Who I Was and Who I Am

On this late night many things are on my mind. Things involving my past and the person I am today. Looking back at just two years ago, the change of my understanding of love is astounding to me. My aptitude to give love and love people despite the hurt they inflict on me is something I didn’t have before. The loving and sweet person, some of you know today, back then was a slightly different person two years ago. There are many things different about me today as compared to two years ago, but most of it boils down to truly learning what Love is. It’s incredible how I can still love the girl who spread rumors about me and would even likely take her back and be friends again if she would talk to me and try and reconcile with me. This is not something that just happened overnight this willingness to love someone like that. They say suffering teaches us lessons we have yet to learn and helps in our sanctification. And there is truth to that statement.

There is a quote by Mother Theresa which basically states love hurts. Loving someone is not easy, especially since we are called to love like God. This means loving when they hate you or are angry at you for stupid reasons. It means loving them and caring about them even when they ridicule you or make fun of you. God reconciles all people if they have a true heart and are guilty for what they have done. Love is painful because despite someone hurting you, you don’t harden your heart. Your heart is still open to love them. It’s still warm, and not ice cold to them. You haven’t turned away from them completely and still have hope in your heart for them.

They also say forgiving is hard, and I will be first to vouch for that statement. The more I reflected on forgiveness this semester and what makes, at times, some things easier to forgive than others, I found was if I had an understanding of why someone did what they did. Understanding in my perspective became key to forgiveness, because in the end everyone is just trying their best and most of the time trying to do what they think is right. I can’t say I have met a person who didn’t have a piece of goodness in them. I would even contend Adolf Hitler still had a shred of goodness in him after all the terrible things he did. There is some goodness in everyone and when you understand they are not doing the things they are doing, most of the time, because they are bad or evil then it makes it easier to forgive. You have this understanding of how a deed transpired and how the options were not black and white. Basically to restate my key point, forgiveness seems to be tied to understanding and understanding helps one forgive another.

I have found the person I am today tends to cherish the good in people and, sometimes to a fault, try and look for that good in a person and give the person the benefit of the doubt. Only more study of my faith and more guidance from God will tell me if I am on the right track in following Jesus and his steps. One thing I am learning at present is the reality of who I am is not contingent on others thoughts or words. I am what I am, and someone’s skewed perspective of me does not change who I am or what is true. What false things people think about me doesn’t matter. What people say or think doesn’t mean it’s who I actually am. This is especially true if the person is not my friend. Wounds and reproves from a friend can be trusted. And from my experience with rumors, I have learned to get to know a person and know the real them, before listening or giving heed to things being said about them.

To wrap this up, the only thing I can say for sure is there is more growing to come and I pray God gives me great patience on my journey to be what I am called to be.

What’s on my Mind…

The friends that matter are the ones who will get to know the real you and not listen to the rumors. My friend Jessica said this to me and the more I think about it the more I find it to be really true. With the case of the rumors and lies circulating about me, it has shown me again how a follower of Jesus should be.

Unfortunately, probably because of my illness, it’s hard for me to not think about the things the person said about me and whether there is any weight to what she is saying. However, I can’t find weight in what she says. My friends all fight me when I think I found maybe something she could be referring too as what she deemed to be “attention seeking.” My trust is really broken in people from what I have experienced. She most of all really broke my trust. It’s hard for me to open up to my boyfriend when I am not feeling well or to a few of my friends who want to be there for me. It’s hard to trust when your trust has been broken by so many people.

What this person did in spreading rumors is stigmatize my illness and made herself no better than those types of people who claim mental illness is a lie. People who are like that are part of the reason so many people do not seek help for major depression. It’s hard for me to understand how she can think I am faking it when she has witnessed times when I got really bad. She was the first one at the university I am attending I opened up that I was being tested for depression. In the end, I feel like I should have went with my intuition and not have trusted her.

It’s sad the lack of understanding and the ignorance that is pervasive in our culture on mental illness. There are times when I feel like no one understands and just feel very alone and misunderstood. The truth is most people don’t understand what one is going through when they have depression. Though I don’t think anyone can totally understand unless they have experienced it themselves, they can on some level have some level of compassion and understanding through education and knowledge.

In addition, I want to point out there is a difference between attention seeking and attention needing. Perhaps a better way to phrase it would be, there is a difference between attention seeking and asking for help. Considering I legitimately had a problem, and would reach out to my friends when I wasn’t feeling well or just needed someone to listen that is not attention seeking. In fact, if someone fakes a mental illness to get attention that is something only a sick person would do. If someone fakes a mental illness that is considered its own mental illness. Only someone who is sick would fake mental illness to get attention.

Anyway, this has what has been on my mind and writing a post about it helped a little.