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I promise you there will come a day when you look back on your life and all you’ve been through with awe and gratitude. There will come a day when you are no longer burdened by the weight of life’s sorrows. There will come a day when you think of the hard times and wouldn’t trade a second of it, because of what it has made of you...
No matter what you are going through, please believe that the sun will shine again! You are loved and you will find JOY. While perfection and lack of struggle are not part of life, joy is. I truly believe that you can and will find joy if you continue moving forward. ~ Heather Falter, Becoming Whole
My heart is full of gratitude for the healing work that Heather has done for herself and has been so brave to share with the world! Her work has been a key piece to my healing. Let me first explain that I've been on the path of healing for almost 9 years since I discovered my husband's sex addiction. It was not only the pain from betrayal trauma, but also the reopening of childhood wounds of neglect and emotional abuse that had me doubled over in pain. In that moment, right then and there, I began a journey of picking up the pieces of my broken self. I was hungry for anything or anyone to heal me. I found, day by day and little by little, that a loving God was there to lead and help me find healing as I was ready for it. I did anything I was led to. I wanted to recover; to feel better, to be able to stand up again. I can honestly say I fought for healing every day! I poured myself into countless recovery support groups for spouses, self-help books, seminars, group therapy, private counseling, ANYTHING! I did it all and I put my whole broken self into it. I was desperate to feel anything besides pain.
When I met Heather, I was still a warrior, but I was exhausted and in despair. I was tired of working so hard at healing. I wondered if I'd ever be whole or happy. I had a voice and boundaries now. I divorced my emotionally abusive and addicted husband. I did whatever it took to provide a safe home for my kids and carry on like warriors do. But, in spite of all that I accomplished and all the recovery behaviors I diligently tried to adopt, I was still hurting and longing for a reprieve from pain. I put on my brave face all day, helped my kids deal with pain in healthy ways, tried to keep my own healing going, and then would cry myself to sleep every night. I thought this was how it was always going to be. What else could I possibly do that I haven't already done to heal?
Shortly after meeting Heather, she asked me to look over her book Becoming Whole. I sobbed through the entire thing! I related to the pain and anguish of her story. I felt hope for the very real possibility of feeling joy despite all of the pain. I felt encouraged by her ideas of HOW to practice becoming whole. Prior to her book, I found lots of resources that told me all the hopeful things I wanted to hear, but no real practices to access those feelings I wanted and the healing I longed for. And then Heather created The Joy, A Course on Finding Peace in Troubling Times. I was honored to be among the first to experience it. What I discovered, and to my amazement, was that by doing the exercises and journaling in that workbook, my heart was opened! More so than it had ever been before. I was literally healing my mind, my heart, my body...every part of what makes me whole! I have never before felt such an opening and clarity into myself and what I need to heal. My negative messages were exposed and refuted. My heart was opened and I was able to take a very brave look inside thanks to Heather's beautiful meditation that walked me through each chamber. The insights were priceless. What I noticed after these breakthroughs was that I truly felt JOY! Not only that, but I felt deserving of it. I was able to receive the joy that had alluded me for so many years of trying to find it. I can't seem to adequately express my gratitude to Heather for leading me, through her work, to find joy. I still cry at night, but they are joyful tears; the kind when your heart is full of gratitude.
This is my healing testimony. I can truly say I am becoming whole. Now I understand what she means when she says it's possible.