I was blessed to grow up in close proximity to my grandmothers. My mom’s mom lived with us starting when I was a baby. My dad’s parents moved into our upstairs apartment when I was in second grade. These women had a profound effect on me.
I was a child who paid close attention. Always looking for the warning signs of the inevitable arguments or explosions of rage, my keen eyes kept me out of the line of fire more times than not.
A benefit to noticing the details came from spending time with my grandmothers. They each had a personal relationship with God, and their deep faith left a profound impact on this young, impressionable child. During my time with them, each woman shared stories about her childhood and adulthood. I would attentively listen, gleaning words of wisdom. Woven throughout the stories I found a common thread. These strong women had come through true hardships, most times ending with “God is good!” or “Prayers answered.” Their message was clear: pray and keep praying.
I needed something to believe in, a force more powerful than me. I have always believed in a power greater than myself, in God. As a young child I was burdened by the guilt of blame.
It was my fault my father was a drunk.
It was my fault when chaos erupted daily in our home.
I was constantly reminded how everything was my fault. I carried that overwhelming burden others placed upon my fragile shoulders because I didn’t yet know it wasn’t mine to bear. Being told that my actions resulted in such outrageous outcomes made me fearful to speak, to do, even to be. I wanted to disappear, be invisible, or just not exist.
So I prayed, and prayed, and prayed. Each night I would spend sleepless hours begging God to make me a better child, smarter, less antagonistic to my family members. I didn’t doubt God hearing me, but my prayers were from the fearful heart of a child so I didn’t believe myself worthy of His response.
I didn’t have anyone else to turn to, so each night as their raised voices made my body tremble in fear I turned my mind to God to seek solace from the One more powerful than me – the only One who could help me believe I was something more than a child who could ruin a family simply by existing.
About Kate Powers: Published author, speaker and coach, Kate shares information, experience and useful tools to help women rethink their limiting beliefs, incorporate their values in all areas, reduce emotional baggage and move forward with confidence and knowing. Kate has been a passionate advocate for her clients for over 10 years and recently released her second book.
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