NOW I GET IT



   All these years of my life, spent neglecting my needs for others' wants.  Doing all I can to meet their needs and more.  A few years back, I began to see myself as just as important for the first time, as anyone else.  And now that I realize that, especially in my marriage, my actions and behaviors have not been in accordance with this new understanding, I am capable of changing.
MY needs are MORE important than his wants, or anyone else's.  I didn't realize how bad things have become until the other day, when I again denied my needs, for the sake of his selfish wants.  I have been contributing to this lifestyle which has left me exhausted, miserable, and lacking a desire to really live.  I had given up on my marriage in my heart, because it was truly not a happy thing for me most of the time.  I embraced instead, motherhood-because naturally, there is a balance there of nurture and discipline, so that everyone is contributing, and we are a unit.

Now I understand.  And if my situation is to change, then I must put my needs as a priority through my actions and responses to him. This problem of mine goes way back to growing up.  I learned as a little girl to please those around me, and through it I felt a sense of control in my unstable world.  But I took it too far for too many years.  I denied myself as an individual of worth so many times, that I completely lost myself.
I remember closing my eyes as a young adult, and not being able to see or understand even a little bit who I was…and being beyond frustrated by that.  I did what my parents wanted me to up to that point…even when I wanted and knew something else was better and the right decision for me, I had not the strength to stand up for myself.
Then, depression hit worse then ever before through marriage and motherhood (and all that comes with it).  Years of therapy, then medication to get my head right-and less tyrannical toward myself.  And now, even though my mind is right, and I have little to no unnecessary negativity toward me, my behaviors are still not corrected.  It helps that I have loved and cared for myself for close to four years now.  My work is not yet done.
My load is too heavy to carry alone anymore.  And my load is really OUR load.  We are a family, not separate entities who share a home.  It is time for me to take responsibility in my contribution to my situation, and do something to change it.

I have seen women like myself.  They have served and taken care of me and my children.  I realized so quickly in those circumstances, how easy it would be to become incredibly selfish.  It was too much. I wanted more than anything to help them to see as clearly as I did that they didn't have to give to this extreme.  They were needing to be taken care of too, and were worth being taken care of.  But they denied their need, and continued giving way too much.  It made me a little sad to know that they truly didn't understand their own worth. Both times I experienced this, they had an exhausted melt down while I was staying with them.., the ones I have come to be so familiar with in my own life because of my own refusal to take time for myself, to rest, to give myself the same tender loving care I give to everyone around me.                          
This treatment is wrong for any daughter of God, including me-including them.  These were clear examples of where I'm headed (both women had experienced really abusive marital relationships), if I don't change my ways.
I can do it, now that I see the problem.  I pray for the Lord's strength to make the changes necessary in my life.

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