Tuesday, February 9, 2010

What is strength?

I was teased pretty mercilessly as a child. It didn't take very long to figure out that if people didn't get an emotional response from you that they didn't tend to pick on you as much. I learned not to cry, not to show emotion of any kind in large quantities and this not only gave me the power of control but denied them the power of controlling me. This is a quality that I began to look at as a strength. I have worked to teach my children this same "quality". I reward them for times when they stuff their emotions and don't allow others see their pain and banish them to their room if they are crying until they can pull it together. It has come to my attention that this is actually not strength. It is a lonely road that leads to a broken person.

My youngest daughter is the happiest, sweetest little ray of sunshine on the planet and because of that I have never respected her. As I fervently tried to teach her to be as unfeeling as I am she has repeatedly looked me in the eye and told me she loves me and continued on in her loving way to reach out and connect with anyone and everyone without hesitation. I was wrong. Not showing my feelings didn't actually stop me from feeling them. The pain was not decreased by denying it... only deepened by my suffering alone. I pray it is not too late. I want to turn it around. She has been so strong to stand up in the face of all my opposition (bullying... if I'm being honest) and continue to care. True strength is being willing to be vulnerable. The ability to walk away unchanged, uncaring with only your control to keep you warm at night is weakness. I will have to learn strength from my little girl. I am confident it is not the only thing she can teach me... just the beginning.


Tam said...

I am really surprised no one has commented on these last two posts yet.

Just wanted you to know that I appreciate your honesty and being willing to be transparent. I'm thankful you are coming out the other side of this darkness with new hope.

"There is no one righteous, not even one..." Rom. 3:10 I'm so thankful we are made clean by the only ONE who was/is righteous, but it really stinks having to live it out day to day. Just remember you are made new in Christ ~ no matter what the rest of the world says.

It's great to hear that you are persevering even when the days are tough. That's all we can do...and each day is new!

"The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies NEVER come to an end; they are NEW EVERY MORNING. Great is your faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22-23

Mrs. Nikki Blockhan said...

Again, you are amazing. I completely agree with Tammy. You are real, through and through.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed reading your thoughts and totally agree with you about having strength in vulnerability-that is so true and it's amazing what our children can teach us. It has taken me quite some time to change in this area as well, when I viewed it as a sign of weakness for years. Thanks for sharing!

Geoff and Monique said...

I'm thankful everyday that's it's never too late with God! You might try to hide it, but I see your lil' miss ray of sunshine inside of you too!