Seeing Leah in Me: Part 1

**This is a transparent post, and like always I want to share because it is another way in which I recognize an evolution of sorts. I will divide it into two parts.**

Show me someone with BPD that does not have deep identity disturbances and emptiness. The concept of who I am is not even something I am able to ponder on for too long because feeling connected with myself is such a fleeting phenomenon.

Yesterday while on a prayer call, the preacher spoke about finding someone in the bible that resonates with us and learn from their life and walk with God. This resonated with me because this same week at Church a Pastor spoke on how we can’t even believe in the promises or directions of God because we really don’t know who we are in Him.

I thought about who resonates with me the most in the bible, and no one was coming up. The only person I thought of was Elijah because of his depression, but still his story and his life is not one that I relate too on a deeper level. So I gave up the search and resumed feeling very overwhelmed and just despondent towards life. That’s how I’ve been existing, just floating through. I don’t talk with friends as much, getting up is harder, smiling is difficult. I’m pretty sure if someone saw me on the train i’d look like a shell of a person, because that is how I feel.

Yet, in the midst of this I somehow “had a revelation” that I am sooo healed from my attachment figure and I can refollow her blog and her instagram. tumblr_lmg5pvNu5l1qzcy5co1_500While talking to a friend, I casually mentioned that I had done that, not really expecting a reaction because I assumed she would feel the same as me. And immediately she was like why would you do that. And I’m like “idk” and proceeded to move on with the conversation we were having. Then she rewinded it and said we can’t move on because I should not have done that.    images-11

 

*insert her long speech on how at this moment in time where so many things are at stake with classes and medical school, I can’t afford another breakdown, and all it would take is one “wrong” picture and I would crack, blah blah, blah.*

Our conversation was a lot more emotional and it ended with me somberly realizing that I did it because I just wanted to be close to her. I feel soo alone and I just wanted to feel close to her again even if just in my mind. My friend sympathized and we agreed that I could keep the blog but ex the instagram, because it was a risky chance.

*insert my stupidity*

 

I’m on my wordpress and she has a new blog up, yay! I read and enjoy and then decide, maybe she also has a new picture up on instagram (it’s public). Excited with the opportunity to see a fresh picture of her, I go on and I see a new box loading and I start smiling, eager to see what awaits, and am instead greeted with text. Now the alarm went off in my head not to read, but who listens to the alarms right….

In the text I was greeted with the news that she would be starting a show with her spiritual mother about their relationship as a parallel relationship to one of THE most praised spiritual mother and daughter relationship, Naomi and Ruth. For those who don’t know the story, a brief synopsis is Ruth loved her mother in law sooo much that even when their husbands died, Ruth sacrificed her hometown and life to follow and be apart of Naomi’s.

Without warning the floodgates behind my eyes burst open and I was on the phone with a friend confessing my actions and seeking guidance on my next series of actions because the self-defeating and self-damaging thoughts in my head were not healthy. It felt like “Rejection, Abandonment, Un-loved” became anvils that just fell upon my chest and heart.

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I was always jealous of their relationship, I mean after all, I did only spend the last two years hoping that she would see me as her daughter, and that she would want me.

My friend, though she was shocked at my stupidity at first with a “wait, what, why would you do that!” then helped me see that I have been feeling very overwhelmed and stressed and when that happens I use to turn to her, so though it caught her off guard, it makes sense why I would turn to my attachment figure in the only way I knew how.

After googling how to cope with feeling rejected, and un-loved, I came across this quote:

“Sometimes, you choose the one that doesn’t want to be chosen – the one that can’t (or won’t) choose you back.”

cant choose back

From this I was led to the story of Leah in the bible. Part two will pick up there….

To Be Continued….

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Gaining Better Focus

I debated about whether I wanted to share my journal entry today. There is a therapeutic release in journaling, which is why I journal so often. However, when it comes to my blog, I have to think about why would I want to share this in a public space. Immediately, I began to feel that when I blog I am taking ownership of myself, and in a way forced to become more conscious of myself by way of knowing that I am in a sense exposed to the people who will stumble across my post. This provides it’s own growth value because I can look back and see a more orderly representation of my growth and this reminds me why I titled my blog “Evolving Perceptions.”

Today during church the Pastor ended by saying this year it won’t be so much about rebuking the devil, as it will be about using wisdom to discern his schemes, because last year it was not about a question of willpower but a question of focus.

