Dear John and Stasi Eldridge,
I simply adore your book. I needed to read it. Thank you for being brave enough to write it, as I know that could not have been an easy task.
So, in case you couldn't tell, I read Captivating, by John and Stasi Eldridge... I started it Saturday night and finished it today. Sunday I was sick, so no reading. But, oh my goodness, if you haven't read this book yet, DO IT NOW!!!! It should be required reading for all women. This book has to be Heaven-sent, and that's not an exaggeration. I mean, I seriously believe it was commissioned by God Himself. It is that good. Yup. So go read it. If you've read it already, then you agree with me, right?
Ah, so back to life... Sorry I haven't posted in a few days... I've been rather sick, and I still am, but now I have "feel-good pills", otherwise known as sinus decongestants (or something like that). Seriously though, every single time the Hicks family is out of town, I get sick... I vote they stop leaving me. But that may be just my own selfish desires... Haha, but anyway, I'm so stoked about these next few weeks... Wednesday is church, Thursday is date night with Meg, Friday is some sort of dinner/game night with some person from NLC, Saturday is Bible Quizzing (I think?), Sunday is church... Then the next weekend is BOOTCAMP!!!!!!!!! I am so excited I can hardly contain myself. This is going to be great. Also, I ordered the EGR valve for my car! Now I need tires and an air conditioner and my car will be as good as new (pardon my cliché). I feel so grown-up now... I am spending my own money on medicine, car parts, food, et cetera (and yes, I wrote that all out just because I can...). Now I just need to head to college and move out and I'll be legit. Of course, that may take a while....
Anyway, on to more... gossip-y type mess. So tonight I made the mistake of saying my mom's taste in television shows was less than stellar. Apparently, that's code for "You are a stupid, idiotic failure and no one loves you." I was unaware that is what that translated to... But okay. So while my mom is sitting there lashing out, due to her injured feelings, all I could think was "Okay, so I can't say you don't watch good TV, but you can say anything you want about me? How is that fair?" Now, I know she's the mom, and therefore has a right to say certain things, but she and my dad both have a way of saying things that cut me to the core and make me feel... unappreciated, unloved, not special, not good enough, and just generally like a failure. I mean, I just finished Captivating, which basically says that all of that is not true, but it still hurts. Especially coming from my parents. For example, they told Megan they expect a 3.9 GPA when she graduates (FYI: that's pretty much impossible, even the school agrees). So when I asked why they would do that, when they said nothing about me graduating with something along the line of a 3.3, they responded "We just don't expect that much from you"... Well... Why not? Oh, and what was their reasoning for their desire for me to go to ASU Beebe and not UCA? They figure I'll just drop out and become a homemaker anyway, so why waste the money on a better, but more expensive, school? That crushed me to the core. That completely broke my heart. Did I tell them that? Absolutely not. That would not make anything better at all. In fact, it would only worsen the situation. I know that from previous experiences. If I say I was hurt by something someone said, I am accused of being weak, whiny, and various other things until I'm the one apologizing. So, in order to avoid that mess, I'm trying to forgive them without letting them know I'm even hurt. I mean, this is one of the reasons I spend more time with people like Emily, who makes me feel like I'm actually worth something. She makes me feel like I could do anything in the world, while my parents expect me (and yes, they actually said this to my face) to drop out of college, settle for a less than stellar guy, marry him, have a kid or two, and just be a "homemaker". Now, honestly, I have absolutely nothing against homemakers. In fact, I would LOVE to be a stay-at-home mom, once I have kids. But the negativity in their voices, the connotation that, by becoming that person, I would be a failure, broke my heart. And, as I'm sure you all know by now, I don't handle heartbreak very well. I trust my parents... But they don't have any faith in me at all. I just don't see how I'm going to be able to live up to God's plan for me, when my parents don't think I can even live up to their bare minimum. This is why I go outside of my family for my support group. I tell Emily just about everything. I tell my parents practically nothing. I know they hate it, but Emily listens and then tells me that I can, that I am good enough, smart enough, that I am blessed, loved, supported, believed in, wanted, needed, desired. She really is my best friend. I wouldn't trade her for the world. Now I know I can't rely on her for validation, that's God's job (read the book and you'll get it), but she does offer me the love and support I need in order to keep trying. Because, honestly, I want to be the strong, beautiful, captivating woman of God that I know I am inside... I just can't seem to let her out just yet. I am going to continue to work on it, but until I can make peace with my demons, I know that can't happen. And one of my biggest "demons" is my belief that anything negative spoken about me, especially by those people whom I love and respect, must be true, whereas positive statements should be analyzed, criticized, and cast out. It's a huge hindrance that I must overcome, and I shall. God made me an overcomer, I know that without a shadow of doubt. I just need to let myself be weak, so that I may be made strong in Him, that I might overcome this battle inside myself. But for now I must stop preaching so that I can go to sleep sometime tonight. I love you all dearly. Good night, and God bless.