Thursday, September 30, 2010

Gianna Jessen

"I didn't survive to make others comfortable. I survived to shake things up a bit."

"Don't mess with me. My Father runs the world."

I am weaker than many of you. If you pay attention. If you listen. I have much to offer. The world that doesn't see or understand, could, if you only hear the courage and strength within me.

Hated from conception. Yet loves herself.
I was loved at conception. Loved at birth. Loved by many. Hurt. Used. Abused. And still can't love myself.

Can God make abuse beautiful?
I see how Cerebral Palsy can be beautiful.
I see how much suffering can be made beautiful, but all that happened to Steph, can it be made beautiful?

If all of that shit hadn't happened to me, I wouldn't be who I am... And I am beautiful.
Paul says God will compensate for all of the suffering. He will make it Good.
Dammit. He better.

This woman seems to have found her way...

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I am a survivor... and one day...

This chart:
was shared on the After the Silence board.

As I read through the different columns, I saw that I have been a victim... still am sometimes... and I felt compassion for myself. My feelings of anger at religion? Make perfect sense in context. And I won't stay there.

But what I saw, the incredibly powerful, AWESOME feeling...
I AM a survivor. I fit very nicely into that column. I've moved and progressed. And there IS more.

One day, I will be a Thriver.
People have traveled this road. They've made it.
I will too.

Monday, September 27, 2010

A walking contradiction

I don't find much comfort in scriptures... never have... well, not true... I find the same amount of comfort in scriptures that I find in other books. Sometimes things pop out to me, and I know, "this is true for me, right now," and I like that.

Today's quote come from 2 Ne 5:1-5

  1 Behold, it came to pass that I, Nephi, did cry much unto the Lord my God, because of the aanger of my brethren.
  2 But behold, their aanger did increase against me, insomuch that they did seek to take away my life.
  3 Yea, they did murmur against me, saying: Our younger brother thinks to arule over us; and we have had much trial because of him; wherefore, now let us slay him, that we may not be afflicted more because of his words. For behold, we will not have him to be our ruler; for it belongs unto us, who are the elder brethren, to brule over this people.
  4 Now I do not write upon these plates all the words which they murmured against me. But it sufficeth me to say, that they did seek to take away my life.
They were abusing him. Saying mean things. Hurting him. Beating him. They wanted to take away his life. If he had backed down and given them all the control they wanted, I imagine they wouldn't have had any reason to be angry. If he had let them control him, he would have been a slave, but he would have lived. He felt helpless. He didn't know what to do. So he prayed.
5 And it came to pass that the Lord did awarn me, that I, bNephi, should depart from them and flee into the wilderness, and all those who would go with me.
How many times have I been warned that I should get out? Depart from an abusive relationship, but I stay. God wouldn't tell me to leave my husband. The church says stay and "endure to the end". And then they say, turn over your fucking control to us, or the abusers, or whatever, so that you stay and be what God wants  you to be. And so I did.

Only God gives us warning. In our hearts, he lets us know, "This isn't right. You need to get out and get away." It is easy to dismiss His warning with so many people talking so loudly about what THEY think God wants ME to do.

Nephi left. He got out.
He didn't have contact with his abusers ever again.
And that was what the Lord wanted.

It doesn't really matter what all of the other people think, and how they want to judge my actions. I have to trust me and trust the Lord, and do whatever I have to do to keep myself safe and to find peace.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I'm silly.

I get paid in royalties. I design stuff, and if people buy the stuff, I get paid. I get paid quarterly.
This morning, running the report to see how much this check will be.

It was double what I expected.
I know MOST people would get really excited.
Not me. I had a panic attack.

What did I do wrong? How could it be that much? I'm greedy. How could I possibly ask for that much money? I'm not worth it. I didn't earn that much, and... blah, blah, blah...

Where does this stuff come from?

Lies. Its all lies.
The truth is, if I ran the report wrong... I'll fix it... No big deal.
The truth is, I designed some dang good stuff. People like it, and they bought way more than I was planning.
The truth is, I'm not greedy. People who are greedy don't set up a pay schedule like I have. They like the guaranteed money.
The truth is, I'm not asking for that much money... That was the agreement we came to when I started working.
The truth is, I AM WORTH IT!

Really... nothing to panic over...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Would you believe me if I said prayers are answered?

I'm not sure who this person is... The one that I am becoming... But sometimes she SCARES me.

Sunday dinner. I've been going every week since I moved out when I was eighteen. When I got married at nineteen, I brought the hubby along. When I got divorced, I went alone. When I started dating, I brought the boyfriend along until he was the hubby, and then we went together. There are certain things I say, and certain things I don't say. Only this week, I said the things that I don't say.