As I analyze the past relationship with my most recent attachment figure, I ask myself why was it so hard for me to see her as human. Why did I feel like I either needed to demonize or idolize her in order for me to better understand myself.

I can now see that it was an interplay between both my thought process and her somewhat grandiose personality.

The logic for me flows like this:

God gives me gift of person-> Person begins withdrawing from me-> SInce person was sent by God, all of their actions in my life must be orchestrated by God-> God is withdrawing person from me-> I did something wrong to lose gift -> Work harder to find what you are doing wrong and fix it so God brings person back

She unknowingly reinforced my thought process every time she said, “God is making me leave.” “God says we are purposeless” “God is ending the season” “God says us being apart is better for both me and you.” Most things she did in my life, if not all really, she backed up by saying she prayed over it and it was God influenced.

So I lost focus. I made her heart synonymous with Gods heart. I made her synonymous with God. Everything she did or did not do became a reflection of what God did or did not do. It made me feel I was in this losing battle against God. Therefore, when she tried to leave, God was leaving me.

But now as I gain more wisdom and insight and I look back over last year, what was more reflective of the truth is that, she wanted to help me love myself, but she realized that the way I needed her to be was something she could never be. And because she can be quite extra at times, she also believed that she felt responsible, as a vessel of Christ, to make things work. But that level of responsibility over an adult, coupled with the trials of her life became too much, and in an effort to rebalance herself she had to give up on me because I was too much. In the latter part of our relationship it wasn’t about me, it was about her, everything she did was for her, even if she doesn’t want to acknowledge that she needed to understandably be selfish, I am at a place where I can acknowledge that with understanding and acceptance. It wasn’t God doing this that and the third, it was her making a human decision to preserve herself.

I lost this focus in the relationship and turned her into a God because I needed to feel loved by God. It’s never about discerning if she was God led or devil led, but discerning whether in all things am I moving in a God led or devil led direction. It’s about me not her.

Sometimes all of this begs the questions for me if she ever actually loved me, or if I was just a misguided assignment. My therapist tries to say that it is impossible for her to have been as invested as she was in me and not to have loved me. I think for now, for my peace, I just answer my question with it doesn’t matter now.

However, with this new wisdom, I am able to look back through saved texts that I simply moved out of sight (she invested a lot of time in writing them that I didn’t want to delete them) and I find new compassion when reading them. I see true sincerity from the heart of a human that I was never able to fully see before as I tried interpreting her words through a God lens. I see GREAT care that sometimes when reading them I want to berate myself for being unable to see them before. Even as I read the texts where she began acknowledging that she was overwhelmed, I want to cry because I see her tiredness that could only stem from someone who cares and that truly feels like they are doing the best they can and still I get no better. I remember when I first read them, I read them with so much anger and hurt, because I felt like it was too late for her to claim being overwhelmed when she promised she would never give up, I wanted more and more. Now I see that for the circumstances of how we were in each others life and the fact that she had no relation to me she gave me a lot, and she tried.

Guard Your Heart

About two weeks ago I felt pushed to delve into and write about what it means to guard your heart. However, I couldn’t because there are just some aspects of my heart that were better left ignored, in my opinion, until there was an appropriate time, namely after the biggest exam in my life to date, passes.

209965I can’t help the unintentional triggers that cause me pain. I feel like I don’t have a choice in the instances where in the melting pot that is America, I inevitably pass people that speak her language, or eat her favorite cultural dessert.

I can’t help those, so I took the necessary steps to avoid intentional triggers. I removed everything of hers off my phone, from pictures to texts, and her presence off of my favorite social media sites.

In all of this though, my relationship with God suffered. I blame God for the ongoing state of pain I always find myself in. In my mind I saw the potential for the downfall of this relationship and when I tried to run away, I thought that it was Him teaching me how to stay and learn to love and accept love.

So naturally for me, as i’m sure many people like me with BPD, can relate to. What resulted was the inevitable investment of my entire self. My heart, my mind, I would have even invested my body if she wanted it, in exchange for her to do the impossible task of filling me unendingly. Of course at the time I did not know that I was engaging in this kind of relationship, however, soon after circumstances revealed the nature of my attachment, things went bad fast.

I was already in too deep to pull away, and she was already too scared to love me or care for me past the newly instated boundaries she felt compelled to enact. The result was a perpetual state of rejection and hurt like none other that I have ever faced.

