It’s a warm Tuesday evening as the door slams and Mr. Wagner walks through it- precisely at 6:01 pm, the same hour (and minute) he arrives home every day.
Mrs. Wagner is the living room, folding clean laundry on the sofa. "Hey honey, how was your day?" she asks. With a huff, Mr. Wagner lays down his work things on the counter. "Where's dinner? What've you been doing all day?"
Molly's face falls and her brows push together to meet one another directly above her not-so perfect nose. "The girls were just crazy today babe, I haven't made dinner yet, but I'll do it in a minute."
"I'm so sick of this. You do nothing all fucking day and then I'm at work- for you- and you can't make dinner?" he asks while pointing at her face.
"Babe-" Mrs. Wagner begins but is quickly cut off by her husband. "Seriously Molly, what're you good for if you can't even do that?"
Now, you and I are quite aware that this isn't a marriage made in Heaven. You're probably telling yourself that you'd never be with anyone who talked to you like that. You'd throw that sexist, controlling ass right outta your house and your life- and probably never look back because you know you deserve better and don't have to put up with that.
Mr. Wagner is also the type of man who wants his wife to have the perfect body, often insisting that maybe she should put the pie down and pick up her ass and get into shape. "I didn't marry a fat ass, and I sure don't want to now, your body disgusts me." he would tell her.
"You don't deserve that. Why don't you stop thinking about yourself and take care of your damn kids? You're a horrible mother." Mr. Wagner would tell his wife when she was shopping.
Can you imagine having a co-worker tell you that you'll never get promoted because you're not good enough? Picture a friend looking you right in the eyes and telling you that nobody, not a soul on this earth will ever love you. What if every day that you woke up and opened your eyes, someone rolled over next to you and said "Good morning! You're ugly, fat, and stupid- nobody even cares about you, why bother getting up?"
What would you do? Would you embrace these people, agree their right and ask for more? Would allow them to pick you apart day after day? No! You'd tell them all to go to hell and get outta your life. If you were the victim in these abuse situations you'd tell them all to leave, you'd get outta there, or get help from someone who loves you.
But what if you're the abuser? What if you're the one telling yourself that you're useless, that no one cares, that no one will ever want you?
While you'd never dream of saying those awful things to your spouse, your co-workers or people you care about, you have no problem telling yourself what a worthless piece of shit you are, day in, day out. What kinda marriage is that? An abusive one, and the only marriage where you can both be the victim and the abuser.
Turning that on its head, when was the last time you told yourself that you are worthy of love and affection? Can you remember a time that you looked yourself in the mirror and gave mercy to the eyes looking back at you?
Just like marriage, we can forget all that makes us wonderful and stop appreciating the small miracles of everyday love. If you're intent on making your self-love marriage work, you've got to stop being the abuser- and the victim.
True love, real, deeply felt and experienced love, keeps no record of wrongs. It is patient, kind, and ever enduring. To begin to love yourself, you must create a vision of the world from a new perspective. You must see yourself the way Love sees you, and treat yourself just as you would a new found flame.
You don't have to be the monster in the mirror. You can choose to be the light. You don't have to tell yourself you hate yourself anymore. You can leave the past in the past. You can choose to forgive yourself for your regrets and be kind to yourself.
The monster in the mirror isn't you, and never really was. What you see is a reflection of fear staring back at you, and if you want to slay this demon and see yourself again, there's only one cure and only one hero who can administer it.
Only love can drive out fear and only self-love can drive out self-hate. If you want to find yourself again, you must first be willing to kill the monster in the mirror, and when you fight with love, you will win- because my dear, love always wins- so go slay your demons.
What Healing Requires
As much as I'd like to say that it did, suffering and weakness do not go hand in hand. Suffering, more of the time than not, leads to reward, if self sacrificed.
Healing my body has been a lesson in sacrificing what I am today for who I will become tomorrow. Who I will become is undetermined, undefined and yet to be created anywhere other than my own imagination.
We were given the gift of imagination, yet we often use it as a method of self deprecation and fear mongering to our own detriment.
Preparation and patience; parents of the same child: Success. But confuse not preparation with fear, for it's womb will always be barren. Healing requires from you more than it requires of others. It requires you not give in, not give up, and never allows you to forget what your fighting.
You weren't given a choice, it isn't an honor, yet it's a war you are enlisted for, with no assurance of an end and little hope of victory.
Whether you want to be in the battle field of your life isn't your choice. The pain you feel, the suffering your war causes to innocent casualties are all around you.
Healing requires that you admit you are at war. Whether you want to be or not, the enemy will come for you and will be here when you wake.
Soldiers have training, have weapons, have preparation. They have skilled leaders to guide them into the battle.
No solider is left behind. Each drill, each lesson is taught for the purpose to make them a one of a kind skilled warrior.
