Where I’ve Been

So you might have noticed I disappeared there for a minute. A month, actually. I’m sorry I didn’t say anything, but it was 100% intentional.

You see, at the start of March I was on the fast track to a breakdown. I was so busy trying to be everything to everyone–a self-inflicted responsibility that was in no way requested of me, that I started drowning.

As a self-diagnosed people-pleaser, the drowning thing happens sometimes. But this time, I saw it happening. I watched the water rising. And instead of kicking my feet harder determined to keep my head above the rising tide, I released the extra weight pulling me down. I gave myself permission to identify my true priorities and let the rest go.

I burdened myself with everyone else’s worries. Making other people’s problems my own is like a special talent of mine. A talent that’ll send me to an early grave. I care about people deeply, and I am painfully empathetic. If you are worried or scared or sad, I will be worried and scared and sad with you, for you. I can’t help it. That doesn’t make me a good person, it makes me crazy.

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will give rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.

Matthew 11:28-30

 I spent the last month connecting with my Life Group, investing in my relationships, and letting myself sit in silence occasionallyHonestly, at the start of the month, I couldn’t remember the last time I’d just sat, eyes closed, dreaming, thinking, planning. No wonder my head felt full and my heart felt tired.

We have this compulsion to do all the things. We’re tempted to take on the problems of the world and make them our own. But in the last month, I realized something so relieving.

It’s not my job to fix everyone else’s problems.

That weight is heavy. Exhausting. Debilitating. An empathetic person to my core, I couldn’t figure out how to stay true to myself without burdening my heart. But as I lost myself in the Word over the month and surrounded myself with the kindest of souls, it hit me.

I can take the problems of the people I love and care about and lift them up to God, laying them at His feet. I am simply a vehicle. It’s not up to me to carry that weight. It does me nor them any good to play the role of a martyr.

God gave me this empathetic heart to be there for people when their souls are hurting. I am the person people call. My texts are full of requests for advice, my thoughts, my opinions. And that makes me so happy. To know that people know they can come to me and find comfort without judgement gives me life. But I was I was doing it all wrong.

So I spent the last month cutting the weight. Instead, I tethered myself to God and let Him do the work so I could focus on using the gifts He’s given me.

I worked on this post little by little through the month of March. And now that we’re into April, I’m ready to publish it. But I wouldn’t feel right without addressing something that happened to me over the last couple of days,

and how my trust in God is the only way I’m coping.

I’ve found myself on the receiving end of unfair treatment due to someone else peddling a story that’s untrue (basically bearing false witness against me). I’ve spent the last 24+ hours navigating through the spectrum of emotions only to continually land on disappointment with a sick feeling in my gut.

I pride myself on the way I treat people. On my work ethic. And on the fact that people can, without a doubt, always trust me because I’m honest and transparent. And in this particular circumstance, none of that seemed to matter.

My only comfort as I start to heal from this is knowing that God knows the truth, and He’s all that matters in the end. I wish I could go into details here; I hate being one of those vague bloggers. But you’ll just have to trust me that the situation is awful, and without my trust in God I wouldn’t be doing too well today. (Not that I’m actually doing all that well, anyway. I am still human.)

All I can do now is to continue to live my life treating people in a way that when someone says something awful about me, those on the receiving end would have no doubts in my character.

I’ve never been in this position before because of the way I build relationships. But in the end, all I can assume is that it’s a blessing in disguise and trust God’s plan that hasn’t been revealed to me yet.

How has God been revealing himself to you lately? I’d love to know.

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7 Comments

  1. Aunt Carol

    April 5, 2017 at 10:06 am

    Psalm 34:4 I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.

  2. Jackie

    April 5, 2017 at 4:45 pm

    Those are some wise words, it is really hard to try to be everything to everyone you think you need to be. I’ve drown myself in that burden before. Sorry your having a tough time, but sounds like your keeping your focus in the right direction. God keeps showing me His faithfulness in countless ways I struggle lately and He is so good! Came across your post today and just wanted to share!

  3. Kristina

    April 5, 2017 at 9:27 pm

    Hey girlie- hang in there! I hope you’re doing okay and we still need to get together and catch up 🙂

    xo, Kristina
    Medicine & Manicures

  4. Micah @ Unabashedly Me

    April 7, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    I could have written this. I am very much the same — people-pleaser who tries to be everything to everyone. I’m having to learn that I am not responsible for the problems or happiness of others. I can only take care of my own. And not taking on the responsibility for others’ emotions does not make me a bad friend/sister/daughter/fiancee/etc.

  5. Carly

    April 13, 2017 at 9:39 am

    I’m so glad that your time away from the blog was fulfilling and put you in such a good space, but I’m so sorry to hear about what you’re going through. I can only imagine how difficult it is, but it sounds like you are on your way to healing.

  6. kristen

    April 18, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    oh girl, i am so sorry you have been going through this. i saw you mention it the other day on instagram i think, and i have been thinking of you. i’m sorry this person is being awful and i hope the situation improves soon. glad you have found a helping hand in your faith.

  7. Kelli {A Deeper Joy}

    April 27, 2017 at 5:21 pm

    Girl, I’ve been away from my blog even longer! I need to find time/motivation/etc to write. I am exactly like you. I struggle SO MUCH with taking on others burdens. With our foster kiddos, I’ve taken on their pain and want success for them so badly that I’m running myself into the ground. Every step back that they take derails me. I’m really working on realizing that I can’t do everything for them and that what I’m doing is good enough. Sorry about your situation you talked about at the end :-/ That’d be so hard for me too! God has been revealing himself through Scripture a lot lately – I know that’s like “duh” but He’s really giving me just the right Scripture at the right time lately. And he’s giving my foster daughter the perfect Scripture as well too through me and studies we’re doing which in turn, helps me so much too! Sorry…my comment was wordy :-p

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