Occasionally I go through old journal entries to see where my mind used to be and how I've grown. Sometimes I come across entries that are relevant to whatever I'm going through currently. Last night I found a document on my computer entitled "Growing Pains." I wrote it on October 10, 2014, right before my TSW journey began. However, I had just dealt with a few major eczema flare ups over the summer, anxiety attacks, and I was still dealing with massive insecurity in my then relationship. I was at a point where I thought everything was about to go one way, but my life took a drastic 180 in the opposite direction. I was frustrated and really forced to examine myself, as I have been forced to do during this entire process. I've had more down time than ever before, so I've done a lot of reflecting, and I've really been able to ponder my purpose and what I ultimately want. Even though the below entry is not specifically about healing, it's reflective of where my mind was before this process started, and it has reminded me of why I'm going through all of this. This process has humbled me and brought me to my lowest low so that I can be rebuilt from the ground up, layer by layer. It's been no walk in the park, but I know that after this I'll be better than I ever was before. So here's to growing pains!
"Facing yourself in the mirror may be one of the hardest things one has to do in order to grow. We get so used to hiding and disguising ourselves that we learn how to hide from self and convince ourselves that we’re content. But there comes that point when you realize…I’m not. I need more. I want more. Not materialistic more, but more substance. A spiritual lacking drives you to the point of desperation in which you can’t hide anymore. You know the truth, and you know you’re not living it, so you’re forced to change. To grow. To mature. And it’s hard as hell, but necessary in order to get where you’re meant to be.
Then sometimes we think we’ve reached the truth and we’re “fixed” or completely healed, but the fact of the matter is, life is a journey of constantly growing, changing, adapting, learning and evolving. You never reach the point of completion because the journey never ends, and it’s when you think you’ve “arrived” that the growing pains come. When you get to that space you think that there’s no need for further growth, and you’re good so everything should just be handed to you. But that couldn’t be further from the truth.
The more resistant you are to growth the more it’s going to hurt, so just suck it up and evolve. God didn’t make us to stay the same from the moment we emerge from the womb until death. He wants us to be affected by others. He wants us to connect. He wants us to grow. He wants us to use everything He gave us in order to do His will. If God is all, beginning, end, limitless, and God lives in us, then what are we? How could we ever be complacent with being average or stagnant? That’s not God’s will.
He didn’t call us for it to be easy. He called us to be great. Sometimes that comes with pain, heartache, confusion, doubt and fear in the process, but we have to rely on His strength, not our flesh, to get us through.
"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." (Philippians 4:13)
And on the other side of that discomfort is joy that is unimaginable. God is the great comforter, and he equips us to be the same.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ." (2 Corinthians 1:3-5)
So embrace those growing pains. It just means that greater is coming."
I hope this inspires you to keep pushing! And keep a look out for my next blog entry about moisture withdrawal coming soon. Much love and until next time!
I'm Lauren, aka Just Du Pree, and I want to thank you for reading. This is a space where I share my very personal journey healing from eczema and topical steroid withdrawal (among other things), life lessons I've learned along the way, and occasionally the thoughts of an awkward Black girl (no Issa Rae). I'm a performer and filmmaker, so if you feel so inclined, pop over here to see what goes on in my mind on the regular. If you like what you see, you can stay up to date with my work here. Much love, friends!