The Story I Tell Myself

by Michelle Edsall

The story I tell myself about me is a limited story. There is no both and. It is a story of
scarcity, of what I did not get, of abuse, and how unlovable I am. Thru this story I see
others actions as either a threat to my story or joining me in my story. Those who join
me in my distinct one sided version of story are actually joining in my bitterness. I like
that they confirm the story I tell myself. I think yes these are my people. Then there are
those who come along side and invite me to consider another perspective, who say yes
and what else is true. This is not a welcome interruption, and yet it is vital to my future
and my legacy. In reality, the people who invite me to something else are my tribe.

I had settled into a place that safety and comfort was vital for me. The one sided story
of me brings a sense of safety. The reality is that I am living out of bitterness. The truth
is there was much more to my story. Bitterness comes with a price. I am clear on the
prices I have paid. I think what is more important is how others have paid a price for
my bitterness. Others have received things from me they did not deserve. I have doled
out judgement, suspicion, competition, and pride and more. All because I believed
someone needed to pay. I have allowed bitterness to pervade my marriage, my
relationships, and eat away at them.

I am clear today that bitterness does not get to have my legacy, my marriage, or my
children. My commitment is balls to the wall for love because that is where redemption
lives and healing comes. The awareness that when judgement comes up I am in
bitterness is a red flag for me to allow me to notice and then to shift, to not stay in
bitterness but love. While I am shifting I am also forgiving. I am forgiving as an act not
a feeling and then letting it go. Now this may come every 5 minutes or every 5 days
and I get to forgive, be humble, and let go each time. What provision that is for me.

Where in your life is bitterness having its way?