Not Again

I was reading a blog post this morning and the writer asked a question to their readers. They asked them “what is it that you fear the most?” I answered with the first of the million things that popped in my head. I fear losing myself…again. I don’t have any shame in the fact that yes, I lost myself once. But the more I think about that, the more I realize that I couldn’t lose something I never knew.

Maybe I lost a piece of myself, or a spark of who I was to become. I lost whatever it was that I had of myself. Let’s put it that way. In the midst of someone else’s problems. Due to choices they made which happened to effect me. I lost it . I lost it all. I don’t want to go back here. That is what I fear.

I don’t sit around and think about it all the time. I don’t dwell on what happened anymore. I don’t stress that I may end up like that again. I just don’t like to think about it. It is a very vulnerable feeling. Hopeless in fact. I like hope. I don’t want to feel like that again. With the Lord’s help and guidance, I worked hard to get out of that place.

Here I am on the other side of it and it still lingers. Just last night when I found a necklace that my son had on his dresser that belonged to his sisters I visioned him sitting in a prison cell like his biological father. Isn’t that horrible?  I asked him why it was in his room. Thankfully he told me the truth and said he found it in the hallway. He knew it wasn’t his,but he kept it anyway. We have talked about finding things and returning them to an adult is the right thing to do. He likes to keep things he finds.  Isn’t that where “finders keepers” came from?

He told me the truth and I prayed that he would. I am thankful and grateful that he did. He knows better. He had it on his dresser. He wasn’t hiding it to pawn at the pawn shop like my brain took off with. I immediately thought of the worse case scenario and my sprint running brain took off.  Praise God, I know how to bring it back to reality. That’s one of the things I couldn’t do when I lost myself before.

The reality of my story is that he does have a father in prison. He does not remember him. He does not know the extent  of what life was when he was born. I’m relieved that he doesn’t know, and I’m saddened to know that one day he will know.  I don’t want it to define anything about him. I don’t want him to attach anything to do with his fathers choices to his life. That is more of my fear than of losing myself. Of them not knowing who they are because of the situation.

I worry about my girls too, but I don’t feel as if it will affect them in the same way. They were around him longer. They don’t remember him. They were infants when we split up. He was still around though, until they were around one and a half years old. I’m glad they dont’ have memories of it. All they have is memories of me. Of my family. Of their daddy who we met when they were four. I alone, and now our family of 6 is all they know.

My son is youngest, yet he is most curious about things. He’s the one who’s asked questions about the past. How they were born if I hadn’t met their daddy. (My husband) I tell them the truth as easy to understand for him (and them) as possible. They know I wasn’t married when they were born. They know I had a boyfriend. They know he made bad choices.

Later he started asking more questions. He knows that he is in prison now. He knows that he has a long sentence. He knows that drugs put him there. He asked each one of these questions on his own. I never volunteer any information. I will answer what they ask. Honestly. I always will.   He is now 9 and has been asking periodically for a couple of years now. The girls have only asked a few times in the last couple of years. Only after he started asking.

He is the one I’m afraid will be like him. He is just like him. He looks like him. He talks like him. He laughs like him. He loves like him. His personality is similar. He even walks like him sometimes. Isn’t it crazy that traits pass on like that? That being around them has noting to do with it?  So, when I found the necklace last night; it crossed my mind if he would be like him in that aspect too.  All the “what if’s”.

What if he does end up like him? What if I end up having to fight for him against drugs or any other addiction? What if he steals from me to support his habit? What if he just steals for the enjoyment of it? It could happen! What if I have to live life with knowing he’s in prison. How will I deal with that? How will I sleep at night? How do I not lose myself in trying to save my kids from this world?

See the cycle here? In them losing themselves, I will lose myself?  I can’t do that again. I can’t let myself. I can’t. I pray that I never have to experience these things with my children.With anyone for that matter. I don’t wish all that on anyone. I don’t have any enemies (besides the devil and his people) but if I did, as the saying goes; I wouldn’t wish this on my enemies either.

I can’t think about these things. Yes, they may be a possibility. Yes,it is the reality of our lives. They will know the whole truth one day. I am not angry anymore about what happened. I can tell them without judgement how things went. I am glad that I will be able to support them emotionally because I no longer have an emotional attachment to what happened then.  I found my way out of that.

I can’t go back. I can’t fix anything. I can’t make it one second easier to bear. I can only deal with what is going on now. I can only show them the wrong way to deal with it. I attached myself to another person (their biological father) and in doing so it destroyed me as he destroyed himself.  That is all kinds of messed up. I will no longer value myself through another human’s eyes.

My worth is found in God alone. I am not worthy of His love. I am not at all. I have been blessed way beyond measure. Its is only because he enjoy’s blessing me. He loves me so much he wants good things for me . He wants me to know my worth in His eyes. Not anyone else. That isn’t easy. Especially when you’ve done it all of your life. Opinions of others dictated how I felt about myself. So needless to say, I was useless and worthless. Ugly and I would never be loved like I longed for. I was wrong.

I am loved like I longed for, but only by Jesus. No man will ever love me like Jesus does. No other human can possibly fill that emptiness inside of our hearts that long for someone to love us unconditionally. Not even our parents can love us like that. It’s as close as we can understand, but it’s so much more.

I may have thoughts that creep in my mind that try to take over due to fear of the future. Due to things in my past. I now have the knowledge that all of that stuff has given me. I have Jesus. So whatever situation may arise; I can deal with it with my identity attached to Him instead of my circumstances. The battle may knock me down, but my God has won the war! I will not lose myself. Not again.

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