On This Day Last Year

My 31st Birthday!

On this day last year, I published my first post on “The Bashful Butterfly”. Initially, my plan was to post weekly blogs, but teacher life is real, so I decided to post once a month.

I kept up with my blog schedule a whopping 5 months.

Truthfully, I didn’t have a direction for “The Bashful Butterfly” or any particular audience I was writing for. I know I’m Christian. Single. A Teacher. Reader. Occasional writer. Movie enthusiast. Perfecter of procrastination. The conundrum came when deciding how to combine each part of my identity. At first, I was excited for the challenge; for the first time, I made the firm decision to keep writing no matter what. The real goal, I suppose, was to improve my writing skills. To build an audience. And to what content people could be encouraged by and find relatable.

In Mid-may I lost my stride. The mental toll of Covid , long standing racial strife in the United States, and deep wounds from my subconscious attacked at once. I became paralyzed with dread and paranoia as I waited for the next disaster to befall the world.

Internally I wasted away and thoughts I thought I had long buried resurfaced. I retreated into my shell while also shutting myself off mentally, emotionally and worst of all spiritually. God became an afterthought and in retrospect, I detached myself from my Lord because I was disappointed. Discouraged. Despairing. And in some ways, disappearing.

And it scared me.

Come September, I decided to seek therapy after parrying with the idea for years (more on that decision in another blog post). One evening, I wrote a concerning and downright frightening journal entry which was my signal that I needed help.

After a jagged journey to therapy, I’ve hit my stride. I am grateful to God for revealing my damaged heart through my writing. The Bible tells us that when Joseph was reunited with his brothers after decades in Egypt (brothers who sold him into slavery) , he said these words to them “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” Genesis 50:20

I used to think my mental health struggles were a stain, a curse or a blemish. I was ashamed of the negative thoughts that kept creeping up even though I am supposed to be a daughter of God. My anxiety, depression and detachment meant I was unfit for God’s kingdom.

Well, the Bible is full of people who were initially “unfit”. So I guess I fit right in, huh?

If anything, I finally have a direction for this blog. Going forward, I’ll take on a wacky, nonsensical and downright odd journey I’m on to spiritual, emotional and mental healing. I’ll share what I’m learning about myself and God, what I learned already and what I still need to learn. And I hope people who read my blog will come away with nuggets, no matter how rusty, on how God’s love plays an essential part in my healing.

So keep your hands and feet inside the ride ladies and gents. It’s going to get bumpy.

With Love,

Leah.

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