Every since I was a young girl I have been told that I have a big heart. Recently my counselor said that I have a golden heart. I keep asking myself, if that were true why does it keep getting hurt? Why do people take advantage of my kindness? Why? Because I let them.
What it Means to Have a Big Heart
To have a “big” or “golden” heart means that you’re very kind, loving and giving. Alluding to “gold” as something valued for its goodness. In my case it has meant giving of myself until there was nothing left to give.
I cannot remember a time when I haven’t allowed myself to be vulnerable. As such I have attracted many “takers” in my life. I’m not saying that everyone that’s been a part of my life has taken advantage of my willingness to please. I have many people in my circle who reciprocate equally and I thank God for them every day.
Protecting the Golden Heart
My counselor has said he will teach me how to protect my “golden heart.” The first thought that came to mind was that I would be learning to be less giving and possibly bitter or mean. That is definitely not what I want to be.
Thankfully, that is not what he meant. He is saying that I will learn how to set boundaries. I will learn how to politely say “no” when someone needs something from me that will either hurt me financially, professionally, or worst of all, emotionally.
Learning How to Say No
This is a very difficult concept for me. I’ve always put others wants and needs before mine. In some cases it was not only at my own expense. My biggest regret is not recognizing that some people are just evil and can easily spot someone like me from a mile away. Had I had the good sense and ability to say “NO” I could have saved my family from a lot of pain.
To protect the innocent I will not go into detail. What I will say is that I allowed someone into my children’s lives who was a very bad person. At the time, I was coming from a failed marriage and had two young children and I was scared. He moved in for the attack but I was so intent on making him happy that I didn’t see the “red” flags.
Pay Attention to the Red Flags
I will say it again, “Pay Attention to the Red Flags.” They are there. Don’t push them to the back of your mind and tell yourself that it’s insignificant because it might just be VERY significant. In our case it would have made a difference had I paid attention. My daughter had said to me at one point that “she didn’t like him”. Instead of listening to her, I put it down to her being upset and thinking I was just trying to replace her dad. I ended up marrying the monster a few years later. That was a BIG mistake. His actions never improved.
Where are you God?
One day, after a particularly bad incident I remember my son saying to me “where’s your God now mom?” We had just been given the bad news that although my husband would be punished for what he had done, in our opinion it was not nearly enough. I remember responding to him that I didn’t know where “my God” was. My faith had been shaken.
I asked a friend what she would have said to my son. She thought for a moment and said “I would’ve told him that we are all God’s children and he loves us all the same. He will punish him as deems appropriate.” Giving that statement some thought and realizing she was right restored my faith.
The Struggle is Real
“If God brings you to it, he will bring you through it.” – Robert C. Crowder Ministries. Through the years, this quote has given me the courage I’ve needed to go on. I know that God always has my back and although it might not seem clear at the time, the path I am going down is the one I’m meant to be on. I realize that not everyone shares my beliefs and that is okay but I pray that who or whatever you believe in also brings you a great source of strength.
The Big Heart of Gold Beats on
“Think you can, think you can’t; either way, you’ll be right.” – Henry Ford. I have an important choice to make. Do I give up and allow my past mistakes consume me? Or do I get the help I need and become strong enough to set my boundaries while still being a good person? I choose the latter.
Thank you all for letting me share a portion of this story that I call “Life” with you. My sincere hope is that if you are like me and allow yourself to be manipulated that you too will seek help and learn how to set your boundaries. If you would like to contact me, you may email me at LisaMHall@Bigheartsofgold.com.