I have much more to update on, but I'll rewind a bit first.
I can't say the past few weeks have been my healthiest or smartest. After finally making it impossible for my ex to be a part of my life, and feeling SO good about it, I decided, naturally, it was time to directly defy my counselor's advice and do the thing I do worst: date.
After WORSHIP night, of all things, about a month ago, I went to the restaurant next door to my church for drinks with a friend. There I managed to meet a guy. Cute. Really cute. Too cute, truthfully for his (my) own good. We talked. I flirted, because that's WHAT I DO...I gave him my number. Magically, he called! I decided I was strong enough--what kind of damage could one date really do?
And I had a really good time. For the first time ever, I was just myself. No attempts at being anything more or less than I am. No, I didn't get trashed and sleep with him. Yes, I do get 10 bonus points for this. Thing is, he walked me to my car, gave me this awkward kiss goodnight that I didn't expect and that was that. No call, nothing since that night. Ouch. If I had been ready to date...if I'd been secure enough in myself and in my faith that the right man is not mine to choose, my reaction to that rejection might have been much different. Instead, I spent a good week cancelling plans, overeating, underexercising, and generally feeling sorry for myself.
All of those negative thoughts came right back. Why not me? What's wrong with me? Why am I not good enough for this person? Pacing the floor (literally...I did this, I paced) wondering what it is about me that makes me NOT WORTH IT.
How quickly I forget. I momentarily let a stranger shake the foundation I'm trying to build. I let another person determine my value, when God set the bar so much higher for me before I ever drew a breath. My value to Him, YOUR value to Him, is infinite. Truth be told, I'm glad it happened. Despite the temporary setback, that one date and subsequent rejection also confirmed how far I have indeed come. Years, or even months ago, I would have sent the occasional text message, letting myself be strung along, clinging to any crumbs of attention or affection tossed my way. I would have found creative ways to remind Mr. Wonderful that I exist, searching for his validation. This time, after my mild tantrum and bout of hurt feelings, I can honestly say this guy's validation is not the reassurance I need.
The foundation shook, but didn't crumble. In one of the books I'm reading, "Having a Mary Spirit", Joanna Weaver writes of earthquakes that are bound to strike our lives. They will come, but if our foundation is strong and we're willing to bend and sway and move a little, we won't just fall apart. I'm still building that foundation. The tubs of cookie dough and chocolate ice cream I downed one night last week can attest to that. But what a relief, when the aftershocks subside and I am still again, to see that I'm still safe and whole. What more reassurance could I ask for?