I like to think for others.
I like to presume what others think about me for them.
I am a pretty perceptive person and I am a realist, put this together with insecurity and it's a recipe for disaster.
I remember when I was younger and in the dating world I never wanted to be perceived as having a crush on someone I never had a chance with.
"Don't be delusional, Ashley!"
Probably coming from the people I watched who talked about their life with blinders on. I became hyper sensitive to being aware of myself and the reality of my life.
Yes, I am overweight, I know that...you don't have to judge me behind closed doors about how big I am and how you feel so sorry for me for having to look this way.
Yes, I can be negative, I know this...you don't have to judge me behind closed doors about how negative I am and how I should just be more positive and try and see the best in all circumstances and people.
Yes, I can be intense, I know this...I know I can be emotional, over analytical, serious, depressive, etc. I KNOW this about myself, so you don't have to judge me behind closed doors about how I shouldn't be that way.
So, it's like the preemptive strike. If I think the worse about myself before anyone else can, then at least I am not delusional.
But perhaps the delusional are at least...happy?
With all these thoughts flowing through my brain on a regular basis, well, this is where my self loathing comes from because these are not exactly good things to dwell on for the self esteem. But I couldn't possibly think something "positive" about myself, because
Yes, I can be prideful...I know this.... and well, you know the rest of the story....
The bottom line is, I think too much.
I judge myself so very harshly, but if I feel that I don't, that I am going to be hurt by others judgment of me.
Last night on my way home I heard just a small portion of the song
"Free to Struggle" by Tenth Avenue North
It was like a small message to me from the Lord, one that I needed to hear.
I am not perfect, and I yes...I know this, but its OK to be in the middle, its OK to be in the struggle.
Everyone is there, no one has made it to the other side, so why am I any different?
Why do I wear other people's opinions of me and tell myself that I am not allowed to be in process.
I tell myself, "You should know better. You should be better. Your lack of change is annoying".
A lot of lies and deception being thrown into my head and heart, if you ask me.
If I can't be my own cheerleader, then who will?
Why is it wrong to be honest of our shortcomings because that is the process of working it out, finding the way, being real and honest, but pursuing answers as well.
I am free to struggle through life, just like everyone else is. I am not here to prove me worth, God has already called me worthy. He will not give up on me, even when I have given up on myself. I am free to be me, because that is exactly who He made me.
He doesn't make us all the same. We all have different lives, different backgrounds, different families, personalities, etc etc. We are all on our own paths to sanctification in the skin we were given.
I have to believe its OK that I am passionate, intense, emotional those parts of me that make up my being and the parts that I can change, I have the ability to change them, but I don't have to be defined or judge myself into condemnation because of those things either.
I want to give myself permission to struggle, judgments free.
Permission to see myself as a beautiful person, a person in process, not a perfect one.
He loves me for nothing I've done, or what I will become, but just for me.
This morning as I listened to Beth Moore as I did my dishes my 3 yr old just told me from the breakfast table...
"don't give up mom"
out of the mouths of babes...
, by Ashley Jackson