40 Day Journey-Days 24-32!!

Holy Moly! I’ve almost ended this crazy ride. And I have some really big news!

I feel different. 

Yes, I still have a ways to go before I think everything will be broken off of me. I still think I’m too fat, my boobs are too old, my arms still flap like chicken wings. I have gray hairs that I refer to as sparkles, I get grouchy, I like junk food, I hate my alarm clock…do I really have to keep going? 
The difference is this: I think I have finally found true joy. You’ll never guess where… Nope. Well, maybe. But don’t ruin it. If I give my answer right away we could end this right now. So let’s drag it out a bit. 

Earlier this week when I met with Josie, she said “maybe your forgiveness issue lies within yourself. Maybe it’s not all about others.” 

Uhmmm…yuck. Who asked for that? 

She sent me home to create a list of all the things I need to forgive myself for. Now picture if you will the old boobs, chicken wing arms, sparkly haired old lady dragging around a very large purse, head hung low, whining…like a toddler. I don’t think it was quite that dramatic but that is definitely how it felt. 

Want me to share? 

That’s why we are here isn’t it?

  • Conception. Yup. I have to forgive myself for being conceived. They weren’t ready. They didn’t want me. But I was so determined to burst forth, I didn’t care. Selfish, I know. OH PLEASE! This was hardly my fault. But it’s definitely on the list. 
  • Robbing my mother of her youth. Duh. This is because I insisted on being conceived. 
  • Being molested-twice. I should have protected my young self better. I should have known that my friends high school brother was not just going to play as a couple of third grade girls would. I should have instinctively known my grandfather was a serial child molester & karate chopped him every time he tried. Which leads to…
  • Tearing apart the family. When I revealed said serial child molester to my parents. 
  • Being barren. This one I believe I am not alone in owing myself a little grace & forgiveness. If we can’t conceive, it immediately becomes our fault. Forever. I literally told Mark once that he could leave me because I couldn’t make babies. Luckily, he didn’t hit me with the pain that flashed across his face. Probably earned it, but he didn’t. 
  • Adopting Dylan. As much love, time, effort…as many prayers, hugs, kisses, snuggles, juice boxes, x-rays, turtles, geckos, fishing poles or hiking trails we piled on top of him, we were unable to undo what was done before us. This one hurts in a way I don’t even know how to describe. So I just don’t. I don’t ask. I don’t inquire. I just ignore. But I need to forgive myself for not being able to save him from himself. 
  • And I need to forgive myself for it destroying our marriage. 
  • Mark. I need to forgive myself that I wasnt enough. Pretty enough. Perfect enough. Rich enough. Fun enough. Interesting enough. Skinny enough. Intelligent enough. Enough. 
  • My bio mom again. Ditto.
  • Getting fat. Yes, I was on medication for fertility treatments that ballooned me up rapidly. Had a hysterectomy so I was in menopause at 30. The perfect storm of fat storage in a woman. Starving allowed some loss. Exercise didn’t. Medical treatments helped shed some but 55 pounds later, I’m still walking around like I’m wearing a small suit about to burst open because chubby Matilda is going to explode out to reveal herself & all that shame. 
  • Getting thinner. Because it’s just not enough yet, is it? Work harder. Eat less. Hide that chocolate. No one wants to see chubby Matilda eat, so don’t. Don’t worry. I do. Plenty. But the point is, I felt shamed fat, I feel shamed less fat. That’s what we are doing to ourselves. 
  • Not finishing college. Seems self explanatory but it’s really not. Do you want to know why? Oh I have a million “reasons.” But the truth is, I never felt worthy of success. I never deserved good, nice or happy. I settled into a career that pays the bills, I even enjoy, but I know is not my calling. Maybe I should forgive that too.
  • Andrew. Go read it. There is way too much to put here. Guilt, shame, regret, what ifs till I can’t breathe.

Well, I think that’s the list. It’s certainly a good start. The funny thing was, Tuesday morning, in prayer, I heard “Grace upon Grace.” Ok. Whatever. But when Josie asked me to write a list of my own personal unforgiveness issues, that became a flashing neon sign. Grace upon grace. Grace upon grace. Oh. Sure. Ok. Give myself grace upon grace. 

“For out of His fullness [the superabundance of His grace and truth] we have all received grace upon grace [spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing, favor upon favor, and gift heaped upon gift].”


Grace: ɡrās/ noun 2.(in Christian belief) the free & unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners & the bestowal of blessings.

Did you see what I bolded there for you? Grace is free. Unmerited. Favor. We get it just because we get it. We get it just because He gives it. We get it “just because” Jesus took that cross for us. If we don’t have to earn it from God, the least we can do is put it to good use for God-in ourselves & the manner in which we treat others. 

So lovelies. I will be working on forgiveness towards myself. You should do the same. We don’t deserve the grace, it’s just there for us. So grab it, let it free your heart & soul. Then spread it around like glitter! And find the true joy that is waiting around the corner. 

Till next time my sweets:


40 Day Journey-Days 11-23

Sorry for the delay. Sometimes my life gets so busy. I didn’t even realize how long it had been since I updated you on this crazy trip. 

If you remember, I’m focusing on trusting God, not using self preservation techniques & forgiving some people. Let’s just jump right into this. 

