Thursday, January 16, 2014

Going to the chapel... 2-1-2013

Spent a little time this morning snuggling my baby boy on this final day of single-motherhood.
It's been just him and I for nearly 6 years, and I am so thankful for every single moment of laughter and every solitary tear of exhaustion.

The first chapter of James tells us to "Consider it pure joy when you face trials of many kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let it finish its work in you, that you may be mature and complete..."
Let me tell ya; many people read those words and just don't get it. --I GET IT.

I would go back and do it all over again, just to be who I am today; all over again.
I wouldn't say that I'm complete, and a lot of days I wouldn't even say that I'm mature....;) But my faith has certainly been tested, and I'm still here.

Tomorrow I become MRS. Cherri Rodriguez. Look out world....

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Mother after Marriage...

The difficulty in being a divorced single mother is the absent sense of belonging that many of us feel. Most women who long to become mothers spend time building a life/foundation to add a child to and become part of a unit. As a young woman I had built my own foundation and identity as a person, then as a partner, and then as a wife, before I became a mother. Then divorce became a factor. Once the foundation of my union and that identity I had as a wife was wiped out from under me, my instinct became an urgency to rebuild, reclaim and reestablish my foundation; much like the instinct of an insect to rebuild its home after it's stepped on or rained out.
The trouble in a new foundation is that the process is no longer allowed to happen in the natural order of our society. Two (or more, depending on the number of children) parts of the unit remain, but without the solid ground of a foundation to rest on they may become scavengers; searching for a new identity wherever they see potential. The first issue in this search is the uncharted territory; the unfamiliar process of reconstruction and the need for instant gratification in it. Since we preexist as a "family", our brains tell us that we have done our due diligence. That earlier process of building and becoming the original unit has already taken place and it feels as if we should be allowed to skip steps 1, 2 & 3...etc. Of course that natural way of thinking couldn't be further from the truth, because instead of building a foundation in free form, fully customizable and dependent upon circumstances which are largely of our choosing, we are now attempting to construct a foundation that will fit perfectly beneath the partial structure that remains. Extremely difficult, though not impossible, construction of a stable foundation must be done with great care and concern. Though I suppose there are instances where carelessness can lead to stability (largely by chance), such behavior is not in my nature. 

Lately I feel a greater need for a foundation; an overwhelming need to belong somewhere. As it  penetrates my heart and overwhelms my spirit, I can't help but wonder if my son has some form of this longing himself. He's 5 years old, and his foundation with his father is as non-existent as mine. He has not seen, spoken to, or had communication of any kind with his dad in almost 2 years, though we often have short conversations about him, or I overhear him having them with other people. This train of thought only leads me further into that longing for stability, as my heart aches not only for myself, but for my child and his innocent role in it.
I am not saying that I would go back and fight for my marriage. It was not worth salvaging in any way, and as time has gone on, I see with more and more clarity that my former spouse was never a stable foundation, nor would he have had the ability to become one as time went on. Some men are incapable of being the husbands and fathers that they've carelessly committed to being. Finding this out only AFTER having become a wife and mother is a tragedy of monumental proportions that will ripple out and effect my household for the rest of my life, and into future generations. However, I believe that the messes we create for ourselves always serve a greater purpose, and obviously in this case the greatest purpose of my life; my sweet little boy, who I wouldn't trade for all the fresh starts that a billion years could offer. 

With that said, I began writing this to express my deep seeded longing for a place to call my own, but also to make sure that people in my life understand the complexity of the situation I am facing. I have difficulty sometimes in communicating my thoughts and desires to friends and family who are making their best attempts to "fix" me. While I won't deny that I have been broken, these "fixes" are temporary and are rather labeled at "fix-ups". Many times, especially in the last few months, I have been approached by different friends about my romantic life. People often ask me why I'm not with this person or that person, or they want to introduce me to someone. It has become difficult for me to explain my reservations to others. People just don't get it, and that's fine. I could never expect someone who hasn't stood in my shoes to understand the trouble in stepping forward in them. There's not much else for me to say. I know that there are women who will read this and know EXACTLY what I mean, and at the same time there will be women who might read this and think, "This female is crazy." and they're right, but I know I'm onto something. 
To those who have recently stepped into shoes much like mine, I'm right here with ya.
To those women who stood firm in my shoes for quite some time until God led them forward, I admire you. 
Until I am blessed with the opportunity to build a lasting, stable foundation, I will continue to rest  in the arms of the one who founded ME. 

