War is awful. It is full of wounding and killing. But one of the greatest tragedies for warriors is friendly fire. The wounding of a soldier that is on your side.
I have found that women have experienced a lot of “friendly fire.” We long for relationship with each other, yet often tempers flair, territories get staked out, misunderstandings are taken as the gospel truth, and it is then that maintaining relationships can feel like a trip on the string of a yo-yo. You’re in, you’re out. You’re too much, you’re not enough. You’re not close enough, you’re smothering me. And maybe, after a while, a few of us just stop trying. We stop trying to understand ourselves and others. We begin take the easy but lonely road of isolation and surface relationships. We sink ourselves into the roles of our lives: mother, wife, girlfriend, teacher, business manager instead of the relationships. We learn to exist floating on the surface like oil on water.
Does anyone else mourn that women feel like oil and water? Shouldn’t we feel like we belong to the same race? Shouldn’t we feel like we are in this life together? Shouldn’t we come to a place where we don’t worry about “friendly fire?” Or at best, manage the “friendly fire” that comes our way.
I think as women, we can do better. We can dig deeper. We can take a step back to see how our own intimidations cause us to retract in fear.
Am I jaded? It’s funny because I wouldn’t say this is where I am ~ but it is where I was. I found that I was insecure about any relationship. I didn’t know what “normal” looked like. I didn’t know what “healthy” felt like.
I was the woman creating the yo-yo effect.
I wanted to be close ~ so I shared some deep secrets. But then I would worry about what you thought of me ~ so I pulled away, afraid to see the answer in your eyes, tone of voice, or body language. I got that life changes, and best friends are not always forever ~ I got that in my head, but my heart still felt rejected. I was my own worst enemy ~ creating a trail of “friendly fire” that I couldn’t see but others got tired of the healing required to be my “friend.”
God has walked me through so much healing and today I am surrounded by women of character, who openly struggle through our insecurities together. I love and value the depth of them knowing me and I knowing them. I trust them and I long to see every woman free of “friendly fire.”
What about you? Is my experience yours too? Are you still reeling from your last round of “friendly fire?” Or have you always had a zone of “Cease Fire?”