I have a new normal...yet again.
I need God, and I want Robert.
I am learning to fully need and rely on God and not on my husband. I am learning that my marriage is just a bonus to my life. It's not a requirement or a necessity to be happy.
I have a new normal...yet again.
Tuesday, June 28, 2011 | 5 Comments »
Can I get a do-over?
I would go back to October of 2002. I would submit my application to teach english as a second language while working on a Masters in English Education. I would spend two years in China and Thailand teaching and learning. I would then look for a job somewhere that would take me far away from friends and family. I would experience a completely different life. That was my dream.
But I love my family. I can't imagine living life with anyone else. So instead of a complete do-over, maybe I could just go back and know then what I know now. I think my life would have taken a slightly different course or at least things would have been delayed for a bit.
But we don't get do-overs and we don't get to know our futures.
So instead of a do-over, can I just run away? Can I leave life as I know it and do something different? Not forever but maybe for a little while? Like a vacation from life. A lengthy getaway to clear my head. To get away from my responsibilities. I know it sounds selfish, but I would just like to have a good 6 months to a year to just focus on me, myself and I.
I guess I could run away, but ultimately, that would cause more harm than good.
Tamara Lunardo (A Deeper Story) wrote, "life doesn't give you re-writes; it only lets you keep telling the stories you've got and offering fresh pages." So instead of starting over or running away, I will continue living and telling my story even it's not the one that I had dreamed of. I will gladly accept the fresh pages, but this go around, I won't waste so much time crafting that perfect ending. I will take life one paragraph at a time. One day at a time. Maybe even one hour at a time. I will leave that perfect ending, whatever it may be, to the Lord.
It's hard though. Hard to not plan my future. Not to think about what is to come. But at this point, I don't really know what is to come. I really can't even imagine what next month has to offer. I know what I hope for. I have a fuzzy dream about what my future can be. But I've definitely learned not to lean on my hopes and my dreams.
Life is teaching me to only hope in the Lord. He is the only one who truly is faithful. He is faithful by always being present in our lives. He may not be present in the way we want him to be, but he is here with that still small voice offering a peaceful embrace. He may not always rescue us, but he always walks with us.
Over the last two months, I have wept, cried, wailed. I have screamed and trembled. I have been left speechless and breathless. But each time, God has offered love and peace. Comfort and release. Confidence and strength. His arms have wrapped tightly around me. He's surrounded me. Understood me. Accepted me.
With these fresh pages he's given me, I am learning to let go. To fully surrender my pain, my hurt, my confusion, my wants and my needs. I have found peace in even leaving the pages blank for a while. I am beginning to feel the freedom that comes with surrender. Freedom to let God hold the pen. To let him write my story.
Can I just get an IV of Midol please? Seriously, to have acetaminophen, caffeine and pyrilamine maleate pumping through my body for the next couple of days would be like a little piece of Heaven right here on earth!
What is it with female hormones that can take an everyday situation and blow it ten times out of proportion? And then the way they can make women react to already big situations is just horrific! I feel like running and hiding so I don't say or do anything that I will later regret.
I feel sorry for myself because I'm the one feeling the cramping and the bloating and the insane emotions, but I feel even sorrier for my family and friends who have to be around me during this time. They are some strong people. :)
Take for instance my kids. They are around me from the time they wake up in the morning until they go to bed at night. When PMS is in the picture, I try to distance myself from them as much as I can. But when they start showing their normal brotherly and sisterly
love hate, they try to distance themselves from me.
This morning Huck was playing with play-doh and SG was playing the wii. Huck wanted his sissy to play with him, but she didn't want to. The fighting began. Instead of walking calmly into the living room, getting down on their levels and speaking gently to them, I tore into the living room screaming "EVERYBODY GO TO YOUR ROOM" at the top of my lungs. Granted, I have done that before, but usually only as a last resort and during this particular time of the month.
This was their first offense, and I lit into them. I scared myself, so I know I had to have scared them. Whew! Monster Mom showed up. But I am glad to say that I did change my mind. I think scaring myself calmed me down a bit. I let them keep playing, and I went to take a long shower.
Now we are heading to the store so I can restock my medicine cabinet with that beautiful little blue pill called Midol.
And to all my fellow natural living friends, I have tried natural remedies. But Midol is one of my few indulgences in the world of synthetic meds. It just works better. Sorry to disappoint. :)
Friday, June 10, 2011 | 1 Comment »
Thursday, June 9, 2011 | Leave A Comment »
Last Summer and Fall, I tried to get up every morning and go through a Beth Moore Bible study that I have, but it was a lot of work. Not that digging into the Word of God that deeply is a bad thing, but it was just a bit much for me and the schedule I was keeping. I needed something a little shorter but just as impacting. In December, I found Proverbs 31's Encouragement for Today. It is just the type of devotional that I need. I highly recommend it.
