“I have no idea,” I say.
We (my massage therapist and I) were going there. Deep into that dark cave of memory…
She is hiding in a bedroom in California. There is pounding of fists on the locked door, and slurred words from the woman – the grandma – who is supposed to nurture. To bake cookies. To give warm squishy hugs. But she doesn’t. This grandmother screams, “You are the devil’s child. You selfish little brat!” This little girl, all alone, cries and holds her body tight. And then she sings to herself – a song with no meaning, just something to drown out the noise of the screaming grandmother, and the noise in her head.
She buried it deep. And in the process, became fractured – a separation that takes place when old memories and tapes lie deep somewhere within us, and are never brought to the light to heal.
“Remember that scene,” my therapist says. “Allow your body to hold it.”
She keeps her hand on my back, protecting me. Holding me.
And I sense that He is there too. Holding me. I don’t have to run.
“You can’t change the past. But you can change the meaning of the past,” says my therapist.
God takes me back into the memory. This time, I see something else.
I see Him, next to her, whispering in her ear and rubbing her back. “You are my beloved,” He says. “You are not alone; I am here. I am so sorry this is happening to you my child. But I love you.”
He reaches down and places HIS wounded hand on her heart. “I will never leave you or forsake you. Never!” He says looking into her swollen eyes, touching those places so wounded.
Are you fractured?
I had lived a fractured life. Very early I found ways to shut the voices out. To tame their taunting. I numbed out by not allowing my body to really feel and not providing it with what it needed. Food. Sleep. Honest relationships. This is not fully living. Today I am working to be whole again. And to allow THE ONE who made the pieces of me to slowly put them back together.
What about you? Are there deep cavernous places full of cobwebs where your secrets live? Crevices of pain with wounds so bottomless if they were to open they would ooze a dark tar-like blood? We all have places where the doors have been slammed shut to their halls, their rooms, and their corners. We give our lives to Christ and our brains know it, but how do we allow God into those awful spots that are too painful to remember?
The truth is God wants every part of us to be invaded with HIS LOVE. HIS LIGHT. So we can live fully, mind body and spirit in accordance with HIS WILL.
And so, with the help of a therapist or a pastor, we must invite God in to those dark places.
And then listen. Listen close…
“Why didn’t YOU fix it?” I say.
“I couldn’t, ” He responds. “But I was there with you, crying with you, holding you.”
God wants to go there with you, too. Won’t you let him?
Abuse Led Me to Numb Self (Jeff Helton, MA)
Freedom From the Past (Mallory Hood)
“Values Corridor” Art Therapy Exercise (Selah House therapist Janie Hubble)
Unlearning a Lifetime of Disordered Eating (Ann Capper, RD, CDN)