Solider's sacrifice who they are today for who they will become tomorrow. They sacrifice their time, their energy, their lives to the cause. Even in times of peace, a solider is always a solider. Once a Marine, always a Marine.
And no solider will return home the same. War changes you. Meeting mortality, changes you.
Not often is it spoken of, or perhaps not often enough; that at some point, nearly everyone is afraid of the battle and wishes for nothing more than the comfort they left.
Each mourns in his/her own way for a simpler time, when the cruel realities of fate hadn't yet touched them. They miss the small joys of laughter, not mingled with pain. More tears have been shed before battle than lives lost, more fears have turned to realities than victories achieved in war.
What is it then, that enables a solider to rise in the morning knowing death lurks just on the other side?
How can they lace their boots and make their beds with precision and steady hands? How do they willing march together, in unison, weapons ready into battle?
Healing requires you to be a solider in a war you did not chose, in a war you did not want; but it is yours now and how you wage the battle is entirely up to you.
The enemy is coming to your door whether you want it or not. This is your war and you must believe you are the one who can win it.
Fear is nothing but our own imagination, once you realize this, you'll understand how it can no longer control you. Danger is very real, but fear isn't. Never confuse preparation with fear; like water and vinegar they may look the same at first, but only one will leave a bitter taste and never quench your thirst.
You have the ability to live in the future, to live in your victories instead of your fears. You have the choice to be afraid and do it anyway.
You can choose what happens to you before the inevitable. You can choose how you live your life, and it doesn't have to be in fear.
Healing requires you to sacrifice who you are today for who you will become tomorrow.
Don't hesitate to be afraid today if it will make you brave tomorrow.
The more you allow yourself to use your imagination for fear, the smaller your world gets.
You can change your prescriptions, you can change your clothes, where you live, where you work; but if you never change your mind, nothing changes.
That's not to say that the same struggles aren't there, its your perception to the struggle that changes.
Suffering is not weakness nor is patience endurance.
Healing requires a changed mind. It requires you lay down the failings of the past and fail forward into success.
If your suffering is not a sacrifice for who you will become tomorrow then your suffering is meaningless in your healing.
If tomorrow is no better than the day preceding it and today is no better than the one before it, what are you suffering for?
If suffering is inevitable, would you rather suffer on the path to healing?
Your fears of the future can be hopes of the future when you are taking active steps to make it happen.
You are going to suffer anyway, why not endure it with purpose instead of despair?
Healing requires all of you, every day, every moment, every thought, every breath. You must decide your life is worth fighting for by you, for you.
You must endure. You must suffer. You must be patient. But you can not be weak. Stop waiting on healing and decide you are going to fight it with your dying breath.
Remember,those who think they can and those who think they can't are both usually right.
Do not wish for an easy life. Wish for the strength to endure a difficult one" ~ Bruce Lee
It took me a long time to fully comprehend the truth of that statement.
I spent countless time asking why. I spent countless nights begging for it to stop. I sought the answers from the wrong places, and I put my trust in the wrong things.
We all suffer. Suffering and pain are a part of life, those who have never suffered or felt pain have not yet fully lived and experienced life's multitude of emotions. Some, suffer more than others; some suffer alone. But pain and suffering are inevitable, that much is guaranteed.
In suffering we have a choice. It is a choice all who are terminally ill must face, and a choice all who live long enough will make. It is, what to do in the midst of that suffering. Who will you be? What will you be remembered for?
Too many of us spend time flipping through the pages of our past and not enough time looking at the pages in front of us. The oxymoron is, we look to our past, we regret, but moreso, we wish for the things we didn't do. The words we didn't say. The opportunities we didn't take.
Many of us try to replay those memories over and over again envisioning various outcomes, but nothing ever changes, the story still remains the same: no matter how much you rewrite it in your own mind.
While you're flipping through those pages of your past, your present time dwindles from you, and in a not so distant future, today will be part of your past.
Are you are going to flip to those days and regret? Or do you want to focus on what's is in front of you and what can be?
You are the writer of your own story.
You have the power to make life anything you want it to be.
Maybe today you can't fulfill those dreams instantly.
But we first have to believe in ourselves before we can ever expect to take that next step.
We have to first believe that it is possible, that there is a way. And you have to believe that you are the one.
You must believe that you are the star of your own story and beyond that you are the writer of your own story.
Will you be a war hero? Will you be a victim? Will you be a little of both?
This is your life and no matter how sick you are and no matter how tired you are, no matter how much you think you can't go on anymore, I'm telling you today that you can.
You have a choice to make. And that choice may need to be made everyday, every hour; but the choice is yours and yours alone.
This is your life, how are you going to live it?
How are you going to spend the time that you have left?
I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become" ~ Carl Jung
Linda Lavender writes articles to help folks with Auto Immune Disease, Depression, Anxiety and other health related illnesses.