Monday, May 18, 2020

Authentically Raw

I've decided one thing in this crazy year of 2020! I just want to be real and authentic and transparent, just raw with who I am. I get so tired of watching people fake their way through careers, religion, life, etc. Sometimes you look at people and wonder if they realize how fake they appear? Maybe it's not on purpose.

I have lived so long trying to become good enough for my family, my friends, for a church, for a ministry and so on. It's crazy to think about really, so many wasted years because as christians we want to put on the mask of being the perfect christian. We can dress right, go above and beyond every rule hoping that this time I'll be accepted, this time they will love me for who I am and just love me. Then as time goes by and I don't meet up to the expectations I have decided they have for me I do them a favor and I move on. I mean seriously who would want to love a failure, a horrible christian. Sadly, I'm not the only one out there wondering how I can be better so that maybe the next person, the next church will see through the pain I carry to who I am. I'm broken, I'm hurting, I've never learned how to be good enough or loud enough or let's be real... fake enough.

So I decided to be me and guess what? I feel like I let yet another group of people down, once again I couldn't figure out how to be good enough, though they may not feel this way, I accept the words that cut into me so deeply. My attendance isn't good enough, I'm not involved enough, I don't do enough, talk enough, pray enough, sing enough, or so I tell myself. 

All I have wanted for 20 years was to love and be loved and I've searched far and wide and yet I stand at a crossroads now it really doesn't matter which road I take this time, I leave nothing behind. 

I don't know how to be a good christian, I don't know how to do ministry correctly, I don't know how to fit in, I don't know how to find my place because it's lonely out here and I was raised very strongly to NEVER make a way for yourself. God will raise you up if you need it, never man. Problem is I'm learning God can raise you up, He can bless you and it's the loneliest place you can ever live.

The loneliest part is people don't know, they have no idea what life is like. The struggle, the sick parent that leaves you laying in bed hoping they get stronger and not continue the decline. No one sees the tears of frustration as you find a place to just be alone to reach out to anyone that will chat for a moment because you need a break, no one sees the parent in the floor unable to get up and it taking every ounce of strength to try and get them up and you aren't strong enough. No one sees that fear of what will happen if I fail? No one sees the nights of worry as you listen to someone being violently ill and wonder what can fix it? The fear of losing someone and watching the decline of the next. It happens so quickly. Then you paste that smile on your face and tell the world everything is OK, it's not, everything isn't OK, sometimes I'm scared. How much time is left? Can I research a little more?

Then the anxiety tries to creep in because I'm pushing, I'm trying to become everything I hear everyone say a christian needs to be but I can't. I'm too tired, my mind is tired, my body is tired... maybe my faith is tired

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Can We Be Good Enough?

After watching a live video a couple weeks ago with tears pouring because she was saying things that I related to so strongly! She recommended people that related watch Bro Wrights series on YouTube called Shame. 🤭

I never understood why I carry guilt or shame when I don’t have sins nor have I been taken advantage of, yet I live everyday feeling like I can’t live up to what “church & religion” expects of me, yet my life has been lived trying desperately to do everything perfectly! My prayer has always been to just be used but felt like a little wisp that no one even knew I existed. I listen, back it up listen to some parts again. I’m thankful for this shutdown because what if I never took time to slow down and watch her video I would have never realized all my “good” was me trying to be good enough for everyone. Then when I realize I can’t I walk away because I can’t live up to their expectations and our life can get pretty heavy with health and the boys family, etc.

Maybe I just needed to “say” it to someone. For so long I thought to find acceptance in a church, be a good Christian. That if a church would accept me and love me I would finally feel good enough, sadly it's quite the opposite. I was left feeling more alone and more broken.

I moved place to place because when I wasn't good enough for church A, I did them a good service and moved on to church B. Sometimes I wonder why people like me aren't identified. We are searching and not understanding the why's or hows. All we are really looking for is someone that can stop and say "hey, it's going to be ok" and really mean it. Someone who can look beyond the well groomed Christian lady to the broken and hurting person inside. Just because I was raised in church all my life doesn't mean I have it all together, quite the opposite... church broke me. Today I'm careful, I don't trust it to much but someday maybe I'll be able to stand tall and strong knowing who's I am!

Am I healed? Not totally but for about 19 years I've tried to find my way. Interestingly enough I never felt like my issue was with God. He's awesome, He's amazing, He's blessed me way beyond what I deserve.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Is There Really A Purpose... In Our Pain?

Really been thinking on this recently. 2018 hasn't been a total wreck but boy oh boy has it taken me on a journey.

