19 March 2010

Flashback Friday - Rite of Passage

This week Jo said:

This week's prompt is ALL GROWN UP. You can take any direction you like with it, but here are a couple of ideas:

The time it dawned on you that you were one of the grown ups
The moment you first felt like a mother (or a father)
A personal rite of passage

As a girl just growing into womanhood, I carried my mother's disappointment. I was the youngest of three children and the only girl and I knew I was not the pretty little thing my mother had hoped for when she dreamed and waited for a female child. I wasn't a popular, social insect, fluttering about. I was smart. My mother gave me credit for that, and urged me to continue to excel in my studies. Smart indeed, but smart girls didn't have boys knocking on their doors, not the cute ones anyway. So smart, and fat and ashamed, I made friends with others who didn't fit the mold which was deemed correct at the time.

One day in an attempt to appear normal (where normal meant being like the majority of other girls at school) I put on makeup and a necklace that I had just found while out shopping with a friend. My mother came home to find me in front of a mirror, looking at myself from various angles, trying to find some pleasure in what I saw.

Maybe it had been a particularly rough day at work for my mother. Maybe she had just seen some pretty little girls my age gathered happily somewhere. Whatever the reason, the sight of her obese daughter trying to look better triggered an explosion that may have been building for years. All of the bitterness and disappointment erupted in a few violent moments. She grabbed the string of beads around my neck and pulled, hard enough to break the strand. Beads flew about the room. Using the fingers of one hand she attempted to wipe the makeup off of my eyes.

“You don't need this stuff” she said, her voice loud and harsh. “Why bother with jewelry or makeup? Why bother?”

I was trembling as she grabbed hold of my tee shirt and continued in this new, frantic voice. “What difference will it make?”

She slapped me across the cheek. I hardly felt the blow as I spun wildly in the sting of my mother's next words.

“No one will ever want you anyway!”

This was a rite of passage that lead me to many years of searching for the very thing my mother said I would never have, the approval of man.

Thankfully I discovered a loving heavenly Father who is teaching me that His approval is all that I need. Part of growing up is realizing we do not have to allow things from the past to continue to shape our lives.

Stop by at Mylestones to read more of our stories and share one of your own.


Victoria said...

Rejoicing in the healing, nurturing, truth speaking, love of our Father! I love you, sweet friend!

Kathy S. said...

That breaks my heart. The chain around your mother's heart must have been such a weight to push her to tear you down so bitterly. I am glad Jesus has put His garland around your neck!!! May His precious Spirit heal every crevice left in your heart!

Anonymous said...

I am so glad that you found a Man that loves you for who you are.

And I'm sorry that you had to go through that, but maybe it is what the Father used to save you.

Jo@Mylestones said...

What a heart-breaking scene, what crushing words. But I'm so inspired by what you say now, looking back, about your heavenly Father's unconditional love and approval.

sharon said...

wow, this is heart breaking. Thank God you found the one who came to heal the broken hearted.

On another note, you should write a novel Karin...your writing is inspired!

Love you

Joyce said...

The power of words, especially a mother's words to a young girl. This was just heartbreaking. And so honest. Thanks for that. I'm thankful you've found God's unconditional love and may His love heal the heartbreak you've endured.

Melissa_Rae said...

My heart breaks for you in this. I am so glad though that your story ends in redemption and hope. Thank you Lord for healing each of is from the hurts and lies of others.

Billy Coffey said...

This just cracked my heart wide open. I think we can endure any story as long as there's a happy ending. I'm glad you found yours.

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