Category Archives: Trauma

Your Body is an Instrument Not an Ornament

Your body is an instrument not an ornament.

BOOM!!!

Let that sink in a minute.

I had to go to the dermatologist today for my yearly skin cancer check. He found only one, took care of it and sent it off so we wait for results. Pray it’s basal cell like the others I’ve had. Any who, as I was updating my paperwork half of it was, did I want information on these particular services…..Cool Sculpting, Botox, fillers, laser, etc. that was all before I got back to the room. Ridiculous! When I got in the room there was an area of cosmetic pamphlets for all the services you can choose to “make yourself better” more acceptable. Listen, I’m not saying there isn’t a place for this but I’m saying that society and media is constantly telling us as women “If you use this product or do this procedure you’ll be more beautiful and happy!” This is a multi bazillion dollar industry preying on women and our insecurities. You could have the most perfect body or face and they will still try and offer these services to “improve” what you have. Still implies there’s something wrong with you. Let me just say God don’t make no junk.

It’s a money making industry!!!

So who has determined that your thighs are too skinny or too fat?

Who has determined that your waist is too thin or wide?

Social media?

Celebrities?

Your friends?

You?

Let’s be real, most of what you see on tv, magazines, social media has all been airbrushed, filtered, or blurred in some way to make it look better. I mean we are all guilty of it. Me: Can you hold the camera up higher? Angle it this way🤣🙈 How long does it take to decide on a picture you will post? Or how many times do you retake a picture? I’m preaching to myself, I do the same thing. I’m just saying we all try and present the best image of ourselves or what we want people to see.

This just cracks me up, LOL🤣

Look at all the phot editing apps. Did your know your can actually stretch your body to make you look taller and thinner? What??? You can blurr out some cellulite….OK now that might be nice LOL. I had no idea but these apps do some crazy stuff. I know a woman I’m pretty sure she does all her photos with an app. She smooths out all her wrinkles to the point it doesn’t even look like her, maybe 20 years younger her. What’s crazy is she’s a beautiful lady. Who told her she needed to do that? To get Likes and comments to build her self esteem? Idk, but obviously she feels the need to look like a “better” versioned herself. Do you feel that same pressure from society or media? I’m sure we’ve all felt that.

But what if I told you, you could be ok in your own skin?!?!? Yea, yea, yea I know, I struggle with that too. Like really struggle. Would you believe me? I’m working hard on this area. I have literally cursed my body and hated it for as long as I can remember when it was thin or fat. It didn’t matter. I never felt enough. Why? I believed lies from the enemy. Things that were spoken over me. But also because I was always comparing myself to what society says is beautiful and acceptable. Also, past hurts, comments, relationships, or traumas can cause this as well. Only you know what played a role in yours.

What about what God says is beautiful and acceptable?

For we are God’s masterpiece. Ephesians 2:10

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. Psalm 139:14

You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you. Sol 4:7

He hath made us accepted in the beloved.”— Ephesians 1:6

My nutritionist is the best, between her and my counselor they challenge me to do the work to truly be a better me, not necessarily in my looks but inside beauty. Inside beauty radiates to outside beauty.

So my nutritionist has been working on me with doing mirror work. Can I just say YUCK!! No one wants to do that. Most of you know I’ve struggled with an eating disorder, well with that comes body image issues. I’ve made a commitment to myself and God to do the hard work.

I’m ALL IN!

So I had to make a list of neutral statements of different body parts and then look in the mirror and say them to myself. Examples; hands, legs, eyes, feet, arms, butt, stomach, etc. Some are harder than others. When you’ve hated your body and been disgusted with it this is the LAST thing you want to do. But I’M ALL IN! So I do it off and on till the other day when I’m reminded that Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:13

See spiritually, we are naked before the Lord but this day I was to be “naked naked” before myself and my mirror. Really Lord??? You have got to be kidding me, my dude?!? 🤣 Nope….disrobe and let’s do this!!

I’m ALL IN so here I go LOL.

So I have mirror time, but NAKED MIRROR TIME! 😱🙈 Oh, the horror right?!?! I didn’t plan it but it just happened. I was just going to do the neutral statements but God had other plans. My friend, lots of tears were shed but I was following Gods leading.

I spoke the neutral words over every part.

I spoke nurturing words over every part.

And then I spoke a blessing over my body.

THAT I have never done. I’ve been too busy hating it and hating how it looks. When I should’ve been blessing it and being thankful for what it does. This is real life y’all, this is total transparency…..I told myself how sorry I was for how I’ve treated my body, how I hated it and cursed it and asked for forgiveness. It was difficult and beautiful all at the same time. Do you find yourself here? Well, if you’re do you are not alone.

Mirror time is getting better. Something broke off me that day. Do I still struggle, yes, of course, but I’m gonna keep doing it and eventually those feelings will catch up to what the Word of God says about me.

