I wrote a few days ago about Captivating. In the post, I mentioned that I was going to write another post on the first chapter. Unlike the previous post, which was mainly about answering specific questions and giving an over all view of the book, this post is much more focused on what impacted me.*

*How many times can you say post in one paragraph…jeez.

So let’s dive in!

This quote always stands out to me when reading through the book: “Then the time came when the risk it took to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” –Anais Nin

Doesn’t that time come, at one point or another, for every woman? I would like to think so, but I’m not really sure. And is it possible for the time to come more than once? Because I believe I’ve faced that time head on…on more than one occasion.

Captivating talks briefly about being unseen, unsought, and uncertain. I’d like to talk about each one of those…but unknown always comes to mind as well, so I’ll mention that also.

Unseen…do you ever feel this way? I sure do. Mainly on the days when I’m really sad or upset. The days when I just need a friend but nobody seems to notice. I remember a year or two ago, I was having a rough morning. It just so happened to be a Sunday, and I was at church. Instead of faking happiness, I sat down and just watched everything go on around me. A few people that I wouldn’t consider my closest friends came over and asked if I was alright. Yet my inner circle of friends did nothing. Said nothing. I felt unseen by those that should have seen me.

Unsought…well this feels like my life right now! I’m seeking friendships and good relationships, but everyone is perfectly fine and comfortable where they are. I don’t feel loved or wanted by anyone other than Jesus, really. And I mean really loved and wanted…not just the cheap “I like you today but tomorrow might be a different story” stuff. Real love…I don’t feel it. None of my old closest friends are seeking after me, to say the least. In fact, they’re running away. So, yes, I feel unsought. Which leaves me feeling like I’m not good enough. And that I’m too much. More on that later…

Captivating says, “We feel unsought–that no one has the passion or the courage to pursue us, to get past our messiness to find the woman deep inside.”

Uncertain…Oh yes, about so many things. For me, it’s about hope and love. Restoration, forgiveness, and reconciliation. What will happen in Jamaica and at camp. What my senior year will look like. What will happen in the friendships. But mostly it all boils down to love. I’m uncertain about so many things.

Unknown…I suppose this goes hand-in-hand with being unseen. But some how, to me, it’s different. Not being seen and not being known are not the same thing. You can be seen without being known, but you can’t (consistantly) be known without being seen. How could you possibly know someone well without ever really seeing them? I hope you feel known. I used to. I felt like E and my best guy friend knew me better than anyone else. Sometimes I thought E knew me better than I knew myself. Obviously that has all changed, because no one but God knows me anymore. It’s really sad, but it’s just how it is.

“An underlying, gut feeling of failing at who she is. I am not enough, and I am too much at the same time. Not pretty enough, not thin enough, not kind enough, not gracious enough, not disciplined enough. But too emotional, too needy, too sensitive, too strong, too opinionated, too messy.”

Isn’t that the truth? Tell me I’m not the only one who has spent much of her life feeling this way…

The last line of the quote is something I said to E many times…I often felt like I was too emotional, too sensitive, too messy, and too needy. And I told her so. She always disagreed, but I still felt that way often. But some how while feeling that I was too _____, I would feel that I wasn’t _____ enough.

You fill in your own blanks. I know I filled in mine all the time back then.

Another quote that stood out to me: “We long to be an irreplaceable part of a shared adventure.” I do, don’t you? Adventures aren’t near as fun or exciting when there’s no one to share them with. I think perhaps that is part of the reason why I want my friends back so badly. I’m experiencing life without them by my side…and I don’t like it that way.

What are your thoughts on the first chapter of Captivating? Please share! :)