March 16, 2010 jennyrain

What is your story? I mean your REAL story

It is hard to share your real story.

Not just the parts of your story you want to share, or the story that presents the picture you want others to have of you, but what your story actually IS.

There are several women bloggers who have challenged me to step out of my writing comfort zone and begin sharing my story – unedited.

If you are struggling to share your story, go read their blogs…Fair warning folks, bring a tissue!

Alece Ronzino

Jenni Clayville

Suzanne Eller

Melissa Taylor

I have never met any of these women.

Most of them probably do not even know the tremendous impact they have had on my ability to share my story. But they have.

I have not shared my story for several reasons… I do not want to continue rehashing what is already past, I do not want in any way to disrespect my sweet husband, I do not want my personal “bizness” to be shared…

But these reasons are really just excuses covering up my fear of what people will think of me if I begin sharing.

Today, one of these women gave me the courage to begin telling a part of my story I have not shared. It was in response to her blog The Death of Dreams

When my ex-husband decided to leave for someone else ten years ago…. this final betrayal in addition to enduring two solid years of abuse at his hand, I remember there was a stubborn rust stain in the kitchen sink. The stain was from a cast-iron pan that was impossible to clean, so we typically just let it sit for days.

After killing my dream of what marriage was “supposed” to be, he left his stain behind.

The day I moved out of “our” house – the stain “magically” was clean-able, but the mark in my heart still remains.

The dream had been brutally murdered by someone who was no longer a part of my life, but I had not died to the dream.

Instead I kept carrying around the dead weight of my life-less dream hoping I could resurrect what I thought was what my dream was supposed to be.

But that was not my dream – it was only a mirror of my dream. It was a second-rate impression of what my dream was supposed to be.

It was not a pure reflection, it was simply a reflection, an image, an impression.

Somewhere in my heart, I always knew it was a substitute… I knew it all along. I knew it before we got married.

I just did not TRUST my heart to know.

So I continued to long.

I longed because I wanted my dream… I longed because I knew a taste of what it could be and my life did not match up to the dream I carried in my heart…

Even in the midst of that awful first marriage, my heart still longed to be embraced by the REAL manifestation of my dream.

But that second-rate impression introduced me to myself, my instincts, my soul, my True God – not just who I wanted Him to be…

As I learned to fight for myself, I found parts of myself coming alive that I had always ignored.

As they were birthed, I grieved over the years I had shoved them into oblivion.

I carried around depression. Clinical depression. Anxiety. I got help.

Ten years later… God unlocked the keys to a better dream. It does not look like anything I planned as a little girl. Doesn’t look much like my longing said it would…

But it is good. And God is good. And in that goodness, I can receive my sweet new groom as God’s perfect gift to me.

Alece, thanks for pushing me off the ledge… I feel strangely free of the past.

As I continue sharing about this part of my story in days to come, my prayer is that as my other blogger friends have encouraged me, so too will you be encouraged by my story and know that if you share my story, you are not alone, things are not hopeless, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel…

Many of the Samaritans from that village committed themselves to [Jesus] because of the woman’s witness: “He knew all about the things I did. He knows me inside and out!” John 4.39 MSG

 

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jennyrain

I break things and trip a lot. I like to chase things like dreams, goals, ideas, and raindrops. I create things with words. Writing has been an outlet since I first discovered the magic empty space of a journal. Words dance around in my brain and often land amidst scraps of paper, find their way into journals, or etch themselves into blinking pixels. I hope my words fall like rain on tender souls in need of refreshing. Finding photos in random moments helps me share stories. During a trip to Africa the perfect trifecta of my first DSLR, mission trip, and dream-location happened and my love of photography became a reality. I'm currently writing my first book, "Will They Laugh if I Call You Daddy: Growing up with 2 Dads in an Evangelical World," I'm a board member for One Million Kids, and I believe that every kid of an LGBT parent should have an opportunity to #ChangeTheConversation with their story. My bio remains in process because I am.

Comments (31)

  1. Sister,
    Congrats on finally getting to that point. Your testimory can encourage others who are in the darkness of the storm and have not yet seen the light at the end of the tunnel. God be with you and yours
    Jim

  2. Sister,
    Congrats on finally getting to that point. Your testimory can encourage others who are in the darkness of the storm and have not yet seen the light at the end of the tunnel. God be with you and yours
    Jim

  3. i was SO blessed by your comment and even more so by your post. thank you for bravely and authentically sharing your story. i’m so glad we are journeying together!

