Oct 4, 2010

A Merciful Breakdown- Chapter 4 *Friendship for Grown-ups*

                                           the beautiful photo by my pirate-y daughter

Chapter 4-A Merciful Breakdown

I hope you will share this week...
please let us know who you are, 
as we are all being open
and allowing the Holy Spirit to minister to our lives;
as we share the deep parts tucked away in our heart... 

Chapter four,
getting to reread it brought back so many things I wanted to share. 

One being,
  how at this point of the book, 
I HAD to remove the dust jacket from the book.
You see on the book's cover was Lisa Whelchel's smiling face.

The chapter pushed me to the edge, perhaps more than I realized at the moment. 

As I read Lisa's words, I had a harder and harder time relating to her *connection,* 
to what appeared early in the chapter as a *real* friend,
a friend she could finally open up to and find intimacy with...

I had to remove Lisa's smiling face from the cover. 
I don't know why it helped me, but with tears I took her paper jacket off, leaving a lovely plain black book in my hands. I walked the dust jacket to a far away corner and buried it beneath a pile of things needing sorting. 

Hmm, I am sure there is some deep meaning there, right?
I was wise enough to stop at this moment, wipe the tears away and ask the Holy Spirit what was going on.  Why did I think removing Lisa's beautiful face was somehow going to help me in reading the book?  I am not sure, perhaps it put distance between her life and mine, perhaps it allowed the Holy Spirit to begin speaking to me clearer through the tears. Perhaps it made me think less about all the things she had accomplished in her life and instead focus on the sadness that I was trying to find a solution for.

I think in reality it made me begin to question my worth.  Somehow, all she shared up to this point, both successes and failures (of which she openly shares both), brought me again to the false belief  I have, that I have to get acceptance in order to have worth.  

I began to ask God if I had any worth.  

You know significance. 

I was sorely lacking in coming up with anything that might give me some self-worth.  The more I read, the more painful it became.  Her rejection with her friend Heather, only stirred the rejection that had been stinging my heart for months now.

I guess I am still grieving over the loss of this friend in my life. It has been over a year that she is no longer in my life.  I am not passed it, though some days I convince myself that I can now move on.  In reality I am still very heavy of heart.  I have talked about it with God, with my Knight, with my friends, ...it is a deeper sadness than I have ever experienced before.  A sad that won't let go.  
I read through the 5 stages she shares of this friend loss/grieving process:

1. Denial (shock)
2. Anger
3. Bargaining
5. Acceptance
I guess though I am sitting longer than I like at number 4, number 5 will someday show up. I can totally remember #1-3, perhaps getting stuck in Bargaining has left me so very very sad.

When a friendship ends, someone suffers- this I know is true.  

Questions Lisa gives us to jump from:

  1. What are some of the acceptable-addictions you have turned to over the years?
  2. Do you have a secret that has never been voiced to another person?
  3. How does the thought of sharing in a group setting feel to you?
  4. Were there any signs of codependency in friendships that sounded familiar to you? 
  5. Have you experience the loss of a close friend? Did you allow yourself to grieve?  How so?
  6. If not, where have you put the pain?


mom said...

{{{{{Kimmie}}}}} Wish I could hug you in person! Tears are part of taking a painful step in our life, but can be sooo healing, too! May God use them to wash your heart with His love!

Tammy ~@~

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Saminda said...

Sweet Kimmie, I know how it feels to lose a best friend. I lost two (a married couple) a few years ago. Honestly, I still think of them every single day. The pain is getting less, I don't cry as often anymore. But I think my memories will always be there. I'm hugging you from afar.
And btw, you have SO MUCH worth!!! You are an inspiration to so many, and a Mama to some very special kids. Love you lady. :) xxxx

Karen said...

