It’s Saturday and I just asked my husband if it was okay to take some quiet time and do nothing today. I continued on by saying “I’m feeling like if I don’t rest my head, I am not going to be good for you and the kids.”
Shocker #1: I acknowledged my weaknesses of being in an overload mental capacity and prioritized doing something for myself. As my recent weekly blogs have stated, I am teetering at the edge of a PTSD cortisol mental shutdown (that’s my self-described diagnosis when my ability to function shuts down). Given all that is going on in the world I imagine everyone reading this post can relate.
Domestic violence recovery: Permission to Rest
Shocker #2 was my husband’s casual response “of course you can do whatever you want; no need to apologize. Enjoy!”
My inability to prioritize taking care of myself stems from my abuser’s relentless pounding lies of how selfish I was, how ugly I was, how worthless I was, and how unloving I was. Twenty-one years of beaten down self-worth followed by years of being a single mom for three children crushed any thoughts of positive self-worth.
But now my children are older and no longer an excuse for my undivided time. I am happily married to an unbelievable Christian man who takes great care of me. My faith is stronger than I ever could have imagined.
Yet, my self-worth continues to linger behind the abundant, loving life I worked so hard to achieve and now have. Lasting change to my destroyed belief in myself due to the years of emotional abuse seems to be an insurmountable feat.
As I capture these thoughts on paper, I am reminded that God calls on us to rest. The Bible provides God’s specific guidance on resting such as:
If I don’t want to prioritize resting for myself, then I need to prioritize resting for my relationship with God. I need to remind myself that I can’t hear God’s prodding and guidance if the scrambled thoughts in my head are erratically bouncing around. Rest, calming down my thoughts, is key to being vigilant to where God is taking me.
Additionally, rest is giving myself God’s grace, love, peace, calmness, and protection. Rest provides me with the vessel to accept all the wonderful things God’s love provides while letting go of the chains from my abuser’s deeply subconscious lies.
I think we all know what we should be doing to rest (eat better, exercise more, turn off electronic devises earlier, doing devotions, listening to Christian music, etc.) and how these do or do not fit our current situations. But none of these things are going to happen or be sustained unless we believe it’s okay to put ourselves first for a few minutes every day.
Writing this blog post has been extremely confirming today. What a wonderful way to spend my time resting and getting closer to God’s word.
I pray for God’s peace and calmness to be with you all,
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Hi, I'm Sue
Welcome to my blog! I served twenty-one honorable years on active duty, living a double life of capability and accomplishment in the service while enduring brutality and abusiveness in my twenty-one year oppressive marriage. Today I'm happily married and have three children who are my inspiration and motivation.
My goal is to help combat the lies of abusers with the truth of God. I hope you find my words to be healing and helpful through your own life experiences.
Being separated from my abusive husband didn't make me a domestic violence survivor. It surely didn't release me from the grip of his brainwashing control and the innate power he had on me.
Read the full raw story in my new book, Rock Bottom and Faithless.