us; but today, your comment was my reminder to get back to remember that i have a purpose beyond my struggle. thank you for sharing! 🙂

  17. As many others have stated, you speak my story too. I reject the term codependent for myself as my life was orchestrated by someone who was living a double life deceiving all those who thought they knew him. My decisions and my journey became my own as my awareness of reality was piece by piece brought into the light. It hurt beyond description. But you are right, we aren’t what happened to us in our past, we are what we choose to become – what we take from difficult times and experiences and weave into being a more complete human.

    We all have different stories and different sources of pain, but our own pain is our own and we should not diminish it based on someone else’s story, nor should we allow it to destroy the beautiful person God has created each of us to be. Face the past and learn from it, but don’t let it rule or ruin your life – because at that point, you become the one causing your own pain.

    There is hope. There is light. The journey through the darkness is always longer than we would like for it to be. And now I’m speaking from the other side. I’ve learned, I’ve changed, and my scars prove I’ve survived. Better still, my smile and my sense of peace prove I’ve persevered. And I thank God for holding me through the pain and know he continues to sustain me in these brighter days. And I know I’ve been refined and will survive whatever difficulties life throws my way – because I know God strengthens me and that strength fuels the power contained within myself.

  18. thank you so much for your words of encouragement. I am also learning that what we think are our worst moments can actually be bringing us to a depth in Christ we never knew before. I don’t like the past year I’ve had filled with darkness and pain but God makes beautiful things out of brokenness. Much love to you and yours. Keep fighting.

    • Bethany,
      That is true – the hard & tough & difficult that turn into the worst of our days can be the very thing that draws us near to Him as we fall on our knees begging for Him and He gladly receives us. Earthly suffering is hard… and some days I forget to hold onto the hope that these days will soon be done and Heaven will be rejoicing. Hold on friend… keep fighting… pull through this too & give Him the glory for all things.

  19. Maryann says:

    i feel so humble….how is it someone I know nothing about was able to write exactly what my heart needed to hear! A long time ago a young girl who was in my care in a youth detention center, said to me, Ms. Murray “what doesn’t kill you, will make you stronger! ” obviously she was quoting from someone else…but what struck me, was her ability to take her desperate situation and reframe it into a story of victory opposed to a story of defeat. She chose how her story was going to be written, she chose not to be a victim. Thank you for taking the time to write this post…you inspired me.

    • Maryann,
      I truly believe, after walking through 15 years of murky waters with a man that has lied, cheated and stolen… that God is good. He brought me through it, while breaking me at the core, while remolding me & calling me back to Him. That young girl was right… I may have been broken down and cut down and expected to roll over and die… but it has made me stronger, more courageous, more unwilling to allow him to ever hurt me again. I am thankful you stopped by and shared with me. Thank you.

  20. I can’t stop crying from this post. I’m in a very similar state that you write about and about to turn 30 myself. This really struck a chord with me and has given me so much hope that better, brighter days are ahead. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful story, Aimee. You’re an inspiration and a light for others through the darkness. Bless you endlessly. With love, Chad. x

    • Chad,
      I have read and re-read your comment as I regularly stop by to revisit my old post… and with assurance I can tell you — BRIGHT IS AHEAD! I believe that sometimes, we are our own worst enemy… we choose to not forgive ourselves, we choose to blame ourselves for the destruction of our circumstances, we choose to live in the present moment that pulls us under the dark waves of hurt. I can assure you, God is good. He is the power, strength and hope that drives away the darkness. Hold on to him Chad as you battle your darkness… let Him lead you out like a sheppard leads his sheep. You are His very own son and with much grace, love and compassion He will carry you.

  21. Amazing and inspiring words. It serves a great purpose here; those going through similar situations can relate and understand that as difficult as a circumstance can be, you’re are never truly fighting a battle that someone else hasn’t fought before and came out of with a bigger, brighter hope for the future. Can i ever relate! Keep going, and keep being happy and free! My best wishes to you and your children.

    • thank you Amelia… you are right.. someone else has been here before and as i learn from mentors, i hope to turn my story into God’s glory shouted loud. your words have blessed me. thank you.

  22. Thank you for posting. It was everything I needed to hear.

  23. Aimee, your transparency and vulnerability are both powerful and refreshing. Having walked through a painful divorce and continuing to see the aftermath of it in my children, I am encouraged and blessed by your words.

    Thank you for sharing!

  24. Thank you for your moving story. 3 months ago I experienced a great loss of my partner leaving me. I’m not sure if that is what you are alluding to in your post. Might I ask what happened?

    Thank you for sharing such profound wisdom that is exactly what I need to hear right now.

    Peace.

Leave a Comment

*