I have been working very hard at trying to pay attention to my emotions and thoughts, and follow them down the rabbit hole. This morning, I looked in the mirror and once again had to fight off nauseating feelings about my weight gain. My goal in life is to completely de-stress, which means not trying to ignore or avoid these feelings and thoughts, but find out which part of me is causing this and try to heal it. Too often, we say, “Well, that’s just how I feel” without trying to do anything about it.
So, I asked which part of me was upset at the image in the mirror, that got so upset at what they saw that they made me feel sick to my stomach. I asked why it was not ok to be overweight. The answer came back that people won’t like me. I responded with an adult logical argument about how my husband likes and loves me, my children like and love me, the friends that know me well like and love me – all while I’m overweight. The response: that doesn’t matter. I want others to like me.
My question was “Who?” Up came a memory that I had already healed, some girls who had tried to trip me down the playground steps in 6th or 7th grade. But this memory was focused on a little blond girl with long hair who had laughed when I tripped. “I want her to like me.”
This was very new to me – dealing with a childish part of me that insisted that someone like me when they didn’t. Explaining that some people just don’t like you was not going to work on this part of me. And explaining that I wasn’t overweight back then didn’t help either. The main thing is that I connected not being liked to being ugly, and I connect being overweight with being ugly.
This is where I had to ask the Holy Spirit to help me come up with a way to resolve the problem in the memory in a realistic way, one that would satisfy the child in me who was still hurt over it. Note, she didn’t want everyone, including the bully, to like her – only this one girl for some reason. She laughed when I got tripped up – how could she be changed into a friend?
Then I remembered that my daughter once told me that she couldn’t help laughing when someone else got hurt. She knew it seemed mean, but she couldn’t help herself from laughing. It was just funny to her. She didn’t mean any ill will, it was just a natural reflex. Maybe that is what this little girl did, too.
So I asked this part of me if it was possible that this little girl couldn’t help herself from laughing, but didn’t mean it in a mean way. Could she accept that? The answer was yes. So we healed the memory by having this girl come over after I tripped and asking if I was ok, and walking with me down the rest of the steps talking to me nicely. That seemed to do the trick, and she was ok with it. The heart wants what the heart wants.
You never know what you will find down the rabbit hole of your past memories, what is causing you to feel ways that are trapping you in unhealthy downward spirals. I know there is a trove of memories still unhealed, but God will bring them up as I commit myself to paying attention to myself and being obedient to respond to what the Holy Spirit brings up in me. I encourage you to do the same thing.