Then, in January, I began reading Ann Voskamp's 1,000 Gifts. She inspired me to begin a gratitude journal. I decided it would not only be a gratitude journal, but it would also become an inspiration/encouragement journal. I don't write anything negative in it. It's only home to thoughts, scriptures, verses and quotes that help lift me up when I encounter a dark place in life.
In December, I also printed off prayer calendars from Inspired to Action. One for my husband, and one for my children. So when the New Year rolled around, I was ready to have a great devotion time every morning to help set the pace for my day. A nice bit of time just for me and Jesus. And because my devotional and prayers were short and to the point, I didn't have to wake up at the crack of dawn to complete them. :)
I've been looking back over the first few pages of my journal. I wrote this quote by Lysa Terkeurst: Sometimes victory seems so far away because we measure it by the end goal. And end goals can seem overwhelmingly huge, daunting and just plain hard to reach. Instead, if we start measuring our victories by the smaller choices we make each day, victory won't seem so impossible. And this one by Ann Voskamp: He chooses our dirty places, our stinking places, the places that shame us, as his point of entry.
These quotes encouraged me with the New Year's resolutions I was setting for myself. They weren't your typical resolutions of losing weight, eating healthier, exercising more, etc. They were more along the lines of improving my relationships with God, my husband and my kids. Just becoming a better person and living a life that is more pleasing to the Lord.
I wrote down that this year my goal would be to learn how to truly trust God. To completely surrender to him. To put my complete hope in him and his ways. I wrote goals down of becoming more supportive, selfless and patient with my family and goals of learning self-control and perseverance.
I even gave this year a few scripture verses to encourage me on my journey. Job 13:15 - God might kill me, but I have no other hope. Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Zephaniah 3:17 - The Lord your God is with you, the mighty Warrior who saves, he will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.
Back in January, I had no idea how important all of the above would become.
A few weeks ago, I referred to some weeds that Robert and I have discovered. Because of them, we have been on quite a journey in the last 6 weeks. There has been a lot of self discovery and a lot of surrender going on. We are realizing just how important it is to put our complete trust and hope in God. To be supportive, selfless, patient and to exhibit perseverance and self-control.
I look back at those prayer calendars and the prayers I've been praying for my family and for myself, and I realize just how faithful God is. I can see his handiwork in everything that has happened. It's been hard. There are times that I feel like God is killing me, but then I remember Job 13:15. I know there is no other place that I can put my hope but in him. His word truly is living and breathing. It speaks truth and brings light into our dark places.
Today, I am so thankful for a God who is true. Who is just. Who is light. A God who knows me. Who loves me. Who accepts me. A God who stays with me. He walks with me. He is the shoulder I can cry on. He is my strength and my encouragement. My hope and my trust is completely in him. How can it not be? I've learned that his ways are the best ways. That if I surrender to his will, then my life will truly work out for good. It's not just some positive quote someone said a long time ago. Romans 8:28 is his promise to me. To you. To us. He is for me and with me, and for that I am so unbelievably thankful!
My gifts counting to 1,000...
156. Nehemiah 9:21
157. sleeping all night
159. wading pools
160. You Are Beautiful sign
161. powerful messages in a kids' cartoon
162. relinquishing control
163. air conditioning
164. midnight conversations
165. unexpected gifts
167. morning devotional time
168. cool mornings
169. reminders of Dad
171. spiritual care team
172. garbage day...literally and metaphorically
173. emotional intimacy
174. kindle app
175. smell of yeast
177. writing as therapy
179. worship music
180. alone time
182. finding toys in odd places
183. cleaning out the corners
184. prayer calendars
185. great neighbors
186. Romans 5
187. relaxing in the Lord's presence
188. joy of the Lord
189. Romans 6
190. God moments
Tuesday, June 7, 2011 | 2 Comments »
My daddy has been gone for two years now. I miss him terribly. I miss how funny and loud he was. I miss how sensitive and understanding he was. I miss talking with him and hearing his advice. I miss getting framed pictures of him and his horse, Tejas, in the mail. I miss hearing about how well he was doing in his sport, Cowboy Mounted Shooting. I miss him asking about the kids and him wishing he could put them on a horse.
Saturday, June 4, 2011 | 1 Comment »