Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Joel. Michawn. {Part 46 - Trust and Eventual Rising}

I'm not much of a meme-er.  But, I was looking for something specific the other day and ran across a wall of some really great ones.  

Goodness...these are just so where I am right now after all that has happened.  

FYI:  I'm not looking for your encouragement or false hope statements here.  Because...there is one thing and one thing only that we can depend on in this life and that is...we never know what is going to happen.  I've already written the next blog post...it speaks to where I stand on that.  I will post this one first...just know that I don't want your "oh, it's not that bad" or "it sounds like you are wallowing in self-pity" comments.  I don't even want your "it will get better" or "you're being too pessimistic" comments.  

This is just reality right now.  Don't be so scared of reality, folks.  Just sit there in it for a while...admit the reality, accept it...and then maybe eventually you can move forward.  Faith doesn't mean that we don't acknowledge reality.  Faith doesn't only sound like name it and claim it statements or "It'll all be alright."  

Faith involves knowing just where you are, trusting God in that, and leaning on Him no matter what happens...because so often in our lives, it is not up to us what happens.  But He's there...always.

Read each of these.  Before you read my caption, let the image and words of the meme really sink in.  I know that so many of you, also, can relate.  Don't be afraid to acknowledge it...and then sit in it for a while.  Nothing does more damage in the long run than pretending to be OK when you're not.  Be honest.  And don't let others make you feel like you are 'less than' or wrong when you don't 'get over it' within their time table.  You will be able to move on.  And you can still be an optimistic person, even when you are walking through this. But...you have to be honest too...first and foremost.

So...this is where I am.

When our counselor was going through and praying for our souls, he saw a huge bulldozer in the back of my soul...he said it represented major assault, betrayal, harassment, and being stabbed in the back.  Oh boy, has that ever happened the past few years!  Not only does this whole blog series speak to that and the betrayal in my marriage, there were a couple of posts that had those very words in the titles.  I think about these two posts when thinking of these specific words, here and here,  and when I think of this image.  And, this meme really captured how I feel after the past few years.  That picture...so spot on.  The words are just reality.  I don't feel like I have 'trust issues' in general, with everyone.  But I do just now feel like my eyes have been opened wide to exactly how people are...exactly what people are capable of...and exactly how untrustworthy they are and how they can turn on you on a dime.  I had never experienced that to this extent before...guess I'm lucky.  But, I've definitely experienced it and been made aware of this reality now.  That reality is very sad and disappointing.
I had never been hurt before.  Heartbroken, yes...but as a result of a very honest person who truly loved me and always showed it.  Not as a result of foul play or betrayal.  Disappointed by people, yes...but never to this extent.  So many people have shown their true colors and beliefs throughout this ordeal the past few years...it is shocking and eye-opening and heart-breaking that what you thought was really is not at all.  The good things you believed about certain people, the church, certain beliefs and people of faith, etc....it's not what you thought at all.  Joel and I, for the first 10 years, had an incredibly open, never-any-secrets, major teamwork marriage.  I never even imagined him to be capable of something like this.  People often say that about their betraying spouse...and others looking on are like, 'Yeah...we could see he was capable.'  But, nobody thought Joel would be capable of something like this.  Which is partly why I wasn't believed.  It's life-altering to now be put in a situation where everything about him and our relationship is doubted.  And no...not because I'm not forgiving or hold grudges...not because I don't know how to move on; but because his actions, present actions still, even again last night, prove that trust is far, far away...for now, everything is doubted.  Which brings us to this truth...
This is the meme I was actually looking for when I stumbled upon all these others.  This is soooo very true!!  People...do whatever it takes with your loved ones to not ever, ever, ever damage the trust they have in you.  I can honestly tell you that I can count on one hand the people I truly fully trust in my life now.  What do they call them now?  Your 'Ride or Die' people?  Yeah...those are rare.  I didn't used to think they were rare...I thought I could trust basically all the people in my life.  And now I know.  That just isn't true.  I trust very few people now like I did before.  Why?  Because they weren't here for me, even when I asked them to be.  And many were even against me.

