Updated: Apr 5
How can you find peace over dysfunction? I am sure a lot of people who have experienced past trauma have struggled with this question. My answer to that question is: Easily!
Now before I go further, let me start off first by saying it is not an overnight process. I didn't just wake up one morning with a greater sense of peace from my past. However, once you get past the hurt, shame and turmoil of it all, you will feel so free and the weight will be so far removed that it will feel like magic!
I grew up in an environment in which I was smothered and conditioned to accept mistreatment. Speaking up for yourself was not the polite way and the right way was to simply pray it all away and pray for the person causing the pain. While I do not disagree with the act of prayer, it is very belittling to tell someone to pray it away like a magic eraser while still enduring pain. The reason I stress my mantra to Geaux Love Ya'Self is because you have to learn to value yourself in order to create those healthy boundaries against emotional abuse.
In my childhood I had a double whammy. I was bullied at school and to make matters worse, bullied in my home. I had an older sibling that wasn’t nice to me. They were always under the extremely false impression that I was favored by our mother and they made no reservations in making me suffer at their hand of meanness and lack of kindness. In reality, I was a factor of co-dependency during my childhood. I was smothered and unhappy. I was not allowed to have the joy and happiness to enjoy my adolescence and it made me extremely depressed and resentful. In addition, being the youngest made me feel like I was never valued in general. My opinions and feelings always meant nothing. I was forced into a box.
Fast forward to adulthood. If someone were to ask me to sum up my family in the way in which they see themselves, the easy answer would be that they all have perfect families, perfect lives, perfect careers, perfect children and perfect marriages. Now of course, no one has anything even close to perfection. However, some people choose to live in the delusion of perfection while looking down upon others. I have always dealt with conflict within my immediate family. I was constantly judged and made to feel less than with no hesitation and zero regards to my feelings. Every single shortcoming was held against me, yet others seemed to have short term memory in regards to their faults. I have been put down by family to the point where a perfect example is how I was once promised to be the godmother of one of my nieces that I once cared for deeply. However, because this sibling and her enabling spouse determined I was not well versed enough in the scriptures, they changed their minds. Even recently, they both doubled down on the manner in which they continue to look down upon me by rescinding an invite to their home--AFTER I had already arrived in one of the most nastiest hurtful incidents that I have ever experienced within my family.
Most recently I was once again, in a situation in which I was being spoken down to by my relative. I told them to stop speaking to me in an condescending tone. Their response was: "Who said I was yelling at you?" Now obviously, the definition of condescending has absolutely nothing to do with yelling. However, this was the thread to let me know that certain things were no longer worth my time or my energy. I was --and still am--done with campaigning lost causes to individuals who have no understanding beyond themselves. It took a lot for me to see that some people are simply toxic. When people use their time and energy to put you down constantly, it has nothing to do with you, it is a reflection of their insecurities, and unhappiness and the false pressure they have put upon themselves to live up to an image.
When you embrace self-love, you have already risen above those who don't value or respect you. When a person judges you, it is because of the misery they can't contain. Have I been depressed? Yes. Have I been in an abusive relationship? Yes. Have I experienced a nasty custody battle? Yes. Have I struggled? Yes! But the peace of settling with the past comes in knowing whose I am. I don't have to answer to my mother, father, brother, sister, cousin, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, and so forth who doesn't value me. My only obligation is to God. And the Higher Power doesn't judge. The Higher Power embraces us. The Higher Power takes those scars and transforms them into joy!
Once you learn to Geaux Love Ya'Self, you will have a bigger understanding that you are not obligated to subject yourself to disrespect, hurt and abuse. When you come to terms with loving yourself for who you are, you realize that the people who constantly put you down are about as small as the size of a pea. So to everyone that reads this entry, please know that from the bottom of my heart, it is imperative to remember that you need to Geaux Love Ya'Self! As I read the other day, "Loving yourself is not vanity. It is sanity!"
Hold your head high and deflect the negativity of those who fail to see how special you are. If the choice comes between choosing to have peace or to share your energy with those who don't truly love you or make you uncomfortable: CHOOSE PEACE EVERY SINGLE TIME!
Geaux Love Ya'Self!