Year One.

I don’t want to write this post. I’ve had the idea to write about this for months, but I’ve been dragging my feet. Tonight I felt that Holy Spirit tug and knew I needed to be obedient. Honestly, I have no idea what I’m about to write. I guess we will find out together.

My lofty vision for this post is to write about what the first year of marriage. Specifically through the lens of an abuse survivor (it took me a full minute to get the courage to type those words).

I don’t want to write about it because I don’t want it to be a thing. I hate that it is. I hate that this person who hurt me so long ago continues to interfere with my life now. I don’t want to acknowledge the pain because then I have to feel it.

But I don’t get to choose anything else.

So I will take my power back by sharing my story in the hope that just one other person will read this and realize they aren’t alone.

The first year of marriage is hard. Everyone warns you. I braced myself for fights, learning how to live together, getting used to a new city, etc. I knew it wasn’t going to always feel good, but I didn’t expect to feel like I was going insane.

A few fun examples:

I don’t remember the first time we had sex (sorry mom and dad), but I do remember the uncontrollable crying that followed it for the rest of the day (yay! honeymoon day 1)

Normal, everyday things would send me oscillating between raging and sobbing

Sometimes I became so afraid that Jason would touch me I would literally run and hide in the other room.

It was the best.

Then I signed up to go through the book “Healing the Wounded Heart.” I know the title sucks, but the book was great.

I had no idea what to expect, but the hope of any improvement pushed me to at least try it. Reading the book and going to group became a total game-changer. I suddenly had a new vocabulary to name what I was experiencing. Other people who would listen to my story, help me name emotions other than “weird,” and courageously allow me to listen to theirs. I was no longer alone and I slowly stopped feeling like I was insane. It truly was a sacred space where the redemption power of the Lord became palpable.

Those weeks ended, and as much as I liked to joke about my brain being fixed during the meetings, I knew it wasn’t over. On my drive home from the last group, feeling great, Facebook was kind enough to remind me that however many years ago today I started a relationship with the very person that caused me to go to group. It was awesome. I loved it. I totally didn’t spiral into a rage.

Though the group/ book didn’t heal everything, it changed a lot. Language is power. It has changed the way I frame and react to a lot of my feelings. It’s honestly way too much to get into for a blog post, but I highly recommend this book, as well as good counseling and support system, to anyone who has been through trauma.

Now Jason and I have made it past the year mark and life is perfect. JK. I spent most of today displacing my anxiety onto shoes to avoid the fact that I was anxious because of abuse stuff.

I truly did not know what this post was going to say when I started. I am reminded of a definition of faith given to me at group one week.

Faith: the ability to be at rest because you know provision will come.

I can see the Lord’s redemptive hand in my first year of marriage because even in the midst of pain I have experienced faith. Deep rest because I know the Lord’s provision will come.

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