Okay so I let people in and I’ve forgiven but now what.
There comes a time in your life when you have to be more than your struggle and you have to be more than your testimony. I’ve forgiven my dad , I’ve taken ownership of my life and I’ve surrendered to God but who am I when I am not sharing this story? What fuels me if this is not the drive? Where am I heading if not out of my struggle?
Here I stand bewildered. Not in wilderness but feeling like a wilderness. These are the thoughts and challenges I faced up until last year. I couldn’t share my story and say oh no I was insecure and I’m learning how to be confident in myself because I was confident in myself but something strange that came along once I overcame and shared my story came overthinking.
Every single thing I did , everything people did to me I thought about. I became fueled with this need to be prepared for whatever could happen because I couldn’t be prepared for my dad not being there and I couldn’t be prepared for my bullying. I could be prepared for tests so that made me happy because if I failed when I was prepared I knew I did the best I could do. I could prepare for speeches. But I couldn’t prepare for how people perceived me and I couldn’t prepare for the heartbreak and rejection to come.
I guess you could call the next part of my story – the after shock or PTSD (Post Testimony Stress Drive. )
I forgave, I let my walls down, focused on how being a woman was something I should be proud of and I accepted the body I was given and who I was. But how am I supposed to prepare for the plot twist? For the next mean word? For the “I love you but I’m out of here” the unexplained ending of friendships. The abandonment and the people pointing “ you have daddy issues”. How? How ? How? Overthinking ruled my life and I had to find a way to solve every possible thing that could happen to me. Whether it meant I simply didn’t let people In too close or I appear as if I am opening my heart and soul but honey you only know what I want you to know. I seem vulnerable but this a mere facade.
I became a pro at seeming un-phased and I thrived on “ look I barely have emotions “. It was a controlled situation and it made sense to me. My desire for control , my desire for being prepared , my desire for knowing … oh boy they took over. Being a Christian and wanting to be all knowing and all prepared will really mess with your brain. Being Christian is about not being able to see but still believing.
I wouldn’t put myself into situations where I thought it would result in me not knowing what to say or what to do. I became socially awkward because “hello what’s your name?” Would be the start but who knows what they could ask next. I’d be terrified of phone calls because texting was easier for me because I could control what I said and which direction the conversation would go. I had time to think I had time to process. This whole spontaneous way of living life freaked me out.
Hello I’m Katelyn and I suffered from post testimony stress drive. Which basically means I have overcome the initial issue but there’s a new level of stress that I need to yet again overcome.
It’s a strange thing to overcome and stumble upon another battle. Like cool I just won this fight and now I must fight again? No thank you this is exhausting. I am just going to simmer in these thoughts for a while and hope no one asks what’s going on in my mind.
That was me – now hello I’m Katelyn and I suffer from being unapologetically me and I cry when things make me happy or when things upset me – I vocalize my thoughts and feelings and I’m surrendered to what God wants from me and I love every human in my life in a way I never have before.
How did I get here? Well it’s simple and not simple at the same time. I had to make conscious decisions that I do not need to put the stress of figuring the plan out on myself and to trust in an all knowing God. How did I stop thinking? I haven’t figured this out 100% but I think maybe 40% of the time whereas before I would think myself into a flat panic 85% of the time if not more. My vision for the year was to “ live loved” and that is how I learned how to navigate this next battle. I approach people with the thought that they won’t hate me and if there’s an awkward silence let me just look at it as a silence instead of awkward.
The approach needs to change and one has to make conscious decisions and yes you have to fight a battle more than once to win it sometimes. I still fight the overthinking battle but instead of sitting in this constant frustration I have learnt how to ask for clarity and not fear looking “too much”.
So my lovely humans – seize the day, live loved, be you unapologetically and let God lead and follow His plan it is so much less stressful.