It hurts so freaking bad. I feel like God must be punishing me for being such a bad person. I believe that he orchestrated all of this on purpose to break me. In my mind He must be punishing me because her joy and her peace has been restored, leading me to think that it was Him and her against me this entire time. And I’ve had other borderline relationships end but despite the pain, my internal sense of peace and connection to God, was never affected because things just made sense. This never and doesn’t make sense. So I run away.

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Though I began by subconsciously running away, when God brought it to my consciousness with a post on my instagram that I’m running. And a follow up verse to show me how just to guard my heart, I ignore Him. Philippians 4:4-7

4 Be full of joy in the Lord always. I will say again, be full of joy.
5 Let everyone see that you are gentle and kind. The Lord is coming soon.
6 Do not worry about anything, but pray and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks.
7 And God’s peace, which is so great we cannot understand it, will keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

I found it a cruel joke to be told that the way to guarding my heart is by having God’s peace. A peace that comes from not worrying about the trials in my heart, but instead praying for a God to do what He sees fit, when I’m scared that what seems fit to Him is punishing me because I am a bad person that does not exemplify His Glory in the way I live my life.

But yesterday, two weeks after this initial run in with God, my ways failed me, like they always do. My way of guarding my heart backfired, because I truly was always unable to do it alone. Though I thought I removed her from all social media platforms, yesterday night her blog showed up on my wordpress feed, because I completely forgot she had a blog. And like clockwork, just at the mere sight of her name, my heart sank. Everything I have been protecting myself from came rushing full force. I felt pressed at the thought of her noticing that I unfollowed her blog, and feared her thinking it was out of malice and not self-preservation, then saddened by the realization that she wouldn’t even care or give it thought because whereas she was able to stop caring for me, she still means so much to me.

So when I woke up this morning, with no desire to move, or eat, or breathe, I began to cry because I realized that I have to confront my hurt, and my heart, and that I have to do so with God. Removing reminders of her is a way of preventing constant bruising at wounds that are trying to heal, but that is not what guards the heart.

Guarding the heart has to be more, it is meant to be more. It is not trying to protect myself from heart grievances by instituting walls that keep everyone out and me locked in. Guarding my heart is a daily walk of prayer with the God who I am angry at. It is covering myself with prayer, and accepting His comfort. I didn’t know how deeply betrayed by God I felt, until I tried to sit and watch a sermon and anger boiled inside of me, then despondency, then finally waterworks to my friend, that revealed through my rambling that my soul is so unstable, because it recognizes it’s emptiness, and fears that God doesn’t recognize it too. That God doesn’t care about my pain or hurt because He thinks I deserve it. That God has His other children’s backs and I have to get the cinderella step-daughter treatment because I am just inherently vile. I believe that He would have her build me up and help me learn to love myself only to have her reach a point of being unable to love me to reflect the reality that I am unloveable.

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Guard my heart because from it flow the issues of my life. “Guarding my heart” against a relationship is not what this verse intends. Who we are does not flow from relationships but rather relationships reveal who we are. Guarding the heart means guarding the thoughts that we store up inside of ourselves that then color the lens through which we live.

Hence why it is only appropriate that Paul follows up his discussion about Gods’ peace with Philippians 4:8-9

8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

9 Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.

The thoughts we think are important. Not seeing her name is not how I guard my heart. Dealing with the fact that I feel unloveable and unworthy of connection when I see her name, is guarding my heart, because then and only then will I stop equating my worth with the value I felt I had in our relationship. Then and only then will I be able to see her name without feeling that I will inevitably be rejected because that’s all I deserve. Once those thoughts have been replaced with new ones, I will not only truly heal from this past relationship, but will be better equipped and ready to handle not only new relationships, but different avenues that I may need to get to, that my stunted self-esteem has kept me from.

God must see something in me that makes Him pursue me, and it has to be more than wanting to punish me. Only by working with Him, and not against Him will I be able to purify my heart and gain His peace to help me grow.

Road Map Meme

The Crumbs from the Masters’ Table

DISCLAIMER: Trigger warning, self-harm and self-hate

I don’t think I am beautiful, or strong, or brave, or courageous.

I don’t value myself as a person. When I look in the mirror I try my best to avoid it because I can feel so much hatred rising up in me when I see my reflection.

I hate myself. Sometimes I don’t even understand the purpose behind my breathing, why God even wants to keep me here.

