I am.

“I remember waking up each morning. Sweaty, heart racing, afraid to open my eyes…even before my feet would hit the floor”. My earliest memories start around 3 years old.

In my 20s, I thought I had them licked. But, they were only hiding.

Waiting, silently, to slink back in.

“When you feel my heat, look into my eyes…it’s where my Demons hide, it’s where my Demons hide. Don’t get too close, it’s dark inside”. Trust me, it pitch f****ing black, and I didn’t even know it.

This blog is written today, to open up a discussion. We all have demons. Most of us fight them on a daily basis.

Behind the smiles, the long lashes, fancy cars and selfies on Facebook.

But, who ever talks about them?

Me.

And why you may ask?

Well, each morning, around 3:37am, I return. I roll out of bed sluggishly, grab my cup of coffee, and sit in my favorite chair.

And then they come.

The demons.

Doubt.

Lack of Worth.

The memories and triggers of a time gone by, but not forgotten.

So, I read my devotional and pray.

I pray this prayer…”Lord, how would you use me today?”

Over and over again. Eyes closed. Heart open.

After a few moments, the demons slip away.

Peace and power Reside.

Faith and fear cannot be in the same room, my friends. And I choose FAITH πŸ’œ

I become open to however and wherever God needs me today. I am an instrument of His love and peace.

And that, in itself, sets me free.

So, back to the Demons.

Those mother f****ers.

As I said, I thought they had left.

But, it seems they never do.

Shortly after my divorce (mid 30s), they reappeared….with a vengeance.

The outside world thought I had it all. Successful career, perfect family, money, love, everything. And I can now see why. It’s the picture I had painted. I took much time and effort creating that masterpiece. No way in hell would I let my past destroy it.

But, as with anything in life, lies, the truth, lack of caring for your health…it catches up with you.

I was struggling through a child custody battle one day when I could feel myself snapping. I could feel the demons grabbing on. When I describe my demons, it always feels like my insides are wrestling. And in reality, they probably are!

I feel torn, wretched, ugly and weak.

And I don’t know about you, but I feel broken inside.

I want everyone around me to hurt because I am in so much pain.

And that, is not a good thing.

So, one day, I went to a counselor. I was blaming and slinging mud at everyone in my world and I was hoping she would agree with me and solidify what assholes everyone was. But, on that life changing afternoon, she did anything but that. She told me that I was my own problem and I needed to come back!

What?!

I was floored. How rude!

Couldn’t this woman see what I had been through? I was strong and resilient and a good person.

I was wrong.

I had never been so weak and hardened and angry in my life. And I was the only one who couldn’t see it.

Not only had my demons taken control of me, they were also destroying everything I had worked so hard to build.

Relationships, trust, strength, forgiveness and inner peace.

They say the pain stays with us until we have learned the lesson it is trying to teach. I believe that now, more than ever.

So, I came back to the counselor that next week. Defensive and pissed off. But, in those hours we spent breaking down barriers and digging up childhood tragedies, we exorcised many of my demons forever.

It’s been a long road. Almost a decade of self love, a lot of work and finally finding (and learning to accept) unconditional love, but I feel free.

Keep in mind, this is no Cinderella story…. I’m not stopping here with a sweet fairytale ending. I do have a charming, strong, irreplaceable prince. I was blessed to be a mother to 4 of the most beautiful souls God ever graced the ground with. And I have found a family, although we do not share the same DNA.

However, I get up every day, at 3:37 am to fight.

No more sadness and no more pain. Only peace and love remain.

I have learned to forgive. I have learned to accept my losses. But, the most empowering, healing thing I have ever done?

I give it all to GOD.

The sadness, the pain. The loneliness and shame. The guilt and the blame.

And also all the gratitude and glory my heart can hold πŸ™πŸ»

I stay close to the ONE who created me and carried me through those awful days. The days without food. The days without love, warmth or joy.

He held me when I lay in a fetal position on my bed, crying in pain, at 35 and rejoices with me when my laughter fills the room at 43.

You see, the demons can and will hide. Our faith must be greater than our fear.

When we confront them head on, they lose their power.

I end this blog with my latest success.

A few weeks ago, I was in a crossfit competition. Burpees, ring rows, and deadlifts to name a few of the movements. I had been breaking through barriers with the deadlifts for a few weeks and was very focused on hitting my heaviest weight ever. 185 lbs. I told my husband that week that I would feel like I gave my all if I could hit 185 5 times….something that seemed unattainable just a short time ago.

My partner and I did the first 2 workouts and then it was time.

I lifted each weight with ease, going higher and higher. We got to the last one. The bar with 185 lbs on it…..and I froze.

The demons stepped in.

I’ve been told by my coaches that I finally entered the “zone” that day as I feel like I was watching from above.

I squatted down to grab the bar, only to see it was a brand new barbell. That may not mean anything to you, but in my world it was a block. “The new ones have more texture and rip up my hands. I don’t want to bleed. “.

Enter Demon #1.

I squatted there, with the weight belt tight around my waist and realized my back was hurting. “I don’t need to be doing this…what are you trying to prove?”

“You’re weak, you’re gonna hurt yourself, you can’t, you aren’t good enough, you don’t fit in”.

Enter Demon #2.

And for the grand finale……..

Apparently I was stronger than I thought. More fierce than the voices told me. More resilient and self assured than even I knew.

In my head, I took over.

“No. You don’t get to take this from me. This is what I came here for.”

I wrapped my tiny hands with my perfectly, polished red nails around that bar and lifted it like I owned it.

185…1,2,3. “Fuck you, Dad!” I said aloud.

I put it down and hugged the judge and my partner and started to cry.

I picked it back up and lifted it 2 more times.

185 x 5πŸ’ͺ🏻

I took control of my mind…and won.

I didn’t let the old recordings of my Dad telling me how weak and worthless I was play louder than the ones who know my true self.

I grabbed that needle and scratched that record to hell, held it over my head and threw it to the ground. It shattered into a million pieces that day and blew the fu** away. Into space.

Never again will the demons tell me I can’t.

Or that I am not good enough.

Or strong enough.

Because I proved to myself that I AM.

That lift taught me 2 things.

1.) The demons still reside, waiting to pounce.

2.) I am stronger than my greatest demons.

So, now every morning, as I sip my coffee, I say..

Here’s to you, beautiful soul.

The gift 🎁 of this new day.

You deserve to be free, too.

Take back control of you.

Remember, fear and faith cannot be in the same room.

Always remember one thing…..

“You are braver than you think, stronger than you know, and hold more power inside than you could ever imagine ”

Now, when the Demons want to come out of hiding, I welcome them one by one.

What we resist will persist and I want these demons gone.

Game on.

I don’t think they realized who they were messing withπŸ˜‰

Much love,

Linda πŸ’œ

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