Several years ago God helped me overcome a life of anxiety & depression. It was a world I just thought I had to live in and there was no hope. My faith upbringing left no room for a failure like me, someone who suffered from depression and anxiety. I lived for others, rather than try to better or help myself I lived thinking I was no good so I would do things so that others could better themselves. It was a dreadful life, no joy, no happiness...

Then it turned around, I learned to put up boundaries and that I could trust God to not fail me. Man does that, not God. Funny part is I never doubted God was there, that someday... However I was hanging on by such a thin thread of hope and it was fraying. An amazing woman of God begin to help me find myself and begin to believe there was beauty in my ashes. I don't have a past or testimony of sin and regrets. My past is full of church attendance and making sure I followed all the rules. It was a life full of control and emotional and mental pain that most didn't even know existed for me within the walls of church and religion. A world of not measuring up, never doing the right things, life repenting for sins I was afraid I committed and didn't know or remember, guilt that wasn't mine to even carry. Then that life fell apart, I was left floundering in a sea of confusion, pain, guilt, shame, fear, depression and anxiety. I lost everything so when God begin to fix my life and put together something beautiful I felt so blessed, everything was good and I was happy and knew that God had put Joy back in my soul.

Then the 2nd Sunday in February 2018 rolled around, I walked through doors and I was totally and completely thrown head first into a battle I never saw coming. I thought because all my personal life stuff had been gone through and healing had started I was good. So I was totally blindsided by the attack on my spiritual life. When I say the present collided with the past, I'm not joking. A situation, which was not anything crazy or weird, triggered old memories, feelings and anxiety, fear and depression immediately engulfed me. I begin to deal with nightmares and anxiety like I had never faced in my life. I was so overwhelmed and angry because God had healed me, I knew without a doubt He has so why were all these feelings back? I tried pushing through but I realized I had no one that cared, yeah my family did, where were the friends and acquaintances? I found myself all alone, isolated and numb. Why? It made no sense, I took a trip with friends, came home worse than before. I was so confused and alone, I couldn't understand why no one cared. I went to the next church service and after just a few minutes I was so overwhelmed with anxiety that as soon at the oppurtunity arose I was gone, in truck headed to my somewhat safe place, a place no one questioned my faith in God or my walk with God, a place where I could huddle in a ball in my room and let the tears flow from all the pain I couldn't understand, I hadn't done anything wrong or bad, why was I fighting all of this? I was the "goodie 2 shoes" I tried to go above and beyond in obedience to church rules. I begin to question the choice where I worshipped. I remember the 3rd or 4th Sunday I went home early and I sat and watched POA and for the first time in weeks felt touched, I felt God, tears pouring I begin to follow link after link of sermons that sorta spoke to me but it was so temporary. It just didn't make sense I wanted a place to find peace, give me a little hope and encouragement. There was no where, nothing. God isn't the author of confusion, right? Ministry Fair rolled around and I wasn't going to go and then agreed for a few minutes and it sounds crazy but I walked into that very overly crowded room and panic and anxiety hit me with such force I can't even remember most of what went on, I signed up for things and no one ever called and I have no idea what I signed up for, other things I was already in so I didn't sign up and they never called either. Talk about forgotten and alone? The devil went to town with that one and the attitude that those I spoke with had towards me in the days after. I just have this to say, don't question my salvation, I've fought hard to survive and stay on my feet. In the "old days" when everyone, and I do mean EVERYONE turned their back on me because I made the decision to stay with my family. The only thing I had was God, He was there but no one else was. Everywhere I went I was shunned by those I knew, I got phone calls from "friends" to let me know how disappointed they were in my decisions and how shameful it was that I couldn't stay loyal. Friends who dropped possessions off at my house but was scared to actually come to the door, I guess afraid my terrible spirit of walking away from a church would jump off on them. It would have been so easy to blame God and throw in the towel. Instead, I would find myself in a fetal position each night in tears begging God to make it all right so life could just be normal again, so I would have a friend again. I became a survivor, a broken, wounded survivor.

I believe that life is a journey! We each have our own journey and no one journey is the same. My journey wasn't so bad, so I thought, until I was 23 1/2 then I really began a journey that ultimately led me home, I hope. A journey that isn't like anyone elses perhaps, a journey that is all my own, a journey of searching for home, a place to call mine, a place to call home where I'm loved and a place to be safe!

