Somedays, my emotions seem to bubble a little closer to the surface than others. The past few days have been those kind of days for me.
Sunday’s are almost always hard days. Between church and my ex calling to talk to the kids, my emotional bungee cord is stretched to the max. I was expecting this Sunday would be different, since I was away and neither of those things were going to be happening. Sunday came, and I was more than a little shocked to find the same feelings resurfacing like they did every other week. It bothered me. A lot. I have blamed these recurring feelings on two main things he. First, going to church where I sit through lesson after lesson on eternal families and how that’s the ultimate goal and knowing that goal was taken away from me twice because of the choices of stupid men. So I sit in church each Sunday arguing with God, yelling “How can you expect me to want to do this again? How am I supposed to trust anyone with my heart that much again? And why the hell is it so important that I do? Why can’t I be enough on my own?” (Yes, I swear at God. I swear at him a lot, actually. And He still loves me.) And it’s not that I don’t want to get married again, because there is a part of me that does. A part that craves that connection and love and romance and all those good things that come with being married. All the things I was missing in both my marriages. But there is also a big part of me that doesn’t believe it’s possible for me. For a multitude of reasons, none of which I will list here now, cause they’re not the point.
So after spending all of church having this massive debate/internal yelling match with God, I’m exhausted. And then I spend the rest of the day knowing I’m going to have to sit and listen while the kids talk to their Dad. The conversations are painful, for many reasons, but for my part, they’re painful because they’re a weekly reminder of something that was taken from me. Of a trust that was broken and a wound I don’t know how to heal. And then I get mad at myself for still feeling angry and hurt 3 years later. “It’s been three flipping years! Get over it, stupid woman!!” I yell at myself as I cringe at his voice. Every other day of the week, I feel like I am over it. Like I’ve moved on with my life and I’m doing the best I can for my little family. I’m so far from perfect, but I’m trying and most days, I’m damn proud of that. But Sunday’s it all seems to fall apart.
Anyway, you can imagine then, how much I was looking forward to a Sunday without these “triggers” that I blamed my Sunday meltdowns on. And equally, you can imagine how frustrating it was to have the same feelings without those triggers. In fact, it bothered me so much that I’ve spent much of yesterday and today thinking about it and asking myself what the issue really is. I’m not sure I’m really any close to an answer as to why Sunday seems to be the day that I can’t keep it together, but I do think I know why it bothers me so much that I can’t.
If you know me at all, you know I’m a *bit* of a control freak. I can’t stand not being in control. Not because I feel the need to dominate people or situations. Totally the opposite actually. I don’t trust people enough to let them dominate me. I’ve been hurt by people I trusted the most in the biggest of ways every time I gave up control. Somewhere along the way, my mind decided that it couldn’t happen again if I was in control. But we all know that isn’t true. Because life happens and circumstances arise that you have no control of. So, while I know I can’t control all the aspects of my life, I try and maintain control over those things I can, especially my emotions. I’ve become very adept at “letting” myself feel emotions or shutting them off at will. That doesn’t mean I don’t let myself feel negative emotions. I think it’s important to acknowledge crappy days and feelings. But I don’t usually let myself dwell on those feelings and I don’t let them overtake me. Except on Sundays. On Sunday, don’t seem to be able to exert the same control. Maybe it’s too much on one day, or maybe it’s the exhaustion of maintaining that control the rest of the week or maybe it’s something completely different that I have yet to figure out, but whatever the reason, I can’t keep it together come Sunday. And then inner Tisha starts yelling at me to get a grip and pull it together. And I spiral. And it isn’t pretty. And then Monday comes and life moves on and I don’t have time for spiralling, so controlling me kicks back into high gear and shoves all those nagging thoughts into the black corner of min mind, the corner that’s wrapped in caution tape and has a big “Keep Out” sign posted.
But that’s where this week was different. This week, I had nothing else to occupy my mind while I relaxed at the boat, so I was spiralling, big time. I’ve spent the bulk of the last 72 hours going over all the things that are wrong in my life, agonizing over all the choices I made that “should” have been different, over the times I’ve let people in and they’ve hurt me, berating myself for being too closed off/ too trusting/ too unworthy/ too hard on myself/ too you name it, over allllll the reasons why no one in their right mind would ever want to date me, let alone marry me, over why it really doesn’t matter how well I do in school, cause school means neglecting my kids… you name it, I went there. It. Was. Hell. A beautiful, beachy hell, but hell nonetheless.
Then, as I was lying on the beach reading/agonizing, I read a sentence that struck me to my core. “Sometimes you have to give up control. Because if you want to know the truth, control wasn’t yours to begin with. (The Lemonade Year by Amy Willoughby-Burle)” (yes, I know that’s a completely incorrectly formatted citation and I don’t care!) And just like that, it hit me. I need to loosen my grip. Mostly on my expectations of myself. I’m so busy trying to control my life that I’ve been forgetting to live it. But here’s the thing. I don’t know how to let go of control. If you get right down to it, I’m scared to trust that life won’t crap all over me again. I’m scared to trust, not only those around me or myself, but I’m scared to trust that my Father in Heaven has a plan for me that doesn’t involve more misery and seemingly endless trials. I don’t say that meaning I expect there to be no more bad things that happen in my life. I’m not dumb. (Well, kinda. Lol) But I don’t trust that the good will outweigh the bad. I don’t trust that at some point, I will be able to feel a sense of security in my life. I don’t trust that I will find someone who loves me the way I deserve to be loved and who wants my love in return. I don’t trust that this isn’t as good as it gets. I feel like the part of me that trusts has been obliterated so many time and, each time it’s put back together, some tiny shards have been missed, leaving me incomplete. And I don’t trust that I can ever feel whole again.
So, here I sit here, watching the sun set on the last night before I head back into real life, contemplating what to do now. How do I relinquish control enough to live the life that is laid out for me and make the best of it? I think the answer for this question would be different if someone else was asking it, but for me, I think the answer is to take baby steps. To start by allowing myself to let loose without worrying about consequences. To stop living with the guilt and shame. And to take time to acknowledge and enjoy the blessings I have been given, and believe me, there are many. And finally, by asking God to help me learn to trust those around me, myself and Him again.