In the past, I’ve written a few blog posts about growing up and dealing with abandonment issues.
My biological father didn’t want me. Repeatedly didn’t want me. But would schedule visits as if he did and then not show up.
Can you imagine sitting on the curb in front of your house waiting for your daddy to show up? I remember it vividly. On several occasions.
One of which was Christmas day. I was 6. Yes, he called. Yes, he was on his way. Several days later when my mom finally got a hold of him, the answer was always the same…. “Something came up.”
Um, something “came up?”
On Christmas day, on the way to pick up your daughter to take her to see her grandparents? On Christmas day in 1981? Before cell phones and social media?
I am pretty sure this yoyo way of living, this waiting on someone who was supposed to love me – that’s what started my life of anxiety. My life of questioning everyone that ever made a date or appointment with me.
“Are you sure they said to meet at 6? Not 6:30 or sooner? Are you sure this is the restaurant? Are you sure they meant today?” My poor sweet husband gets the raw end of this. I question everything. As if I am waiting for the bottom to drop out.
Can I be honest with you?
I have been waiting for 16 years for my husband to up and leave me with no warning or reason. Just because. Because why would he stay?
And honestly, I have actually seen it play out in my head. And then poor Jason gets the cold shoulder for two days because in my mind, his leaving me was so real.
I have friendships that ended suddenly for no reason.
I remember the first time this happened, and I thought, “What did I do wrong?” Staying awake for nights on end with thoughts running through my head like a high school football coach at Friday Night football games. Over and over again. Praying that God would help me just to move forward.
He did. And I remember thinking then: “God, please don’t ever make me walk through that again. That was way too hard. You know my issues with abandonment.”
Yet a few years later, it happened again. This time was a little easier than the first time. Not a lot easier, but a little bit.
I did an AMAZING study called “In My Father’s House” by Mary Kassian. It was about relating to God as Father, no matter who your earthly father is or was.
You see, my image of God was based on my image and memories of my earthly dad. I couldn’t fully understand the fact that God truly would never leave me or forsake me. I never had that example here on earth.
WOW! I highly recommend that study! God did some amazing work there! My eyes and my heart were truly opened. I stopped wondering daily when God would leave me. I stopped waiting for the moment He would take my family away from me.
What God taught me during this time was to hold captive every thought. He taught me to not allow Satan to steal my joy!
Randomly – on several different occasions at different churches – Ken Freeman spoke God’s word. Each time, those words made me realize that there are others that deal with what I deal with. Battle the thoughts I battle.
And now I know that I am not supposed to keep secret my struggles. We are to be transparent and help others. We are not to be secretive and exclusive or clique-like.
Life is full of choices – options – if you will. And while I have made a lot of bad choices, I know without a doubt that my choice to follow Jesus has NEVER EVER led me astray!
If you struggle with abandonment issues, I am here for you.
I have this message for you: It is NOT YOUR FAULT.
You are not to blame. People make choices. If you were abandoned, another person made that choice. It had nothing to do with you.
God loves you and wants you to know Him. He wants to be Lord of your life. Do you already know Him? Maybe you aren’t running to Him first….
I challenge you to change that. Turn to Him. Reach to Him. Yell to Him. Angry? Sad? Grieving? Yell at Him. It’s okay, I promise. He wants to hear from you.
But, when you are done letting it out…. Be still. Listen for Him to respond. He will, just give Him time. Because guess what…HE WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU!!!!
“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6