In March I attended a Ladies Retreat out of town, more out of obligation than desire. It was a nice little conference but a lady from that church spoke on Saturday morning and I realized why I was there. Her session was supposed to be on the relationship between a pastors wife and her ladies (saints of the church). I was unimpressed because attending a fairly large church I have very little interaction with my pastors wife so I had already decided it didn't apply to me but oh well, here I sit. She spoke about Mary & Martha and how Martha is a worker and we all need to be the Martha's but sometimes we have to stop and go to the feet of Jesus and be Mary. That was good, true! Then she talked about Naomi and Ruth and how Ruth followed Naomi and met Boaz and that was good, she was right and a very good speaker, I was surprised. The comparison that got me? Sarah and Hagar.

Sarah and Hagar! I had heard it and I immediately thought, well Sarah laughed, Hagar had a son with Sarah's husband and she was bad, etc. Then she begin to read where Sarah Ok'd the relationship between her husband and her maidservant and then we read Hagar was expecting. I don't know if Hagar really felt better than Sarah due to her pregnancy or if it was just a perceived feeling but regardless she deals harshly with Hagar and Hagar flees and we find her weeping in the desert. God comes to her and tells her he saw her tears and heard her cries and now it was time to get up and go back and submit to Sarah. That hit me like a pound of bricks! I knew instantly that God spoke to me in my heart and said... "It's time to go back and submit". I literally felt tears well up in my eyes. Submit? I knew I was experiencing so much pain, and loneliness (which I had never dealt with before) and anxiety and depression and I had gone through it 18 years before and I'm back and it's no fault of my own and God wants me to submit? I'm being hurt, I'm feeling pain, no one cares, no one even noticed for that matter that I had somehow become totally disconnected, forgotten, overlooked, overwhelmed with a pain I didn't understand. God wanted me to submit? I knew what that was about because in over 18 years distrust in ministry had kept me from truly submitting to a pastor in my life. Why submit when I had sat under so many and watched it fall apart? Hagar went back, submitted to Sarah and when Ishmael was born Abraham loved him. Best I could find he was obviously 12-13ish, I think, when Isaac was born? Suddenly Sarah was done, she wanted them gone!!! So she told Abraham to send them away. Can you imagine the pain, the confusion and the hurt? Hagar watching her son suffer physically sick but also, I'm sure, with the confusion of receiving so much love and suddenly you aren't good enough? I could relate to Hagar and Ishmael and I had no idea. It led me into studying the Bible with a new interest.

Then in April or May I went to a Ladies conference close to home and I won't go into details but I felt so out of place and disconnected from my group. I was hurting so bad inside and everyone around me was oblivious, I went hoping that the worship or the message would speak to me, nothing! Then toward the end of the altar call I was just sitting praying quietly and enjoying the singing when a lady I had previously gone to church with years before walked up and asked if she could pray for me, I said sure and pray she did, I was so touched because God had laid it on her heart to seek me out. The service was nearing close when a ministers wife from another church hugged me and commented she was glad she got to sit by me, we laughed and I repeated it back and we hugged again. That was that until a few minutes later very seriously she once again turned to me and asked if she could pray for me, she said "I don't know you but when I hugged you God spoke to me and told me to pray for you". I cried, because suddenly 2 people not close to me, not knowing the chaos of change shaking every part of my world was impressed by God to reach out to me. She prayed for a long time and I just sobbed, I had no words, I had nothing but tears and hurt and pain. In the middle of praying she told me God wanted me to know that He knows where I am, He knows the hurt, pain, he knows I feel so inadequate and unworthy and less than but He sees me as beautiful, He sees me as a precious gem, but not just a precious gem but a rare precious gem. One that you can't find another like it. That's how he sees me. She went on to say God doesn't see everyone as a rare precious gem but I'm that special to Him and He's not done with me. Oh the love I could feel in that moment.

I thought, well, that is a word from God and I'll go to church and find peace and victory over all this chaos. Instead I found even worse anxiety and frustration and loneliness. I was so confused, I even ranted on FB one night and that led to a deleted post and a text conversation with a lady I very much respect. She said sometimes the pain is compartmentalized and as we work through the layers we will find more pain and hurt covered up. She encouraged me to reach out to our pastor but how? I have such little trust and what if I went and he criticized my pain? What if he lashed out against it and I was hurt worse? I knew I couldn't deal with anymore. She had stressed how we need spiritual leadership and authority over us and once we submit to that than the devil can't fight us the same way. Because we have spiritual authority over us and she explained how much it had helped her to do that. She said revival is coming and you are a part of that revival don't give up now. I just never found the right time to set that up.

The battle kept getting worse, I was fine at home, God blessed me along the way and I felt like it was His way of saying hold on, the battles rough but I'm here and this is just a reminder someday it's going to be OK. 