COMPARISON GAME

Do you play the comparison game? Boy, I have. What happens to us when we compare ourselves to what the world says is beautiful and acceptable? I’ll be happy to tell you…..we don’t measure up and you never will. You’ll never be happy. You’ll always be looking for the next thing to fulfill you, diet, lotion, procedure, exercise, etc. When we feel like we don’t measure up shame and guilt rush in and set up camp. Our lives become like little hamsters on the wheel, constantly spinning but never getting anywhere. Trying, failing, shame, guilt, repeat.

We make decisions in our lives based on how we look and how we think people perceive us. We don’t go to the party because we don’t feel pretty enough or have the right outfit. Or I can’t wear shorts again because my legs are ugly. How about, I can’t go swimming again because I’d have to put a bathing suit then others would see my thunder thighs or cellulite. Come on, where my sisters at??? I know there’s a bunch of y’all out there feeling this.

How many things have your missed out on because you felt less than or not good enough? I know I’ve missed out on waaaay to much. I challenge myself now to not do that, to explore the why, explore those feelings.

I’m ALL IN!

How about you?

So today, I’m learning how to nurture and love my body. I’m more than a body and so are you! Loving your body isn’t thinking your body looks good. It is knowing your body “IS” good regardless of how it looks. Now that right there is POWERFUL!

In a world full of body shaming, fat shaming, skinny shaming, messages coming at you left and right that something is not quit right about you. If you do this or that….buy this or that you’ll be a better you and you’ll finally be happy and accepted. I’ll leave you with this, love and appreciate your body for what it does. Your Body is Powerful. Use it as an Instrument, Not an Ornament. You are beautiful just the way you are flaws and all. You are Gods chosen instrument. You are good because God is good and you are made in His image.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

God Collects Our Tears

Often times when struggling with pain and trauma we find ourselves angry, holding onto bitterness, and unforgiveness. Does that sound familiar to you? Does to me, I’ve been there and honestly I’m still working through some things. But here’s what I know. We’ve got to revisit the pain and trauma…..revisit…..NOT SET UP CAMP and fellowship with it but for many of us we’ve shoved it down so far we can’t even feel it which means it’s harder to feel other things as well.

It’s kinda like a garden, we need to tend to our heart, our broken places, and the things we hide so they can heal.

This definitely takes time and will probably be painful. But just because it takes time doesn’t mean we should neglect it.

Just because it’s painful doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it.

YOU ARE ANOINTED FOR HARD THINGS! His Word says; for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Phil 2:13

Don’t run from the hard and painful things, embrace them.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

We need to go to that particular pain and trauma dig it up and allow Jesus to heal it. We’ve got to feel it, experience it and allow it to do its work in us. The Word says in Psalms 56:8 You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.

So after we have felt it and experienced it, it’s time to place it back in the ground, then God takes those tears of ours that He’s collected and pours it over it. It’s like a healing balm. The healing will come. It may take some time and doing this over and over again, like me, you may have many traumas or past pains to work though, it’s ok. You are gonna make it! It’s a process. Not a competition. As long as you are pressing forward, doing the work and allowing God to do a work in you friend you can’t go wrong!

I say this often but it’s so true and worth reminding you, God wants to heal you everywhere you hurt! Don’t hide your brokenness from him, He already knows it…move through it! Don’t get stuck at the point of your pain. I’ve been there and been stuck for way to long. I’ve allowed others to paralyze me, heck I’ve paralyzed myself.

Sometimes we are our own worst enemy. The devil don’t need any help because we are doing it all for him when we get stuck and paralyzed, and not moving forward in our lives. He’s rejoicing and we are foiling our own lives.

See God has a plan for you and me and you may not know what it is and thats ok, you’ll figure it out. Keep searching and trying different things till you get it. He’s not gonna let you fall, He will reposition you. The thing about God is you never really fail the test, you always get a do over. Again and again and again! That’s kinda nice if you think about it.

Sweet friend, I hope you hear me when I say YOU are precious and loved by God. You are worth all the hard work it takes to overcome past traumas. You weren’t meant to get stuck there. No! God needs you to tend to your heart….your garden so He can do the healing so you can help someone else. I’m definitely preaching to myself here. There’s someone out there who needs to hear your story. They need to hear what you’ve been through and how you’ve healed from it but if you’re stuck and not moving forward that can’t happen. Rise up precious one and plow forward, YOU ARE DESTINED FOR GREAT THINGS!!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

You are a beautiful mess, created

Pain….Embracing Where You’re At

Pain…don’t you just hate that word? In the last year or so I’m learning to actually embrace the word P A I N. Pain in my body, and pain in my mind and heart.

Culture today tells us to do everything we can to escape any and all pain. That’s why we have so many addictions these days. But let me share a different side to that. If you choose to escape pain and you absolutely can, God will allow you to do that. But it never really goes away it just gets shoved down and you just use different things to numb the pain. You can pick your choice….shopping, food, drugs, alcohol, sex, tv, games, over working, etc. You try and avoid the pain at all cost but it shows up in relationships, work, and your health you just may not realize it.

