Sunday, May 8, 2011

My Bubble Wrap Barrier

Is it worse to not be loved, or to not love? I don't know. There have been many times in my life where I didn't feel loved, but rarely have I ever felt like I didn't love someone. God has blessed me with an awesome, Godly family, and I've always had many good friends. Even after moving to new cities, I've always held on to someone, somewhere, somehow, whether to my old friends or my family. But today in church, as I sat tired through service, I realize something that scared me very deeply: I am scared of love.

I was sitting alone with a girl my age, a girl to whom the words "beautiful" and gorgeous" don't quite do justice. It happened very innocently: I sat by myself near the front by the worship band and, being in the worship band, she sat by me once worship ended. I've known her for a few years, and though aware of her untapped beauty and absolutely lovely singing voice, she's always been simply a friend. I thought nothing of her sitting by me. At least, until I caught my grandma staring at me. I don't actually even know if she was looking at me, but she was looking in my direction, and I tried to figure out why. My mind raced to connect the dots, and I somehow thought she was looking at me because I was sitting by a pretty girl (alone) and that we looked like a couple. Stupid, I know. Talk about dramatic. But when I realized how scared I was that somebody who didn't know me might think I was in a relationship, that's when I figured out something was wrong. Just the thought of me in a relationship gave me the willies. I asked more questions, like, Why am I scared? Why do I want to move and not sit by her anymore? What's so wrong with me that I sit by a beautiful girl and feel self-conscious and guilty about it? Why do I feel guilty when I simply sit by or close to a girl, even out of accident or circumstance?  

As my mind tried harder to answer these questions, I stepped out to the kitchen for some water. I was still shaken, but needed to stay in the service to avoid any questions, so I went back in. I set the issue aside and focused on the sermon and on worship. But when I got home, I locked myself in my room and began asking those questions again.

The answers shook me up.

Maybe I've built a bubble wrap security wall to protect myself from pain and loss. Maybe that bubble wrap has created a barrier between me and other people. Maybe I'm so scared to relive the two nightmarish dating relationships of my past that I hide behind a facade that preaches a resolution to not date out of purity and wisdom when really I'm just afraid and protecting myself. Maybe I'm not quite so noble or honorable. Maybe I refrain from dating because I've been hurt, burned, tortured, and pained so deep that I'm scared to love. Maybe I've associated the same horror of my past relationships with all relationships, even my future and current relationships, and other peoples' relationships.

I've been hurt; I've experienced loss; I was burned. And I realized today that maybe I'm not over that yet, even though it's been over fifteen months and two years since those two relationships ended, respectively. I've been bitter towards those two girls for a long time; way too long. And I know that in order to love again (and not romantic love, but love for my friends, love for my family, love for my enemies, and love for those I don't like), I'm going to have to forgive and move on. It hurts to write these words; it doesn't seem fair that I should forgive them, after all they put me through. But I'm not faultless, and life's too short for me to waste time in the past. I'm not writing this as a release, because releasing my bitterness will be the end of this journey. No, I'm writing this as an acknowledgement, a start. I don't know what it means to forgive, really forgive. And I know I'm petty for letting bitterness and anger control me for so long. I'm also sicked at how blind I was at it. But bitterness has held me back, and I don't want it to any more. It's time I put an end to this. I just wish I knew how.

Maybe my answer will come from the Rebelution. After all, this most certainly will be a hard thing. I'm going to need help popping my bubble wrap barrier.


Anonymous said...

Logan, I loved this! It made me cry! I've been going through a situation similar to your two at church. When we first started attending this church about a year ago, me and this guy seemed to hit it off right away. Or so I thought. I guess I got to self-conscious of us talking all the time, so I held back. But I held back too much. Now, we don't talk anymore at all, or even acknowledge each other. I tried fixing it, but I guess I didn't do a very good job of it. For a while now, I've been feeling VERY bitter and angry towards that guy for a couple of months now. I actually just had a dream last night of me and him resolving things. And then a few hours later I read this. God's been trying to teach me something, and I've been trying to figure it out. This was another piece to my puzzle! Thank you SO much for all your encouraging posts! You have no idea how many people you impact!
Morgan L.

Ashley said...

I love popping bubble wrap! ;)

Seriously though, I wish I knew some way to help. However, I can pray, and will. *hugs*

LoVizzle said...

