10 April 2014


Bonnie asked us to write prompted by the word brokenness.
Here is another slice from my novel-in-progress --
Her mind was a fertile breeding ground for the voices of shame.  With no positive words to contradict them the voices grew, stronger, louder and more convincing.  They were the truth to Linda, the only truth she knew. 
By the time Linda was sixteen she had stopped going to school.  She followed a boy six years older than her to another city.  He treated her roughly, but that felt familiar, and at least he gave her a place to live.  She did whatever he asked of her, paid the price for her imperfections and swallowed the pain with the alcohol he had taught her to drink. 
When he grew tired of her, he passed her on to a friend who treated her just as badly.  She never questioned the abuse convinced it was what she deserved, all she had ever deserved. 
She didn't expect her baby son to love her, or the daughter she birthed four years later.  She didn't expect anything but trouble and trouble always found her.  On her twenty first birthday, with a four year old and an infant she drank herself to sleep after their father walked out for the last time. 
The voices sang a familiar song.  “No one will ever really care for you because you’ll never be good enough to care about.”  Linda believed them, of course.  Theirs was the only song she knew.  They were the songs she sang to her children like an inside out lullaby. 
Linda was broken and alone with both her heart and her body covered with scars.  Going home wasn't an option.  She had closed the door on that pain and couldn't imagine opening it again.  Her children were hungry, the rent would come due soon and she never learned how to do anything that someone would want to pay her for. 
She left the kids home alone at night, asking a neighbor to look in on them if she heard noises. She went to the bars down the street, offering herself to anyone who would buy her a drink, taking them back to her place as payment of sorts.  She thought herself lucky when one of them would choose to hang around for a month, or two. Some stayed longer, but she never expected that.  If they paid the bills she was willing to absorb whatever blows inevitably accompanied the favors.   
Linda was too hurt and too lost to think about what harm living that way was inflicting on her son and daughter.  She was in survival mode, doing whatever she thought she must.  Just like her own mother.  Just like always.  Day followed day, week after week, and the years piled up one after the other.
Brokenness. Shame. Pain.  All these abound in the lives of my main characters, just as they do in our own lives. But...

The is a God Who loves beyond measure.
The people in my novel learn that.
They teach each other truth as they learn it.
Just as we need to love and teach and encourage each other.
We are His.
Shaped in His image.
Givers of light and love and life.

jamming with Bonnie



Trudy said...

Thank you for sharing this, Karin. Heart-breaking brokenness.

Renee said...

Very powerful and painful to read. Compelling.....

Krista Sprankle said...

I'm sitting here in awe... You've shared something very raw here. I love how you say it's your novel!
The way your write this, I can feel your emotion in your words.
I agree with Renee, very compelling!
Bless you!

Denise said...


Melissa R said...

Very well said. It reminds me of an article I just read about the five lies that we all believe (You're not good enough, etc.). I've been there, too, though not nearly to that extent. And thank God for saving me from it!

Michelle said...

"broken and alone with both her heart and her body covered with scars" - what a incredible image of brokenness. Thank you for sharing this and reminding us to love, teach, and encourage each other.

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