Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Because this helps me figure out who I am...

Fear is the main driving force behind many of the stupid decisions that people make.

Fear of rejection. Fear of being hurt. 
Fear of the unknown. Fear of falling.
Fear of being the outcast.  Fear of ridicule.
Fear of being wrong. Fear of losing control.
Fear of change.

Fear is what makes people cheat on their loved ones, play sports they hate, lie to those who are closest to them, shy away from trying something new, keep quiet when something should be said. Fear is where secrets are kept and lies are buried.

The problem with fear is that it's just like a gateway drug; it oftentimes morphs into something much worse.

Anger. Disdain. Regret.
 Recklessness. Hatred. Obsession.
 Jealousy. Insecurity.

And once you get to that point, it's hard to turn back, to reverse the negativity that's eating away at your happiness and figure out how to be who you used to be.  It becomes hard to even remember who you are in the first place.  At that point, a person just has to sit back and write out what she knows to be the truth about herself.  She needs to take stock of what is real before she can begin to expel the irrational jealousy or insecurity or hatred and get rid of unnecessary obsessions.

So, here we go. Here are the few things I know to be my truths, because I've come to realize that I've lost myself to the grip of my fears and obsessions and jealousy and recklessness.

My name is Jenna Brianne Long.
I am stubborn and too proud most days.
I hate to admit I'm wrong.
I would rather do things by myself than with others.
I rarely cry, but I am ultra-sensitive to how others treat me.
I feel called to help others in any possible way.
A good book and my bed will always be my go-to pick-me-up.
I used to cut myself because I wanted to look as ugly as I felt on the inside, 
and every day is a struggle to see myself as something beautiful.
I may have a retail therapy problem.
I put my everything into my relationships with people I love.
I am more serious than fun or outgoing.
God may have created me without a censor for my thoughts.
Confrontation terrifies me; a raised voice will send me running.
I can write well.
I was born to lead, and someday I'll figure out why.
Trust is hard for me,
but expressing thoughts I know will hurt someone is even harder.
I tend to hide behind a really good "I'm fine" mask.
I need routines and plans to avoid anxiety.
I love Jesus, but right now I have my reservations.
Sleeping is my favorite hobby.

Maybe I know more morbid truths than happy ones, but they all make me who I am and who I am is in constant transition. And hey, without trials it would be impossible to embrace the joys of life.

Life is a roller-coaster, or maybe more like a game of bumper cars: sometimes you feel like you are untouchable, awesome, and at the top of your game while other times you feel helpless, out of control, and thrown around by people who shouldn't have that power.  All one can do is ride it out, not letting the fear of getting a little beat up stop us from trying.

Monday, July 9, 2012

&& then it hit me like a brick wall

I used to look at couples who depended on each other for happiness as if they were lunatics.  I would snort, all high-and-mighty, telling myself that it didn't matter how happy they seemed because having to depend on someone else for happiness could only lead to one thing: disaster.

After all, if you don't first love yourself how can anyone else love you?  If you aren't happy with yourself how can you be happy with someone else?  ....right?

The problem with this way of thinking, this mindset, was only recently revealed to me during an argument.  I'm not sure how I managed to overlook it for so long considering how prevalent it is in my life.

Sometimes it takes someone who loves you on all human levels to show you how beautiful and awesome of a person you really are.  Someone who cares about you as a lover, who knows all your secrets like a best friend, who is concerned for you as a family member would be, who can kiss and hug and cuddle and argue and yell and make up and pressure the secrets out of you.  That someone is instrumental for a person like me, a person is is scared to share her secrets and is insecure and afraid and used to pushing everyone of importance away.

People aren't meant to go through life alone, we are meant to go through life with a group of people holding and supporting us.  Most of us will never be happy on our own, will never feel complete on our own.  And when we give a part of our soul to someone else, how can we ever expect to feel complete without them in our lives?

We all need help being happy, and I think it's the most natural thing in the world for that help to come from the person closest to us, the person who knows us on every level and doesn't run away. No mother or best friend can know us on the same kind of level a boyfriend or girlfriend can.

Obviously, I need to be happy with who I am as an individual, but is it so wrong for me to like myself better because someone else helped open my eyes to how lovely I really am? For me to like myself better when someone else is in the mirror too, protecting and loving me and making me smile?  I don't think it is.

I've spent years trying to see what everyone else does when they look at me, but it wasn't until recently that I can glimpse it every so often.  How is someone screwed up enough to hurt themselves supposed to feel capable of loving and caring for herself without feeling the warmness it from someone else first?

So, now that I've become one of those lunatics who radiates happiness when shes around her boyfriend and can't stand being away from him because something just feels like its missing, I understand why my attempts at being happy with myself have never worked; doing it on my own simply doesn't work.  I needed to be taken by the hand and shown by someone who isn't afraid how all of my mistakes have made me a more beautiful soul.

After all, God did make woman from the rib of man, he made us in a way that forces us to depend on one another for our survival.  He made us in a way that we need one another on levels several thousand feet deeper than sex and reproduction.