Trish Wilkinson: Making Peace with Imperfection
By Christine Wilson McWhorter
The 700 Club
CBN.com - "My heart was beating so hard that you could literally look at my chest and see my heart beating from my chest. It was my secret. And when I experienced those episodes I would hide myself. It was my big secret. I was the master of disguise."
Being good was never good enough for Trish Wilkinson. She wanted to be perfect.
"Best mother. Best wife. Had the cleanest house. Best Christian. Best teacher. Best friend. Best performer. "
So Trish made sure every move she made was flawless. No shortcuts, no rest, and certainly, no mistakes.
"I equated performance to value. I didn't know how to handle if you disliked me, or if you were dissatisfied with me. And if I was a failure, then you weren't going to love me."
As a wife and mother, Trish's live got more difficult as she tried to have the perfect marriage, and perfect children. Eventually, it all caught up with her and she began having panic attacks.
The episodes would pass, but Trish didn't tell anyone about them. Instead, she pretended everything was normal. But the attacks grew worse.
"I would be overwhelmed with extreme nausea to the point of vomiting. Sweating profusely. Then there was the overwhelming sense of extreme fear. It would be an array of things. I'm afraid of loosing my mind, of dying, of losing control. "
Finally when the attacks became too much to bear, she went to the ER to see a doctor.
"He diagnosed me with severe clinical depression. I refused to believe that diagnosis because I was a BORN. AGAIN. CHRISTIAN. I thought, I'm a Christian. I love God with all my heart and I am working for Him. This diagnosis has got to be incorrect. I ignored the fact that I was clinically depressed for four years. "
She didn't understand why this was happening-after all, in her mind, she had done everything perfectly.
"I was angry with God. I was perplexed and I was angry. I had conversation with God in my heart and in my mind, saying, God I don't understand why you allowed me to go through with this. I’ve lived as an example before you, I’ve raised my children before you, I love you with all of my heart, why would you allow this to happen to me?"
For four years, Trish ignored the panic attacks, but the attacks interfered with every aspect of her life. Trish could not longer pretend everything was okay.
"I just totally broke down and it became reality for me. I had to face it. I had to face my fear and I had to face reality. I needed daily medical attention. "
Through her sessions with a Christian counselor, she realized God loves her unconditionally, even when she's not perfect.
"He began to mold me and make me and began to heal me and helped me to realize- Trish, I love you unconditionally. And my perspective of everything was fresh, and new and healthy. And vibrant and I was empowered and I was motivated."
Today, Trish is at peace. She doesn't have panic attacks anymore, and she says she clearly understands God's love for her.
"Now my relationship with him, I work for him, but I work for him because I love him. I don't work for him because I feel like I have to merit his love or his grace or blessing. You can be healed from clinical depression. You can live in victory. Every challenge the enemy b rings your way, everything society brings your way, God is greater."
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