Less than a year into my own recovery I went to a conference for women who were on a journey of healing from sexual addiction. It was an intensive three day experience with a lot of group work and also individual artistic reflection. For one of our assignments we were given a poster size piece of paper and markers. We were told to use the tools to draw how it feels to be trapped in our addiction. Now, anyone who has known me for a while can tell you that my artistic talents are definitely not in the realm of expression through drawing. My sister got that gift ~ not me! So, needless to say I was less than thrilled when receiving this assignment and I even may or may not have sighed and rolled my eyes. But, much to my shock, something struck me and I knew exactly what I wanted to draw and was thrilled because it depicted so accurately what I felt. I drew in the upper left hand corner of the paper a very small female stick figure (you guessed it, that was me). Then, in the center of the paper I drew a very large planet earth ~ complete with a few continents and stick figures all over it. In between the earth and myself I drew a jagged and wide chasm. In between the earth and the chasm and crossing slightly into the area of paper where I was I drew a large ferocious dragon. I wrote a big letter “A” on him. This wasn’t, “The Scarlet Letter” so the dragon wasn’t being marked for Adultery. This letter A represented a word that has wreaked perhaps more havoc than Hawthorne’s “A” ever could. The letter “A” on my dragon stood for Abandonment ~ what I had come to call the “Big A” in my recovery.
What I was depicting in my drawing was that I felt completely separated by a chasm from the entire world. And the evil “monster” that was keeping me in fear from crossing that chasm was the trauma of past abandonment and fear of present and future abandonment. What I learned was that I was too frightened to cross that chasm alone. As I dared to cry out for help and allow the people that seemed so distant and unreachable to hear my cries something miraculous happened. Undaunted by the dragon that terrified me, they crossed over the chasm to me. They patiently waited with me until I realized that I too could cross over. Together we journeyed back and joined all of the others. The dragon is still there, but he’s no longer the life dominating force he once was. He is now weak and small. Occasionally he deceives me into thinking that he’s powerful. But upon further examination I see that there is no fire coming from him, he is just merely blowing smoke!
Kimberly ~ Counselor, speaker, teacher, author and most importantly broken but beloved daughter of Jesus.