Insert Clever Title Here…

I am distracted by my lack of feeling significant.  I just don’t understand where this is coming from.  I have this weird sense the people around me are not pleased with me.  I haven’t done anything wrong (that I know of), but I just feel like I am not as welcomed or as loved as others.  It’s almost like I am ‘old news’ or ‘not cool enough’…I don’t know.  I feel like I am not making sense.  This is so petty, but it’s bothering me!  Just thought I would write it out…to see if it would help…

You know when you are talking to someone and the other person keeps looking away, but they are trying to stay focused on you at the same time?  That’s how I feel.  I feel like people are just bored with me and have no interest in really having a meaningful conversation or relationship or whatever…I just feel like I am an ‘eye roll’ type of person or a ‘fake smile’ person.  You know, I come walking towards you and you do either of those two things in response to my presence…yea. 

I just have this sense that people don’t really care to hear my thoughts or really want know what’s going on.  They just want to give me some two cent crap advice and push me aside so they can enjoy the company of someone more pleasing. 

I’m feeling ignored, unwanted, lame, insecure, disregarded…insignificant. *cue the eye roll and deep sigh…*  

Anyway, just a short post.  Trying to process some feelings out…

-S-

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God Is Near

I love music. I mean, who doesn’t. I typically have it on all the time. I even bought a portable Bose speaker because I wanted quality and portability.

Anyway, aside from that, this song is beautiful. I have listened to this song many times before, and I love signing it. Recently, though, I feel more connected to this song. As I hear the words in this song, and listen to the melody, I am reminded of how I feel. I know these words well…

In this past week, I have realized something important. Something I already kind of mentioned. I am not in control – God is. He is the one that knows every part of my mind, heart, and soul. He knows what’s ahead, and there is nothing I can do about the future. I can, however, follow where I hear God leading me. When I let the Holy Spirit really guide my heart, I have a genuine calm that covers me. I feel at peace, and I have an undeniable trust in the Lord. No doubts. No fear. No matter what.

That’s how I feel right now.

In this song, I love all the lyrics, but I particularly love when he sings this:

“I’ll trade the fear of all that I could lose, for every moment I’ll share with you…heaven brought you to this moment, it’s to wonderful to speak…you’re worth all of me…”

In this moment, I feel this. I know God has it all under control and I am truly at peace with what is to come.

Until next time…adios.

-S-

Don’t Worry About It…

I have anxiety, and it sucks.  I wish, with all my heart, that I could just let go and let be…but I can’t.  I want to control situations, know everything, and ask as many questions as I can because I want to be prepared for every single second…yea…I know.  But you know what bugs me the most!?!  When someone says, “Just stop worrying about it…”  Really?!?!  That’s not helpful, at all.  Okay, here’s something for you.  Don’t think about an elephant.  NO MATTER WHAT, do NOT think about an elephant.  I mean thinking about an elephant is just not good for you.  When you think about an elephant you lose focus, your self-esteem goes down, and sometimes you can become irrational…So, please, try your best, and don’t think about an elephant…okay?  Hmm…I wonder what came to mind after reading that…you see my point?

I don’t like having this feeling, and need, to know every single detail, but the unknown is just so scary for me.  Typically, when people become anxious about the unknown, they can rationalize and process through those feelings in a fairly healthy manner.  For Christians, they can just trust that God has it under control, and that He will provide for them as planned.  I believe that, too.  However, I also have trust issues; even with the big man upstairs…

You see, anxiety is not biological or inherited.  It is actually environmental and can be maintained (with A LOT of practice and time).  It mostly involves being aware of your mind and acknowledging what’s going on with your thoughts.  The key is to being aware that certain thoughts will be there, but that they don’t have to stop you from living or experiencing life.  And they certainly don’t have to control the way you react or respond-you can have some say in that.  I know, sounds very ‘therapy like’…I mean it is helpful; I just have to remember that God is truly the only one who can calm my heart and pull me away from the enemies lies.

