Let go

I had just left the theaters from watching Finding Dory & I was thinking of the moral & summary. When all of a sudden, a memory of a text I had sent to a friend earlier flashed back to my mind. The ending reading, “but once it all ends, it hurts like hell.”  The thought crossed my mind immediately, is that what you think letting go is? That if you actually ‘let go’, there will be pain & lots of it??   
Ok. Whoa. Wait. Stop the car, slam the breaks. (NOT LITERALLY)
In a crazy, unintentional chain of thoughts due to a MOVIE, I had unlocked a door of my very own flash backs. All the flash backs of rejection- time & time again, no matter how hard I tried even as a child, my efforts to “control” other people’s acceptance & love for me failed every single time. I would change myself or act accordingly to their liking & it would only work temporarily. Eventually, who was meant to be lost, was lost.  Who I never fought for is still here, to this very day.
In my mind, somehow letting go meant there’d be pain & I didn’t want pain. Because I know pain too well. I flashed back to life as a child when I had no control over anything. What was done to me, what was said to me & what was said about me, how I was treated, how I was raised, who did what & who said what, who blamed me for faults not my own, who molded my personal identity as a child, the teachers who’d said horrific things or the kids who didn’t like the color of my skin.
I could not control any of it, I still can’t. The past is the past. All of that is just a part of me. How I was treated by people could not be controlled.
So somehow, I came into this cocoon of my own protection with walls painted with pain thinking that holding on keeps the hurt away, but day after day, year after year, it’s still the same. Only I’ve tried to gather prisoners through the years & tried to “make” things happen because I had no control as a child. Crazy, right? Oh, but we think this way, we do! We just don’t stop to think of what we’ve done, ignorance is only bliss for a time until we’re forced to face reality.
Then, in a still small voice, I hear “It’s okay, you can let go. You don’t have to hold on to them anymore, those moments of the past. You couldn’t control what happened, none of it is your fault. People choose how they want to treat others & it wasn’t your responsibility to make them treat you lovingly.  Let go, it’s OK. Not even I, God, can force someone to love me or to pay attention to me even though I’ve sent my son to die for them. I get no gratitude from most, but I am not a puppeteer & my creation are not my puppets.  You aren’t alone in this, it’s okay to finally let go now, Amanda. How people act is out of your control, just be OK now.”
Wow. I never once thought of it that way, that God gets treated worse then we do & He knows it & He won’t force us to love Him or even to believe in Him. Wow.
So after a spiral into the past & stuck in a deep, deep place- all because of a movie & a text message- I found the root of my inability to let go.
Here’s to letting go & burning that cocoon with all of those stupid pain-painted walls!!!  (Haha)
Until next time,
Amanda

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So We Meet Again

It has been over four months since I last wrote, I sort of fell off the grid there, didn’t I?!  Well, alot has happened since the beginning of 2016.  I made a very difficult decision on NYE to cut ties once and for all with a certain somebody.

Since then, I have gone through a surge of emotions from anger to sadness & was tempted to start talking to someone else but this particular person has been in my life for years, so they don’t deserve to be a rebound. They deserve a whole me, a ready me. Yet, here April is already in mid shift and I find myself, still, not over that OTHER person.
Maybe it is all of the “could haves”, “what could have been”, “if only”….  But recently I came across a song that couldn’t have been more perfect, talking about all of the “if only’s”, but sadly not in this lifetime.  Maybe it’s because this time last year was when it all began. When my world was shaken & for the life of me, I still don’t know why I chose to let my walls down for them.  My walls are so thick, one can almost sense they are present. But this person- got through. It wasn’t even just a little bit, but slowly through the months, he crept in further inside my heart & in the end, there was nothing to show for it but wasted time. Wasted months & an ignored God. My God. Because he broke through so much that I began to not care. I chose it all, I take my 50% blame in the game I played. I am not an innocent victim, I am the one who let him into my life.
So here I am, in the midst of repair & regaining my relationship with God day by day. Each day does get better, but some days he still crosses my mind.  Here, another point in time through the years is this other person I’ve always known- but again, timing is off. Maybe not ever.
Honestly, I am at a point to where, maybe I should give up on this “waiting game” maybe, sadly, love isn’t for me. Maybe. Because that is what I see, demonstrated through all the relationships that have fallen away.  Maybe…maybe I am just too hurt.  Maybe, I must forgive myself first & learn to let go, to forgive & move forward. Yes. That is exactly what I need to do. 
Until next time,
Amanda