I wish I could adequately convey the level of release I feel. I believe this has been the most substantial leg of the journey thus far. I am excitedly anticipating how the rest of this will continue. 

As all of you, I have friends struggling through some things. While in prayer & conversations throughout the last week, I felt overwhelmed with the words to send them. Upon sending them AND having a tearful therapy session discussing them with Josie, I realized how important these same words were for my own life. She actually said I had already created my next blog through the texts I sent my friends. So I am going to share them with the hope that maybe they will be helpful to someone else, too. {A few of you may recognize some of this. Don’t worry. All identifiable information has been removed &  modifications were made to make it more globally applicable as well as allow me to add commentary. And please keep reading, there is more…}

The other morning I was talking with a friend, who also has mom issues & occasionally we talk about our struggles through that. Per the context of the conversation, I said I get people that compliment me for being kind, funny, generous…but I don’t see how I am anything worthy of the compliments because my own mother can’t like me, let alone love me. Then I said “So which Matilda is the “Real” Matilda? The one everyone loves or the one who’s own mother does not?” My answer to my friend was so different than the one I would usually give myself. 

Even as unstable as my mother is, I have days where “I want my mommy” runs through my mind & I just have to eat those feelings & move past it. Nothing replaces a mommy. Even a wonderful amazing step mom like mine. So to you, my friends…We are the people we are with everyone else. Because our own mothers may have struggled with their own brokenness & that  caused them to make terrible decisions, it does not change or negate the amazing people they have helped shape us into. In fact, it solidifies it because we are strong & refuse to back down on the beliefs at our core. And I don’t see it that our mothers  don’t love us. I believe they love us as much as they know how based on their own issues. Sadly they have no idea how to function within all of the things needing attention in their mind (her own past) & they are choosing easy over correct. So now, we need to heal with the knowledge that we are genuine, that our mother’s behavior doesn’t cause us to be fake, that when someone loves us, it’s because of the beauty within that is so evident it shines out of us like sunbeams. 

In regards to holding onto my unforgiveness, distrust & pain: 

So I’m just going to throw out this nugget: What I see is that this is giving us the justification we (unknowingly & even unwittingly) “want” 😬(because this is where the enemy wants us) to continue to feel broken. You know I know this place well, the place that broken is safe & even craved because the concept of not being broken & facing a new normal means accepting that the old is gone & the old is familiar, & new is unknown. Remember how I felt like I couldn’t laugh or have fun after Andrew died because he couldn’t? That’s insane. He would have been so angry. But I sat in that for a sad year. Even after the year, I struggled with moving on-and even today, I still struggle. 

So when I say my advice is to face plant in the presence of God, to worship with abandon & delight, to seek Him EVERY second of every day, it’s because you & I both know that until we do that, God’s NOT going to move in ways we can see or feel. WE block him better than any offensive line ever could by getting in his way. WE try to figure out why, what, how…but the truth is that none of that even matters. What matters is creating a trusting bond with our Father so HE can take over & love us through & bless our socks off on the other side. What matters is the face plant & abandon in obedience. What matters is telling God “I KNOW you’ve got this, you’ve got me & I’m good. NO. MATTER. WHAT.

Truth be told, I’d love to say I figured it out & I’m filled with a sense of freedom. But I’m still struggling. However, when I pray for my friends, I get a direct grab their face to get their attention response. And that is to tell them to praise, worship, pray & thank him. To sing out. To remember how when people get drunk on alcohol, they feel carefree & loose, & realize that we can find  that carefree & loose feeling in him. To know without ever having to second guess or worry or even have a glimmer of doubt that HE WILL SHOW UP!! That he loves us more than everyone in your contacts, your church, your family, your parents & I all combined ever could. That he finds you perfect & beautiful & amazing & divine. That he doesn’t care about what you have done in your past because he wants to heal your future. That he knows you have been hurt & broken by people but that was not his doing & he cried with you, for you. He cried deep agonizing chest caving, stomach hurting tears because people hurt his precious child. He cries for you now, to see this struggle. And he is begging you to lay your face at the cross & release this death grip. He is begging you to trust that he wants to carry you forward with healing. He wants to see that freedom & carefree abandon of self because you find joy in knowing he is your creator, your healer, your Father.

And some words of wisdom from a friend to me this week: Jesus always saw you perfect. Through his blood. Don’t be mad at me for this but I think you are still living in the image of something broken. Like you can’t accept yourself. You are not broken you are whole in His sight. 

My reply: I wouldn’t get mad. And I would say you are totally correct. Honestly, I’m not sure how to see myself differently but I am trying. Some is fear, some is the past, some lack of trust. 

See friends, I can’t claim that I am all knowing & that I have everything in my life in order. I can’t claim that life, moving on, friendships, dating or any vulnerability doesn’t scare the daylights out of me. But I can claim this: I will no longer be identified as the shame-filled guilt-driven broken words that have been spoken over me my entire life. I will be identified by the names my Father calls me: chosen, beloved, pure, beautiful, prosperous, shining, generous, lovely, HIS child, redeemed, FREE, accepted, blameless & forgiven. 

Not sure about you, but I feel better already. 

Lovelies, you all are also: chosen, beloved, pure, beautiful, prosperous, shining, generous, lovely, HIS child, redeemed, FREE, accepted, blameless & forgiven. Begin to speak these life giving words over yourself and watch the change. I love you all!