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The Uglies

Here's a funny story,
I recently took a mental hike and stepped in something pretty stinky. When I looked down to see what that something stinky might be, I found myself ankle deep in a........
of the Uglies.
My own, in fact.
I think I must have suffered an implosion of sorts, and everything that was "in" decided to come "out".
Out came the angry witch lady who yells at her dog for being alive.
Out came the petulant toddler screaming at her husband....., who dared to say words.
Out came the lazy sloth....., who decided that living in a pig sty could actually be cozy.
Out came the sullen teenager, who decided that silence is the best sort of communication.
Out came the despairing and wilted lily, who decided that life was Just-So-Totally-Over.

Oh boy did it steam and did it stink.
I must have been saving it all up for months.

It's funny how emotions can build up like that.
Like a giant 2 liter bottle of soda shaken up and ready to explode. Then add a tablet of alka-seltzer to the mix and watch chemistry at work.  An awesome, spraying arc of all the things you really want others to see in you, flying through the air in unmitigated speeds of earth shattering, humiliating, glory.

This process is what I like to call, The Uglies.
They suck.

I thought I had been doing well in my life process. I've been eating better, getting exercise and actually feeling good about it, even looking ahead into the unknown as if it has exciting possibilities for me.

So what toppled my tower of awesome?

Me. I did it.

I looked at myself and felt shame. I'm the barren woman. I'm the social outcast who can't do the one thing that a woman was specially designed to do. I'm the mother who couldn't save her baby. I'm the wife who let her husband down. I'm the woman who can't lose weight. The angry friend who doesn't celebrate when you tell her you're pregnant. The woman who grieves because her arms are empty.
The woman who got really, really mad at God, because she felt like He had lied to her. The woman who is full of  "can't's"

In my youth the barren woman was an unknown entity, a woman I didn't get, so therefore, she was unimportant to my spiritual growth.
As a soon to be mom, the barren woman was to be pitied, I mean, how sad for her, right?
As a woman who has born and lost a child, the barren woman was to be avoided, I don't want her cooties infecting me.
As a woman who struggles with infertility, the barren woman is my sister. I love her and I feel a kinship with her. She doesn't pity me, she understands me, and I finally understand her.

Talk about eating a big spoonful of Humble Pie.
Here's the crazy thing I realized after throwing my tantrums and pity parties and testing every ounce of patience my husband contains;
My goal was the promise.
Not the giver of the promise.
I trusted the awaited evidence of the promise more than I trusted the one who gave me the promise in the first place.

This week all the oozing, sliming, stinking, Uglies decided to surface. I'm glad they did. I saw things about me that I don't like, that I would be mortified if others saw (needless to say, my husband deserves some accolades for surviving the onslaught with grace), but in that tangled and messy pile, I remembered that I simply need Jesus.
He's not afraid of my snotty nose or my tantrums.
I need Him because He gave the barren woman hope. Because He loves her.
He opened her womb and gave her a child. Because He loves her
He told her that she mattered. Not only that she mattered, but that she would be honored forever. Because He loves her.

He doesn't see me as a woman who can't. He sees me as His daughter who can. Because He says so.


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