Always remember to feed your Faith...and your doubts will starve to death.
Much love, Momma's. 


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sticks and stones.....

There's a story from my childhood that I've found myself telling over and over as of late. Its painful memory surfaced after my 4 year old and I had an encounter with a witless bully. I recounted the incident in a short Facebook update:
April 6th, 2011
Wanted to string up a couple second graders lastnight. I took Ezra out to ride his bike and these three little punks walk up right next to him and tell him he's a baby for riding with the training wheels on. Seriously?! They're bullying kids right in front of their parents now? I told them not to worry; He would probably be riding without training wheels before any of them stopped wetting the bed. #FutureFelons

In the days to follow I had shared the details of this little incident with several friends and family members. I was reminded several times that I have no power over who picks on him when I'm not around. It reminded me of a time when I was 7 years old, and kept a pretty serious secret from my parents....
As most of my friends know, I was the second of 6 children (7, including my kid-brother Luke). My first sister wasn't even born until I was 8, so my childhood playmates at this time included a brother, another brother, another brother, see where this is going. I was a tomboy by most accounts. I dressed like my brothers, acted like them (and even tried to pee like them a couple times, but I won't go into that). One completely girlie thing that I reserved for myself was my Barbie dolls. I LOVED them. I didn't have very many; we didn't have the money growing up that a lot of other kids had, so I treasured my Barbie dolls like they were precious. At this particular time I had just received an AMAZING gift from my grandmother: A rolling Barbie suitcase!! I could NOT have been more thrilled. 
I would load up my Barbie dolls, their dresses, hairbrushes, and shoes and wheel them down the street to my best friends house nearly every day. Rebecca, was that friend. 
She was my age, much girlier than myself; probably prettier too. She didn't wear boy clothes like me, and her mother used to put her in beauty pageants. She went to school just like all the other kids, while I stayed home, as one of 4 (at the time) that my mom homeschooled. Of course that meant that Rebecca had a lot of other friends, and aside from the kids I grew up with in Church, (and my aforementioned brothers) I didn't really have many at all. 

On this day I received a phone call from Rebecca, she asked that I come down to play, "and make sure to bring your Barbie suitcase", she said. I asked permission from my mom, who was going to be running errands for a while, and she agreed. I hurriedly collected my things and ran out the door and down the street. When I reached her house I went up to the front door as usual and rang the bell. She answered, opening the big green wooden door, but just stood there, staring at me through the glass of the second. 
"Go around to the back." She told me. "Why?" I asked, confused. "Because, I said to." She replied. 
I was eager to get this show on the road, so I complied and wheeled my suitcase down the little path to her privacy gate. As I came inside the fence and around to the back door I was surprised to see 4 other girls blocking my way.
 One girl grabbed my wrist as another shoved me from the back and I fell on the ground. Completely stunned I turned and watched them unzip my Barbie suitcase, dumping every last bit of its contents into a big mud hole. I tried to stand up and go after my things, but as soon as I was near the hole, another girl gave me a big shove and I fell in too. At this point Rebecca had come out into the yard; I looked at her, begging her with my eyes to run and get help, thinking that she had no idea what was going on either, until I saw the look on her face, as she stared back at me with a smirk. This was a setup
All of a sudden I felt a knocking against the side of my head; then against my back, my neck, the top of my head, my face. What was happening? I sat in bewilderment as this group of young girls threw rocks, sticks, and big green walnuts (from the trees in our neighborhood) at me. I'm sure I was crying, but I can't remember any sounds coming from my mouth as I sat there with my eyes closed, willing it to stop. All I remember was the sounds these objects made against my head and body; And the pain. 
But all of a sudden, "HEY!!" I uncovered my eyes and there he was; My big brother, Jason. 
"What are you doing!?" he shouted at them, as he began grabbing at me and my belongings, covered in mud and bleeding from my eye. The girls, having been caught, fled into the house. My brother proceeded to collect every single item he could find that belonged to me, placing each muddy remnant into my Barbie suitcase before making that long walk home down the street with us both in tow. I don't remember him saying anything to me at all. But he had saved me, and silence couldn't have felt more comforting. My mind began to race as we walked. Between feelings of hurt and betrayal, came those of fear and loneliness. What would happen when my mom found out about this? She already didn't like Rebecca's parents very much. She would NEVER let me play with her again if she found out that this happened! It's sad to think that after this little girl had set me up for destruction, I still wanted her to be my friend. I was scared to lose her. As soon as we got home, Jason helped me get cleaned up. New clothes, a wet washcloth on my scrapes and the cut on my eye, and soapy water up and down my legs and arms. I made him promise he wouldn't tell mom and dad. He agreed not to. 