Anyway, the first time I learned that anxiety was environmental is when I was in my outpatient therapy.  As soon as I heard those words, I couldn’t find blame anywhere, but within me.  It immediately gave me this sense of responsibility and guilt at the same time.  Responsibility meaning:  I can manage this and I need to.  Guilt meaning:  your the reason for all the problems in your life (clearly not from God…).  My therapists, however, did acknowledge for me, that my anxiety formed out of being raised in a hostile environment (being in constant fear for my parents and our lives, in all aspects).  Not that this is where my blame is to be-no, but that it is a dominant factor.  I didn’t have anyone else in my life I could go to, and ask about what I experienced on a daily bases.  I just sat with those feels, those fears, and those questions.  I worried constantly.  Psychologically speaking, this is where I started to develop an irrational filter for processing situations.  Until now, I haven’t actually been taught anything different…

Growing up I cried about 4 out of 7 nights a week.  Angry, frustrated, confused, scared etc.  Most nights, I would wait until my alcoholic Dad came home (or I would be awaken by him slamming the door) and I would listen… Listen to his footsteps, how the floor sounded as he walked across it, what he was mumbling, how he seemed.  I could tell right away what kind of mood he was in, and how the night was going to go…Sometimes, though, my predictions were wrong.  He would often go into my Mom’s room, and wake her up. He would always ask her stupid questions, telling her stories she didn’t care about, and yelling at her because she wasn’t attentive to him…at 3 A.M.  This went on almost every single night growing up.  And every single night, I would hear every single thing they said, and how they behaved.  Worried, I quickly invented a tactic to distract my Dad.  I would get up and walk to the bathroom (which meant I had to walk past my Mom’s room), and subtlety remind my Dad that his food was in the microwave, in the kitchen.  Most of the time, that would redirect him enough to grab it and go downstairs (where he slept) to go to sleep.  My room was right above his and I knew I was successful, when he would turn on the T.V. (very loudly mind you) and proceed to call some ‘buddy’ of his and talk like a 14 year old girl all night…This, is usually what I fell asleep to…Anyway, that was just part of where it all began.  There is so much more in-between…

Oh boy, do I digress…My point in my rambling is this: I  had an anxiety attack today.  I couldn’t control what was happening (or going to happen) and it freaked me out.  However, it also made me realize, once again – I do not have control of anyone or anything around me – I only have control of myself and what I do…but even that, I don’t have full control of.  Just like my childhood, or the events in my life since (especially those two miscarriages);  I couldn’t stop that, and I can’t stop what is ahead…

So, I leave you with this Bible verse that says it all…

Image

Until next time…Adios

-S-

Marchin’ On

So, yesterday was a rough day in the household of us (my husband and I). We had a very intense argument that lead to a deeper part of us. After being slightly irrational (on both parts), we finally started talking…and actually listening.

I love my husband very much. I am often reminded of how uniquely perfect he is for me. I’m not saying he is perfect, but he is definitely my match. I am not proud of the way we have treated each other over the years, because we have been unbelievably awful and uncharacteristically evil. We not only got married young, but we have also had a number of overwhelming situations come into our lives (not that anyone else in the world hasn’t had that). But being young and stupid AND MARRIED, really did a number on us. I mean, some days I feel like we have been married for 20 years! Not only that, but we each brought an immense about of emotional baggage (and suppressed feelings) along for the ride…

The reason why I am sharing this song, specifically, is because it represents how I feel about mine and Adam’s relationship, at this point. We are about to celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary this May, and up until yesterday, I was feeling very detached from my husband. Like I have mentioned, over and over again, we are coming out of a rather rough year. We are not unfamiliar in this area, but this past year encompassed more than just us. It was a mental breakdown that involved all the loved ones around us. As we argued yesterday, things were brought up that shook us both. We even mentioned the “D” word…yes, I know…don’t judge. We are not pursuing that, so don’t worry, but I realized yesterday that it’s not just me that’s lost, he is too. We are lost with each other because we are both changing. It doesn’t have to be a bad thing, we just have to continue to seek guidance and acclimate to how our life and relationship is shifting. Neither of us want to spend the next 5, 10, 80 years just cycling around this same pond. We need to keep moving and growing with each other. Like this song sings:

“For this dance we’ll move with each other.
There ain’t no other step than one foot,
Right in front of the other.

There’s so many wars we fought,
There’s so many things we’re not,
But with what we have,
I promise you that,
We’re marching on…”

My husband and I know that we need God to be the main presence in our lives together, but we need help doing that. We have taken our focus off of Him, and selfishly dwell in our lives, trying to problem solve on our own. We know we can’t accomplish anything without Him, but we also know that we can’t even begin to refocus on Him, unless someone literally helps direct us. So, as a couple, we have decided to take that first step forward and have a third party (MC) sit down with us. Who knows how long we will do this, but all I know is that this is the healthiest decision we can make right now, and we’re going for it…

Enjoy this song. It’s meaningful and upbeat…just my kind of tune.

