Last night amidst my incredibly chaotic life with two kids, a husband that requires my attention sometimes more than the kids and a dog needier than any of them, I was finally able to fall into bed with a cup of tea and read a little. This particular night I chose a blog about a mom whose toddler son gave up on her (awesome choice, I know). By the end I was crying … audibly … and wondering, “Will my son give up on me?” She did it; she nailed it. She left me in tears, questioning what kind of mother I was and having to explain to my husband why I chose to co-sleep with my three-and-a-half-year-old year old that night. That writer moved me.
I have always loved to write. I have written stories and songs as far back as I can remember. I thought one day I would write books about enchanting love stories with brave women who ended up with everything they’d always wanted–a life they dreamed of. I would imagine myself as one of these leading ladies, with all of the wisdom and poise to save the day at the end of the story. But somewhere on my journey to becoming a writer, I stopped being the leading lady. I got scared. I became afraid to risk anything when it came to putting my stories, my songs, my writing, out there.
These mommy bloggers today are so incredibly funny, captivating, and so well written. But I sit down to try and do the same thing they’re doing and immediately feel like I’m on the JV squad and all the real athletes made Varsity. Call it the devil, call it lack of talent but I can’t seem to move myself, let alone the mommy sitting at the other end of the country. But today God gently spoke to me these words …”Write what you feel, write what you know.” So I’ll make a deal with you. I will be completely vulnerable and risk you thinking what I am writing is crap, if you promise to dig deeper with me during these next few minutes in the hopes you will be able to become honest with yourself.
Are you willing to risk being exposed to finally become the leading lady?
So here it is. My heart. My soul. Written down with words, posed in paragraphs, in the hopes that something I say will move you, my friends and sisters to act–to become the leading lady in your story.
What I FEEL is this: My heart longs to be able to show every single one of you what you are truly capable of. I want you to know that as dark as your situation, your addiction or dependency on that destructive thing that makes you feel whole, you are just one brave step away from being exposed. I want to look you in the eye, and tell you that it’s ok to shed light on your inner struggle because that one courageous move might heal you forever. I want to tell you without one ounce of doubt that your best life is yet to come. Will it take a willingness on your part to uncover your best? YES! But I will tell you that I feel you can do it. It starts with one step.
What I KNOW is this: I’ve been there, girls. I have been to the deepest depths of depravity and experienced a darkness that swallowed up my soul. But even in my darkest days, God never left. He reminded me quietly but consistently that I was his and he would see me through the worst. Just. Keep. Going. Just keep risking leaving the old behind. Just keep loving. For me, one day it finally happened.
God showed me through the many books I clung to and highlighted in that I needed to live with the power of NOW, with intention. I needed to live in this current moment, fully present. He showed me that I could do nothing about my past nor wait for my future to be better. I had to use the knowledge I had that second to make the best decisions for myself and my family. And if I did that, slowly, my life would start looking like what I imagined as a little girl it would be. I had to be brave. I had to risk feeling uncomfortable, to eventually feel alive and free.
Freedom is available to everyone. Peace is a gift we can all partake in. TRUE PEACE. It does exist. I have experienced it; I am living in it now. But I fought like hell to have it. I looked the devil in the face and risked feeling out of control by being exposed to capture my life back.
Let’s do this ladies. Let’s risk. Let’s be brave. Let’s be the leading lady.
A Guest Post from Lauren Rainey Tenney, she would love to hear from you…email her at