I am Seeing a Counselor ::: And Other News

Imperfectly Brave


I am seeing a counselor.


And you know what? I like to think that if I had met her at a coffee shop, I would have started small talk about The Voice or our kids or you know, life. I think we would be actual friends. I also like to think that I would be friends with the whole wide world, but lo and behold, not everyone likes me. There is actually an 80/20 rule about friend-making, but I won’t go down that rabbit trail.


Too many opinions, too little time.


Instead of being her friend, my counselor sits with her notebook open and we begin to talk immediately. I only have a scheduled hour with her and I have always been one to get every ounce of life out of something. I tell her I like her hair, because I really do like her hair. We talk about the small things and she tells me that she’s been praying for me. And I think about how weird this all is because I am usually the one telling people I am praying for them.


I am usually the one to carry all the burdens. Not today.


She listens. This is the thing about counselors. They listen. And you want to know their other secret? Open-ended questions. The ones that hurt and make you break open and ooze out. Yeah, she asks all of those questions.


When I first met with her, I told her I just wanted soul-care. In fact, I told her a friend referred me because my friend knows my life and she knows that I am usually the listener. So there you have it — I blamed it on a friend. That hurts a little but it is the truth and the truth feels better than a lie.


What was once a thought of needing soul-care quickly became an understanding on both of our ends that this hot mess needed more than soul-care. Because all those open-ended questions literally made me a puddle, oozing out on the floor.


So I thought I would go there will all of you. I thought I would let you know what I am working on right now. I thought I would give you the assignment my counselor gave me. And that this one thing I am tackling is quite literally one of the harder fights of my life.


She told me to shelf the opinions of man.


Do you know what I wanted to say to her?



(And I am saying that nicely, because quite honestly, I still want to please the whole wide world).


Imperfectly Brave


I am to shelf the opinions of: my co-workers, my church friends, my Facebook acquaintances, my grocery store run-ins, my dreams, my hopes, my ambitions.


Are there shelves big enough for this?


But before I get in a tizzy (and I am in kind of a tizzy), let me explain why I am to shelf everything: because when those voices are louder than God’s than I am not living FREE.


And I am dying to live free. Not literally. Figuratively. But sometimes figuratively hurts pretty bad, too.


So, I don’t have any good answers for you. Not one. I am currently trying to find my shelf. But maybe we can all try to find shelves. I am going to need help nailing mine to a wall, any wall really. And that being said, I don’t even know where the nails are located. So, there’s that.


Maybe you can help me find some nails and together we can build a really big shelf and start tackling this enormous fight. You + Me + and the other 80% that are friends with us.


xo – whitney

4 Responses

  1. Thank you so much for being brave to share this!! I love to share stories of people working through their imperfect and am sharing this on my page today! Confession is powerful. Keep writing!

    1. Maggie, thanks! Hopefully our journeys will give way to freer places. We all need to help each other and give up this “perfection” act, right? Thanks for sharing on your space. I love what you are doing and how you are digging into the hard places. It’s necessary and worth it. Keep going.

  2. i love counseling! such an advocate for that. and dang, that’s a good thought. i totally agree – getting to that place to hear the still small voice of god is a place of FREEDOM! I need that in my life.

    1. Oh girl, me too. I am learning to hammer a little bit harder at hanging my shelf every day and listening to God over the noise. I think it takes practice and a bit of a fight. But it’s worth it, right?

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