Unit next time…Adios!

-S-

Let’s Be Frank

I am just one person out of billions on earth.  Surrounded by powerful forces all around and in society, I often feel totally powerless and insignificant.  My temptation is to simply fall into a comfortable routine and try my best to be happy.  But I know that’s not right.  I also know that God is all powerful, much greater than any group or institution in the world.  He has given me talents, gifts, and abilities to invest wisely for His glory.  I want to use them to truly make a difference, even if that means one person at a time-nothing grand-just God and me working together to change lives.  However, I have been told recently that I have developed some bad habits, harmful to me, my relationship with God, and the people around me.  My first response was denial.  Then I made excuses (and am still making excuses), rationalizing my behavior as normal and expected, especially for someone in my situation.  But I know I am just trying to convince myself, which is easy because I am a qualified manipulator and as gullible as they come…

Seeing another person’s problems is easy-it’s obvious.  However, it is also easy to be blind to our own issues and shortcomings.  I know that the only way to start working through that is to simply realizing where you are, and I do; at least I think I do.  I feel as though I am realizing more and more, each day, where I am, and where I would like to be.  I have come a long way in the last year (and even the past 3 months), but I’m still seeking my temptation, more than I am seeking truth.  I absolutely know where I need to be, and how that looks, but I don’t long for it as passionately as I have in the past.  Previously, as I have entered into a new season of my life, I would have this undeniable drive and motivation, but for some reason, I still feel jaded.  Quite frankly, I really haven’t flipped the passion switch on yet, but I am driven to some degree.  I see certain elements as a perfectly clear options, and most of which encompasses truth, but for some reason, I keep thinking that it’s what other people want for me.  That it’s really not who or where I want to be.

Image

You see this little girl?  This little girl was very imaginative.  She had a lot of ideas about who she wanted to be and couldn’t wait to take on the world!  She wanted to grow up, be a teacher, get married, have a wonderful family, adopt a golden retriever, and live happily ever after in her amazing home with a front porch and white picket fence.  Wow, how Americanized!  Well, this little girl soon learned that world is a shitty place and that good people have very dark sides…Over time, she felt misplaced and confused and bound by fear.  She never knew what the night would bring, and it scared her to death.  She was often caught in the middle of horrific, violent, physically and verbally abusive arguments between two people where supposed to love each other.  In most situations, she was the target of their anger and frustration.  She never had anyone to talk to about anything that was going on, so she just endured.  She lived…She hoped…and she desperately desired to become the opposite of what she was given.  She never realized, though, that tucking all that pain away, would only result in her becoming exactly what she despised…

Over the course of my life, I feel as though I have been stripped of traditional experiences or ‘unofficial milestones’ of life.  And because of that, I have attempted to pursue those ridiculous en-devours, at the wrong time, only causing more disappointment.  I know that the temptation I currently seek is wrong.  Completely and utterly inappropriate and meaningless.  I guess I think back to this little girl.  How she wanted to be carefree, but was burdened by circumstance.  She was never taught (or even able to process in a healthy manner) how to emotionally and psychologically handle those experiences.  I think about how I jumped into marriage at the age of 21, completely oblivious to reality and blinded by my heart.  I was filled with a distorted filter of what marriage is and overflowed with unrealistic expectations of myself and my husband.  Over the course of our marriage, we did a pretty good job of hiding what happened behind closed doors and ignoring the real issues.  Now, that we have exposed ourselves to most of our family, friends, and professional counselors, I feel overwhelmed.  Maybe because things are getting real?  I don’t know, but I feel this desire to experience life in a way that doesn’t fit in my marriage.  Am I doing this because I feel trapped and unsuccessful, or because I want to be reminded of the absolutely wonderful man that I have?  I don’t know, honestly.  I look at us and I feel as though we are doing fantastic individually, but what about together…?

