Alf SantosYou’re lying awake on what is another sleepless night. How you wished you could just stay sleeping. But you’re interrupted by a harsh reality that is your life. It’s another 2am. It’s another lonely night. It’s another battle inside your head that pulls at you, like a tug of war. These voices that creep…
Hi all! I’ll be back to writing again in about a week or so. I had quite a fall on Sunday. Fall backwards down three stairs and whacked my head on the cement. Got a bad concussion. Haven’t been able to go to work yet and am not expected to get better for about a week. Have to go back to the doctor on Friday for a follow up and see if I need any brain scans done. I’ll be back when I can think again. Until then, take care.
What makes a person stronger, love or pain? This is a debate I have seen going on between a few people on Facebook over the past few days. It is also a question in which I now sit and think about. What does make a person stronger? Love? Or pain?
Honestly, I truly believe pain makes a person stronger. When one experiences love, they tend to stay within their nice little comfort zone and everything remains happy…..happy….happy……It’s all a sappy, happy love story right? How do you get strong through that? How do you get strong by always being in your comfort zone?
When one experiences pain, they are forced to grow through it in order to overcome it. Reflecting on my life right now, I know that had my parents not passed away, family and friends not abandoned me, and depression not come upon me, I wouldn’t be as strong as I currently am. I wouldn’t have the strength to overcome my depression and continue living my life. I have grown tremendously through my grief and pain. These very things have taught me how important love is, as well as how to show love to someone. I have also learned how to openly express feelings and pain to people. I can now talk about my painful past with others, whereas before this would stay bottled up inside. It is through my pain that I am becoming a mature and strong woman. A woman who will be able to provide for those who are vulnerable because I have been there myself.
While love is a valuable concept and vital to life, it is through pain that we learn and grow. It is through pain that we become strong. It is through our overcoming of pain that our life story is written.
Well, hello again!
It’s me. Your future wife. I was thinking about you today and a smile came to my face. A day dream of you came upon me as I thought about your looks, your kindness, and the love you are able to give to the world. I thought about how I believe God has made us for each other. To comfort and complete each other. My weaknesses are your strengths and your weaknesses are my strengths. Together, we are a couple formed by God.
Darling, I pray for you every day. I pray God guides us both throughout our day so we make decisions that will not only bring us closer together, but benefit our children. I ask God to protect you as you go throughout your day. I know we may not even know each other right now, but I still pray for you and our future together.
I know our marriage will bring together our very bodies and soul. We will become one. Throughout our marriage, I will long to please you in every way. I will also desire to give you children. This is perhaps among the greatest gifts I can give to you, your children.
I can’t wait until I know who you are. You will be the kindest and most amazing man I will ever know. I look forward to saying yes to living the rest of my life with you.
Your Future Wife
It is most certainly time for me to write in my Loving Myself and Others Journal. So, here we go. This entry will mainly be about loving others.
The concept of forgiveness has been on my mind a lot lately. I think about Jesus every day and have been going through the motions as I exist in my fog. Well, yesterday at church I snapped out of it. I sort of went into my own thinking during the service. I was thinking about forgiveness.
So many things have happened to me since my father passed away this spring. I lost friendships. I got hurt emotionally by family. I gained weight. I got severely depressed. The list goes on and on. There is so much bitterness and anger in me when I think about certain friends that left me, or how much I have changed in a negative way. I feel that this negativity is so easy for me to dwell on. It is time for me to release these shackles of bitterness. To stop dwelling on the fact that I do not have parents or friends. To move on.
I woke up from this bitterness yesterday as the Lord spoke to my heart. It hit me (yet again) that I am a sinner. Yes, I sin. I sin every day. I am by no means any where close to a saint and have every right to hell as the next person out there. But, Jesus saved me. I spit words of anger out at Him for taking my parents away from me. Each of these words of anger and hate are what helped drive those nails through His hands and feet. My sins did this to Him and you know what? He FORGIVES ME. He forgives me for being angry with Him at times and slandering Him. He forgives me for being the reason He had to die on the cross.
I don’t feel worthy of this forgiveness. But, I am because He loves me that much. When I enter into heaven and meet Jesus face to face, I want to hug Him, fall down on my knees and worship Him, then ask why He did it. Why He died for a sinner like me who was not worthy of His sacrifice and forgiveness.
Then I thought, If Jesus can forgive me for this, I can surely forgive those who hurt me. I need to forgive in order to move on and remove this bitterness from my life.
So, I forgive all those friends who have hurt me. I understand they did not know how to reach out to me during my times of despair and grief. I understand there were underlying reasons as to why they were not there for me. I forgive them for not being there for me. I pray God helps them feel my forgiveness so that they can also move on with the hurt I may have caused in their life. I pray God restores their hurt and allows them to forget this pain I caused them as they move on. I pray God protects them and allows them to find peace.
If any of you people this effects is out there reading this right now, I forgive you. Please, move on with your life and forget about the pain I may have caused you. Know that you are forgiven, not only by me, but by someone greater as well, the Lord. He loves you and so shall I continue to do as well.
Mom and Dad,
I wanted to tell you both that I am graduating with my master’s degree in special education this Thursday. I am finally done with this degree and soon it will be onto another chapter of life for me. My, how I am growing up right? I hope you are both proud of the woman I am becoming.
Mom, I maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout the whole program just for you. You were always so proud of my academic achievements. Jody gave me the necklace you got when you graduated with your degree from the same university. I am going to wear it on Thursday in honor of you. In a way, it will help me feel your presence there.
I know you both would be so proud of me. I can practically see your smiles and feel your tight hugs and kisses on my cheek as you embrace me saying that you are “so proud of your baby.” I would grin and say, “Stop calling me your baby. I am all grown up!” But, secretly, I would love it because your baby I will always be.
