Ending Bitterness

Due to the fact that I have been stopped multiple times to discuss my last post, I think there should have been a part 2. So, here you go. Again….please remember that this is just what I have learned,  I’m not an expert, this was VERY hard for me, and I still fall backwards every once in a while.

I am very serious when I said before that bitterness overwhelmed my life. So, how did I get rid of this? That is the question that many people have asked me and told me that they have the same feelings but with different topics. So, let me share what I did to grow and become a healthier-happier person.

1. Realize that being bitter and jealous is an unhealthy feeling. I really told myself that the jealous feelings I was having were ok. I had experienced 10 miscarriages. This to me seemed like a perfect reason to be bitter! I didn’t understand why everyone around me was being blessed with babies and I had to say goodbye to mine. The truth is,  I should have been grieving through this journey, but being overwhelmed with ugly feelings towards other people’s blessings was NOT ok! So, first step was seeing that I had a problem….I know….sounds silly but I am being truly honest!

2. Stop making excuses for being bitter. I figured that since I was asking for a creation of God…a blessing to our family…an opportunity to share Christ….I had every right to feel these negative feelings because what I was asking for was important! I kept telling myself, “it’s not like I’m asking for a new car!” Well, I’m sure you are seeing the problem already…..yes, this was an idol in my life! I had an excuse for every negative feeling!

3. Learn what bitterness does to your life. So, at this point in my life I am reading scripture, meeting with people who encourage and challenge me, praying A LOT, and really just seeking to figure things out. Well, my precious friend from church that leads a group called HOPEFUL hearts gave me a year devotional. It was called HOPE. It wasn’t the whole book that changed my life, it was ONE devotional! It said that if you get what you have been waiting for and don’t deal with your bitterness it will still be there. WHAT!!!!!!! This totally blew my mind! If I get a sweet baby….I won’t be bitter…are you kidding me! Ok, well that was my first thought…..my second thought was tears! I didn’t want to meet my children and be that ugly mom who is jealous of everyone! I want to embrace my children and feel absolutely joyful about the blessings in my friend’s lives!

4. Look for the tiniest blessings that surrounded you. I had to start small. (my car started, date night, my teen was respectful, food!!) Then when I started to do this, I realized that they were everywhere! There is always something that you have that someone else wants. Hold onto what you have and have pure joy and hope for the future!

jealous

5. Get rid of bitterness. This was the hard part. It is super easy to recognize that you have problems, but fixing your problems are much more difficult. So, I knew that my major problem was being jealous of a healthy pregnant women, going to a baby shower and feeling sadness overwhelm me because it brought back thoughts of our loss, hearing pregnant women complain about being pregnant, or just spending time obsessing about why this kept happening to me. I finally had a place to start because I could identify the  situations that increased my jealousy/bitterness. You might think this is totally crazy but let me remind you that this is just my experience….I’m not an expert! But it did work 🙂

CRAZY STEP #1: I surrounded myself with children. I teach school but I went a step further and I even started working in the church nursery.  I know…..I also thought this was insane because why would you surround yourself with the one thing that was causing all of these negative feelings. WELL, first of all ……fact #1-children make you smile! Secondly, I decided that I should surround myself with what I wanted most! And lastly, when you are in this overwhelming state of negativity….you should do things for others not yourself. It really does help build you back up! And running from my problems was just making it worse!

CRAZY STEP #2: I started faking it till I made it. I decided that I needed to bless moms. I would find a cute outfit that a friend would love and I would buy it for them. Please understand that this was not genuine for a long time. I really hate admitting this, but I feel like if someone is dealing with this, they need to know that this is an ugly process. So, after giving these gifts and checking on these moms, I started to realize that I was actually excited to do these things! I can say that today I don’t have those negative feelings when I go through the baby aisle. But let me be real….yes…I do fall backwards sometimes. However, it is not the bitterness anymore….it is usually just sadness from a memory. Which is totally part of the grieving process. It is ok to have ups and downs as long as eventually you have more ups than downs!

Let me tell you that these things above were done also with the help of  lots of prayer, friends/family who would pick me up when I fell, a husband who would take me out some nights just to forget for a while, and a church that truly loved me through this.

I really am very embarrassed to tell you this was part of my life, but I have been growing so much and just want other people to be able to feel free and enjoy everything that God is blessing them with! So, thank you friends for coming to ask me how did you get rid of your bitterness. I hope this helps you!

Getting Rid of an Idol

I am excited when I have times of clarity about my life. I have been in all kinds of different places in my life. Some of these I’m very embarrassed about but they have helped me become who I am, so…. you gotta love those moments! I used to read those scriptures about idols and think….I don’t have those…who has those?

If you ever say anything like this…..you are probably that person….I know…stinks..huh!

Isaiah 44:9-20 ESV 

 

All who fashion idols are nothing, and the things they delight in do not profit. Their witnesses neither see nor know, that they may be put to shame. Who fashions a god or casts an idol that is profitable for nothing? Behold, all his companions shall be put to shame, and the craftsmen are only human. Let them all assemble, let them stand forth. They shall be terrified; they shall be put to shame together. The ironsmith takes a cutting tool and works it over the coals. He fashions it with hammers and works it with his strong arm. He becomes hungry, and his strength fails; he drinks no water and is faint. The carpenter stretches a line; he marks it out with a pencil. He shapes it with planes and marks it with a compass. He shapes it into the figure of a man, with the beauty of a man, to dwell in a house. …

Well, as you have guessed…after a process of healing from bitterness….I can truly look back and say I had an idol in my life. No, not a piece of metal that I worshiped every morning…but I might as well have.

EVERY moment I thought and planned about having children. I calculated dates of ovulation, waited for missed periods, planned new things I would try next time I did get pregnant so I wouldn’t miscarry, and I could go on and on about what my mind was thinking every moment. Not to mention that you are surrounded with new moms everywhere.

Just like in the verse above, I became faint, my strength failed, jealousy overwhelmed me, and negative thoughts were always surrounding me. I was that person that you did not want to be around…and to be honest, I didn’t want to be around you either. It was too hard for me to be happy for new moms. (I know…I was in some deep bitterness)

I always kept praying for my pregnancy to not end early, however, I can say that peace wasn’t there because I wouldn’t put my “Baby Idol” aside. I kept trying to put this problem into my own hands….hoping Dr.’s would fix my problem. Forgetting that my GOD is the ultimate healer.

See now I have taken care of those bitter feelings and have healed my heart. I can now say that I live in peace that whatever happens with our children…..I will have joy and peace. I know that God has plans for our children that I could never imagine. I have let go of the plans I had and am excited to live day by day and not control the outcome of how many will be in our family. We just embrace what we do have…..always choosing thankfulness!