I tend to bury myself in books or the children when things are tough... For my self-worth I tend to focus on Psalm 139...I have worth because God made me fearfully and wonderful and his works are marvelous...even if I can't see anything so great about me. I've had friendships rise and wane....I remember one back when I was about 16 that suddenly severed...we have recently reconnected via facebook but will never be the same...and I'm okay with that...it was a long time ago. I'm working on being more vulnerable, being needy....sometimes it's easier to write it out for blogland then to actually say the words....I can even have a hard time admitting my weakness to my awesome husband....

I appreciate your blog and your openness....

Roselawn said...

Acceptable addictions? I don't think any addictions are acceptable if they become harmful to your mind, spirit or body. Even exercise can be bad for you if it's done too often. I admit I have relied on sleep to escape from life's trials. I do suffer from clinical depression which makes everything even harder to deal with. I have lost many close friends in my life... never because we had an altercation. Just because our life situations changed. Even so, it is loss all the same, and it is hard. I have come to expect my friendships to be short-lived and learn to appreciate the level of intimacy I do have at that time.

Stace said...

Until a few years ago, I would not have understood that you could grieve for a friendship. Part of me wishes I still didn't know. HA. And I have allowed work, kids, live to get the better of me. I think I've used it as a crutch to not TRY and WORK for a friendship. I didn't hide my grief and I, too, don't think I am at acceptance. God help me. My "disconnect" is reading, I guess. It's not an addiction but I do enjoy it.

disjourney said...

There were a couple of things that stuck out to me as well that Lisa said.

"Without work to fill my emptiness...I had to find an additional addiction to distract me." This really resonated in my heart as God is working on my self worth as well. I used to find it in my career, but now that it has changed, I find myself distracting myself with other things like exercise, reading, etc. Anything to fill that emptiness. I'm sure that's why I have such a difficult time sitting still and allowing God to bring the things He wants to heal.

"I was scared that my emotions were too big and they would get so out of control, that I might do something wrong. It felt unsafe to feel strong emotions." The part of me that wants to remain in control and have it all together is sometimes terrified to allow myself to go to those dark places. But God says that even the dark places are light to Him. So why don't I go there as easily as I should?

Kimmie, this book has really opened my eyes to even deeper issues that I thought I had already dealt with. I'm so glad to be going through this book with you, my friend. Praying for you as God guides you through the healing process of losing your friend.

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Recently a counselor show me something that helped with past pains. She held a pencil, rolling it around in her hand, then just put it down. She asked me what I was getting out of holding on to hurts. Would I consider just letting them go, without trying to figure out the whys or hows the hurts happened. She suggested I imagine tossing them to the farthest planet, where the hurts could be decomposed, and later, when it was time, for the good from that decomposition be used to grow something better. I was able to grab the idea that really I could just let it go...just like I would drop a pencil if I needed my hand to do something. By the way, I often think of you and think what you are doing with adoption is so much more important/valuable/honored by God than what I do. Tell voices who suggest otherwise to go eat a rock.

Renata said...

OH Kimmie - you are such a beautiful person - I'm so sorry you are struggling through this.

Cathy said...

I find that a lot of people have their "best friend" set from childhood and their 2nds and 3rds are taken as well. I was telling my husband that the term BFF must be a term made up by women (men don't use that term) to exclude other women.

Then, there is the person (among many different friends) that I was a "best friend" of...or so I was told...until the point that I wasn't anymore and now it is clear she has one best friend that she says (on facebook) has always been her best friend and always will be and I don't even come close. I don't need an exclusive friendship...that's what my husband is for, but it would be nice if more women seemed to open themselves up to friendship or to friendship with me. But, if it isn't the case that others want a loyal kind of friendship with me, to me, for me at least, it's just something I have to grieve a little over and move on and leave myself open, but don't feel bad about.

Roselawn said...

Cathy-- I'm with you on the BFF thing... It really bothers me when women feel like they have to use that to define someone. It does feel exclusive and I get annoyed. Especially because usually I even know who that person is. Just call her by name.

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