A friend of mine asked me to write a paragraph for her High School girls bible study. I thought maybe I would share it here too. She asked me to describe myself the best that I could…
Who Am I
I am a sinner, saved by grace. I am a girl who makes mistakes every single day and curls up on my Abba Daddy’s lap every single evening for His comfort and love to overpower my fears. Once upon a time I was living a comfortable “dream” life. I had a job that I loved and a plan for the future. Then I went to Haiti and everything changed. I saw things I would never forget, heard voices that now make up the soundtrack to my life. I held frail babies that I had only ever seen on late night infomercials. All of the sudden my comfortable life became very uncomfortable. I could not return to life as I knew it, I longed for more, I longed for meaning. Now I am a girl who lives every day with a purpose and a passion. A girl who gets to wake up and do exactly what I was created for, not because I am good enough for the honor but because He is good enough to be able to use me anyway. I am a girl, a sinner, a broken mess and I am forgiven, free and blessed beyond belief.
The last few months I have spent here in the States have been the most difficult of my life. The truth is that seeing Haiti every single day is traumatic, and it should be! It should break someone down to see starvation, death, poverty and despair. Before my counseling I thought that I shouldn’t be traumatized by those things. That I should be strong enough to hold it together. Instead I learned that I am strong enough to let it break my heart! I SHOULD cry when I see things that break my heart. I am allowed to feel fiercely. I worked through a lot of guilt for feeling trauma over something I felt like I shouldn’t be “allowed” to be traumatized by. No one in my family was killed, my house didn’t fall down. I didn’t witness the horrific things that other people did. I felt that I shouldn’t be allowed to be breaking down the way that I was. But I was. So I tried not to. I forced myself to dry tears when starving children knocked on my gate. I threw myself into anything and everything I could do to keep busy. I did everything I could to distract myself from feeling anything at all. Obviously that can never work for very long. When I did break down it was painful and raw. I was at my lowest of lows. Talking and sharing about everything was exactly what I needed. I was reassured that my trauma came from a deep place inside of me. A place so filled with love for Haiti that I couldn’t separate her from myself. I was grieving for a country that I loved and the fact that it would never be the same. I was grieving for the line that had been drawn, life before the earthquake and life after. I was crying for the things that I loved and the things that were lost. And I was ALLOWED. A person can’t force themselves not to feel something. I couldn’t make myself strong when I really wasn’t. I’m still not.
I had a lot of help and I am in a better place than I have been in a long time but I am also in a position of realizing that this is a continual journey. It’s still going and will still be years from now. But the journey doesn’t have to be painful, it can be filled with joy and tears, beautiful days and nights of fear. That’s life, a beautiful life. The life that I was chosen for and blessed with. Not because I am worthy but because He is mighty!
My plane is boarding, off I go. Home to my life, my babies and my purpose. Thank you Jesus!