I definitely feel that a lot of this is only proof that I have become stationary in my faith, even though God has warned me about the enemy.  Despite popular representations, he is real and dangerous, a devouring “lion” often disguised as something good (1 Peter 5:8).  God calls Satan a liar and the Accuser, and he uses both tactics in bombarding me, lying about God and reminding me of my failures and sins.  I have felt under heavy attack, with the devil’s accusations swirling about in my mind and obstacles being placed in my way…The crazy thing is I KNOW the devil is no match for God, but I am still struggling to stomp on the enemies ideas, and move closer to God.  I mean, how foolish is that?!?  I KNOW that I am supposed to love my enemies, resist temptation, give godly counsel, stand for truth, serve others selflessly, steward my resources wisely, and more-all only possible by God’s grace and through his strength (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12).  BUT WHERE IS MY PASSION TO OBEY THAT?  It’s like I want it, but I don’t.

Anyway, I will leave you with this; my only prayer at this point.  Holy Spirit, please empower me.

Until next time…adios!

-S-

A Picture is Worth a 1000 Words…or 879

Image credit: “safe” – © 2007 Paul Keller – made available under Attribution 2.0 Generic

This image was pulled randomly by WordPress, when I clicked on a link that said, “inspire me”.  I was curious to see what would happen.  When the picture appeared on the screen, I first thought, ‘What the heck?’  Then, I looked at it for a little bit and started to think about Haiti, a country I visited in December of 2012.  Mental images of my experience in Haiti started flooding my mind.  I began thinking about the people I met (especially the children), the environment that surrounded them, and how I felt during that time.  My heart was so open and extremely self-less.  I could have stayed there, or traveled to several other countries, if I had the ability.  I was so passionate about serving others.  I had no problem speaking about our money hungry, materialistic, ego driven, American ways, in comparison to the humble, God filled, altruistic, grateful Haitians.  Then, I started getting busy in my life…

My husband and I had packed our weeks and weekends with church, friends, work etc.  We were very busy and very focused on each other.  At that point, we had decided that we were going to be more proactive about ‘trying’ for a family.  After trying for a few months, I discovered I was pregnant.  We were excited, and I immediately went to get blood work to confirm.  Almost instantly after that, I started having issues.  I knew in my heart that the pregnancy was failing, but I was denying that and remaining hopeful.  After going back for more blood work, I came home and tried to rest.  I began pleading with God to give us the opportunity to know this baby, and to let this baby develop and live.  I have never wanted something so much, as I did in that moment.  When I got the results back, the nurse said that my levels were extremely low, and that they don’t even consider that being pregnant.  Exceptionally offended, and emotionally overwhelmed, I hung up the phone and cried my eyes dry.  After that, I had to return to the doctor to get another blood test – just to confirm their previous findings.  When I was called, to hear the results, the nurse (very unsympathetically) said, “Your blood work came back negative for being pregnant.”  And just like that, I wasn’t pregnant anymore.  It literally felt like I was pregnant for all of 2 seconds…what a crock!  In that moment, I could feel my heart harden.  I was devastated.

After that, I began losing myself at an accelerated rate.  I was not the same person that had lovingly visited Haiti to be with Godly centered people.  I mean, honestly, I was struggling at that point in my life anyway.  I was mentally overwhelmed with so many family dynamics; both with mine and my husbands.  Before this recent miscarriage, I had always struggled with ‘family things’ because it triggers a lot of my personal pain from my past.  Personal pain that I never really dealt with until I started affecting the people around me.  Which, unfortunately, was right around the time that this miscarriage happened.  I thought that going to Haiti would center me, and bring me to a different level with God.  You know, allow me to feel confident in my struggles going forward… But after coming back, and feeling like an opportunity was literally ripped from me with that miscarriage, I could no longer function in a stable manner.  It probably didn’t help that this wasn’t my first miscarriage (but that story is for another time).  I was gone…and nothing that anyone could do at that point, was going to help me.  I needed to fall on my face, and seek for help, like a big girl.

Anyway, I sort of digressed while talking about Haiti and what followed in that next year.  My point in this post is to acknowledge that not only does this picture remind me of Haiti, but it also reminds me of myself (maybe even blatantly displaying how I am two different people within about a years time).  Honestly, I feel tarnish and misplaced; just like that safe.  I mean, after living a life of constantly feeling emotionally defeated; to completely breaking down because I had, had enough; to being hospitalized, placed in treatment, and put on medication; and then facing my family and friends in an undesirable manner – yea… I had been exposed in the most abraded way possible.  And it wasn’t just me looking in a mirror and being disgusted by what I saw.  No.  It was me standing in front of a window, so that everyone could gawk at me, at my most vulnerable, unattractive state, and listen to their judgments and opinions being thrown at me.  Actually, it wasn’t like a window.  I take that back…it was like throwing me into shark infested water, covered in blood…yea, that’s more like it…

Anyway, like I have said before.  I am hear to write, because I still feel lost.  For the past several months, I have been trying to implement what I have learned, work hard at letting people in (and not personalize their perspective), and spiritually figure out where I stand.  I’m just not sure who I am right now, but I can feel pieces coming together.  Yet still, at this moment, ‘I don’t know’ are my favorite words…

Until next time…Adios.

