Monday, October 15, 2012

Confessions of a Shop-a-holic

This post was my original, but the previous post entitled “Unemployment Soap Box" below sort of came out in the midst of this post. Its incredibly late while I am writing both of these two posts which may explain the some what rant based first post with regards to my unemployment and job creation annoyance within the current election season...

Anyways I feel I need to post about something, or perhaps its more of a public confession. I don’t want to make excuses for why I have done, what I did, but I do think its important and a part of my healing process that I also try to be as open to myself as I write my feelings sitting here tonight in the dark alone. 

Many of you have followed my very painful journey of infertility and the very difficult road I have been on in trying to find my voice and identity as I experience everything that was supposed to be of comfort and security stripped away. My healing process has been slow, but its been an amazing time of transformation, reflection and rebuilding the relationship I have with my husband. 

However, today in a moment of utter humiliation I realized that perhaps losing my job took a much deeper toll on me than I was either unable to recognize or simply chose not to recognize. For the time being I don’t think it really matters which one is the reason. I haven't really blogged much about my job loss and the identity which I had associated with my career. I do believe as everything else fell apart the most painful items took precedent and were the most obvious not only to me but also to others and it was easier to process through what was right at the forefront. What I am about to confess is more or less a symptom or at least the result of many symptoms and it may or may not directly and/or indirectly be related to job loss. But really this is another step in my ability to fully heal and learn to lean completely on my Lord and Savior.

Here we go...

I conceptually understood how much value I put into my position and how much my identity was engulfed in the titles and projects that I was a part of. My career path and trajectory truly consumed the very fabric of who I was and how I would describe myself to others. It was a badge of honor that I could wear and a very protective armor that I could hide behind from the judgements of the world. Lets be honest what is the first thing you ask someone, what do you do? Its how we gage others, its how we begin to place them into our neat little identity boxes. How we start to connect with them based on shared “American” norms of success and perseverance. The American dream in its most basic form is centered completely on the most magnificent rise to the top. Its in our DNA to wrap ourselves in our careers. 

All of that to say, I was broken this afternoon once again, when I had to let go and confess that I am on the verge of destroying our finances, significantly straining our marriage, potentially hurting my husband’s organization, and being unable to pay our mortgage because I couldn’t let go of what was making me feel good for only a fleeting moment. A luxury I had when my identity was wrapped up in the success I was having in my career. 

Shopping for me was a mask to save face in front of others. It was a way for me to pretend that everything was okay. That I hadn’t really lost everything. It was also one of the only things I could count on that gave me feelings. I truly received a high when I purchase something, and when for so long I had been so numb to everything, everything that was in my life and around me. This high of purchasing something I craved deeply because for just a brief moment I knew I was still alive and I fit in with all of these other people, that to me in my confused and hazed state, had it all together. I wanted to be them, I wanted the casual freedom back of not caring about the purchases I made, I wanted the selfish need to please me and only me. I craved it, I desired, it, I needed it...

But today, standing in front of the person I love the most, I have to through absolute brokeness, say I am sorry. I have put us in a position that undermines the very fragile financial state that we have been in since I lost my job. I have to confess the selfish, ugly, self fulfilling things that I did with out any sense of others. I have nothing to show for the destruction that I have caused. Only a closet full of items which are nice, but not necessary. Which did not bring me healing, fulfillment or life. 

I have to say I am sorry because I hurt him and broke the trust between he and I. 

I am broken, I am hurting, and I am asking God to please please remember me. I am sorry for the idols I put in front of the amazing Creator who made me full in His image. I am sorry I am only now learning that my fear consumed me and I couldn’t be transparent and vulnerable enough to allow You Lord to be my only desire, my only fulfillment, my only need. 

I don’t understand the whys, but I am so grateful for Your love and for the amazing love you have given me through my husband who is desperately trying to reach me. 

Tonight, with my baggage in the open I ask my family and friends to help me to pray for us. I have created a mountain which faithfully we can move...

Love a perfectly tarnished child of God

1 comment:

melinda said...

Hey Brenda

This... this is the kind of piece that takes a lot of heart and tears to write. And I feel the weight of it for you in reading.
My dear, I've met you a couple of times and we've hardly had a conversation of more than a few sentences, I think. But i do read your blog, and I pray for you and Andrew as often as you come to mind. And I just wanted to say thanks. Thanks for living hard and for loving hard, and for sharing your heart and letting us walk with you.

You are beautiful, and you are loved. And oh, how God does remember you. Breathe, dear one.