Until recently, my mom knew nothing of this incident. Afterall, I was a tomboy; Constantly covered in scrapes and bruises, always getting my clothes dirty, grass stained, and muddy. It was just another day in the life.
As I started writing this today, I wondered wether or not my brother would remember it. I texted him to find out. At first he didn't really recall it, but after I gave him a few of the details it started to surface in his mind. I suppose that sometimes, a heroic act means more to the saved than it does to the savior.  I'm not sure what would've happened that day if the abuse had gone on much longer. I was helpless and hopeless; not even fighting back; just waiting for the conclusion. 
Anyone who knows me NOW knows that I'm a fighter. I never ever stand by and watch someone being attacked, wether it be physical, emotional, or spiritual. At times I still have trouble standing up for myself, but not for others. Realizing this has helped me to understand that there will be times that Ezra goes through some horrible things that I can't protect him from. I know that going through things like this (there were plenty more where this came from) as a child helped to build and mold me into the compassionate, loving person that I am. 
They also taught me a lot about relationships; The trust that was destroyed in my friendship with Rebecca was instantly restored through the courageous act of compassion by my brother. Funny though, since this was the SAME brother who just weeks earlier had shot me in the butt with a BB gun, and who tortured me on countless occasions (sometimes with assistance from brothers 2 and 3, and sometimes solo). I guess it goes back to that sibling rule of: "I can hurt, tease, torture my sister...BUT YOU CAN'T!!" and I'm okay with that...... 

Jason and Me, going fishing. =)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Snowpocalypse 2011...

I wrote my name in the snow, so Ezra followed suit. =)
Snowpocalypse; Perhaps God's way of slowing us down; Reminding me, specifically, that I have never been (nor will I ever be) the pace maker. I've struggled this week, trying to factor an entire missed week of work into an already stretched solo-parent budget, but I've been in tough spots before, and He's never left me out in the cold. *Pun fully intended*

Psalm 108:4
 For great is your love, higher than the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Authentic Love...

Authenticity; a word like most any other nowadays, that is thrown into the vast body of our daily speech, and like other words we say, we lack the desire to understand it fully. 
In its English form, it means to be "reputably undisputed".
Word etymology says "the word authentic implies that the contents it presents correspond to the facts and are not fictitious." It also calls it "genuine, implying that the reputed, credible author is the real one."

So then, what is authentic love? What would it mean to you to have an undisputed, reputable, factual, credible, genuine, authentic love? In all I know, I see only two loves to be "reputably undisputed", genuine, and authentic....1) My love for my child, and 2) God's love for His. In fact, I will go as far as to say that I attribute ALL authentic love to the divine, for it is certainly God's gift of authentic love for ME that has blessed me with my child.  

