Sad And Grateful At The Same Time

I'm sorry that there was no post last Friday... Last week something traumatic happened to me that prevented me from posting. Please keep me in your prayers and thoughts as I work through that experience and heal from it.

My last blog post was about being grateful for the spiritual discipline of coloring while dealing with complex emotions. Boy was I ever grateful that I had a practice and discipline that grounded me and helped hold me in that moment. I got news about two weeks ago that the wife of the man who raped me (as a teenager) had passed away. Talk about a host of complex emotions hitting you all at once. The complexity of feeling sad that a life has passed away, yet meanwhile feeling ever so grateful that someone who caused me pain is no longer here on this earth.

You see this woman KNEW what her husband was doing. She allowed it to continue and even had the nerve to tell me she knew about it but did nothing to help me or stop him. She even allowed her own daughter to be victimized as well. So you can imagine the complexity of emotions that where running through my head as I got this news.

I am truly sorry that a life was lost and a daughter is grieving her mother. I feel for my ex-friend because I know what it is like to lose a parent (my father was murdered when i was only about 2 and a half months old). So I feel her pain. But I was so happy for myself that someone who caused and allowed such pain to happen to me is no longer able to cause harm to anyone. I feel like such a bad person for feeling this way - the happy part- because how can one be a christian and almost be rejoicing at the death of someone and yet sad at the same time???

Then I realize that I am a human being... With emotions... With feelings... With experiences... With trauma... All of these things cause me to look at life through a lens. I realize that my emotions, feelings, experiences, and trauma are VALID. What I do with those things is truly key. I'm not going to rub it in this person's face that I'm glad her mother isn't here because that is her mother. I don't want to inflict pain or trauma on someone else. I want to rise above the kind of person her mother was and put someone else's needs before my own. But that doesn't negate the fact that through this death I received a sense of closure from my sexual assault as a teenager.

I am still working through these host of complex emotions and I probably will end up sitting with these emotions for a while especially since I have a host of new ones to deal with too. I'm again grateful for the various spiritual disciplines that ground me: coloring, reading, Lectio Divina, scripture journaling, and of course good old fashioned bible study. I'm also extremely grateful for the simple indulgences of self care that include drinking my favorite flavor of coffee right now. I'm treating myself gently and giving myself the same care I would want for my ex-friend as she deals with a loss. Will you please pray for her, her first name is Crystal, as she grieves her mother?

What are you grateful for as you deal with complex emotions and difficult/hard situations in life?

With Love, Gratitude, and Grace from the Divine,

Brian Lee

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