Yesterday this rang ever more true for me. I struggle very deeply with shame. In light of my attachment figure leaving me, my shame has become increasingly hard to bear. About 3 days ago I started crumbling and for the first time in a short while thoughts of cutting resurfaced in my mind. I was maxing out, and my coping resources were getting scarcer. Yesterday even though she told me not to reach out to her I still did because the pain was getting so hard to bear. I knew she wouldn’t respond and a large part of me hoped that she wouldn’t. I prayed that God would soften her heart towards me and help her realize that I am struggling and pray for me without coming back because though I don’t understand I need to be here.

But as is the case for sufferers of BPD rationality continues to slip as pain increases, and before I knew it I was cutting myself again deeply. Begging to understand and begging for reprieve.

I spent the whole day covered, and pinned down to my bed in shame. The shame I have felt since I was younger was hitting me full force. In my culture pining after people and hyper-attaching as I tend to do is considered shameful, as it probably is in most cultures. However, my culture labels people that do that dogs. They tell you your being a dog for the person. I hated when people told me that when I was younger and I hate it when I tell myself that now.

I don’t want to be a dog. I want to be accepted. I want to be loved. I want to not get left or ignored. But I do. I do get left and ignored and society tells you it’s ok to grieve for a while and feel hurt, but pining and begging for the person means you have no self respect and no dignity.

Last night as I tried my hardest to just fall asleep and escape the day I surrendered to the worlds labeling and admitted to God, that maybe then i’m just a dog. I began to just feel at peace at accepting the label instead of trying to fight it when according to society my natural disposition merits the name “dog.”

So I gave in and said God, i’m a dog. I told Him, I don’t understand why I don’t want to let her go, I don’t understand why I won’t give up, but it’s just not who I am so if i’m a dog then so be it.

In my peace I heard God say that even dogs eat the crumbs from their masters table, and my heart softened because I understood. I knew what God was referring to.

The Faith of a Canaanite Woman
21 And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. 22 And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.” 23 But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.” 24 He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” 25 But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.” 26 And he answered, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” 27 She said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” 28 Then Jesus answered her, “O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed instantly.

This passage in the bible troubled me for a very long time. The first time I ever read it I didn’t talk to God for a week because I was so angry and it made me cry. Every time I got mad at God I would refer back to this verse on why I shouldn’t be with Him because I thought He was a low down dirty hypocrite and only cared about me, a gentile, as an afterthought. This passage gave me so many problems and it wasn’t until last night that I drew the parallel between my shame of being called a dog and Jesus calling this woman a dog. In hindsight I find it so strange that I never made the connection, or if I saw it, never fully internalized it.

Everything that hurts me so much, Jesus did to this woman. He ignored her, told her that she wasn’t meant to be helped by Him, and when she persisted because of the heart she knew He had, He called her a dog. Some of my deepest wounds were caused by believers. The reason being that unlike other people I persist after them to help me. I see their faith and their belief in God and so I don’t see why they would want to hurt me. I see them as God’s tools, and so if they say they want to do Gods work, I think that surely they would want to help me. I beg and plead for their help even after they give up because I knew the problem had to be me. I was just too undeserving of love because of my anger or whatever else I did, so if I came back with a different disposition then they would love me and help me again.

But I understand so much now. There is a reason why it is hard to accept a persons love when you don’t love yourself. My most recent attachment figure tried so hard to get me to dispel the beliefs I had about myself but they just run too deep. Nothing she could do or say, unless she weathered my storm indefinitely, would get me to believe on my own that I am a person worthy of love.

So up until last night, I have been trying to change myself to receive love. I have been working so hard to not be a dog anymore, to not hyper-attach anymore, to let go more easily, to not become so depressed when people leave me. I believed that all of those things are just too shameful and I can’t be loved like that, and people won’t want to stay with me if i’m like that. But last night after accepting myself as I was where I was, God only drew me in closer and reminded me that there is love, even for me, at His table.

He loves me even though I am a dog. He knows that for now, like the Canaanite woman, I was brought up in a world that because of who I am, I am labeled as less than, and that I have accepted that as truth. Because I see it as my truth God showed the Canaanite woman and me that no matter who I am, or what I believe about myself, if I believe He can then He will. He will help me, He will save me, and He will love me.

And ironically as only God could, in his infinite and wonderful sense of humor, I discovered that today is national dog day.

I love my God.