You'll hear the word authentic used to describe objects now and then. Things that are said to be authentic give us a sense of security in their worth. We want to be recipients of things that are authentic, because they hold the most value. So what can be said of a love that is not authentic? The antonym (direct opposite) of authentic, is counterfeit. I love the definition of counterfeit in the English etymology dictionary; It says "A copy; Something which is made with the intent to deceive. Not genuine;  the imitation of something superior."
It nearly stopped my heart to read those words. "Something which is made to deceive; The imitation of something superior." Love which is not authentic simply mimics and mocks the love of my Savior. I have been in situations and relationships where love was counterfeit. The pain and the anguish of recovering from a counterfeit love can feel impossible. The first blow to your heart is the end of something which YOU perceive to have been real; the second comes later when you realize that the love you had was never authentic, never genuine. 

There was an elderly couple shot in the Tucson rampage last week. Reports indicated that the elderly man shielded his wife from the gunman; he died in the process and his wife lived. 
It is my belief that love is self-sacrificing. Not by sacrificing your physical life necessarily, but in dying to selfishness every day and putting your partners needs ahead of your own. If a couple is able to die to self every day and put the other first, both partners needs are met and both feels that they are authentically loved.
The ultimate authentic love is the love of Christ. By dying for us physically, we were given eternal life, but I think this act is ultimately the greatest example to us of how we should be loving one another in His name.

I plan to continue the study of authenticity. There is plenty for me to learn. I don't know how to determine wether a love is authentic, except that it is blessed to us by God. I long for more authentic love in my life, as I think we all do; After reaching this conclusion I commit to accept nothing less. 


Saturday, September 25, 2010

For no reason at all....

Ezra's 4 yr old hand on my Dad's gravestone, next to his newborn hand print.

You can't imagine the love I have for you. Holding you in my arms; listening to your gentle breaths, I put my face against your hair and breathe in your angel smell. You press your tiny hand against my back and gently pat, 

because I've patted your back for 4 years now, 

and you know it means "I love you." 

You like to hear every detail of my day and hang on every word,

 inquiring as to the workings of the most simple tasks that would 

fall idle on most other ears.

 You tuck away every detail I've ever told you. You remember if I didn't feel good yesterday, and you want to know if I'm better in the morning. When I'm away from you, you miss me, and you tell me so. 

You stop in the middle of your childs-play to say you love me, 

just because you do. You have no agenda, no secret motives, no logic behind your love for me. You must be the only person in this world who loves me for no reason and every reason, at the same time. 

When I think of every way in which you surround and penetrate my heart, I can't imagine how much more amazing my God's love for me could be, though I am told it's beyond my deepest capacity to love. Therefore, I vow each day to love and adore my God for all that He is, in the same way that you love and adore me for no reason at all

I love you, Ezra

Ezra's hand again at 3 yrs.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I started thinking this week, about how divine it is to have grace in Christ. To be given the opportunity to do it ALL over again, just because we asked for it. Nobody deserves a second chance or is given any right to redemption except through salvation. But oh, what a complex-mind must do to wrap itself around a such a simple, modest concept; To be granted absolution, in exchange for mere request.

Am I able, in my human-nature to grant forgiveness to my offender for a mere apology? Often and more than likely, no; The begrudging, resentful, prideful side of my human-nature would prompt me to demand action of them; proof of their regretfulness. Sometimes that begrudging side even calls on me to get revenge and to even the score. So, being born with my sinful human-nature, and having a logical, reasonable, sensible, rational mind, it is nearly impossible for me to believe that God is willing to place on my head, boundless odds; But still, I do. 
The amazing thing about Faith, having no sight, touch, taste, smell, or sound of it, is the feeling that IS illogical, unreasonable, insensible, irrational; The spiritual sense. I have been redeemed by it. I am so far from perfect; so FAR from worthy, and at times even doubtful that my faith has true foundation, yet I am never more than 180 degrees from complete and total absolution.

I am painfully aware of my inability to give, receive or DESERVE the kind of forgiveness that is offered to me, and how ludicrous the notion of my judgement on another life would be, if I were to even begin to render it.

GAP.........(God Answers Prayer)


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Precisely where I mean to....

I have a theory; Some of you have heard me say it, some haven't, and it is this; 

"People end up precisely where they mean to."

Some would argue that this statement is false; They would say that even with the best intentions, sometimes people end up very far from the goal they set for themselves. But in reality, with all that I am, I believe that it's true.

