[Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Alina. I think this is such a relatable devotional in today’s world– women have so many opportunities (which is awesome) but along with that comes expectations and pressures. Some of us may even have to grow up too fast. Here’s Alina’s story of healing from our Heavenly Father!]
The Adored Little Girl
Families are complicated. I learned this reality in my toddler years, as I clung to my mother’s knit sweater, refusing to let go and soaking in the scents of her perfume so that when she was not near, I could reminisce her by the thoughts of that sweet aroma. I was the first child, adored and cradled, all attention on me with absolutely no cares in my tiny, perfect world.
Years passed, my parents had more children, new homes and jobs, new opportunities. With all the good, came new disappointments and uncomfortable changes in my once so-called tiny, perfect world. The vanity of life took over, and it was no longer just me and my mommy and daddy.
With each difficult situation in our family, I was forced to grow up and mature very quickly because expectations and standards rose high. My parent’s worries became mine as they took care of other responsibilities and I no longer felt as that adored daughter.
Instead I became a goal achieving perfectionist, afraid to let my parents or others down in any way. Teenage years were brutal because I started to search in other places, that, what I pushed away from my parents – love and attention from my father and acceptance from my mother.
Like many girls, I searched for affirmation from the opposite sex, with each guy failing to fill my deepest voids. I searched for acceptance amongst my friends whose lives and families I envied.
“Why were my friends lives so much easier and happier than my own?” I would mumble in frustration to God as I wept like a baby every night. I started to feel alone and secluded in my own home, within my own family.
With each passing year, I distanced myself from my dad, my mom and my siblings. I would reject family gatherings just to seclude myself as far away as possible. I began to despise going home and would take any opportunity to escape from that sanctuary. Because of the disconnection on my end, my relationship with my father began to decline. Every one of his actions that he proved as love, I took as judgment and rejection.
It was a dreary January morning, weeks after the holiday season had dwindled down, that I woke up, and felt no more. Tears that would flood my face before, I no longer could produce. I became numb. My heart was like a steel shield, with every bullet fired, bouncing off like a ricochet.
Don’t get me wrong, life still continued, as I kept myself involved in community, ministry and work. I kept civil with my family and knew that I loved them dearly, but I allowed the grip of hurt and offense take over me years prior, at the age of ten. Twelve years later, I finally came to the awareness of the uncomfortable truth that it was no longer just a barricade that I had constructed with my own hands, but a spiritual oppression that I allowed to control my destiny. I missed years of living in peace, strained by the grip of the enemy.
My solution? Although it took many years to realize, it was simple. I needed to first and foremost accept that I had become immune to being vulnerable, followed by the conscious decision of allowing God himself to wreck even the most minuscule offense and heal me from within. The freedom did not come in a split second, but I preserved to be completely whole again.
Change was minor at first, like giving and receiving hugs as well as saying “I love you” to my mother and father (which was nearly impossible to pronounce years prior). Within a year of the Lord loving on me in areas I did not even know I lacked love in, I was radically restored. No more feelings of pain, but floods of joy filled my days as I began to feel again.
Although it is true that to a certain extent our childhoods shape us and build subconscious walls and trust issues, I refuse to accept that we are meant to spend our lives in that state. For many years, I would put blame on my parents or on the circumstances that would occur in my life hoping that by doing that, I had an excuse for my dissatisfaction. The honest truth is that our happiness is our responsibility and not someone else’s fault. We can either create or destroy our future by refusing or allowing our past to dictate it.
Today, choose forgiveness over self-pity. Choose vulnerability over putting up walls. Choose joy over fear. It’s your choice that can start the healing process and your choice to live a life full of God’s promises and destiny that he has created for you. You are too beautiful to miss out on that gift. Yes, the process may hurt, but the reward is extravagant.
Today, I am confident that I am my heavenly Father’s favorite little girl, cradled, all attention on me with absolutely no cares in the world.
My name is Alina. I was born in Ukraine and moved to the states in 2001. I absolutely love writing and reading other girl’s stories. Another hobby is fashion and skin care. I believe every girl is beautiful inside and out.