For everyone who is on a budget or who doesn't enjoy over-priced decorations from the store!
Start with a vase and a few stems of flowers of your choice from the Dollar Store, Dollar Tree, Dollar General, or other affordable outlet.
Paint the vase using paint you have on hand or affordable paint purchased at the discount store. (I had this paint on hand due to a Mermaid Room makeover but some dollar stores carry paint. Wal-mart has two- ounce bottles of acrylic paint for super-cheap -like 50 cents- in the craft section.)
Keep in mind coordinating themes or seasonal color pallets.
Let the vase dry.
Add a strip of burlap using Mod-Podge (both found at the Dollar Store). I pulled of a couple of ropes from the burlap to use as a bow tie. This not only added a decorative element, but helped keep the burlap in place while the Mod-Podge was drying.
Put the flowers in the vase and enjoy!
The Victim, Anger and Sin
Some Christian recovery groups, therapists, friends and advice-giving strangers (like the ones we find on social media) are known for forcing the act of forgiveness on others- especially victims. And Lord help the poor soul who happens to (gasp) vent any anger over a wrong that has been committed.
Summed up, some (well meaning?) Christians want you to suck it up and if you suffer, do so in silence. Your personal healing is basically nothing compared to their holiness agenda.
I am willing to bet that many of these people have never suffered actual abuse, serious betrayal or traumatic loss. (Or they are in denial.) Their solutions are just too simple, too canned, to convey an understanding of righteous anger or the healing process.
To top it off, their theory doesn’t make any sense. You don’t run into a hospital bed where someone lost the use of their legs and tell them, “Hey, just forgive the drunk driver that hit you, stop being angry, and get in your wheelchair already!” That’s absurd. But doing the equivalent to a survivor of emotional trauma is somehow okay?
I’m not saying forgiveness is useless or anger should last forever. However, we should respect the fact that anger is a real emotion and experiencing it over an injustice is more reflective of God’s character than we may think. (For Scripture verses on injustice and righteous anger visit https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Injustice,-Hated-By-God.)
God cares deeply for those who are mistreated, broken and abused. (Read Isaiah 61.) And, He does more than care. He heals. He restores. He helps turn pain into a purpose. He helps us forgive.
To be sure, this is a process (sometimes a lengthy one) that can involve feeling anger and healing from anger. "Allowing the process to occur does not mean the person is living in sin." (https://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-anger.html)
If you are healing from an emotional trauma, you may want to enlist the help of a qualified professional. Therapists are trained to help people process trauma and work through anger.
May you find healing and peace in your heart- M
Photo credit: pixabay
The Reluctant Passive-Aggressive
There is a common notion that people who display passive-aggressive tendencies are flawed: afraid of conflict and even afraid of their own negative emotions. They hide behind covert acts of revenge rather than discuss their true feelings with someone. They say “yes” when they mean “no.” They don’t call when they say they will. They block you on social media with no apparent provocation. They make plans- then no show.
They are the “crazy makers.”
But what if they’re not?
What if their behavior is a learned peace-keeping strategy? What if their behavior is a survival strategy?
As frustrating as this behavior may be, stay with me for a minute. What if the passive aggressive friend, co-worker or mate that frustrates you so, has tried direct communication, openness and honesty before, only to be mocked or insulted? What if s/he has tried to express his/her feelings; to air his/her complaints in a respectful, compassionate manner only to be verbally bulldozed, name called or worse? What if that person, as a child, was chastised, ridiculed or even beaten when s/he did not agree with or conform to family norms?
Well, this confused and lonely child will do what all confused and lonely children do- try to adapt.
We have all heard of the child who acts out; who is aggressive and defiant. These kids get a lot of attention, albeit negative. They are seen. They are heard. They are acknowledged. Plus, their misbehavior serves as an outlet to diffuse the internal angst.
But what about the quiet ones? Some children who are raised in homes where they receive any variety of devaluing messages may learn to keep quiet. The risk of speaking up is not worth the cost. The loss of parental (or parental figure) love- or of enduring further rejection- is just too great. Their adaption style to is to conform, please and/or disappear.
They are usually the “good” kids and become friendly adults. But at a great cost. The smile they hide behind is fake. The pain they feel due to long-term, repeated emotional abuse, rejection and/or abandonment is real.
And the anger can be intense.
But remember, they are not able to show it. Since they subconsciously or consciously know that anger- in any form (confrontation, disagreement, and even their own opinion) is inherently wrong, they engage their (faulty) adaption strategy: smile… agree… acquiesce.
But their anger isn’t so compliant. Anger needs, no anger demands, release. Anger buried will find its way out, either by leak or by brute force. Life, in this case, has facilitated a near-constant leak. And, leaks look a lot like “passive-aggressive” behavior.
So, what can we do with our PA comrades?
Take heart, if you have read this far, you are most likely a compassionate type who cares deeply about someone in your life. This quality will assist you along the way.
Stay kind and brave, my friends -M
The Motley Ms.
Hi! My name is Melinda. I'm a saved-by-grace-er, lifelong learner, INFJ, health & fitness trynabe, Mom, #vanlifer, mental health vlogger, and Director & Clinical Supervisor at a Child & Family Therapy Practice in Northern California.
The Motley Ms
The Therapist's Therapy Blog