I was in mere grade school when the awareness formed in my horse obsessed little girl mind that I was emotionally rejected by someone who by default was supposed to love me. I’d watched my friends with these emotionally present and invested mothers who would dote on them in the most loving and sound of mind ways. Not to appear to be a great mother, but because they really were great moms.

There was two things I always wished for as a little girl…. a horse and a real mom like the ones my friends had.

There was a lot of psychological warfare and mental torment I was forced to navigate very young. My mom was really talented at portraying herself as mom of the year, in fact my friends and cousins loved her! But the mask she wore to others was very different than how she was with me.

So while I was completely emotionally rejected, she herself was operating out of a spirit of rejection as well. She would go to great lengths to get attention, acceptance, acknowledgement and love from the outside world and many times it was at my expense.

She loved making something wrong with me, the bigger in trouble the better, because the more attention and support she got. Same with my accomplishments. But they’d be met with extreme embellishments to glorify herself. Teaching me time and time again, that I wasn’t good enough. My accomplishments weren’t enough and I wasn’t enough to warrant her love.

She even used to make fun of me to my friends. The one that haunted me the longest is how she told all my friends that I had a potbelly and made oinking noises. I wrestled with that identity lie for a while before being set free from the spirit of rejection! She even told my friends’ parents that I was a slut (I hadn’t even kissed a boy yet). And so my friends weren’t allowed to play with me.

I remember being about 5 years old at the doctors office in their little blood draw room. Here was my mother down the hall crying hysterically for attention because me getting my blood drawn was so traumatic for her. The doctor held her and the nurses coddled her, assuring her she’d be okay while I was alone with the phlebotomist getting my blood drawn. Tissue boxes and cups of water were brought to her as I sat in the cold high chair with my arm out holding back tears because I was scared to get my blood drawn. I remember looking at the phlebotomist and seeing in her eyes that she saw what was going on. I knew she knew that this was only a teeny tiny representation of the daily mental and psychological warfare I went through. She told me she was so sorry with her eyes and assured me I was so brave.

This story just scratches the surface, I could tell you things that I guarantee would be hard to comprehend how a mother could do. But I don’t share this to slam my mom. In fact as cruel as she could be to me, and how emotionally rejected and isolated of a childhood I lived, the truth is she’s not well. She was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder – deep trauma of her own could have been the only viable explanation. And she is in an incredible amount of pain and torment herself.

People in my life today will say things like “You’re just so bubbly!” or “You’re always happy!” Honestly I think it annoys some who are suffering themselves! If they only understood what I overcame they’d understand that I wear joy as a badge of honor. Joy is a level of emotional fitness I’ve achieved and continue to strengthen daily.

I constantly ask God to let my joy be an inspiration to others who are hurting, that they too can be free. And He often reminds me…. keep telling your story so they understand.

If I can overcome the inner torment, and live free- truly free and in an immense out of joy…. then truly anyone can.

I walked through some intense darkness in my life to learn how to live in the light. And now I help my clients do the same.

What it’s not is a magical pill or a quick fix (trust me I tried those to no avail), instead it’s an incredible loving and nurturing journey we take together, we walk together step by step achieving real results, radical transformations, and lasting freedom. And we have a lot of fun in the process!

You are not what happened to you.

And you don’t have to carry the weight of it anymore.

You are loved.

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