Take two sides of a failed marriage for example; 
Perhaps a husband has intentions of being unfaithful to his wife; In the most likely scenario, he would end up cheating on her as his intentions led. So okay, yeah, theory applies. 
But most would look at the wife and say that it doesn't apply to her. 
Perhaps she was a wonderful, faithful wife, who hoped to marry a noble, respectful and honorable man. But did she? Obviously not. The question isn't, 'what were her intentions as his wife?', but; 'what were her intentions in marrying a man who was neither noble nor honorable?'. She undoubtedly had experiences with him where he exhibited to her some of his undesirable/disloyal traits, yet she still married him. Does she not end up precisely where she meant to? On the arm of an adulterer? In my opinion, yes; 
In theory, and because.......I've been her.

Look at a person who exhibits reckless behavior; Someone who's actions clearly give no regard to the possibility of facing consequences for them. Sure, they don't wish to end up in serious trouble, but didn't they intend to? Weren't they tempting the dark side, playing with fire, and waiting to get burned? theory says yes.

People have dreams, aspirations, needs...but until they fully mean to accomplish them, they won't. Before you fully mean to have the love, the career, the family, the relationships, the peace of mind that you desire, you'll never reach it. 

The whole thing goes back to the old song I learned in preschool:

"The Foolish man built his house upon the sand...the rains came down and the floods came up, and the house came tumbling down.
The Wise man built his house upon the rock....the rains came down and the floods came up, but the wise man's house stood firm."

You build your house on the sand. You intend to do so. 
You don't build on the sand with the impression that it's actually a rock. 
Although sometimes we build on the sand and PRETEND it's a rock, we still know from the beginning and fully intend (through the course of our actions and decisions) to build our house on the sand. 

If your current living situation involves a sand-like foundation, 
perhaps it's time for a move? 

"People end up precisely where they mean to." 

Where do you mean to go?


"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice 
is like a wise man who builds his house on a rock."
Matthew 7:24

Sunday, August 8, 2010


Patience is indeed a burden. 

Wishing and waiting for contentment in it's infinitive glory to bestow itself upon me like a midnight snowfall, discovered in the morning light. 

I find myself in mourning for the minutes lost in petrification; 

Frozen in a state of desire for that which I can not seem to grasp; 

Something that perhaps, I once held, but has been stolen....


Sunday, July 4, 2010

You know what SUCKS!?