-S-

Eat, Pray, Laugh

Alrighty, so I have made two blog posts!  Now, my third…wow – I am on a roll!  Awesome.  I am very glad to be writing and I have found that this is most definitely helpful!  I am feeling very elevated today and much of that credit goes to my friends.  I have had a great weekend laughing and feeling relaxed with a couple of different people – and it was refreshing (and did I mention full of laughter?)!

Speaking of laughter, I looked up the definition of laughter and this is what came up, according to Google:

Laughter: The action or sound of laughing.

Umm, ok… really Google?  You can’t be a little more specific?!?  I mean really, that’s the definition you have!?  Oy Vey…So, then I kept looking and I found this definition by Dictionary.com:

Laughter: an inner quality, mood,disposition, etc., suggestive of laughter;mirthfulness: a man of laughter and goodwill. 

OR

an expression or appearance of merriment or amusement.

Okay, okay…getting better…but still not a very good definition. Then, I found this one…thanks to Oxford Dictionaries.com:

Laughter:  to make the spontaneous sounds and movements of the face and body that are the instinctive expressions of lively amusement and sometimes also of contempt or derision.

Alrighty!  I like that one!  Much better, and more detailed!

Anyway, after having fun looking up different definitions of the word, laughter, (yes I actually enjoyed doing that) I decided to make my own definition.  After this weekend, I was reminded of how it feels to really laugh and I owe it all to my wonderful friends.  Thanks guys 🙂

So here is my definition:

Laughter:  The physical experience and expression of vocalizing true joy and pleasure from deep inside your heart.

What do you think?  To cheesy?  Eh, I don’t care!  It’s my opinion and I like it! OHHH snap!! Haha, I’m just kidding… No but really, I like it…

Moving on!  My point in this post is to acknowledge the pure fact that our lives just wouldn’t be the same without the companionship of great people.  Our world is so messed up and so many things happen to us on a daily basis.  We were made and created for relationships, to be in community with others…

Personally, I don’t know where I would be without my Friends.  In my book, God comes first, then my husband, then family and then friends.  During 2013, I had a mental breakdown and I just needed to release everything inside.  I was so heartbroken and very, very lost.  Well, actually, I am still very lost.  I am trying to understand myself and follow where God wants me to go.  However, until recently, I was still very angry with God.  I know, who am I to be angry with GOD!?  But He wants to hear our honest hearts, not just some mumbo jumbo…I mean, He knows…everything…don’t get me wrong, but He wants us to acknowledge what’s inside of ourselves, to Him.  So, I have been nothing but honest.  I have opened up my heart to God, and many people around me – most of which have been my friends.  I would say, for the first time in my life, I have been completely raw and unbelievably real in every way.  I have not liked this process of refinement, but I have appreciated the insight I have gained, up until this point.  We grow and change on a daily basis, but this past year, it was much more intense for myself and the people around me…

I am very fortunate to be given the opportunity to have such wonderful friends be along side me, and my husband, through all the ‘up’s and down’s’ of this life.  The kind of people who never give up on you, even when your the bitchiest, most stubborn, thick-headed brat possible…I have friends who know my heart, and who I am – even when I don’t.  Friends who will tell me how it is, even if it hurts.  Friends that are intentional about showing their love and their commitment by spending quality, meaningful time together…I have friends that I love very much, and I wouldn’t change anything about our any of our relationships…

So, this post is for you, friends.  Thank you, for being more than just ordinary, but rather, extraordinary people in my life.  Thank you for loving me, encouraging me, supporting me (and Adam), and for always being there.  You are truly an inspiration to me and I wouldn’t be who I am without your help.

By the way, check out this song down below…it fits perfectly!

Count On Me

Until next time…Adios!

-S-