the slow spiral down

*I wanted to tell you, I’m not writing these stories to accuse, to judge, to belittle, or berate. I’m writing to discover, to purge, to be healed from the past that has followed me for far too long. I’m writing because the Lord says it’s time. Time to go deeper, to discover who I am, who He created me to be, His purpose, His plan.*

When did hope, optimism, faith of childhood leave? When did all of it get replaced with fear, pessimism, worry, shattered faith?

It trickled away slowly at first.

Transitioning from being held closely as a very small child to being a “big” girl who takes herself to bed without so much as a hug or peck on the cheek began as early as 8 years old.

Discovering there is no tooth fairy or Santa or Easter bunny around the same time, they’re all made up inventions of people searching for more, led me to wonder if perhaps God and Jesus were just made up too?

At 12, realizing the world is not safe. Cold wars threatened bombs dropping that would end life. Closer still, girls in junior high threatening to beat me up just because they didn’t like the way my face looked and the time a man tried to abduct me in an alley just a half block from home brought no concern, no sympathy, no compassion, no justice from my house.

I am a very sensitive creature, too sensitive for my parents. Neither parent was available for me. One was always working or playing with his friends. Sure he was nice when he was home, but he was hardly ever home. The other parent emotionally distant, home but not home.
Sure she kept a clean, tidy house, made great meals, did all the tasks a mom should do, but unavailable for the hard things.

They could only do happy. They never knew how to do sensitive. Therefore they never embraced me for who I was. They wanted me to be someone else, happy go lucky, fun, smiling, outgoing. I was/am mostly the opposite of that person.

I heard things like:
You have no sense of humor.
You can’t take a joke.
Stop crying.
You have to be tougher.
You’re too sensitive.
Pissy Missy.
You’re such a baby.

Shamed for who I was when I didn’t meet their expectations.

By 14, I started to pull away from them, stopped sharing my life with them, figured they didn’t care so why should I tell them about my life anymore?

To protect myself from the bullies I started smoking cigarettes, figured they would see me as tough like them and leave me alone. It worked.

At 15 I smoked my first joint. I started drinking too. I began the search for belonging. I found a group that year that took me in. I was in the marching band. I was really happy in that group. Tenth grade was a magical, happy year for me. Smoking with new friends in what we affectionately called “cancer court,” hanging out together after school, parties, group activities.

But everything took a dramatic turn for the worse the following year. One short year later, the heart attack, the retreat of friendship, the paradigm shift.

His… Michelle

Linking with Jennifer for #tellhisstory.


10 thoughts on “the slow spiral down

  1. For the record – your writing doesn’t come across as malicious – it comes across as truth. Hard truth, for sure, but honesty and pain and strength and moving forward. Good for you. God has a plan for all of us and He points us in the directions He wants us to go. Keep going. Keep writing. Like Sharon said…we’re listening.

  2. Hi there – I’m stopping by from the #TellHisStory community. Thanks for sharing your story – it’s never easy to write about the hard stuff, but I find that the work of writing is often healing and releasing in and of itself. Many blessings to you as you do this.

  3. You’ve got me listening! Being known as overly sensitive myself, I understand some of those struggles. I’ve tried to toughen up some in adulthood, but now I know that sensitivity leads to compassion so it’s not all bad…. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Oh Michelle… You’ve heard some hard words, and had to live through some hard moments. I like what Lisa said above about knowing that sensitivity leads to compassion. I totally agree!

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