Unexpected

At the start of 2015, I had hopes this would be a year of courage & fearlessness. I can’t put the pieces together just yet, but I’m sure somehow, all of what 2015 gave, that those 2 are there…I hope! Ha.
One thing I can say, is I never expected to say goodbye to the people I had to & I most certainly never expected to have the close relationships that I now do.
Sometimes the unexpected is better than what we actually expected. I can’t quite come to peace with the pain 2015 brought but I have to believe that there is blessing in the unexpected.  This year has been a whirlwind sending me into inner-self adventures, to find the peace within. Having to search deeper than before, finding the Holy Spirit as my inner solstice. My constant, my balance in my pain.
2015.
It’s made me tired. It’s made me weary. It’s made me forget the important things. The biggest distraction of all came this year & I can’t tell you how many times I tried to severe ties. I gave up trying to get rid of someone who clearly wants to be a part of my life.  Yet, somehow, still, I always reach back to my one true constant. God.  I can’t understand any meaning to this madness but one thing I know for sure, I sure in the heck am NOT who I was in the beginning of 2015.  Wiser, more attentive, quieter yet crazier, stronger not weaker.  By crazier, I really just mean that I’m more free. I don’t hold back.  I’ve come to the acceptance of people being two-faced & me just not caring anymore. I refuse to hide something that’s good just because of the talkers. Nah, I’m good.  The opinions of those who pretend to like you are like dust. Meaningless.  Am I over it all yet? Of course not…. But that’s only because the story is far from over.   Many blessings have come this year, goals have been met, prayers have been answered but only through the unexpected.  I am grateful, thankful yet still, am counting down the days that this year is over. Is that a bad thing? No. Because I know life will always give me things I don’t expect but we need those things. Those moments. Those people. Those beginnings & endings. Life is all about growth, what better way to grow then through the unexpected? It’s all worth it. No matter what. It is. Eventually, the pieces come together & you realize what you wanted/needed/asked for has finally come. Through a really unexpected package.  Then, once it’s clear to you, be thankful & expect another. Roll with the punches. It’s life & we’re strong enough to handle what comes our way with God by our side.

Breathe Again

It has been months since I’ve set out to write but I must say that it has been an interesting & busy few months. Being that it is nearing the end of the year, I have begun to reflect on all 2015 has brought. It’s had alot of heartache, but it has also had a lot of long awaited answered prayers, a growing into self, & letting go of meaningless stresses.

I feel as though I’ve been coasting along lately. From family tragedies to break ups, to crazy experiences, to betrayal, to healing, closure, love & forgiveness. I haven’t been speeding OR on pause. Just coasting. Rolling with the punches & accepting that God desires to use me despite my many, many, many, many shortcomings, mistakes & imperfections. Perhaps I judge myself too harshly. Expecting to be better all the time but I’m not. I’ve learned to speak less, share less. Listen more & to be extremely selective & attentive.  To listen to my spirit, when God whispers something to me that ultimately changes a situation or person from night to day, or something about a person but to know when or if to tell them. I’ve learned to not forsake that inner discernment, that inner “knowing”. I’ve learned to be in the moment, to just let things happen as they do, no expectation or anticipation. To be open to anything, to any adventure, any opportunity. To flow. I’ve had to let go of things, thoughts, judgments & people for my health. Some things & people in our life are just there to add more anxiety to our lives.  Worrying is a killer.   Not everyone cares like they appear to, not everyone is genuine with their words to us.  In fact, most actually don’t care & if we aren’t wise, we’ll share our hearts with mouths of running water & cold hands.

Through it all, I still see God remind me of His undying love for me. Tiny moments that remind me God is working & although the road may be tough, His blessings, His favor & His grace follow me. NO MATTER WHAT. I think the person that looks down on me the most is MYSELF & I’m not afraid to admit it because I know I’m NOT the only one. I know we all share similar struggles. I refuse to stay quiet about my imperfections & struggles because someone out there needs authenticity. They need raw truth. They need to know they’re not alone. They need to know someone cares because they can relate. They need to know that they’ll get through it. They need to know that they’re gonna be ok eventually.  This is why I write. This is why I share. Compassion & the Love of God are two things that I know I can give easily.