I'm questioning the church.
I got a text from a "dear friend" saying he was concerned about me, and asked me to please read Alma 30, as he thought there were parallels in my life. Silly me. I read it. And guess what? There were parallels.

It turns out I'm an anti-Christ. I believe more of what Korihor said than what Alma said.
I shared that with my parents.
Then I went on to tell them that I thought President Monson is a very arrogant man.
AND that trying to live this "gospel" is making me miserable.
I have had TWO bishops tell me that going to church isn't good for me. They told me to stop coming. I had a really hard time listening to them. I felt so guilty...
My dad asked if there was anything about meetings that is good.

"No. Well... sometimes I really like pointing out to people that what they are saying is really wrong... but I don't think that counts, does it?"

Who the hell is this person?

At that moment, food was ready, time to eat. Conversation over. There was more I would have liked to say, but I'm also really glad I didn't:
The two bishops that said, "Don't come," were really good for me. I was dying, and they showed they cared more about me than a stupid church. Unfortunately, Campbell got released and this new guy is just like all of the other stupid drones. Quoting shit at me while never listening to a word (or might I add the spirit).

Paul and BJ have both shared the thought that maybe he was called to be bishop FOR me. I was struggling with doing what was best for me (not going), and once he was called, no more struggle. Easy.

I've never felt good reading the scriptures. There are parts and quotes that I really like, but... a testimony that these things really happened and they were really translated... I don't know. Overall, I've never gotten that warm, fuzzy feeling. The only feeling I have felt is a lessening of guilt, because I was actually doing what I was supposed to be doing.

I find peace when I read things about Buddha, and the ideas expressed there seem more true than what I hear at church. I like the way I feel when I read what Thich Nhat Hanh has to say.

As I was leaving, my mom said, "You are a GOOD person. Don't let anyone tell you you aren't."
Should I have shared with her that I don't believe in good and bad? Probably good that I didn't.

I came home a MESS. Oh dear, what have I done? Stressing 'cause I said too much. Stressing 'cause I didn't say enough. Wondering if I said what I was really feeling or was I just being ruled by emotions. (I'm angry... and I know it.) Will they hate me? Will my mom be sad? Will my dad be mad?

Those last three questions, "Will they hate me? Will my mom be sad? Will my dad be mad?"
Seems those three things still RULE my life. With an iron fist.
I'm a five-year-old little girl terrified to tell them what happened, what I'm thinking, what I'm feeling, etc. because my mom will be sad and my dad will be mad.

I don't want to live like that anymore.
I don't want them to be mad or sad, but... I won't try to control their emotions anymore.

The back and forth inside my head was maddening. I got the sudden and strange idea to listen to Beethoven's 9th Symphony. The first three movements sounded like chaos to me. I cried, because I felt the music pounding in my crazy head. Then it got to the last movement. "Ode to Joy"
"O friends, no more these sounds! Let us sing more cheerful songs, more full of joy!
Thy magic power re-unites
All that custom has divided,
All men become brothers
Under the sway of thy gentle wings.

Whoever has created
An abiding friendship,
All who can call at least one soul theirs,
Join in our song of praise!"
I think my life is currently in the first movement. Its loud and chaotic and... well... messy sounding.
I look forward to getting the 4th movement. FEELING that joy and that peace...
Being ME, no matter what that looks like.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

thinking, praying, pondering, reading, studying, wondering, feeling, hoping, yelling, screaming, crying

I'm spending a lot of time thinking, praying, pondering, reading, studying, wondering, feeling, hoping, yelling, screaming, crying... and well... I'm trying to figure out what to do about the church.

I don't go anymore. Its not good for me. But I still can't get away from it.

I'm angry at the things that have been said to me. I'm angry at the things I was taught. I'm angry that when I try to talk about it, people excuse it... tell me I'm the one that has misinterpreted things, I'm the one that is wrong, only... the thing is, I have seen lots of other people "misinterpret" what has been said come to the same damn conclusions I did. Telling me its my problem (and therefore no one else has to take any responsibility) is not okay with me. I have been taking responsibility for a lot of people's shit for a long time, and I just won't do it anymore... even if the person dishing the shit is "called of God".
Like I said, I'm angry.

There are things about the church that have brought me comfort. I don't want to throw those things away. Some of the talks and quotes from church have been helpful. Some of the quotes and talks from other places have been helpful too, but I don't go around thinking that Wyatt Webb speaks for God. Wyatt Webb speaks for Wyatt Webb, and he says some things that ring true for me. I believe in truth. I don't care where it comes from.

I believe in God and miracles. I have seen amazing things happen in my life that I can't explain. I have had strength given to me that was not my own. I feel a connection to the world around me and to some people that I can only describe as a spiritual connection. I have felt guided in ways that again, I just can't explain.

