I have always struggled with believing in myself, whether it was in my beauty, my talents, or just my God-given nature. This didn’t start until elementary school when I found out how mean others could be. I remember being teased for my big and beautiful lips, then later for my tall and lanky figure. You see, back in the day, big lips with little to no butt wasn’t cute or popular. All this coupled with a chaotic home life, made for the perfect storm within myself. Eventually I became suicidal, wanting and attempting to take my own life several times. Praying to God not to wake me up. Well thankfully He ignored that prayer. I made it to college, where I thought I’d escape and experience the freedom I was desperately wanting. And I experienced freedom alright - my own version, which led me to even darker places. You see, I gave my heart and body away so many times, seeking self-love and validation. My soul crying out for someone to say I love you and you are enough. However, I didn’t realize at the time, they could never give me that. Simultaneously, I thought if I did well in medical school, become a doctor, then my mama, and everyone else would be proud and know I was enough. They would believe I was worthy of love & validation. Also, maybe I could finally believe it for myself. Spoiler alert, I never became a doctor. I also joined the military during college, a seriously life altering decision, looking back on it all now. I joined strictly for the money, which came much later than promised. I also experienced some very hard things in my beginning years and throughout my journey as a military soldier. My final years in college resulted in rape by my ROTC peers and then contracting herpes from one of my "situationships." It was an extremely hard and painful season.
After graduation, I moved back home for a little bit, but still didn’t feel as if I were enough. During my time back home, I came across a medical post-baccalaureate program in Atlanta, GA. This would allow me to get back on track to becoming a doctor, which was a golden opportunity for me. I could live somewhere I’ve always wanted to live, start anew, and have a second chance at salvaging my future career. So my family and I packed up my things and I moved to the East coast. How many know old habits come right along with you? Well, that old Chloe’ that was giving herself away, in hopes of receiving love & acceptance, came out to play. Here I was, so close to medical school I could smell it, and I was reverting back to those same old toxic behaviors. My grades began slipping again. I would have moments of concentrated focus and do well in one or two classes, but my overall drive was depleting. I was living off student loans and the belief that I’ll pay it all back when I’m a rich OB/GYN. However, within those hallways, God sent a guy to help lead me back home. He brought me to a church that would eventually aid in the resuscitation of my walk with God. Robert Bonds, my first Christian mentor, led me to Victory Church in Norcross, GA and my life has never been the same since.
I started the journey to really know who God was and who I had always been within Him. He has shown me the true, unconditional love I was desperately needing. Through Him, I understand that I am enough & now see I had always been enough. It has now been 8 years of intentionally doing this big thing called life with Him. And please don’t think for a second, I haven’t strayed. I have. But I’ve also learned that I always get to come home. I now believe that home with Him is safe and full of freedom. It’s not the home I grew up in, and it’s not the home I tried to make with those relationships. It’s a home you only know through knowing Him. So I invite anyone struggling with belief in themselves, for their life, or even in God to just return home to the Father. Exactly what you are looking for is exactly where He is.