So I say to you, dear reader, flow. Remind yourself to breathe. Life is a learning experience, so might as well enjoy the ride!  As my good friend always tells me “just Relax Amanda.”   Then, I remember, “oh yeah, that’s right. Relax. Less stress. Don’t worry.” And I put my shoulders down & breathe. 

Two wrongs don’t make a right.

These last few months have been pure growth. What have I learned? Just because someone is very friendly and nice to your face means nothing.  Don’t be stupid and share your past with someone you hardly know. NO MATTER how trustworthy they seem to you. Even if it’s someone you see as a mentor. Nope. Shut it down.
Last year, I made the horrible mistake of sharing something that I should have never shared. As coincidences had it, I met the brother of this so-called friend at MY brother-in-Laws’ bday party. Turned out, he was one of his best friends. A month later, this guy says he couldn’t stop thinking of me since we met at the bday party. So he manages to find me via Facebook & immediately asked me out on a date. Quick much? Yes!!!!  So I obviously turned him down but I WAS still interested. He was a nice guy. Things were great. UNTIL I made the mistake of telling his sister (my supposed friend).  After many months passed, I finally find out what I suspected all along- he told me that his sister told him a bunch of stuff about me. For THREE months I kept silent, every time I’d see this “friend” I’d be friendly but I was no longer happy with this person. Yeah, I chose to be nice & pretend like I didn’t know what she did. I pretended like I didn’t know that she sabotaged everything.  I had stopped talking to her brother for about 6 weeks and then, like clockwork, he began trying to get my attention yet again- but at this point I was fed up with pretending & I had come to the conclusion that had it not been for her telling my secrets, I would be with someone that I shouldn’t be with.  I no longer felt the same way about him but those feelings were starting to wake up again & I knew I had to do what I didn’t want to. I set ground rules & told him I would only be his friend and never anything more. Then, at the same time, I also confronted his sister(my supposed friend). I was tired of pretending & ready to close the door to that season, once and for all.  Her reason was “he needed to make a well-informed decision” & backed it up with “don’t tell me you wouldn’t do the same for your siblings” aha! Well played! However, two wrongs have never made anything right. I got to thinking and realized, she has a point but only within reason. IF my past was ALSO my present, then, Sure- tell- but this in fact was not a current thing & what made matters worse, she even made up stories to make me appear to be worse than I was & am. Hmmm… OK can I just point out that he came back 2 times? Because he must have missed me, right? So yeah, I admit to my mistakes but she surely will keep hers justified. That’s fine by me. Somehow it’s ok to royally hurt someone who looked up to you & trusted you? To make up stories? Who are you? Really? You appear to be a super happy person to everyone you see, but are you really happy? Genuinely? Does it make you feel better about yourself when you cast judgement, lies, hypocrisy & gossip? Is that really all you have to do in life? I really, I mean REALLY thought you were an intelligent, confident, successful & genuinely happy human being. However, truly happy & intelligent people don’t waste their conversations talking about other people.  Why? Because they have more important things to fill their life with.   This facade you carry on will eventually trip you up. The mask you wear will eventually fall off & you’ll eventually pay for all the pain & hurt you’ve caused others.  I will leave you where you are because it is NOT my responsibility to take revenge. I just feel sorry for you, I would NOT want to be on the other side of God’s anger- which is actually the reason why I will ALWAYS remain nice to you. I will forgive you no matter how bad it hurts. My responsibility is to love. Eventually I’ll be ok. Yes, I still thank you for speaking but it doesn’t change the hurt that you’ve caused in my heart.  Time heals all things & the truth always reveals itself.

