What I LOVE about Cynthia’s is that I feel like she’s writing pretty much exactly my story, minus the married part..someday. It has so many grains of truth in it. I hope that you enjoy!
Fearing Love ~Cynthia
How it all started, the FEAR
I fear a lot of things. I admittedly have an anxiety disorder and drove once in the middle of the night just to be with my dad after he had a heart attack even though he was fine and already home. And I check just to make sure Hunni and my dogs are breathing every now and again just to make sure I don’t lose them. I’m never really going to get over all my fears but there are many I have overcome in the past fear years.
The biggest fear for me was that I would never fall in love and be loved in return. You see I never really thought I could be so I never thought anyone would me. As a kid I was Daddy’s little girl and then Daddy left and moved several states away to be with his new wife. This left me thinking I wasn’t good enough for him to stay around. I wasn’t loved enough for him to stay. And if my dad didn’t love me why would anyone else. Of course I know now that this isn’t true but this was the reality I lived with.
Weight ‘protected me’
It was also around this time that I started to gain weight. And lots of it. By the time I graduated from High School I was over 250 pounds.
I called it my protective layer. I guess I wanted to protect myself from being hurt again. If I was fat and someone left it would be because I was fat not because there was something wrong with me. I was good but the fat was bad so that is why people would leave…right?
I let a few guys get to know me and even dated a guy in my sophomore year that almost lead to an engagement. But one by one they all left and in my heartbroken state I always blamed it on the weight. I wasn’t pretty enough or thin enough to be loved and therefore no one would ever love me. As my college friends paired off and got married I felt even more alone and unlovable.
So I pushed people away. I didn’t let anyone in…no one. My fear was so big that I was unlovable and every time I thought someone could love me it turned out to be false so the deeper the wound got. To prevent being hurt and shown I was unlovable time and again I would just push people away. If a guy wanted to date me I would let my imagination run wild with what our future would look like and “know” he would leave me broken hearted so I would keep him at a distance. I started to come off as a snob when I so desperately wanted to be loved but not hurt. I spent 3 years avoiding guys in romantic situations as I longingly watched movies like Sleepless in Seattle and You’ve Got Mail hoping someone would love me for me.
Turning point for my health
After about three years I realized my health was awful due to my protective fat layer..all the weight I had gained. At my highest I guess I was around 275 or so…I didn’t own a scale so I don’t know. So I took control of my health and lost about 80 pounds. I started caring about myself and how I looked and what I ate. I even became a runner.
But even though my body was getting fitter and feeling better about myself on the outside my heart still hurt. I still felt unlovable to anyone. I was afraid that now that I was HOTT…just kidding….That a guy would only like the outside package and never love the inside with all the flaws. I was still truly a hurting little girl with all the pain that caused me to feel unlovable in the first place. So while I continued to get fit for my physical health I went to counseling for all my hurts and emotional health.
I had been in counseling for years for other issues but had never brought up the fear that I held so deeply. I finally brought up these issues with my counselor and we began to work on them very intensely. We went through all the pain that my parent’s divorce and Dad’s leaving had caused and learned that they were not my fault. They were something my Dad did…nothing I could control. And there would still be men that would hurt me even if they did not set out to hurt me. But God had designed me to be loved and that I indeed was worthy and very lovable. As I learned to love myself and find myself lovable I became more friendly and open. And then a guy noticed me…for the right reasons. A cute guy if I do say so myself (and so does he :)).
Then a man came into my life
I tried to push him away for a bit but he was persistent and just wanted to be my friend. And slowly that friendship turned into love. He loved me for who I was and knew I had faults. And surprise, surprise he had faults of his own. We dated for 6 months before getting engaged which scared the ever living crap out of me. Could he really love me after only 6 month and want to marry me. But I loved him and the ring on my finger was proof enough to me that he wasn’t going to leave me heartbroken.
We got married on 21 June 2008 in a wonderful little ceremony. Two years later we are more in love than ever.
We enjoy trips together and making each other laugh until our bellies hurt. And I’m not afraid of falling in love anymore. In fact I fall more and more in love each day sharing my life with him. I know that he loves me dearly and we can love our family as it grows and all that life throws at us. Because we do it together and we are still growing together.
Overcoming my fear wasn’t easy.
In fact it was down right hard.
The fear was so deep rooted in me that it was like surgery to clear the entire wound. But it was worth it. I still talk to my therapist about the issues that caused the pain to begin with. But anything worth having is going to require hard work. And love is one of the best things to have so it is worth every drop of sweat and tears. I am lovable and so are each of you.
How have you protected yourself because of fear? How have you overcome this?