Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Yes, I am. We all have "issues" to deal with - we're all human and life involves pain and joy. Troubles and triumphs. For so many years, I've tried to keep it all together. But, I can't do it anymore. In the past couple of years, events occurred in our lives that caused me to come to a place where I had to face "issues" in my life or they would consume me... I've decided to face them. And thankfully I'm not going through this alone. Others are going through their own healing journeys and while our circumstances are not the same, I am strengthened and encouraged to acknowledge the areas in my own life that have held me captive.

I am addicted to APPROVAL and ACCEPTANCE and
I have a horrible FEAR of FAILURE!

And, over the years it has caused me to make decisions or commit my time to people or activities that caused others to be sacrificed. Even though I thought I was doing good and helping many, I sacrificed my own family too often. Yes, "we" were all involved in activities together, but family time and vacations didn't happen - because time and money were invested in the activities. Or there was busy preparation time. Or training or a meeting to attend to. There were things I wanted to do growing up that I wasn't able to do and I was determined that our children would always be able to do the things they wanted to ~ and they did, but it wasn't necessarily a healthy balance for the whole family. In addition, being gripped by FEAR there were activities or people that I didn't want our children to be involved with. So, there were excuses and reasons why they couldn't go somewhere or be with some people. I was too afraid something might happen to them and I couldn't protect them. I wish I would have allowed them to take more chances. But, I didn't know it then. I am grieving over things we lost together. And, I'm thankful for, and remind myself of, God's grace in the midst of it all - for I can see how He has blessed our children and family in spite of my own complicated "story" that affected us all.

There. I said it. And, it's true. Once I made the discovery, I knew it was who I am. And, I'm incredible thankful for Sarah Ferguson for sharing her journey on OWN. I don't care what your thoughts are of her (or me, actually). I've learned that my judgements of others (and their actions) are not always accurate. And people's judgements of me aren't always right on either. I find Sarah, Duchess of York, to be a real person. Yes, she's made lots of mistakes and has regrets in her life. So have I. But, she hasn't given up. She keeps trying. She's determined to discover who she is and to heal, so she can live wholly and be set free from what holds her captive. I am seeking the same for my life.

Today, I am walking this healing journey and it's extremely difficult. I want to give up almost daily. I often fall back into the same patterns and then "beat myself up" for not being stronger and overcoming.

Add to this emotional eating. I use food to deal with stress and to comfort me ~ especially sugar (cookies, ice cream, chocolate) and salty foods (chips). And, when I remove these foods - my body goes through a significant withdrawal. If I keep these foods out of my diet, I feel a lot better. But just a few bites draws me in and it's difficult to stop eating... I'm trying to learn new tools to deal with stress in my life. And, I'm trying to extend myself GRACE when I fall short.

When you're dealing with addiction to approval and acceptance and a fear of failure coupled with emotional eating ~ it creates a real mess! I've always tried to make everyone happy and I don't want to let anyone down. I can see now that it's really unhealthy to live this way. It's not humanly possible to do. I need to focus on knowing that God accepts me for who I am and I need to accept myself. I will fail in this life. I have failed. I will fail again. I am human and every fails at some point in their life. Some fail more than others. It's okay. I know that I've never intentionally tried to hurt others or intentionally failed them, but I have fallen short. I have wounded other people. I have failed. It is painful to know this, but I must continue to learn and grow and transform my life - letting go of what has held me captive and seek healing.

So... this is where I am today. Taking one day at a time. A few steps forward, a few steps back. Making progress, learning from failures, healing the "lenses" through which I see the world and people around me, continuing to process the "hows" and "whys" of who I am and how I got to this place. Some days, I feel paralyzed and nothing gets done. I have been tortured by these days. Recently, someone I love and is a blessing in my life, shared that my body is trying to heal and it can't give out energy - but needs to reserve all it can to help heal me inside. I'm trying not to struggle on those days now, but allow healing to occur. My creativity has crashed. My naturopath has given me some flower essences to support my body in the areas it needs. They are helpful and I have times that I feel "inspired" again. One day, I know it will fully return. There are things I'd like to do in my life..., but today I'm taking one day at a time and believing HEALING will come and I will overcome my addictions. God is good.


  1. Hi Joanie.. I appreciate where you are coming from and your honesty.. I am also struggling with this and have done so for nearly all my life i reckon. I found Joyce Meyers book Approval addiction an eye opening experience a few years ago and i regularly listen to her CDs on same topic in the car. ... and a huge challenge of course. I am far from perfect but its revolutionary to accept that I have a heavenly Father who made me me and can also help me improve in areas He wants me to.. To be able to accept ourselves and others is a huge step.. but we can take baby steps each minute and hour and live in the moment.. hang in there. and thanks again for sharing.. perhaps we need to learn to BE and not DO!
    Lynette (adelaide)

  2. Hi, love your honesty in sharing! You are SO not alone in all that you are facing and dealing with. I agree with what Lynette said about Joyce Meyers book, Approval Addiction...SO GOOD! I have found the book "Made To Crave" by Lysa Terquest (sp?) has been a wonderful daily help for me...she takes the cravings we have for the unhealthy foods and says its not a bad thing, it's just directed in the WRONG direction...that God gave us this craving, but it's for Him and Him only! It's a great way to re-channel those cravings toward God and off the negative foods. Praying for you and know you are not alone! : )


Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! Abundant blessings on your day... Joanie