MARIA MAGDELEINA

writer, podcaster, child of God

How to accept having a broken hip, just like Jacob?

Honestly, I don’t know. I tried to make myself feel better by comparing myself to other people, but it made me feel so much worse. I was either envying people with perfectly amazing lives, or judging them without wanting to judge them, just to make sure I didn’t mess up too bad, or crossed the line. But the problem is that I mess up badly everyday. Otherwise, I wouldn’t feel like disappearing.

After comparing myself to others, I looked up stories of saints and prophets from the Bible. I did feel less alone, but that didn’t change anything. I still felt horrible because I didn’t and still don’t have their faith. Because I couldn’t accept my mistakes, I felt doomed, almost destined to be broken.

I then realized that I had this fear of not being accepted, or loved, because of my mistakes. However, God showed me my true friends and made me know I was loved by the most important people, no matter what. Still, to know this truth wasn’t enough.

st-augustine-icon1

“If you loved God, then you have loved yourself truthfully.”

Saint Augustine

This is when I was led to a certain conclusion: I didn’t need to be loved by anyone. I had to know and understand, and mentally and emotionally comprehend God’s love for me: that HE loves me no matter what. That HE wants me to live no matter what. The only thing I needed to do was to be confident about this statement and trust that I am forgiven (which is something I still struggle with at times). Not only did I have to believe that His love is enough, but I also needed self-love. And this is what I didn’t have for myself for a good ten months. If I was willing to love people no matter what, I had to be willing to do the same thing for me, no matter what. That’s of course easier said than done, which is ironic personally because I’ve always been about loving myself and preaching self-love to others. Nevertheless, all of a sudden, I had lost that joy of living and loving, and I couldn’t practice what I preached. It felt like I lost the war, and there was no point into fighting again.

In order for me to love myself again and do it better than when I wasn’t broken, I had to follow a couple of steps:

  • STOP overthinking. Whether it’s overthinking every mistake that happened, every conversation I ever had with anyone, every comment on Instagram or Facebook, every gesture I did or someone did toward me… EVERYTHING. How do I stop though? Gotta start practicing to not think. Ok, that’s impossible, but I shouldn’t spend more than a minute thinking of something. If I do exceed a minute, I have to stop myself and find distractions. I can also write about it, let it all out, writing it down on a piece of paper for instance. I can try other alternatives: going to the gym, screaming, singing out loud, play guitar, freak myself out… but no harm or hurt should be involved just because I’m mad. I should just focus.
  • Listen to music. I shouldn’t listen to too many sad songs. I mean, yes, they exist for me to relate, but I might get trapped in a depressive bubble, so I should put on these positive songs/hymns, at some point, as I am moving on, and dance all by myself and jump in my room… I know I’m going to feel alive again. PS: I am not saying to dance on hymns by the way. 😛 
  • Meditate (in every sense of this word).
  • “Early to bed, early to rise, to be healthy, wealthy, and wise.”
  • Meet new people. Different people than I am used to encounter. I have to deal with all kinds of people anyway, and it’s important for anyone to meet new cultures.
  • Not eating my emotions, but also not “lacking” appetite.
  • Cry.
  • Cry.
  • Cry.
  • Stop crying for good.
  • Realize that people are too busy to care about others, so no one really thinks anything about me anyway, and if they actually do, then I should be flattered lol.
  • Put myself in others’ shoes, especially the people who hurt me. I need to admit that I’m not mad at them, at least not anymore, and I never hated them anyway, but hurt leads to pain and pain lasts longer than we want. We have nonetheless no clue how rewarding pain can be. Therefore, I got to let these people go: I won’t see them again anyway. In the end, no one’s perfect, including me, but this is no excuse to not live by this verse: “be perfect as your Father in Heaven is.” Also, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”
  • I might think I’m completely lost because I can’t recognize the person I am today. I am however finding myself again in the things I love: my favourite movies, albums, childhood stories, books, places to hide, to eat, to draw (inspiration from)… I find myself dancing in the streets like I used, laugh super loudly at a very bad joke, or imitate my favourite actors, although I suck at impersonations. I am starting to feel new, even brand new, as I am also trying out new activities. In the end, I am going back to my old self, to my innocence, and step by step, erasing the knowledge from my mind and heart, basically renewing my mind: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” – Romans 12:2.
  • This is the last step, but the most important one. I kind of had to go through all these steps to realize how still overwhelmed, exhausted, worried, fearful, and empty I feel. That’s because, even if I’m starting a new life, I still unconsciously put God on the side. Maria, pick up your Bible, let God speak to you as you are reading His words of love, kindness, patience, peace, serenity, and strength. Also, pray. Fast because it’ll make you see that you don’t need much in life to be/feel ok. You are ok, and have always been. And you will always be ok. Confess as you need. Repeat.

I guess I’m like Jacob who “stole” his father’s blessing from his older brother Esau: God had to go as far as breaking me a hip, for me to wake up and remember I am not perfect; thus, for me to stop being proud. I wrestled with God, negotiated with Him, thinking I could win a useless battle, but He broke me to save me (as I was stubborn as hell).

Now every time I move one in life, “walking” hurts because of my broken hip. I constantly remember I failed myself, the people who love me unconditionally, and God, and how I was always a failure, but failed to know it.

It’s therefore hard to love myself as I feel haunted every day, and it seems like my sins are ever before me, but what I didn’t have in the past is compassion and mercy for others, and that leads me to God’s love a little more every day.

Click here for Self-Love/Esteem Key Verses.

Click here to listen to a sermon on forgetting your past and moving on.

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