The thing about numbing one area of pain is it actually numbs more areas if not all areas.

However, if we choose to embrace the pain something else happens, yes it is painful and yes it can take a while especially if you are dealing with any form of trauma. But it’s better to go through the pain than to shove the pain deeper where it grows and festers.

This is where I find myself today fighting through past traumas, embracing the pain, and allowing it to do its perfect work in me.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. Psalm 147:3

In Gods Word it says, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. Philippians 1:6

Pain tells us something is going on.

Pain tells us something isn’t right.

Are we listening though or do we shove it down again and again?

I’ve done that myself. I’ve been the Queen of shoving, maybe you have to.

I’m learning that untreated trauma shows up in the body in the form of pain, sickness, and disease. It can show up as migraines, asthma, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, IBS, or autoimmune disease. Very interesting, right? The body keeps the score of what we’ve been through whether we choose to deal with it or not the body does something with it good or bad.

For me I think it started growing up in a broken home and toxic environment. Things and traumas that happened during my younger years and teenage years. I learned to not share and to shove things further because it wasn’t safe to share. Or I never felt safe to share. Maybe you feel that way too. I’d like to encourage you today to begin to take that mask off, find someone to share those things with whether it’s a counselor or someone from your small group or church. Start slow, but just start. Letting those secrets or painful things out of those dark hidden places is extremely difficult but you will feel so much better.

It’s all about being vulnerable. Ehhh, that word, it makes me all squirmy. I don’t like it and yet in order to get the things I need being vulnerable is what has to happen. See people don’t know what’s going on in your heart and mind if you’re don’t tell them. Yea I know, no one wants I do that either, lol.

But YOU ARE WORTH IT!

I AM WORTH IT!

Let’s make this more practical and personal, I’ve had a lot going on in my life the last couple of years, extremely difficult things. But if you know me, you prolly have no idea because I don’t let on that anything is wrong or happening. Let me take it a step further and say why. See growing up, my mother had enough emotions for the both of us. She was EXTREMELY emotional. She freaked out over little things as if they were HUGE things on the daily. She also played the victim so well, even though she would create the situation but she would blame others to get the attention she desired. Makes no sense, right? It was just really difficult. So for me I guess I became numb to emotions because everything was BIG! If that makes sense. I never wanted to be like that and that was one of my fears, being like her. So that’s part of why I shoved things down instead of feeling them on a “real level” not an extreme level like my mom. Also it just wasn’t safe. People around me weren’t safe. It made me more afraid to be vulnerable because I didn’t want people to think I was like her even though I wasn’t.

Exert from Brene Brown about Vulnerability:

The difficult thing is that vulnerability is the first thing I look for in you and the last thing I’m willing to show you. In you, it’s courage and daring. In me, it’s weakness.

This is where shame comes into play. Vulnerability is about showing up and being seen. It’s tough to do that when we’re terrified about what people might see or think. When we’re fueled by the fear of what other people think or that gremlin that’s constantly whispering “You’re not good enough” in our ear, it’s tough to show up. We end up hustling for our worthiness rather than standing in it.

When we’ve attached our self-worth to what we produce or earn, being real gets dicey.

The good news is that I think people are tired of the hustle – they’re tired of doing it and tired of watching it. We’re hungry for people who have the courage to say, “I need help” or “I own that mistake” or “I’m not willing to define success simply by my title or income any longer.”

Did you catch that at the beginning, being vulnerable for others is courageous and daring but for me it shows weakness. Exactly how I have felt for years. That can be our mindset if we let it. But it absolutely shows more courage to say what we need or desire than to keep going without and feeling less then, resentful, and angry at someone for not knowing what we need. I’m totally speaking to myself on this. See there are times I just need a hug from my husband and I continue to go at life alone in a certain situation. Have you ever been here? I’m challenging myself to be more real and honest in my closest relationships. How about you? Are you willing to ask for what you need? Or does it seem scary to you? It seems scary to me but what’s scarier, staying the same and feeling less than, resentful and angry or stepping out and doing something YOU need and desire.

My friend YOU deserve good things, to be loved and treasured and maybe part of that is stepping out and saying what you need. Do it afraid!

YOU ARE WORTH IT!

I AM WORTH IT!

At 51 years of age, I’m learning to feel all the things. Embrace all the pain and emotions and yes it’s has been really hard but so worth it and so freeing. I have a ways to go but I’m so thankful for the healing journey I’m on. God is a good good Father and He wants to heal you everywhere you hurt. Will you let Him in to do it?

God bless y’all and let me remind you how loved you are and that God has a plan and purpose for you. He desires to heal you so you can go on to help heal others. You have a job to do sweet friend. Get out there and do it! Let’s do it afraid!

Big hug,

Nicole❤️