You know what SUCKS!?:
-Accidently sitting on a cheeto in your white linen shorts.
-Leaving your drink on top of your car and driving front of a bunch of people.....who then point and chuckle.
-Nonchalantly placing money from the ATM machine in your purse, after which you turn around to see an error message on the screen telling you that you didn't take your card out fast enough, so ite ate it (for your protection, of course) and you'll have to get it back the next business day.....on a holiday weekend.
-Having an intensely awkward conversation that lasts FAR too long, with someone you'd rather not have talked your life.
-Dropping your iPhone on your face when you're laying in bed. Owie....
-Really wanting a fudgesicle on a hot day; Going into the freezer and finding none. Shizz.
-Getting home from the grocery store without the ONE thing you went in for. (Damn you, fudgesicles!)
-Going to the bathroom and then realizing you're out of TP.....(This one REALLY sucks!)
-Sending a text to the wrong person, not realizing it until you've already hit "Send" and begging your phone to STOP by smashing your finger into every button on the screen. (This is made even WORSE if you should happen to be talking ABOUT the person you accidently sent the message to!)
-Getting a text message about yourself that was actually meant to be sent to someone else....
-Knowing that you were right about a person, after being convinced to the contrary, to the point that you nearly had a change of heart. Yeah sure, it's great to be right, but maybe for once, in a situation like this....I wish I wasn't.
-Seeing the guy that broke your heart, happy.
-Seeing your son start to really grow in every way, and knowing that he needs his Dad. The one thing that you can't give him.
These things suck, for me. Yeah, maybe one or two of them were just karma, kicking me in the metaphorical nuts, but the majority of them are a part of my life that I can't control and they simply....suck. In the scheme of life, I make mistakes. I've had choices to make, and have chosen poorly. I have sinned and fallen short. I have prayed for something and then rejected it. And all of those things suck too.
The great thing about having parts of my life suck is that I'm able to stand before anyone and say with complete confidence, that those things do NOT define me. When other people let me down, it's painful. In the last 5 years I've been let down a LOT. It's caused some deep scars that I cannot erase. Scars suck.
In the spirit of healing the suckie things in life, I write this.
To the cheeto I sat on.....touche.
To the people who laughed at me when my diet coke splashed down the side of my car, your kids are ugly.
To the ATM machine, I stole your envelopes. *Take that, take that.*
To Apple, The genius's behind the iPhone; Consider selling dental insurance plans. Apparently this dropping-your-phone-on-your-face-in-bed thing happens to other iPhone users regularly!!
To Wal-mart and it's endless isles of "rollbacks". Thanks for the .98 cent 40oz. bottle of ketchup, and making me forget my fudgesicles.
Note to self: Check TP holder before sitting down with People magazine.
Another Note to self: Don't send texts to someone about someone that you wouldn't want someone (or anyone) to read.......Or just double check the name before you even type anything! ;)
To the person who has sent me an accidental text before: Yes, I also think I looked like a slut in that dress on that night. Thanks.
To the person I was right about. I'm sad to know that everything you told me was essentially bait on a hook. You suck. (P.S. Your new girlfriend is like, 15...that's gross.)
To the guy who broke my heart....Your day is on the horizon. Better hope that your midnight lasts.
To my ex-husband, the father of my beautiful 4 year old son; You are doing damage you can't undo. I wish you had a little more integrity and a lot less selfishness. MY son deserves better.
With these things said, I leave you with this; Earlier in the week I posted this on Facebook and I wanted to journal it so I wouldn't forget it:

"People don't always return your authenticity; You can love & cherish them but receive nothing truly genuine in return. It's not fair but it's life. The golden rule still applies for me. You don't always get out what you put in, No; But I'd rather be genuine than fake. I'd rather be forgiving than persecuting. I'd rather hope than hate. I'd rather love than degrade. I'll stay me, no matter who you turn out to be."

Maybe a lot of the "To's" I just wrote don't sound very forgiving, but I'd like to say that I'm not perfect. In most aspects of my life I try to be a genuine and forgiving person, but it all comes back to the fact that I sin, and fall short.....and it sucks.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Me, Me, Me! (Bitching and moaning)...a must read

There are women who will never work as hard in their lives, as I do daily. There are women whose worries are far more insignificant than my own; I only dream of having worries as insignificant and insubstantial as theirs. But even from my standpoint, working hard, worrying how I'll do everything that MUST be done, and doing it all on my own, I know that there's a woman out there somewhere, who dreams of only having problems as insignificant as mine, and for her today, I push myself harder and resent my load less.
After all, who am I to request a lighter load? To say that although I am well armored for the battles and obstacles in my path, that I'd rather be ill-equipped and unaffected? Who am I to ask God to remove my burdens; Essentially mocking the Faith He has placed in me to carry them?
If any of us were to re-examine the day to day issues that meet us head on and compare them to the actual life or death struggles met by some of our brothers & sisters around the globe, I think we'd be a little ashamed of our self-serving attitudes.
Things I've learned and have witnessed in the last couple of months have shown me just how small I am in this great big world of injustice.
I complain about having to get up to go to work every day, when I have family that desperately need jobs.
I complain about my living expenses getting higher, when I know someone who has no safe place to call home.
I worry about making ends meet, even though I have NEVER been without food, clothing or shelter, like a friend has.
I complain about being tired or feeling sick, when someone I love has just been diagnosed with a very serious illness.
I often grumble about the stress of single parenting, when two people I know are desperate to have a child of their own, but cannot.
There isn't really any kind of conclusion to this blog post. I simply thought that bringing awareness to my own selfish tendencies, might help someone else to count their I am tonight.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Mirror, Mirror...

