This blog post is going to be brutally honest. Today I was awful to someone.
When I was being abused physically, I developed this hard-won ability to turn off my senses. Nothing could touch me, nothing could hurt me. I suppose that's a metaphor. I hurt, I always hurt. I made my way through the halls of my high school gingerly, skirting around people rather than pushing through the crowds to avoid unnecessary contact that would further irritate my constantly injured skin. But I could take anything that was dished at me physically, because I used the pain as fuel to do what I needed to do to stay alive. The pain was good. If I used the physical pain I was dealt to dull the emotional pain, it was like I was untouchable. Bruises didn't ache, burns and cuts didn't sting, and the mad rush of five hundred teenagers didn't phase me. When someone was hurting me on purpose, I could deal.
Now I have a dear friend who would never, ever want to hurt me. But without the intense physical pain to make the pain of emotions, of feeling feel insignificant, it's like everything hurts. Words that mean nothing harmful make me cry. Being misunderstood makes me cry. Misunderstanding makes me cry. This pain, the pain of my heart beating in my chest is sometimes so much to bear that I don't know what to do. I've never cried so hard as when this person doesn't mean to hurt me.
And so, today, in a rage, I told this friend that I could better understand him if he would just hit me. I told him that I wished he would, that then at least I would know what to feel. I told him, in essence that I would prefer abuse I could understand to him.
I have never felt more ungrateful in my life than when I said those words.
This friend means the world to me. He is understanding, patient, unwavering, a person I don't at all deserve and today I treated him like crap, and his friendship like it was worthless. All of this is to say that I am trying. I am trying so hard to act like a normal person that can have normal relationships with people, and I fail. But I am lucky. I have people who love me no matter how badly I screw up. I have friends that insist I deserve better than what I wish for myself in the heat of an angry moment. I have faith in a gospel that teaches that the worst blunders I could possibly make can be wiped clean. And are. Today I really screwed up and I am SO grateful for the opportunity I have to learn from my mistakes.