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“I can’t not explain myself, I’m afraid sir,” said Alice. “Because I’m not myself you see.” – Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.

Today I got mad.

Really mad. I got mad because I just want to feel normal again. I don’t want to have to work through things. I don’t want to feel inadequate or fake it until I make it. I want to be whole again.

Today I got mad.

Because I want to feel in control again. And be able to give advice on parenting, and things like colds- and not have insight on PTSD, and depression, and anxiety.

I want to be funny and not worry that I offended anyone. I want to sleep at night and not be tired all day. I want to to be real about shallow things like Mom Jeans and laugh about people who post pictures of themselves exercising so I can send pictures of “real me” exercising to my friend Brit.

I want to feel present in my life. Not like I’m watching through the glass like I have since Sunday.

Since Sunday I’ve allowed all these thoughts- or A.n.t.s( automatic negative thoughts- suck) into my stream of conscious and under my skin. And I’ve become so tired again. And low.

It’s always like that after I’ve had a good day.

Saturday was a good day…

Then I had a couple of how low can you go days. That’s being real.

So I got mad. And it ends now.

Right now.

I refuse to allow these a.n.t.s to infiltrate my mind. I refuse to allow the ways I’m inadequate define who I am.

So I’m different.
So I have off days.
But I have good days, and for a while there weren’t many of those.
And some days I don’t have a lot to offer,
But most days I can find beauty in small things I used to take for granted.

I don’t take anything for granted anymore.

Not when I’ve worked so hard to live.

Today I got mad.

And then I thought. And I prayed. And I looked inside.

And I began to clear out all those cob web thoughts and saw somethings with clarity.

And I became grateful.

And it surprised me. Because I never expected it.

I want a lot of things.

But if I hadn’t been there…

If I hadn’t known a dark night of the soul…

If I hadn’t loved and lost and been broken…

If I hadn’t watched the fierce love of my love living his vows…

I may have never known the tremendous flood of hope and overwhelming love of God.

If I hadn’t lost his voice during the dark*, I may have taken it for granted.

Which I won’t. Ever.

If I had never known that loneliness I would never have gained insight into people who don’t know Him. Don’t know that life shattering Love.

But I do. And it changed my world.

It broke me. But it also changed the way I live. The way I love.

A life of fresh eyes.

There will still be low days. And mad days. And a lot of days where I long for that wholeness again.

But until then I am so grateful that I can watch my children when I get home through the window. That I can watch them grow and live. That I can watch them play.

I am grateful I can feel. That I can feel anger. And passion. And remorse. That I can feel empathy for real pain.

That I can see God working in me. And know He is there.

I may not totally be myself. But I am alive!

I. Am. Real.

*i talk about my Dark Night of the Soul in an earlier post if you are confused…

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