Laurie tells us how and why she began to engage her story at a deeper level. She then shares a story from when she was 12 years old. It’s a story in which her sense of innocence, beauty, and hope were shattered in an instant. We talk about how she responded to the assault against her heart and body, and how she has come to reclaim much of what was stolen.

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Show Notes

Laurie tells us how and why she began to engage her story at a deeper level. She then shares a story from when she was 12 years old. It’s a story in which her sense of innocence, beauty, and hope were shattered in an instant. We talk about how she responded to the assault against her heart and body, and how she has come to reclaim much of what was stolen.
• Laurie Proctor has a business where she coaches people in story and what their calling and purpose is in life
o Born out of dealing with own story – “Why are we doing this? This is painful” in the hard times of story building
o Doing it so that they can find freedom, so that they can live in the glory that God has put in them
o “So that” – the two words that would keep Laurie and her friend going
• Lover of story but did not think she had a story of her own.
• “I do have a story, and it’s epic!”
• “To sit with one another in this sacred circle for a year and a half and just holding and caring for each other’s stories was life transforming. It changed everything”
• Biggest obstacle was comparison – other’s stories of tragedy led to personal dismissal.
• “Being able to honor my own story and what I suffered”
• “I knew it had shaped me, but I kept dismissing, well, it wasn’t that big of a deal”
• “We dismiss and minimize our own stories so we don’t have to feel the heartache of it”
• “Seeing these beautiful faces weeping on my behalf allowed me to weep for myself for the very first time” (in her late 30’s and was numb prior to that. Was hardened and surviving until it did not)
• Numb and disconnected from stories and from husband.
• “Something about the way God operates. He will orchestrate events in our present that connect us emotionally to past feelings that we have not felt but need to feel.”
• Because I did not have compassion for my younger self, I actually had a whole lot of contempt for her, so that I did not have compassion for the losses experienced in my adult years”
• Laurie’s story of going to a camp at age 12 to get away from stressful home life as she pretends to be okay, pretends to be mature and put together. Yet the place she longed to get away from is where she missed, as the sinking feeling of homesickness took over her. The next day, Laurie looks for cute boys at camp hoping that would distract her from the homesickness, when she spots Reuben, the gorgeous camp counselor that all the girls were fawning over. She thought that he was way out of her league and knew he would not go after “a girl like her” and he would like her friend, Michelle (all the boys do, and Laurie knew this deep in her soul). She is beautiful, and I am not, as the boys in her neighborhood have told her over and over again (and accepted as truth). Laurie makes eye contact with a boy in the 12-year-old cabin named Steve, befriends him, and then Steve asks her out. She is shocked that he would choose her. Laurie no longer misses home, but feels giddy and alive at camp, hanging out with Steve and friends. Steve is ok showing others that they are together, and even though it is awkward, it is glorious. Laurie felt a sense of awe, thinking “this must be how Michelle feels all the time”. The last day of camp is the camp dance, and Laurie is so excited to go to the dance with Steve, his “chosen one”. As they are on their way to the dance, some older boys begin to yell and taunt the couple, yelling things like “What the hell are you doing taking that dog to the dance?” and “Dogs aren’t allowed at dances, especially fat ones”. All the joy is sucked out of Laurie, filled with terror and shame. Laurie ignores Steve for the rest of the night, and tries to hang out with Rueben, who only pats her on the head, treating her like an annoying little sister, or worst, “a dog”.
• Laurie responded “yes” immediately when Steve asked her out. No reflection of whether Laurie actually likes Steve, but it was so nice that someone liked her. A new experience and so used to her friend being asked that question, and other boys asking Laurie if her friend liked them.
• Always unfavorably compared to Michelle
• The feeling of 12-year-old Laurie being chosen: awkward, glorious and innocent (innocence, beauty, hope).
o Laurie had as much contempt for the little girl as the older boys did
• Laurie had assaulted her as well, joining the older boys in their assault.
• Now Laurie can bless the little girl now, seeing her and celebrating her innocent beauty she had.
• The feeling of being chosen goes to the core of how we are created as human beings. We need to belong and there is no belonging without being chosen.
• Not noticed much at home, and was under the radar (kindness was there, but not noticed in a positive way).
• Feeling that her life would never be the same/the best she’s ever felt/alive/real/almost like the aisle in a wedding/enamored and excitement filled the friendship → evil uses the shame and assault to penetrate the joy
• Full on trauma response/body was bracing for a beating
• “The core of trauma is helplessness combined by abandonment by potentially protective caregivers”
• There was a gap between the verbal assault and getting to the dance – contempt for herself and Steve
• Trapped at a celebration and culmination of the best time of her life/new found freedom – “something is wrong with him, and if he chose me, and I am what those boys say I am, then something is wrong with him and I don’t want anything to do with him”
• Contempt for Steve was masked as more self-contempt
• Self-contempt and hatred towards body and face of outward beauty
• Such as dismissal that the older boys weren’t even talking to her but addressing Steve about her. Joined them in cursing and dismissing her beauty
• 12-year-old body joined in their condemnation and humiliation of her body
• Prior to their assault, there had already been naming and condemnation of her beauty.
• “How stupid could you be that you thought that it could be different”
• How has posture towards the 12-year-old changed → going into stories, going back and being in the dirt and allowing older self to feel what she felt, breaking the agreements and standing against the curses that are thrown at her. It is a process.
o Delight in her now. Grieve for her. Have others grieve for her, blessing her and speaking kindness to the 12-year-old.
o An act of repentance and sheer blessing and naming her well. Blessing her beauty, innocence, hope.
• “You hated her for softening and risking the hope that life could be good, and I could be chosen and beautiful”
o She hoped and look what happened – she was assaulted and cursed
• Brain has paired hope with trauma – a sensation of “better not hope too much” and tempers herself, but hope has grown, and negativity is giving way to gratitude and awe.
• Can see in her 15-year-old daughter and the pain she has to go through – catches herself “not hoping too much” for her daughter, but then has to claim God’s promises over her daughter’s life.
• The mama bear in her is not protective, it’s contemptuous when other girls hurt her daughter.
• Has to be willing to enter into the pain and grieving with her daughter as to not train to go into protection
• Hardening of heart has cost connection, vulnerability in marriage and friendships.
• The nature of our stories are epic – there are so many things and keep entering this stories because there’s so much more. Each one has so much to teach us, not only the tragedy and heartache, but our absolute stunning beauty and glory.
• To continue to engage our stories may bring more grief but will bring freedom and be in alignment with the glory that God has created us to be, yet our stories have us believe otherwise. To reclaim the glory, beauty, joy, innocence, hope.
• You no longer will be grieving alone as you once were, but with a new level of healing and letting others in, gifting them with your wounds. It brings freedom and connectedness not only for you, but for others.
• In tragedy and trauma, even though we are surrounded by others, we feel alone. There is so much freedom sharing and being vulnerable with others that shows “you are no longer alone.”
• Grieving with others helps write a new narrative and experience a connectedness and healing that is the essence of what Christ is about on earth as the Holy Spirit.

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