What is self image? The English dictionary defines self-image simply, as; "The idea one has of their abilities, appearance, and personality."
A healthy self image is make or break for every single human being. It just may be the most important object that any of us could ever hope to obtain.
Does anyone really have a healthy self image?
And how does the way you see yourself effect your daily life?
Answer to question one, in my opinion, is no. No one really has the true self-image-411. On one hand, there are people who think very highly of themselves. Their self-image is distorted by the fact that their vision begins and ends with "Me". Their heads are so largely filled with self-righteous thoughts that they fail to see anyone else around them. They even allow other people to love them knowing that their greatest lover is indeed, themselves. By doing this, they rob the heart of its tender intended nature, because God didn't create love selfishly, and those that pour their love into the hearts of the self-righteous are doomed to heartache when their love is inevitably, unreturned.
In the same breath I bring to you the opposite conundrum. A person who thinks so little of themselves that their personal heartache is unrelenting. They deem themselves unworthy to be loved, and in a similar relation to their counterparts, they condemn those with affections for them to love unrequited. Because they will never love themselves enough to love any person back.
So how does self-image effect us in our daily lives?
Recently I have seen self image resonate itself in several ways that apply to the situations people face on a daily basis and how we react to them. Having a poor self image takes us to a place where we're willing to accept something less than what we deserve. Should you find yourself in a bad situation, making a choice that is inevitably harmful to you, perhaps the origin of the situation stems from how you perceive yourself. If you don't deem yourself worthy of your own love, God's love, and the love of others, you'll find yourself in the lap of an addiction. Something that soothes you momentarily, but simply fades and leaves painful side effects in its wake.
We all have our own addictions. Wether it be drugs, alcohol, sex, food and even love, no one addiction is more dangerous than the other. They're all equally as harmful to a persons self-image, which undoubtedly is where they originated and where they continue to deplete from as we fall further and further into them.
Your self image is your real addiction. You see yourself as if you only have TRUE value in IT. The addiction gives you a false momentary sense of peace and control. It allows you to briefly step out of your pain and into your freedom place. Your addiction is to give yourself worth when you feel much less than worthy. The poisonous nature of addiction is that when you find your own worth in something or someone else, it's perilous. However you slice it.
To be brutally honest, my OWN self image is rotten. Experiences, failures and shortcomings throughout my life have cast back a very poor reflection of the person that I see in the mirror. People that know me well, are aware of the fact that I can NOT take compliments; Especially in regards to my appearance. I fall short in so many things and have been humiliated by those things in such a public way that I have begun to see them as if they were written on my skin. I walk through a room where I feel like everyone's eyes are watching me, scrutinizing me, reading the failures that I picture have been burned into my spirit and are showing through like tattoo's on my physical body. My poor self image manifests itself in an addiction to love. I feel an undying thirst for approval in others. I need to feel valued and needed at any given opportunity, because without it, I fall back into my deeply rooted feeling of unworth.
I'm reminded often, though not constantly, of the way that I know Christ must view me. As His daughter through salvation, I am made pure and beautiful. I wish with my entire being that I was able to grab ahold of the vision he has of me and make it my own, but it's in my human nature of unbelief to hold tightly to my skeptical, sinful perception of myself.
A great friend and I recently had a conversation about our addictions and our desires for love and approval. "So now that we recognize this, how do we change it?" She asked me. A question with an undeniable underlying answer that we both knew before the question was posed. But unrelenting to us both is our consuming need for the physical love, over the spiritual. To touch, see, smell, hold and nurture a physical love rather than to have faith in a love we neither see nor touch. My prayer for myself, my sister in Christ and the unnumbered billions seeking true self image, is the ability and the desire to release the physical need for love and embrace Faith. For without it, we are truly unworthy....

"If a man should change to please another,
Temporary it shall be.
For when need arise for his addiction,
He casts away his watcher to be free.
Dance does he, in darkness,
With his vices at his side.
And cursed be each step he takes
For each moment they reside.
A feeble man is he that watches,
And yet utters not a word.
He condemns his brother lightly
Possessing not, the nerve."