I can see the value in many teachings of the church. Word of Wisdom. Makes sense... especially since I have so many addictions already... But then, my addictions aren't covered in the Word of Wisdom... Fasting is supposed to be a really good thing for the spirit... When they talk about addictions in the church, it usually triggers the hell out of me. They talk about having self-control and not giving in to wants and desires. My addictions have always been about self-denial. Drugs didn't phase me... starving myself was much better.

I don't believe that the church authorities are speaking for God, because then I would be angry at God, and I don't wanna be. I don't believe in a God that says trials are for my own damn good and I should be grateful for them. I don't believe in a God that insists that I take abuse, because that is what Christ did. I don't believe in a God that sits in judgment of me (or anyone else).

I still have a lot of questions, but I no longer believe that I will find answers only if I am obedient to self-serving shitheads.

I'll be true to myself, and that is when I will find answers.

So, what am I trying to say here?
I'm finding what works for me.
I'm taking the things that I like, and leaving the rest behind.
No one is going to like everything that I choose... And I don't want them to.
Choose what works for you. And go with it.

All I can do is be honest with what I think, what I feel, who I am in THIS moment.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Thank God for brilliant friends

I shared my heartbreak.
My worries.
My shame and guilt.
In one sentence, she brought me back to reality.

And just like that, I was calmer.
And I could think better...

She's freaking amazing.
Does she understand that??

Friday, September 10, 2010

some good cynical sarcasm

I found a bunch of quotes by an author named Terry Pratchett. He is a satirist who writes fiction. And I think I agree with him on a lot of things:
"It was so much easier to blame it on Them. It was bleakly depressing to think that They were Us. If it was Them, then nothing was anyone's fault. If it was us, what did that make Me? After all, I'm one of Us. I must be. I've certainly never thought of myself as one of Them. No one ever thinks of themselves as one of Them. We're always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things."
"I'll be more enthusiastic about encouraging thinking outside the box when there's evidence of any thinking going on inside it."

"It could not be happening because this sort of thing did not happen. Any contradictory evidence could be safely ignored"

"Men should die for lies. But the truth is too precious to die for."

“The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they’ve found it.”

"Give a man a fire and he's warm for the day. But set fire to him and he's warm for the rest of his life."
oh the joy I find in some good cynical sarcasm

Monday, September 6, 2010

perfect record... no more

I have been riding horses for more than two years now.
BJ has often marveled at the fact that I have never fallen, never been thrown, and have never been injured.
Especially with the way I ride. Running whenever I can. All day long. Pushing everyone (Sunny, me, BJ, and Bo) to their absolute limits.

I can no longer say I have never been thrown from a horse.
We were riding up above Kamas, just off the Mirror Lake Highway. There was a stretch of trail just perfect for running in. I let Sunny go first, running FULL speed. It was awesome.
I saw the stream up ahead. Decided I did not want to approach that quite as fast as we were going. I wasn't sure what he'd do.
He'd either:
  • Jump it, which was a BIG jump, and I wasn't sure I wanted to do that.
  • Run through it, which would have been okay.
  • Stop entirely.
Jumping it and stopping take two entirely different postures. I couldn't prepare for both.
I pulled back on the rein to get him to slow down. That put me a little off balance.
He stumbled. I flew over his shoulder, did a flip and landed on my back.
His hoof grazed my face... just enough to give me a black eye and a bloody nose.

I remember the thought as I landed was, "Not so bad," and then, "OH SHIT!"
BJ was far enough behind me that he couldn't see me. He says he heard the air go out of my lungs. And came upon me bloody and gasping for air.He was scared of internal injuries. I couldn't tell him what hurt (other than my face), because I didn't know. I was able to pull myself up onto the horse, but I couldn't keep myself balanced. Every time Bo would start to trot a little faster, I'd see stars again. My hands and feet would go numb, and I thought I was going to pass out.

I am very gifted at not passing out when I feel like I am going to. I kept consciousness and within an hour was telling funny stories. Only I kept forgetting what I was saying. The words got all jumbled. Which made me laugh at myself even more.
There was a part of me that felt really bad for falling. I was worried he wouldn't let me ride anymore. (He had once told me if I ever got hurt, I was done. It turns out, he mean, if I ever got hurt because I was acting out on eating disorder schtuff, I was done.) I felt bad because we ended the ride with a lot of daylight left... which I hate to do.

There was another part of me that was dang proud that I had just fallen off a horse. Kind of like a "badge of honor". What horse person has never gotten hurt by a horse?

Now, I'm totally legit.
And I think I'm healing quite nicely.