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Age told her so

*María’s* life began to change. She loved her life but before she knew it, she had a new life that very few knew the details of. She learned quickly to keep her circle tiny & She knew that both worlds couldn’t possibly coincide. Stuck between wanting what was right and behind the thought of settling, that “it would do” and that although not ideal, she was willing to go through the drama to have what she wanted. Because this woman, almost ALWAYS got what she wanted. She had a way with her words that seemed to change things in her favor.
She was listening to her age telling her that it’s gotta happen sometime and maybe all of the items on her list weren’t all that important and she chose to ignore the red flags time and time again because she wanted to be wanted. She so badly wanted to be loved like all the others experience. She was envious and refused to let the thought that “maybe she just wasn’t meant for it” could be true or that “maybe she was never meant to be loved that way” “maybe she was never meant to marry” “maybe she wasn’t good enough”. Hmm… Good enough. Isn’t that what we women struggle with in our minds? We’re consumed with the lie that we’re not good enough, or not deserving of such things? That maybe we’re not “cut out for it” or “love isn’t meant for us” when all we really want is to finally be held like everyone else. So, holding hands with compromise, we lower our standards and begin to accept what used to be unacceptable to us. We begin to break our own rules because, maybe we CAN have it, IF we just give in a little. Yet deep down knowing that it is all so wrong, we push it aside and accept what should sicken us. Slowly somehow dying, our spirit gasping for air- yet we go on. Because age has told us and when all our friends are getting married and having children, yet here we are, still waiting.  Waiting….
When she was once very content in her singleness, somehow one person changed all that and she began to want more than just “waiting”. She wanted what was next and she wanted to make it happen for herself. Disregarding the connection her heart made along the way. Then, she realizes that it’s not too late to back down now, because the real thing is around the corner and she is still entertaining the decoy only her heart might be farther in than it was before. She has a choice to make.  She prays that God would protect her heart but she still hasn’t let go of it, she is still trying to take matters into her own hands if only she’d become fed up & choose to wait just a little while longer. She IS enough. She IS deserving. She IS meant for this but the work must be in God’s hands, not hers. She must surrender it and let go, once and for all.

Purposely & Perfectly Broken

Sometimes the most difficult situations, if we allow ourselves to maintain a learning spirit- can open our eyes. It will reveal answers that you never knew you were in search of, but deep down that inner need to know “why” to EVERYTHING- was really because you were in search of the one true answer- to that ONE question that has always burned within.  That WHY began far before you were even born- in the midst of formation, swimming in amniotic fluid, there was where your answer began. Yes, began.
A purpose so grand that the enemy felt he’d only be successful in destroying you by beginning to plant the seed while you were yet a growing seed yourself, before you could take your first breath. Yes. It’s that serious. This life is far more than what our natural eye can see. It always goes deeper than the surface. More than our own life but whose life we were purposed to change somehow, some way- whether small or huge. So when what you’ve asked your whole life “why” (you personally know what your why is, or maybe not, but I can assure you, your “why” is not the same as anyone else’s. When you finally get your answer, everything will make sense. Even the most horrible of things, it will all fit perfectly like a 5,000 piece puzzle- intricate, difficult and detailed. Then and only then will you truly be able to come to acceptance of all. ALL. WHAT was said- hundreds of times, for years. WHAT was done¬ done. All the wrongs wronged against you- all the ones who took their turn. All the choices you’ve made because of that why. You will come to accept- because for once, you finally understand why. The raging waters inside can finally come to peace. Once you understand why and accept, then you can truly forgive. Forgive them and forgive yourself. Then, with eyes open to a new horizon, you can finally move forward like you’d always wished you could!

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Somehow

Somehow it happened.
It slipped passed my guards.
But maybe I had my guard down so the moment of attack was easy.
Mixed between who I am yet being drawn in the opposite direction.
Partially fighting my way back out, closing the door yet still enjoying the moments that should never happen
Releasing words that should stay in silence
What is happening?
So indecisive.
Knowing what’s right-
But you are not it, but you’re still here.
Knowing I should close the door
But you’re still there.
Somehow caught up in this complicated game when I said I’d never play games- here I am. 
Why a connection?
No no no. Then it made it worse.
What’s happening?
I keep hoping you’ll leave on your own but silently hope you’ll stay.
But if I let you stay, I might just lose it all.
Somehow.
Somehow it happened.
Somehow I need help,
I pray God will close the door
I am too weak to shut it on my own-
Because I want the door open but who I truly am and am continuing into cannot have an open door to you.
Connection, distance, coincidences, familiarities, commons & mutual friendships
Perhaps not by chance but by purpose but what purpose?
A greater purpose beyond what I see?
Maybe this door was broken into,
Maybe the key didn’t come until later.
Somehow.
Somehow it happened.

