Something popped into my mind a little while ago and for some reason I can’t get it out. So, I figured it was the perfect topic for a blog post. I think it’s because I have so many friends struggling with issues, healing and recovery that I wish I could just make it all go away for them. As we all know, it doesn’t work that way, unfortunately.
When someone comes to me to discuss a problem, I have to keep myself in check because I want to tell them how to fix it or take it on myself and help them fix it. Sometimes, all someone needs is a sounding board or just to be heard. My responsibility is to listen, encourage and just be there when they need me.
What’s even harder, is not telling them what I think they should do. I try my hardest (hopefully Lucy agrees that I’m getting better) to offer my opinion, advice or suggestions, but only when asked for, and that’s just what they are, MY opinions, advice or suggestions. Just because I have been through things does not make me the authority on the subject, they should just do what I tell them and their life will be great. No, I am just someone who worked through my own pain and trauma the best way I could that made sense for me and brought peace and healing to my life. What worked for me may not work for someone else.
As I was processing these thoughts, I felt the urgency to say something to those who are struggling in their recovery. I know, for me, being codependent and a people-pleaser and trying to recover and set boundaries, was one of the most difficult things I had to learn how to do. Especially with people I loved, yet they had hurt me in some way. If you are struggling in this area, please let me say this: Your recovery is yours!
If you are struggling to forgive someone who hurt you, not because you don’t want to, but because you’re afraid of other people’s thoughts or reactions, please let me remind you that this is YOUR journey and YOUR recovery. There will be people who don’t agree with the way you are handling things. There will be people who don’t agree with how you feel. There will be people who walk away because of your choices. As scary as that thought is, it’s ok. They were obviously only meant to be in your life for a season and the season is over.
Please do not let anyone, ever, tell you how you are to feel or what you have to do to. It is not their healing, it is yours. They did not live through what you did so they have no right to tell you what to do. Sure, maybe something similar happened to them (whatever the situation) but they are not you. What worked for them does not mean it will work for you. You take the advice/opinions/suggestions that you feel most comfortable with and you leave the rest on the table.
I chose to forgive my childhood abuser and I still see him from time to time. Does everyone agree with the way I handled it? No. Is it their place to understand what I did and why? No. The journey to healing was mine, and mine alone, and I chose to do what was best for me. I know I did what was right for me because I have a peace about it. I do not live in fear any longer.
There is no one way to do recovery. There is no right or wrong way to do recovery. There is only your way. You set the pace. You make the decisions. You set the boundaries. You do what is best for you.
I do not know why I felt so burdened to say that but I hope it helps someone our there.
Bless you dear reader!