Father God has always used buildings, houses and land as a representation of my mind. At one point it was a tower with no door (think Rapunzel) that eventually got crushed beneath the feet of Jesus and transformed into a castle (beautiful but defensive) and one day, unexpectedly this castle was transformed into a palace (because I no longer required the thick defensive walls) … I figured that’s where it ended. I was wrong.
I’ve been feeling like a total failure recently… It’s coming up to three years since I entered the Mercy program and I don’t have a shiny “My life is AMAZING and I’m totally well” testimony like everyone else seems to. Honestly things are a bit crap. I’m in therapy, self-harming, my eating habits are dreadful and I’m dissociating frequently. Whilst I know I’m a million times better in a ton of ways than I was this time three years ago I feel like from the outside it probably doesn’t look like it. I’ve been feeling like I’m totally letting down the organisation that helped me so much and more importantly I’m letting Jesus down…. I should know better. I should be better. I should have a shiny story like the girls in the books and on the blog posts but I don’t and it must be my fault.
In psychology, we’ve just learnt about a man called Carl Rogers. Rogers suggested we have a “self” (who we are) and an “ideal self” (who we want to be). If these two selves are two far apart from each other it causes dysfunction. This has been my problem and this is what I’ve chosen to change. Ideally I’d be in a position freedom from anxiety, self-harm and be totally healthy…. Ideally that would have happened by now…. But it hasn’t…. BUT maybe that’s okay… Maybe I just need to change my ideally? Looking at other people and aspiring to be like them, obtain their approval and achieve perfecting will drive any person insane. I’m choosing not to do it anymore.
I’ve been listening to the Matilda soundtrack recently and there’s a song in it called “My House” and a section kept jumping out at me but I couldn’t explain why…
“Through this window, I can watch the seasons change.
By this lamp, I can read, and I – I am set free.
And when it’s cold outside, I feel no fear.
Even in the winter storms, I am warmed
By a small but stubborn fire,
And there is nowhere I would rather be.”
Today on the bus home from college I realised why. I’ve moved house. I no longer have a giant glamorous palace, neither do I need one. Right now I have a small, maintainable, comfortable, peaceful, slightly fragile cottage. Other girls might have huge mansions, palaces or whatever. I don’t. I won’t be distracted by looking left or right any more. I am in a storm and maybe sometimes a window might get damaged but that doesn’t make my testimony any less powerful… Even permanent looking damage is repairable. It doesn’t make me worth less than anyone else. I’m kept going by my “small stubborn fire” …. My drive to survive, my drive for more, my drive to be well enough to be in a position to help other people. My life might not look or sound incredible or impressive to others but that’s okay. I think it’s pretty incredible.
“It isn’t much but it is enough for me”
(Nearly) Three years on from entering the Mercy house I can stand proudly and say these things. I’m Victoria Louise. I’m a child of God. I’m a wife, a nanny, a student. I love craft, children and animals. I have mental health issues rooted in trauma. Life is painful and I feel hurt. I will overcome the struggles eventually because Father God knew my name before I was even conceived. He calls me “Victorious Warrior” I can be real. I can be honest…. I couldn’t have done that back then.