Then I decided to go to a revival service with my aunt at the church she attends. I went curious if I would find the same anxiety and fear, etc I experienced every time I went to my church. I'm talking literal dread!!! I didn't but yet there still was no freedom but I did find a level of peace. Then a lady in their church walked up to me and asked if she could pray for me (you seeing a trend here? I don't know these people so I know it's God) when I said yes she wrapped her arms around me and begin to travail in the spirit, a soul stopping prayer that obviously reached heaven. After a long time of prayer she said God wanted me to know that he knows right where I am and it's not over for me that He has a mighty work for me to do and that I'm precious to Him. I can't say that all the pain, anxiety and frustration, the hurt, chaos, fear, depression, etc lifted because it didn't all go away, but maybe it became a bit less overwhelming, I had hope again, I'm obviously doing something right for God to keep sending basically strangers to me to reiterate what others have said. Those past prophetic words I've received the prayers prayed over me by ministers I didn't know and didn't know me, they were not in vain, God hasn't forgotten those past moments. I may not understand yet, I may not understand tomorrow but all I can do is hold on and wait!!! God is in the waiting I've had proof of that these last few months. 

I don't understand but maybe I will soon, if not I'll keep hanging on the best I know how. I can't let others opinions or judgments weigh me down because this isn't their life or their journey, it's mine! I know where I've been, where I am and only God really knows where I am going. I just want to be in the will of God and that is all that matters. 

I am good enough, and strong enough. I will rise up, pride and arrogance and talent and performance is not what it's about. It's about a real true relationship with God where I'm overwhelmed with His power and anointing! No one can stop that!!!

UPDATE: All of that was written August 8th, 2018. Today is December 30th, 2018. Tomorrow is the last day of this year that has taken me through so much pain and turmoil! However, I did make changes, after weeks and months of prayer and soul-searching I did make a change. Since Dec 2000, I've wanted to go "home", I've gone through several churches who friended me, loved me, helped me. I believe in every one of them there was a purpose, a reason I was there. I found different levels of healing yet never ever totally felt like I belonged. I moved on a few times and would hope that this was it! This would be the place I would belong forever, that place to call home.

A couple months ago I visited a church and really enjoyed it, no one knew me and I stood with tears pouring as I felt the peace of God flow over me, the next weekend I couldn't go back to visit due to other obligations but I felt so sad. The following Sunday found me back and once again I felt like God met me there. The 2nd or 3rd Sunday I was invited to the front by a sweet friend that I trust deeply and as I stood there letting the pain flow and filling the peace and love surround me it struck me that maybe I'm home. Finally home, a place I belong. Nothing against anyone I know and any church I've attended but sometimes God's gotta get us to places where we can grow, where we understand how it all works and it gives you that warm coziness of home.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Life Changes So Quickly...

WOW, It's been almost 2 years and more has happened in those 2 years then I could have ever imagined!!!

So last August I fell... Broke my ankle/leg/foot in 3 places. I stayed with my brothers family for about 4-5 weeks before moving back home where there were steps. LOL.

January my parents took in 5 foster kids. March my parents moved to Cedar Hill and the end of April, a very generous person bought me my own home, in my name!!! I became a homeowner, a answer to a prayer I had prayed for all of my adult life!!! That's it in a nutshell and now my brain is thinking and praying things I thought I had closed those books on and I wonder... is there a chance? It's scary and exciting and just comforting all at the same time. Just knowing I can lean back on Jesus because He's got this!!! It's learning to trust, truly trust!!!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

2016... Thoughts and Musings

So... I can not believe I haven't written since August. Bad me!!! LOL. I am going to TRY to get better, sometimes I've learned that writing is a way I can debrief in life and who cares, right? So here I sit thinking and pondering this new year and this new me! I remember the year my Dad burned is foot so bad, was it really over 2 years ago now? That seems so crazy yet it doesn't. That first year I didn't work much and I learned to live on much less that I had before. It was a year of hurt, fear and yet a year of hope. Then last year was a year of learning and finding my wings and living, like really and truly learning to live life to the fullest. In 2001 I quit really living, I gave up on all my goals and dreams. I packed away everything I thought I wanted in life and locked it up, it's like there was a little box inside of me and every hope and dream went in there and I locked it and threw away the key. Now 15 years later, I didn't know how to open it back up. I couldn't find the "key" and if I'd had it I was scared to face all that hurt and pain again. I mean, what if I got in there and it was worse than I remembered, what if the little good I could recall wasn't good at all. So last year I began counseling and Sis Vani has helped me tremendously!!! She is a God send to me. She can sit there while I pour out my hurt and all the bad things I feel about myself and she still loves me, she still tells me I'm important to God and I can be something in life, life isn't over yet.

