I am in the process of putting my life's story into a book and in the last few days, I have been feeling like I need to write as fast as humanly possible... The reason? My memories are changing.
Social networking sites like Facebook and My Space are all the rage. Many of my friends are out there and they talk about it all the time. I was tempted, but I knew there were two reasons I did not want to go there. #1 - A part of me was afraid that no one from my past would even remember me and I'd feel rejected. But I know the truth - I know that I was never invisible and that my memories of the past were horribly clouded by my pained perspective. #2 - In the past I struggled with an overwhelming desire to reject people I was in relationship with before they could reject me. Deep down, when considering these social networking sites, I would think, "But, if I reconnect with an old boyfriend, will that tempt me to ditch my husband if I'm mad at him?" The honest truth is that I can never say that would never happen, but my husband and I take careful measures to ensure that our relationship is what it should be. The bottom line - I was choosing not to participate in this social networking stuff out of fear. As I thought about it, I decided that I wanted to make a conscious decision this time to overcome my fears.
God has honored that... I was blessed right away with renewed relationships with several people from my early childhood and teen years. Some I haven't seen in over twenty years. They have said the nicest things to me and have shared some of the most pleasant memories with me. I had forgotten so much of what they remembered. As I talk with them, they are reconstructing my past - giving me a fresh and pure perspective of innocence, joy, and youth. Those gaps in time that I do not remember at all are being filled now with bike races, days at the pool, slumber parties, birthday parties, Girl Scouts, crushes, camp and homemade pizza. As I discussed this with my friend today, I'd expressed my excitement over getting to finally experience this stuff. It was then that she said, "I'll bet you experienced it then too but just had too much going on at home to keep the fun memories fresh in your mind." I know that she is right. I did experience fun things as a child, but the pain of the abuse quickly diminished the good stuff. But the opposite is happening today... I am remembering all the good stuff and the bad memories are diminishing. It is a crazy, wonderful, amazing thing.
This is the third time I have gone through Shelter From the Storm in the last year. When I started leading groups a year ago I had a pretty good handle on things. However, I do not think I would be discovering this much profound healing if it wasn't for the study and the continued recovery efforts that I am making everyday. I want to encourage you to keep taking your journey into recovery. It is amazing the way God has been faithful to his word; "Who redeems your life from the pit; Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle." Psalm 103:4-5
I feel an urgency to write this book quickly. I fear that the youth I want to write about will be all but forgotten before I know it. But my story needs to be shared. I want to share it in its entirety so that other survivors will know that they are not alone. God has laid it on my heart to write it, so I know He will allow the memories, feelings and emotions to be real long enough for me to accomplish His work. But it is coming quickly.. a completely renewed youth.