I will miss your actual presence at my graduation ceremony, but I know you will be watching from heaven. I love you and miss you both so much.
Love Always and Forever,
Your Baby Girl
Let’s talk about Mary, the mother of Jesus. We all know that Christmas is about Mary giving birth to Christ, the savior who came into the world to not only teach us how to live according to God’s word but also to save us from our sin.
Mary is very dear to my heart. For certain reasons, of course. Most of you probably don’t know that my real name is Mary Jo. I was named after my grandparents (Mary and Joseph) on my father’s side. I was also named after the spouses in the Holy Family (Mary and Joseph). Mary has always been part of my life as she is part of my namesake and her mother (Anne) is my confirmed name. Also, Mary bore and raised my Savior. So, she plays a large part in my life. Now, let’s get to talking about Mary.
When I think about Mary, I think about how strong of a woman she was. First, she was very young when she was told by an angel that she would bear a son by the Holy Spirit coming down upon her. She not only believed what she was told, but told the angel that she was a “handmaiden of the Lord” and “to let it be done according to his word.” She accepted this challenge knowing that her betrothed, Joseph, could easily stone her to death because she would be found pregnant prior to marriage and accused of the child being that of another man’s. In those days, women were stoned to death for things like this. She could also have faced public humility. She knew all of this, but took on God’s plan for her life. God provided for her as, obviously we all know, Joseph took her in even though she was already pregnant.
Mary has this child and it turns out to be Jesus. She raised this child and let Him venture away from her as He completed His ministry. That is my second point of Mary’s great strength. She was a women who let her son leave her with no way to communicate with Him because she knew He had to carry out His ministry. I know I would have a hard time with that.
Next, Mary not only has this son to love and adore, but she has to accept the fact that her son is also her Savior. She bore Him, but He came to save her and all of creation. That takes strength. Think about how hard that would be. You want to tell your son not to leave you and not to walk among people you don’t know because they could harm him, but you have to because he insists and it is God’s plan. If that were me, I would be constantly worrying about him.
The last part of Mary’s life is where she endures the greatest of her strength. She had to watch her son be sentenced to death and stood at the cross as He took His final breaths. She watched her son be publicly humiliated and endure a painful death. She never left His side. How many mothers could do this? Sit and watch all of this happen to your son knowing that you can’t stop it? I know that I probably wouldn’t be able to do it. Then, not only does her son die, but He gives her to one of His apostles who did not have a mother (John). This apostle is to care for Mary, and vice versa. Therefore, Mary had to leave the site of her son’s death and follow around an apostle she didn’t know for all of her life. She had to follow around a man that her son had entrusted her to. Again..that takes great strength.
In the Catholic Church we know about the seven swords that pierced Mary’s heart (as Simeon predicts when he receives baby Jesus into the temple and tells Mary that a “sword will pierce her very soul”). Mary endured great grief and trials because she said yes to God and bore the Savior of the universe. She certainly carried her cross with strength as she made salvation possible for all humans.
I think about the grief Mary endured during her life and compare it to mine (although, my grief is really nothing compared to what she endured). I take many lessons from Mary. The woman stayed firm in her faith and love for her son and Savior. She didn’t give up. She continued to let God carry out His plan in not only her own life, but her son’s as well.
I pray that as I continue my journey of grief and life, I may have a heart like Mary. That I may keep my eyes fixed on my Savior and let Him carry out His plans for me. That I don’t get sidetracked and distanced from Him. For Mary says it best, “I am a handmaiden of the Lord. Let it be done to me according to His word.”
If I could talk to you one more time, I would ask you why. Why you left me when I was in my darkest moments. Why you see me going through my own personal hell and still don’t contact me. Why you see me wanting to harm myself and still don’t reach out to me. It’s like you never cared about me. It’s like when you told me that you loved me, you never really meant it. It’s like it was all about you. Like the relationship was only about you and your pain. Yes, you had pain, but I just needed support. I just needed someone to be there for me.
Imagine being 25-years-old, single, and forced to deal with the deaths of both of your parents. Imagine being in a place where you don’t have many friends. Imagine being from a family that hates you and says nothing nice to you, nonetheless doesn’t care about your grief. Imagine going through all of this and then losing all your close friends. Walking through this literally on your own. Imagine sitting in a doctor’s office, then a therapist’s office, and telling them that you want to kill yourself and that your plan of action was to take that knife you were using just the other day and slice your wrist wide open. Your plan is to die a slow death and when you are found, you would be lying on your kitchen floor soaked in your own blood. Imagine telling someone that. Imagine telling your therapist months later that you want to start cutting. Imagine that. Imagine telling the same therapist that you don’t care if your plane went down or your car crashed and secretly wish it did. Imagine that. Imagine going through all of these emotions and thoughts on your own. With no one to cry to. No one to talk to. Just imagine that and maybe then you will understand what I am truly going through. Imagine that and maybe you will understand why some days I just want to die.
Dear Future Husband,
Hello again. It is me….your future wife. I am writing to you again because I so long to meet you. I so long for you to hold me and tell me that everything will be fine. To tell me that I will always have you and you will never leave me. I so long for you to hold me as I cry and hear you tell me that it is okay for me to cry. That I don’t need to hold it all in and be strong anymore. I long for you to be there in my bed as I wake up from nightmares as you let me bury my head in your chest and cry as I tell you all about it.
I know…I am probably dreaming or sounding like a “hopeless romantic” right now. I just wish I knew you because right now all I really need is a friend. And what I need most of all is to hear someone speak the words “I love you” to me and mean them.
I can’t wait until the day I walk down the aisle to marry you.
Your Future Wife