Recently I have been battling have a bit of sensitive skin. Do you know what I’m talking about? When anything can hurt your feelings. From the smallest little comment to the way that someone simply looks at you. Sometimes, you just feel so bad for yourself and you get stuck in a pool of self-pity. It’s really a terrible feeling and I totally despise it. I can typically battle back and redirect these thoughts easily but sometimes they consume me and seem to get the best of me.
I grew up in a house where I was conditioned to be mentally strong and always told that I could overcome anything. I was not allowed to say “can’t” and I was always corrected for negative comments. I was especially corrected for negative self-talk. I think that of all of the things my parents did right while raising us, this is one of the most important lessons I have taken away. Just read this little saying that we often had to say if we were in trouble. It’s pretty amazing and I try to recite it daily.
If you know me or have read my blog, you know the challenges I have faced in the past 5 years. It’s been a lot to digest but through it all, I have remained positive and grateful for what God has provided in my life. There have been moments when I am a bit more down, but I can always pull myself out of it. I find that I usually don’t hang out in this pity pool for long. Lately, I feel like I’m treading water in that pool and waiting for someone to throw me a life saver buoy. When I know that this is something that I have to figure out for myself.
My last blog entry kind of shed light on some sensitive comments that I have taken to heart from time to time. By writing that, I began to identify that I need to work on positive self-talk and redirecting negative thoughts. When this realization came to attrition, it all really hit me like a ton of bricks. I hopped in the shower the other day, and there it was. The soap bottle that I had used for at least a month now pretty much spoke to me. Right there on the bottle was “sensitive skin.” As you know this exact phrase is printed on so many soap items. But this one time, it was like it literally spoke out and said, “Quit being so sensitive everything.” I literally laughed out loud in the shower at this internal dialogue I was having with this silly soap bottle! It’s amazing how this all happened really.
The day of the “soap bottle dialogue” was the 5th year anniversary of my dad’s passing. My husband, Brandon, wasn’t home and Beau was napping. Brandon was helping clean out his grandparent’s house that tragically burned down the day before. He was helping his mother gather the most important things they could salvage. His grandparents aren’t in good enough health to be a part of the cleanup process, so this is heavy responsibility for his mother and her siblings. My mother and sister both had plans for the day and we had all enjoyed a nice lunch together the day before. I was home alone while Beau napped and I began to feel a little sorry for myself for spending most of the day without my Husband, mom, and sister. Even though years ago, I had decided that no specific day would ever hold power over my emotions, because I am in control of my day and I can make it a great day. This time, this was a little harder to do that.
Once I had a little time to reflect on this “soap bottle dialogue” I began to think maybe it was a message from my dad. I couldn’t help but be so grateful at that very moment. I was able to sit back a realize that God is always with me and a part of my dad will forever live on through me. I started to think a little deeper about this sensitive skin I had been having. Thinking about how I could rise above this and to find a way to be so grateful and humble in what I do have so that these other little negative things wouldn’t be able to penetrate my mind.
Sometimes things happen a certain way (like me spending the 5th anniversary of my dad’s passing at home and mostly alone) and the result is not always what we want but that’s the beauty in relationships. In all relationships, marriage, family, and friendships there is give and take (receive). It’s easy to caught up in the take (receive) side of things. For instance, “What’s in it for me?” or “How does that make me feel?” It’s so important to remember there is value to what we can do for others and to not be so caught up in what can be or is being done for ourselves. I was able to remind myself that giving a part of me to others is exactly how I need to combat this self-pity party. I have always enjoyed building others up and making people feel good about themselves. I feel like I have recently fallen off track a little and been a little too self-serving. I was able to realize that I wasn’t giving the best of myself to everyone who matters so much to me. Some of those closest to me may not have noticed this or see what I am talking about, but I did. It was mostly an internal battle that is likely hard to see on the outside, but it was enough to do some damage on the inside.
I also believe that a huge part to me realizing this and making a change is that there is so much power in the name of Jesus (yes, just like the song) so. I needed to remind myself that when my thoughts are being controlled by the enemy and negative thoughts infiltrate into my mind, I need to pray. I can give any fears or worries to God and He can handle it all. I have stepped up my servant mindset as well as my prayer and I am happy to report that I am so pleased with others and most importantly myself.