So I began writing a new chapter in my book of life. I went back to school last September and I took the TSI test and breezed through reading and writing and fell a couple points too low in math. So I pulled up my big girl pants and walked into that big building (actually in the country community college is very small but it felt big, LOL) and signed up and started taking a half load. First semester I took intermediate algebra (for failing that section of the TSI) and a psychology class. I listed my major as Behavioral Science because I wanted to learn to fix people. We want to do Tammy's House and that means helping people. I learned in the last 6 months that fixing people isn't my strong suit and I was doing things and trying to talk myself into being something I wasn't, it's a miserable way to live. After a couple of session with my counselor I realized I was trying to be what I perceived my Mom wanted me to be so she would be proud of me and I would then find happiness. I realized that isn't true, happiness can't be found by finding validation in people or my Mom or family. I had to be Taniss, that's when I'm happy, when I'm just being ME!!! I have learned I'm a pretty awesome person that doesn't like hands on helping people, regardless how much I try it, I'm not good at it. However, I can run circles around those kinds of hands on helping people sorts when I'm in a office. Give me a computer, reports, paperwork, etc and I'm happy!!! I love it and in a ministry of helping people there is alot of paperwork too. I've had to learn to be happy with me and not try to expect more out of myself than I am capable of giving.

This year I decided to live, really live the life I want to live and make decisions for me not based on other opinions. I'm tired of living worrying about if I'm doing the right or wrong thing. So I traveled with a couple of girls to a singles conference in californina, LA to be exact. It was fun so I then went to a few concerts, then took a cruise with Crystal & Terrell and it was so much fun. This year is full of travel fun. Next is singles conference for a night or 2 and then New York twice, once with my Mom, friend and sister in law and then a month later with a couple of friends. Then ladies conference, prison conference and I want to find a quick cruise this summer to take Katy and Gavin on for Katy's birthday. I plan on going to Maine, I have never been there and I have always wanted to go, so... LOL.

This week started semester 2 with more Algebra and this time my 2nd class is principles of marketing. I feel like a fish out of water still but I'm a bit more confident this round. I changed my major to business management and when the adviser showed me the class list I sighed a big sigh of relief!!! More my style and line of classes, I was so happy!!!

So we were put in contact with a new contact for Tammy's House and I really feel like we passed a test and now God is allowing us to move a step forward in starting up. I'll write more about that when we know more.

Now I'm going to sign off, along with picking up a half class load of college classes to go along with my part time (25-30 hour) job I've also picked up a 2nd job to help make ends meet. It's not easy, it's actually very tiring and stressful some days I just hope I can keep it all on track this semester.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Ugh!!! Somedays...

There are somedays that life just seems to much to take anymore. You get tired of everyone else feeling free to laze around, be "sick", etc. Then you are expected to pick up the extra load no one else wants to deal with. You just wanna say, I'm through. I get so frustrated and so angry, it hurts when no one thinks of others, you just wanna pack their stuff up and move them onto the curb. Do it on your own like you are now and see where it gets you? I'm tired of it all.

So I close my eyes tight and I wish a wish that my prince charming will come riding up on his big white horse and whisk me away to a land far away where the chaos in my life now will be but a memory.

Seriously, sometimes you have to wonder why God puts you through stuff when it "looks" like others lives are so much more care-free. If I was skinny I would have been married with a bus full of children according to others, instead I suffer with PCOS which makes sure I struggle to stay where I'm at much less lose weight. How do you compare to the beautiful Barbies of the world? I get tired of them being paraded in front of me as what is so desirable by men? I can't help that my body isn't made like theirs!!!

I finally found a diet plan people are using and I'm all alone doing it. I have to work in the kitchen around all the stuff I can't eat to fix stuff that about half the time isn't fit to eat. I want to eat what you eat, I want to drink what you drink, it's good, taste wise but it's no good for my body. Even a little bit makes a difference in my body, I have found. I struggle with so many insecurities wondering how I'll ever be good enough, look good enough, eat good enough, live in a good enough house when it feels like I'm the only one who cares.

That's all!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Twist and Turns of Life

So much going on... Get this, I'm seeing a counselor!!! Best decision I've ever made. She's amazing and as scared as I was going in the first session I came out ready for the next one. LOL

Lots going on!!!

We have officially began working on becoming Tammy's House Inc. We are now a corporation and are working on getting our approval for our 501c3. It's exciting and alot of work. So much we want to accomplish!!!

I've gotten back to working on my Life Coaching degree which I think will help with Tammy's House. Then hopefully I'll have everything I need to start college in the Fall.

That's all for tonight. I'm tired

Authentically Raw

I've decided one thing in this crazy year of 2020! I just want to be real and authentic and transparent, just raw with who I am. I get s...