I was invited into argument recently. It was tempting and juicy, challenging my character as a person as well as the experiences I have had and the knowledge I have gleaned from them (or have not gleaned, in the opinion of the other).
The truth is, I am seasoned in the art of self-preserving argument. I was raised in it by the traits of a loved one who, rest his soul, trained me up in it. I have known, my whole life, the pain of being accused of being less than I am. Of my motives being false. Of my heart or mind being deceived. All for funsies. (Doesn’t that sound fun?)
Yes, the truth is, I have spent numerous occasions throughout my life wondering whether I ever saw myself correctly at all. Because when they are coming from someone you love so dearly, the accusations carry such ridiculous weight. It can take days, weeks, months to shake them off.
So It Happened
So it happened that somebody else did that to me recently. It was as unfair here as it was in the prior predicaments, and as untrue.
Of course you probably know, I am now a therapist. I help people with this type of thing regularly. But here I was. Vulnerable and human, and triggered. Having incorrectly learned from my own faulty experiences that saying anything at all just adds fuel to the fire, I was stuck.
I’ll Listen For You
A few years ago I met the most beautiful soul. She is twisty and complicated and always says more –in meaning, not words–than I expect. It is the greatest compliment I have ever given myself, to call her my soul twin.
She has leaned hard on me in recent days. Her path is pain-ridden like mine, the messaging she received so similar. And yet she shines. In all God’s glory, this woman shines.
So leaning back in, I asked her. Not for advice, though she is qualified to give it. But for her to listen for me. Because I was upset and in that state where I just could not hear God.
I have been thinking a lot since that interaction. My friend did hear God for me and did deliver to me some deliciously empowering instructions from the ONE who LOVES ME. And it has called to my attention, perhaps now more than ever, how much we need each other. How badly we need just one person to hear our struggle without naming us with it. And I want you to know.
When it is you. When it is your heart that is hurting. When it is your belief or your identity or your calling or your purpose or your belonging in this world in question. When YOU are under attack.
I will listen for you.
I just want you to know that.
Jennifer DeBrito,CSP CCLD, CCBE was a Doula and Childbirth Educator in Colorado Springs. She authored Expectant Parents Workshop: Devotional and created the Christian Childbirth Class Expectant Parents Workshop. With a passion for all women in every stage of life, Jennifer now works as a Master Splankna Therapist, and serves the community as founder of Eden’s Promise, LLC and their nonprofit project, Adopt-A-Mom.