Dare 36: The Lap Conundrum

This post is one of a series devoted to The Respect Dare. I joined with several other bloggers in using Nina Roesner’s The Respect Dare: 40 Days to a Deeper Connection with God and Your Husband as a guide. I share my journey here with you.

Here I am, back to having an emotional response based on my past. (I’m really not surprised. Yesterday was a good hiccup, but I knew it would be a while before the hiccup becomes a pattern.)

I read the story and thought of some of my own OB/GYN experiences. I’ve had painful biopsies, scary diagnoses, extreme preterm labor, a hysterectomy . . . I could feel for that woman.

Then I went through the questions and journaled about them. No problem. I understand, in my mind, that God heals and helps us through pain. I’ve experienced that myself.

But the Dare hurt, somewhere deep inside me that I haven’t thought about in a long, long time. We are challenged to sit and listen to God’s voice for a time. I can do that. And then we are to imagine God sitting in a chair in a corner; we are to climb onto his lap and feel safe while He holds us. We are to call Him “Daddy” while He calls us “Daughter.”

Oh, how I crave that. Because I don’t remember ever, ever having that. I was not a cuddly child. My mom tells me that I never wanted to snuggle and be held. I didn’t like feeling trapped or enclosed, even as an infant. So did my parents stop trying to hold and comfort me? Or am I simply unable to remember those times because I was so focused on my feelings of being confined?

I have no memories of being comforted as a child. I suppose I was, but I just don’t remember it. I have physical memories of being afraid, being excited, being adventurous, being confused, being proud—but I have no physical memories of being loved or comforted as a child. Even though I didn’t want to be held, I wanted to know that I was welcome to be held, that I was wanted. And I don’t remember ever feeling this way. I felt unlovable for years—and this shaped my faith in God, my inability to identify and hold firm to values, my sexual promiscuity as a young adult, and my marriage. It has affected my mothering of my own children, as so many of my actions and decisions with them are based on whether they will feel loved or unloved as a result.

So I imagine myself in the room where God is in His chair, just waiting for me. I stand, on the other side of the room, chin down, eyes full of tears, watching Him, yearning to know that I am loved. I want to be sitting on His lap–but I just don’t know how to climbinto God’s lap and accept comfort. I just don’t know how.


Later in the day after I published this post, everything came together for me:

After lunch most days, I leave the dining room at school and take an outside route to return to my office. I’ve come to use this time for short mid-day praying. Today, with this Dare in my heart, I stood on the sidewalk and suddenly saw God sitting in the chair, still waiting for me. While I stood and yearned for Him, Jesus appeared at my side. He picked me up, carried me, and gently placed me on God’s lap. I couldn’t climb myself, so Jesus did it for me.

Read these other bloggers to learn about their experiences with the Respect Dare:

Unbroken Woman

My Beloved Is Mine!

Broken But Not Forgotten


The Respect Dare Blog (author Nina Roesner)

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9 Comments on “Dare 36: The Lap Conundrum”

    1. Thank you. The most beautiful treasures are the ones that come to me completely unexpectedly, such as when I’m walking back to my office in the middle of my work day or am stuck in traffic.

  1. Wow, lady. You brought tears to my eyes. I was never comforted like that either, was also told I wasn’t cuddly (except I kind of am) and I also don’t like confined spaces. More so my parents were a little too wrapped up in their own drama to give a lot of time. My oldest daughter is a lot like me and she’s super sensitive to energy. My mom’s energy bothered her a lot as a baby and I’m guessing it bothered me more so (it was way worse). She also smoked, I was also Adhd and couldn’t handle trying to sleep with that much physical stimulus. I was definitely not the dream daughter my parents wanted. But, we are the dream daughters God wanted and created!

    I wrote about it a little here:http://unbrokenwoman.com/2012/08/you-cannot-have-me/

  2. My oldest daughter was diagnosed with a sensory processing disorder when she was about 5 years old. At the time I thought it was related to her hearing (It was long before the internet age). I did not realize at the time that there was a component for her that involved her dislike of touch. She only took comfort from my wife and was inconsolable when she was absent. At the time it was hard for me to deal with her rejection. I’m not sure if knowing about her disorder at the time would have helped, but I wish I had known more.

    I don’t mean to diagnose others, but your story reminded me of my daughter and I wanted to share.

    Tactile Defensiveness… So THAT’S Why He Acts That Way!

    Children who have tactile defensiveness are sensitive to touch sensations and can be easily overwhelmed by, and fearful of, ordinary daily experiences and activities.


    1. Although there are a couple things on the list that are often true for me, it’s never been about touch–just about being confined and enclosed. One of my sons is the same way. He liked being held but not being held onto.

      I suspect it would have helped you a great deal to understand what your daughter was experiencing at the time. Knowledge and understanding often make acceptance much easier.

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