I really appreciate you telling me that. I can relate. I've had almost a dozen similar situations, where me and a girl talk non-stop and then I feel self-conscience about how much time we talk so I begin to ignore her some, then a lot, and the relationship shatters. I have at least three of four friends whom I've ignored and treated badly all because I began to feel guilty about paying her too much attention. This has been a huge burden for me lately. I don't want to end a friendship but I don't want to talk to someone too much, you know? At least I know what to post about next. lol :p

LoVizzle said...

Haha, my previous comment was directed to Morgan; just clarifying.

But thanks, Ashley. My next post will be about this subject too, and maybe on how to help it. I don't know how to maintain a good friendship with a girl, but keep the emotional and time attachment at the proper distance. I seem to always be texting one girl all the time. I need to stop that. But I also need to still be friends with those girls. I sure hope I learn hoe to do that soon, or I'll keep losing friends :/

Anonymous said...

I know exactly what you mean! I've done that countless times with a guy friends, and then the friendship ends. I need to have a happy-medium, but I just haven't found it yet. :/ Well I can't wait for it! Your next post, I mean.
Morgan L.

Shay said...

I kind sort of relate... I have never been in a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship but I have had guy friends that I talk to alot and then one day one of us will get self conscious and just stop talking to one another...happened to me recently with a guy...we were really good friends one day and the next day he won't answer a text just asking how he is doing.

So I too have some trust issues when it comes to getting close to anyone due to backstabbing and horrible friendships in the past. Its SOOOO hard to forgive alot of the time and to be honest I am still working on forgiving someone who wronged my family and more than a YEAR ago.

Logan, I am praying for you! I know its hard but it will be so worth it and freeing! And more than that its what God desires from you. =)

Anonymous said...

Ashley, are you going to be at English Dancing tonight? Morgan

Essa said...

I can kind of relate to this post, but in a different way. God has led me to a decision not to date in high school. (I totally know its not for everyone.) This makes my life a lot easier when I am trying to have a friendship with a guy. If my priorities aren't striaght, I can correct them without wrestling with my emotions on whether or not he would make a good boyfriend. I think it was wise of you to recognize and examine your intentions, so I'll end my comment with a bible verse I use on myself quite a bit: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires. (Song of Solomon)

Jessica said...

Amazingly a lot of girls are commenting on this post. :) Maybe we are just more free to speak our minds. lol. Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that I understand what you are going through. I've never really been in a dating relationship but I was caught up in a friendship with a guy a couple of years ago and it quickly became something that was not pleasing to God (and ironically texting was a big part of that). I just want to encourage you to take it slow and seek God's will. I also have decided not to date for purity sake and I don't believe my decision is strictly based on just protecting myself. I believe God wants us to stay innocent in this area of our lives. The Bible shows that He didn't created marriage between one man and one woman just so we could spend our growing up years giving parts of our heart away. Also, when you say that your friendships with girls have fizzled out you have to know how a girl thinks. There is a fine line between good friends and wanting more. Just look at Jane Austen's quote for Pride and Prejudice "A lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment." This is my mind in a nutshell sadly. Though some girls may deny this I think we all have a desire for romantic love and often it hits us in the middle of a good friendship with the opposite sex. So perhaps your female friends are protecting themselves or maybe they are just not thinking of your feelings, some girls can just be selfish and forget that guys get hurt to. Anyway, I'm praying that God will give you guidance on the subject. Seek Him and He will make your paths straight. I also want to recommend a book that I've really enjoyed "Emotional Purity : An Affair of the Heart" by Heather Arnel Paulsen. It may look like a book geared for girls, but she has great sections for guys too which helped me understand how you guys think. (sorry this comment was so long!)

Alexis (Lexi) Winters said...

Oh my goodness! This is so moving Logan! Thanks for posting.

Anonymous said...

Logan, I just want you to know you aren't alone. One thing that has been on my heart for over a year now is guy/girl relationships. Just when I think things are going well, the guy seems to pull back, and I get offended. Now I understand that you guys go through exactly what we go through: hesitation, fear, and self-consciousness. On my part, (and I can only speak for myself) when a guy starts to pull away, I think I did something wrong, and I get angry and do the same thing. I always think guys are much emotionally stronger than I am, so I'm just now realizing guys get uncomfortable just like we do. Thank you for your honesty; it's greatly appreciated!

Lexi W.