I get in my own head sometimes…a lot. I’m not talking about simple introspection. I mean drive myself slowly crazy with worse case scenarios and what if’s. We’ve gone over this, past hurts leave marks for a lifetime unless comforted…but even then. There can be comfort but the memories remain. In a bad moment, we (I) let ourselves go to a not so great place.
With the recent death of my father following the “Trey days” of my life, I look back at my own life. If a giant asteroid hit me this afternoon…what would I regret? Would it be the bad decisions I made? What about the opportunities I didn’t seize? How about the times I valued humor over someone’s feelings and hurt them? What about the time(s) I flipped out during bed or bath time (the kids, not mine, I’m good at it for me) and yelled at any of the kids? Could it be the less than wise use of money or lack of foresight in taking care of the house? Career choice? Car choice? Spending time with the family? No, not one of them.
If I regret one thing…it’s worry. Not only worry, but selfish worry. I think back to times I was consumed by thoughts or concerns and it really affected me in other areas of my life. Let me be perfectly clear, I don’t worry about things I cannot control. I didn’t once “worry” about Trey dying. I knew that there really wasn’t one thing I could do to help or hurt that. I would be fixated on things that are (in theory) in my control. Mind you, I’m not huddled up in my bedroom rocking back and forth. It’s the quiet times, the alone times, the in between times. “What if I don’t…, What If I got…, If I don’t change X, Y might happen?” Things like that have run through my mind in the past (and when I’m not careful) and I regret it.
Granted, it’s not debilitating. It’s not crippling. For me it’s not even obvious. It’s subtle. It’s quiet. It’s something that just creeps in and spends a little bit of time. For a bit after Trey died I posted that I started experiencing some anxiety. I have been blessed to have a lot of those pains (from the Trey days) comforted. However, I still get in my head…too much.
You are very likely reading this and thinking, “Yeah Jay, me too.” I’m sure to some extent we all have those moments, to a greater or lessor degree. That gets to my point today. However, before I get there please know that pains need to be comforted. Your pain is real. Your hurts matter. Your story needs to be told. NOW, given that, we all need to ask a very simple question, “Who needs me?”
You see, the keys to success in a relationship is putting your trust to meet your needs in God, not the other person. There needs to be open/hones/and vulnerable communication. Lastly, there needs to be mutual giving to meet those needs. I believe this to be true as a society as well.
Imagine if each and every one of us woke up every day and asked that question, “Who needs me?” Imagine, if you will, that EVERYONE did that? How different would the world be? Ok, far from ever happening and not really possible. However, it happening in our world, our immediate lives, is very possible. What’s stopping us? Yes, our past hurts. Please, deal with them, let me help you deal with them. We talk about that at my church every week. Beyond that, it can happen. We can make a difference in the lives of everyone around us by loving them, meeting their needs and then what happens? Our needs get met as well. We worry less and find ourselves helping more. The quiet worry times are replaced by thinking of others and ways to help them get by. Together, we make this world look a lot more like it was supposed to be.