Arise

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I’ve fought through hell. I’ve fought LIKE hell. To hell (metaphorically) I’ve once been, mesmerized by it’s flames, dancing with wolves with laughter, carelessly while unbeknownst to my once teenage self being devoured from the inside out, beginning with my heart, hitting every organ inside, oh how many times death attempted its final capture. Then- I WOKE UP.  I saw truth, I saw light, I saw hope…. even though there was nothing. I had to start fresh, like a blank canvas, a chunk of clay, an empty sheet of music- waiting to be written.  I had nothing, but my heart knew that life was better in the unknown. So I grew and I broke, time and time again. Those flames came to play many times but each time I came out stronger, with more assurance than before, more determination than before, more anger against this fight for my life than before.  I’ve learned and I’ve healed, trial after trial. Every moment that I found myself on the floor in a pool tears, “Why is it always something?” I’d always ask. Yet time and time again I heard the same thing “what you have gone through, are going through and will go through, you are going to help those women & girls who have experienced the same thing or are experiencing” 
So some how all this is not just for my betterment- but for others. To somehow be chosen to go through everything one can possibly experience, yes I have wished it’d stop, how many HUNDREDS of times I’ve wanted to stop and turn around. How many times those wolves in those flames seemed so much better to my flesh, that kissing all my perseverance goodbye seemed so easy to do- so many times.

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Now, I am living and operating in things that have never been. Things I’ve only prayed about, things only asked for but were just hopes. “The greater the call, the greater the devil”, they say.  Well, crap!  2015 started off with a bang, then the blows came in, one stronger and deeper then before. This last one? OH MY DEAR LORD.  I am not going to lie, I was willing to lose it all- EVERYTHING.  There’s far too much to lose this time around, basically, if I gave it all up- I can guarantee there’d be no going back. I am not over exaggerating!  We all will fall for one reason or another, but it’s God’s strength that enables and empowers us to get back up. Life gets hard. I contemplated staying down, but here and there God called out to me in different ways. He kept reminding me that His hand was held out to pick me up in His strength.  Then I remembered the hell I’ve fought through to get to where I am, how many lives stand in balance if I trashed it all, the precious relationships God has given. Then the fire that tried to burn me alive suddenly became flames to reignite my soul.

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I found strength, I remembered God is with me through the fire.

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I stood up with determination, laughed and said, “ha, that was a good one, nice try- I’m out” and walked away.  Was this a test & did I fail? No, falling never means failing, it’s whether you get back up after the attack or not.
I won. End of story.
Until next time,
Amanda

Unsaid

As odd as it may sound, I am a very trusting person (even tho I only fully trust a handful of people), in that, I believe others to be as I am- who believe in the best even though they know the worst in you. You can present me with the craziest, wildest, most horrifying thing and I will never look at you differently because it’s never my job to judge. I am also a person of my word, when I say I won’t say anything, I mean it. When I tell someone I trust them, it is because I believe their word.  I hate for promises to be broken and I only commit to what I know I can keep. I am a very loving person. Unfortunately, most people do not have the same heart & love as do I. Even more unfortunate, is when you find out that you’ve been outted by the person you least expected.  Yup. It’s a crusher but when you know you have a choice to make- avoidance or accept it and learn from it. Oh how I wish I could have taken the easier route!!!   Things happen in life so we can learn from them, and if you’re hard headed (stubborn like me), that often means learning the hard way. 
So what am I learning? The true meaning of silence is golden.  In short, my life shouldn’t be as open as a book as I’ve allowed it to be…  Because, frankly, words can be turned, flipped and switched (just like the childhood game of telephone)…. Not necessarily by the person who opened their mouth, but the person to which those ears who heard belong to!!  Oh Gossip. You are so juicy, but you cause so much trouble & death to many friendships!   Sounds a lot like the apple Eve ate in the garden of eden, huh? Or really, sin in general. Sin feels good but in the end?  Well, let’s not go there, shall we?!  The truth of the matter is, it all comes down to our mouth. We hold the power of life and death in our tongue. That for me, is a new realization- am I unknowingly self-sabotaging by sharing things with the wrong people? Perhaps.  So, here’s to selective sharing from here on out!
Until next time,
Amanda