    • jennyrain

      me too Alece! you are such a blessing… thanks for the push, and more for your example. Shine on sistah!!!!

      Still pondering your “authenticity is not found in the rear-view mirror” too… its gone beyond writin to meddlin… and I love it 🙂

      • Oh, Alece is soo soo wonderful. In words and in person!! She is often in the DC area, actually, you should try and snag some time with her next time she is in town. She’s all about the group blind date 😉 That’s how we met the first time. And now we just keep on meeting any where we have an opportunity. She is the real deal – in every sense of the word!!

        ~Lisa-Jo

      • ohhhhh thank you! that felt like a hug, LJ! (and jenny and i are planning to meet up soon!)

  4. i was SO blessed by your comment and even more so by your post. thank you for bravely and authentically sharing your story. i’m so glad we are journeying together!

    • jennyrain

      me too Alece! you are such a blessing… thanks for the push, and more for your example. Shine on sistah!!!!

      Still pondering your “authenticity is not found in the rear-view mirror” too… its gone beyond writin to meddlin… and I love it 🙂

      • Oh, Alece is soo soo wonderful. In words and in person!! She is often in the DC area, actually, you should try and snag some time with her next time she is in town. She’s all about the group blind date 😉 That’s how we met the first time. And now we just keep on meeting any where we have an opportunity. She is the real deal – in every sense of the word!!

        ~Lisa-Jo

      • ohhhhh thank you! that felt like a hug, LJ! (and jenny and i are planning to meet up soon!)

  5. Wow. What a nice post!

    This really was a blessing to read. I am curretly half way through a book that is my story. A book that will hopefully help other people that have been in my situation. Recently as I am nearing the end of the book, I am getting more and more fearful that God will let it take off and be published. simply because I’m afraid of what people will think of me once its out there. i firmly believe that God wants my story to be told, yet still its intimidating. Thank you for sharing your story and thank you for encouraging me to keep going. God bless you!

  6. Wow. What a nice post!

    This really was a blessing to read. I am curretly half way through a book that is my story. A book that will hopefully help other people that have been in my situation. Recently as I am nearing the end of the book, I am getting more and more fearful that God will let it take off and be published. simply because I’m afraid of what people will think of me once its out there. i firmly believe that God wants my story to be told, yet still its intimidating. Thank you for sharing your story and thank you for encouraging me to keep going. God bless you!

  7. Wow…way to go! Stepping out into freedom like this is so hard at first but then gets so much easier. There’s so much pain and bondage that we put on ourselves and every story like yours about God’s power to break us free helps loose the chains. (Sorry for the cliches…they’re just aflowin’.)

  8. Wow…way to go! Stepping out into freedom like this is so hard at first but then gets so much easier. There’s so much pain and bondage that we put on ourselves and every story like yours about God’s power to break us free helps loose the chains. (Sorry for the cliches…they’re just aflowin’.)

  9. WOW! Thank you, Jenny, for including me on this privileged list.

    God DOES set us free… from so many things.

    Thanking God for the freedom you are experiencing now and for all those you’ll be able to help because you’ve experienced the desert.

    • jennyrain

      Jenni your story has been soooo encouraging to me… I’ve read both yours and your husband’s blogs and every time I read them it just inspires me for the courage it took y’all to share your story. It also shows how amazing of a redemptive God we serve 🙂 Thanks so much for taking a risk to share your story and helping me find the courage to start sharing mine 🙂

  10. WOW! Thank you, Jenny, for including me on this privileged list.

    God DOES set us free… from so many things.

    Thanking God for the freedom you are experiencing now and for all those you’ll be able to help because you’ve experienced the desert.

    • jennyrain

      Jenni your story has been soooo encouraging to me… I’ve read both yours and your husband’s blogs and every time I read them it just inspires me for the courage it took y’all to share your story. It also shows how amazing of a redemptive God we serve 🙂 Thanks so much for taking a risk to share your story and helping me find the courage to start sharing mine 🙂

  11. Thelma Collins

    Jen, thanks so much for sharing your heart. As I grew up, I never knew my greatest enemy would be me and the expectations of myself and what my life should have been like. It’s not what I expected, but it’s better than I dreamed.

  12. Thelma Collins

    Jen, thanks so much for sharing your heart. As I grew up, I never knew my greatest enemy would be me and the expectations of myself and what my life should have been like. It’s not what I expected, but it’s better than I dreamed.

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