Do not destroy people's trust in you.  Unless you are fine with destroying your relationship with that person as well.  Because that is what destroying trust does.

It will go nowhere.  Nowhere.  That is why, until trust is re-gained here within my marriage, there is no moving forward.  It's not possible.  That's why, as the counselor said, whatever it takes has to be done to win my trust back.

The next two just give a clear image of what it looks like to destroy trust.
You might forgive, you might be reconciled, you might gain back total trust.  And God can fully restore.  But, while we are here on this earth, the same temptations and same wrong belief systems that contributed to the broken trust in the first place remain.  Once trust is broken, esp. over and over...instead of a clean, crisp piece of paper, you have a crumpled one.  It's like when you're in a bad car accident, your body might be healed as much as possible on this earth and you may be able to get back to almost complete function...but there will be scars.  There will be damage.  Your body, in certain parts, will be more prone to injury in the future.  That's just reality.

Trust might be broken after even just a one-time offense...it might be completely shattered after just that one time, depending on what happened.  But, the longer trust-breaking behavior goes on and the more it happens (the number of times)...the more trust is eroded.  It literally is like the land that is eroded by the running river...or the coast gradually eroded by the crashing waves.  So, after 3 ½ years (and counting) of these behaviors, these 'mistakes' (read: CHOICES), my trust eraser is just a tiny nub and not even functional.  That's what destroying trust does.

Truth.  We put so much importance in the 'I love you' phrase.  There are other phrases and feelings and expressions of those feelings that actually mean even more...like this says.  There are so many times that someone will say to you 'I love you' and yet be treating you like crap.  Um, lol.  That's not love.
"But...I love you.  I want to do what's right.  I want to gain your trust back.  I want us to be ONE again.  I want to be a team with you."  All just words.  Your true feelings and beliefs and desires ("I want"s) are proven by actions.  Bottom line.

Growth is painful.  And change (I've lived through lots) is painful.  But, being stuck where you know you shouldn't be...there is just no other pain like that.  It's oppression.  And it's terribly painful.  You miss out on so much...because you're stuck.  I'll get into that in more detail with the next blog post.  But, this is so very true.  Your life is on hold...and there's nothing, barring escape, that you can do about it.

There will always be scars.  Scars from all the many behaviors and actions against me that broke trust.  I will be 'seared with' them...many.  I already have many...and I still have many wounds (and still receive many wounds often) that will one day turn into scars too.  But ultimately, this is what will happen...and in many ways already has.  I am a strong soul.  And massive in character and spirit.  Yes I am.
Many of you know how much I love Maya Angelou.  There is a lady who has been following this blog series from South Africa.  We have a mutual virtual friend and she just clicked on my blog randomly one day.  She has been through her own set of trials and has been a great encouragement.  But, I don't know her personally at all.  So, she had no idea of my love for Maya and this particular poem (since high school) when she posted it in a comment to this blog post, written weeks before we went to the counselor.  I was shocked to see it...and see how God used this lady I don't know personally to give me something familiar and already special to me to encourage me and just let me know and remind me in that moment He's here and He sees.  That reminder was so very needed at that time.

A couple of weeks ago I was watching some videos of Maya.  I just love her recitation of this great poem she wrote.

Just like that last image above is true of what is, and what is to come...this is also true.  Bit by bit.  I mentioned in a recent post that tenacity is not on my list of personal weaknesses.  All of the above is reality.  There's no denying it.  Trust is broken.  And it is presently a very challenging time because of that...and will be for quite some time.  I'm not rushing through that.  And it's not up to me to do the right things to regain trust here...it is up to others.  No matter the choices they make though...

...Ultimately, still I rise.

Still I Rise
Maya Angelou, 1928 - 2014

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
  I rise.  

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