Friday, May 1, 2009

Overcoming Hatred

"Hatred can be overcome only by love." Mahatma Ghandi

For years I walked around with so much hate and anger in me. I hated what my parents did to me. I hated the way they shamed me, beat me, made me feel less than human. And I hated the system that claimed they could help me. They were like my parents,- shaming, punishing, bullying.

I was arrested for drug possession. My social worker convinced the judge to let me do the time on a locked pysch ward instead of prison. Being on that ward,- that place of misery pushed me further into myself and broke me even more. Their methods of forcing me to conform were brutal. The chemical and physical restrains took away any shred of dignity I may have had. My brain became dull from the medications, the fight in me subdued, but the hatred grew. Hatred for them, for me, and for everyone who had hurt me.

One time they strapped me to a bed by my arms and legs for some minor infraction. They kept me there for two days like a chained animal, allowing me up only to go to the washroom. At mealtimes, they wouldn't untie my arms. A staff came in to feed me. Humiliated; I refused to eat. I hated them. I despised them. My anger grew. I wanted to hurt them, punish them in some way like they were doing to me.

Instead, I cut into my flesh, trying to rip myself apart, desperate to pull out the bad, the part of me everyone kept telling me was horrible and wrong. Scars formed on my body, but I didn't care, because they were already in my heart and soul and mind.

Hatred and anger became a way of life. It drove me. It fueled the fight in me. I turned on myself with a vengeance. My arms were full of bruises and marks from biting myself and cutting my skin open. The blood oozing out was my salvation, the thing that released the building tension inside me. My blood, a proof of life, that I was still alive.

Blood? That's what finally turned my life around. The blood. His blood. The blood He shed for me so I wouldn't have to hurt myself anymore. Like me, He too was beaten, shamed, ridiculed. He never opened his mouth. He never fought back. That amazed me. How could He not? They laughed at Him, mocked Him, and He said nothing, nothing except, "Father, forgive them...."

Hearing that, my anger began to subside. Thoughts of revenge slowly became thoughts of forgiveness. It's hard to forgive, to let go of the brutality of what some people did - but to not forgive is worse.

I want my life to reflect His love. He loved me when I couldn't love myself. He loved me when I was wild, out of control and bent on self-destruction. I don't fully get how He did that, but I am so grateful for the gentleness of His love that broke the chains that kept me stuck.

10 comments:

Kelly's Ideas said...

I am at a loss for words... Your journey is difficult to imagine and so glad that you found Christ...
God bless you.

Kelly

Jane said...

Yes, thank God you found Christ, found His forgiveness and acceptance. Thanks for sharing.

Debbie Thorkildsen said...

You have an awesome blog. So glad you are sharing the deep hurts of long ago. May God truly bless your journey and bring complete healing.

LISSALYNN2006 said...

im not sure if u got the first comment or not but i know where your comming from and may god bless you.... i too was abused i too was an addict i too was a cutter, i too have been in a psychiatric hospital and even though i have scars on the outside i have healed on the inside through the help of GOD. i now lead a clena and sober and cut free life thanks to GOD....
he is so awesome...feel free to stop by and read my blof myt testimony is the under older post as well. keep writing its the best therapy other than GOD...
http://lissalynn2006.blogspot.com/

Jane said...

Hi Sarah,
You have been tagged, please go to
http://daysofourlives-jane.blogspot.com/2009/05/tagged.html . Thanks. :)

Jane said...

OOps, have I given you the right link?
http://daysofourlives-jane.blogspot.com/search/label/Tag

Jane said...

Hi Sarah, the answer to your question left on my blog is this: just name 7 blogs in a post, this mean that you're tagging them, these 7 blogs should be blogs that you like, and leave a comment in their blogs like I did to yours. Also, in your post, write about 7 things about yourself, so that others will get to know you. :)

Terri Tiffany said...

It's great to see that you are impacting others with your life story! May you touch many lives!

Marj aka Thriver said...

Thank you for the amazing honesty you share here. Thanks for allowing us to use this for THE BLOG CARNIVAL AGAINST CHILD ABUSE. Great work!

Patricia Singleton said...

Sarah, you have overcome so much in your struggle to be free from the effects of the abuse. I thank God that you have been able to forgive. That is such an incredible step.

Thanks for sharing your articles on this subject. I know as difficult as they are to read, they were much more difficult for you to experience and still survive.