Wednesday, August 11, 2010


I have another post in the works about our vacation last week, but I can't finish it until I get some pictures edited. However today I have some random thoughts going through my head that need to get out so I thought I would put them down here.

This will not be my usual "this is what we did today" report. This will be random and all over the place - as all brain dumps are.

As simply as I can put it. I like to feed people.

Ok, random, I know, but I have been faced lately with struggling with my insane desire to speak when I shouldn't, explain when I should leave things alone, and challenge when it is better to leave things unsaid.  I have been torturing myself by holding my tongue and praying for peace, understanding and release from the things that haunt me.  But in it all I have noticed that I have this strange drive to feed.

Not necessarily in food, though you know how much I do love that.  But in other ways as well.  Some of my friends tell me I am a people pleaser.  Maybe that is true. Some of it comes from the way I react if I think someone is upset with me.  It is a mental and sometimes even physical torture for me - I anguish and hurt until I know I have fixed it. It is hard for me to just get over it.  And even if someone is upset with me over something that I didn't even do - I still feel awful. 

So, I am a feeder. I like cooking for people. I like trying to cheer them up. I like extending kindness, even when it might be rebuffed. I am like an abused dog - kick me and I will come back and lick your feet anyway.

Parts of that - I really hate about myself.  I want to be "stronger", whatever that means.  Is it really strong to brush people off; to give them the proverbial "what-eveR" and walk away? I don't like being seen as weak or annoying, but I do want to be thought of as caring.

I shoulder a lot of unnecessary burden.  I take other's troubles on to myself and feel the need to make things right, even if there is nothing I can do. I cry when others hurt. I know I can't make people get over things, or feel better about things. I can't control how others let things effect them. I can't persuade someone to change their mind unless they really want to.

So, even if you are mad at me or I am mad at you or we aren't on good terms or if things are difficult between us... if you are hurting, I want to help.  When you feel bad, I feel bad.  And helpless. And sorry. Sorry for what? I don't know - and it doesn't matter.  It is just how I feel.  And if I could find a way to make things better I would. Because all I really want is for everyone's experience in this life to be good.  I feel like I have something to offer to everyone - be it a kind word, a thoughtful gesture, or a delicious chocolate cake. I want to feed your belly, feed your eyes, feed your ears, feed your soul. I want to leave you better than I found you. I want to bring peace, understanding and grace. I want you to know that no matter how the world treats you and no matter how you treat yourself, you are loved.  I want you to stop beating yourself up for things you did, I want you to let go, I want you to learn and move on, and know that each experience in life helps us grow - experiences should never hold us back or keep us in a bad place. 

In college, our choir went through a few months of dealing with a horrible choral director.  It was awful going to class every day, listening to everyone complain and bicker, moan and groan.  At one point, a girl in my section was complaining once again how she had paid good money to go to college to learn, and that being in this director's class was such a waste.  I rarely spoke out in times like that; shoot, I rarely spoke at all.  But I'd had enough of her bickering and I told her that she could still learn from the experience.  At the very least, she could learn what NOT to do.

It probably wasn't a life altering moment for her, but it made her think (I think) and the bickering stopped. It was life altering for me though - while I was the one that said it, I had never really thought about things that way. And from then on I tried, with any experience, good or bad, to learn something, even if it was what not to do.

Life is all about how you look at it. You can take bad things and let them ruin you forever, or you can view them as a learning or a growing experience and you can move on as a better person.  Dwelling on heartache and poor decisions isn't fair to anyone, especially you.  With most things, I have chosen to forgive, to heal, to move on, and to look back only in the interest of learning and using those experiences to not make the same mistakes again. I'm not saying it is instant - a lot of it took time (sometimes a LONG time) but eventually I get there.

If I know you are hurting, I want to help. I want to find the right words, the right song, the right message. I want to bring a ray of light to your world - if only for a moment. Sometimes it is hard to sit here so helplessly, wanting to give and knowing it may not be wanted.

I want to know that my presence in your life brought you to a better place. Even if it was bad at the time, that the experience helped steer you to a better life without me. And if it was good, that it is something you can fondly look back on.

Because even the bad people in my life, even the ones that angered me or broke my heart - I am still thankful for them for making me who I am.  I am thankful that those experiences pushed me and changed my direction toward the life I have now; toward my family and my friends.  I am thankful for the heartache and the life altering decisions. I am thankful that some things didn't go the way I had hoped, because if they had, I would have never ended up where I am now.

I am thankful for the path God has put me on, even if it's not lined with rose petals.

Thanks for reading.

D :)


TitanKT said...

I have read this post several times and didn't comment because it's hard for me to know what to say... Which is that while I can obviously relate to the desire to feed people (as you well know), I can't say that I feel the same as you do about/toward people who have hurt me. And in general I'd say that makes you a better person than me. I can say that in hindsight, the difficulties I've suffered through in my life (mostly all of my own doing anyway) have made me a stronger, better, smarter person... I don't spend a lot of time thinking about those who have hurt me (one way or the other).

My heart is soft toward people who clearly need love and support, even if I don't know them personally. I have long-distance FB friends whom I've never met that I keep close tabs on and care very much about. And maybe that makes us similar in a way.

But you're post really highlights what a special person you are, Dawn. It is scary sometimes, seeing that deeply into the soul of someone you've never met. It's really a blessing that you share that much and I confess to you that revealing the sweet, tender beauty of who you really are is precious to me.


Jill said...

I think it's a God-given gift to be empathetic and be able to actually do things that really do "feed" people in a real way. Sure maybe it doesn't always work, but all you can do it put it out there, plant a seed of caring. I think I'm very empathetic, but not a good feeder at all. Don't know what to do in a way that feels natural to me! So,I envy you for having a gift to do the feeding! Good for you! But I do't want you to feel bad when the support is not taken or appreciated. People are people...

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