Long standing problem? Try Kneeling

I’m not good at getting on my knees.  It’s the one thing I really don’t ‘do’

I was raised a Catholic, and went to a Catholic convent secondary school. We studied the lives of the saints.  How they starved themselves, beat themselves, meditated for days, put themselves through incredible torture just to be closer to their God.

In transcending pain we can sometimes attain a trance like state.  I discovered this when I was 12 and eager and earnest about my faith.  The school used to have Mass at 7.30am in the morning.  You can’t eat 1 hour before communion, so this meant I would go to school early and without breakfast.

Our school chapel had hard wooden kneelers.  There are parts of the mass when you could chose to sit or kneel, but all the really holy nuns kneeled all the way through the mass.  I wanted to be like them.  I wanted to be a good girl.  I was training to be a saint.

So I knelt there, tired, cold hungry in agony for having knelt too long on hard wooden kneelers.  Sometimes I would slip down onto the tiled cold floor just to give my poor knees a change of scenery.

I regularly achieved a trance-like state in those days.  I left the church an hour later feeling like I was floating.  Separate and apart from the rest of the world.

Later in my teens when my self doubt, self hatred, self loathing really took a hold, I drew on my experiences in the church those mornings to transcend the pain of self harm, and hide it so nobody could see it. (If someone found out it wouldn’t count, the whole effort would have been wasted)

I used my ability to transcend hunger when my anorexia developed. I knew that if I did it for long enough I would get into that trance-like state where nothing could hurt me

So, aged 30 when my life fell apart due to addiction and self abuse, and I finally got help. When my sponsor told me ‘”you must get on your knees twice a day” I said “F*** That” That’s addictive behaviour for me.

She sacked me.

I found a new sponsor who understood my difficulty with kneeling and we got past it! The God of my understanding doesn’t need kneeling!!

Nowadays kneeling is not a problem for me, but I don’t pray like that. I do forget to pray every day though, and that’s not good for me. I need to hand my day over, especially days like today, long before I try & take control of the outcomes again.

So I was taking my nose drops this morning, following the instructions on the leaflet:

Nose Drops Instructions

A message from my Higher Power

A message from my Higher Power


My Higher Power has a funny way of sending me messages. I got it 🙂 I said my prayers. I asked for help today. I asked for the strength to get through all the different appointments I have to attend, I asked to be reminded that today is Monday not Tuesday (I seem to be running a day fast at the moment) I asked not to have to take too many painkillers so I am safe on the roads. I asked to be given the strength to handle the outcomes of today, whatever they are.

The Serenity Prayer

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About Barbara

Born in Dublin, living in London with Peter, my two daughters, Wilson our Spaniel & Woordow our Malshih (Shih Tzu-Maltese cross)
This entry was posted in Addiction, Anorexia, Blogging, Health, Life, Neuralgia, Pain, Photography, Self Harm, Sinus headache and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Long standing problem? Try Kneeling

  1. we’re both still having the stupid sinus issue ?!?! grr

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  2. Grannymar says:

    Thinking about you!

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    • Barbara says:

      Thank you 🙂 my prayers worked. I burst into tears in the Job Centre so they brought me to my personal Adviser who helped me with all the letters &ct and told me that me applying for Employment Support Allowance (new name for incapacity benefit) and backdating it to December the 7th, the date of my sick note was completely the right thing to do.

      She said not to worry about appealing the decision, if I’m getting ESA then I don’t need to appeal it.

      I suppose what is really upsetting is that there is a huge stigma around claiming incapacity benefit, and I don’t want to be a benefit scrounger. My advisor was so lovely, she said that she could see that I really want to work but am not well enough, and she said that I was her favourite client as I always did what she asked 🙂

      So my day went much better once I handed over the worry to my Higher Power, and trusted that I would be ok with whatever happened… I even cheered up enough to take some fun photos! 🙂

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