April 27, 2015

Tonight, Tonight

Tonight, my boys are tucked safely in  their beds.  I've read stories and helped brush teeth and snuggled and sang my little one to sleep.  I didn't do the laundry, and I served them leftovers and we stayed inside to play.  But I loved on them as best as I could with all that I had.

Tonight, I am weary and tired.  Exhausted from lack of sleep due to worry, anxiety and pain. And so over the pain.

Tonight, I am grateful that Jacob doesn't have any broken bones after a scary fall this weekend.  I am worn from worry over the what-if's and could-have-been's and finding it hard to calm after thinking about my little one hurting and injured.  I so badly wanted to hurt for him.  To take the X-rays for him.  To do it all for him.

Tonight, I am overwhelmed about big decisions in regards to my health.  About treatment for my Rheumatoid Arthritis and learning to trust my doctor's advice.  I feel both defeated and relieved.  And incredibly angry that I have this stupid thing.  That I don't have the power to make it go away by myself.

Tonight, I feel quiet.  Todd is working late and I feel alone and I am missing his presence.  Wanting more of the protective, understanding embraces of earlier today when we sat with the news of what we're dealing with in regards to my RA.  My husband - he loves me good.  So good.

Tonight, I am thinking about what it means to be brave and keep going.  About how the bravest thing we can do sometimes is to surrender and let go of what we were holding on to in the first place.
Tonight, I am wishing God wasn't so big. And while I need his bigness and greatness, these moments when my heart is full and heavy and aching, I'm wishing He was small enough to meet me in my living room.  To hold me tight and close.

April 23, 2015


The thing about invitations is that they always give you a choice.

To attend or stay home?  To accept or decline?

And usually, they are easy choices to make.  Because, yes - I do want to go to that birthday party.  Or yes - I will be your 'friend' on Facebook.  Or yes - I accept that job offer.

But there are the more complex invitations too.  Sometimes we get invited to engage in an argument that will have no positive resolution.  Or we get invited to join someone in gossip or slander and a slew of other-centered contempt.  We can be invited to join family members in their familiar ways of relating which can feel like abuse or wounding all over again.  And often times, life can present us with difficult circumstances and disappointments and we can be invited to either wallow in it and let it take us down or struggle through it all well. 

And again, our response is always up to us.  Our choice.  We get to decide how to act, what to say, and how we will respond when these invitations present themselves. 

Recently, I received an actual for-real invitation.  It came with a fancy envelope and beautiful script writing on gold foil paper.  Just the sight of it promises to be a grand celebration.  I was immediately flooded with emotion and conflict and curiosity.  As I sit here and type this, it's staring at me begging me to RSVP as the event is only a month away.  And I wish it felt easy to accept, but it doesn't. 

It reminds me of hurts and pain from the past.  Places I felt betrayed, abandoned and forgotten by others I had given my heart to.  And for a long time now, I have let myself feel justified in my hurt and anger.  I've pouted and ignored several other invitations or opportunities as if I was trying to prove something or get back at them for how I felt.  I was hoping my absence and silence would make an impact.  And the last few years I've really only discovered that I've only felt more of the same feelings.  The not showing up and the staying quiet and being absent hasn't brought healing.  It has never made me feel better and I can't shake the memories of my hurts either.  I'm in the very same place with all of it, and I don't like how true that feels.

And all of this from a piece of fancy paper.

Tonight, I am trying to be curious about what reconciliation might look like.  About what showing up to the celebration might be like.  If I'm ready or if it would only invite more feelings of hurt.

Either way, it's up to me.  Because the thing about invitations is that they always, always give you a choice.

April 14, 2015

On my mind

I've been learning how to feed my body well.  And I almost feel like I'm learning these things for the first time.  Most of what I remember about my body during childhood, was simply shaming me for what it looked like.  Or that whatever sickness ailed me, would get better on it's own and there was no need to see a doctor or receive treatment as my brother took up enough time with doctors and medicines and hospitals and various treatments.  The tools I was given for success were diet pills or bribes with money if I could lose weight or sack lunches full of carrot sticks that I would throw away at school every day.  But, I was never really shown or modeled healthy living - or even made to be excited about it.  Even the mere mention of healthy anything sounded like a complete drag and was never encouraged outside of needing to lose weight so I would "look better".  Now that I'm in this position where I absolutely have to change my diet in order to find some relief for my RA pain, I'm learning things about food and nourishment and how to take care of this body that has been so hurt and abused and mistreated over the years. 

For months I've been beating myself up about my faith in God.  When December came, an unexpected bout of depression came with it and I found myself in these old and familiar places of accusing God.  I tore myself down for the struggles I was still struggling with and wondered how I could be in this wretched state-of-heart after such an epic year of following Jesus in all of these new places.  And what I've been learning is that faith is something I will always be battling for.  It's not a place of achievement, it's an ongoing process and I am constantly growing here.  Because I lost confidence in myself, I went very, very low.  I forgot that I only need to have confidence in Him.  And also - faith doesn't mean that God has to explain Himself or His ways and perhaps I should take a different stance rather than blaming and accusing Him of things all of the time.

I want to do something different with my life.  I don't want to work as a bookkeeper forever.  I want more and I feel like I'm one of those people who was created for something more.  And maybe that sounds conceited or presumptuous or like I'm special or something.  But I'm craving something different.  Yet, I don't know what it is I'm supposed to do or meant to do.  Sometimes, it feels like it could be a hundred different things.  Writing.  Ministry.  Decorating.  Singing.  Event-planning.  Counseling. But I'm restless and feel lost.  Is there even a method to dream a dream?  Some of my high-schoolers are close to graduation and are looking at their forever futures and I can be excited with them at the plethora of possibilities that are ahead of them.  But I feel like my window of possibility gets smaller and smaller every day and I wonder if I've just missed the dream-boat all together.

So I've been doing things I've been avoiding.  Like admitting that my blood pressure is high and I need to be on medication for it.  And talking to doctors about my weight and finding a plan that will work for me.  And making decisions about heavy duty medications that could treat my Rheumatoid Arthritis.  I have needed a good amount of guts to admit things are wrong and that I need help and care for my physical self.  It's been brave to say yes to certain things and no to others.  And I believe that in this place specifically, God has been asking me for more of my heart.  And it's hard and brave to let Him have these pieces.  Because it's with these pieces, I've discovered, that I trust Him the least.

April 6, 2015

The Annual Easter Picture

This silly picture thing started a few years ago when Tommy was small.  And now it's something we purpose to do every year.  It's fun to see how traditions grow into your family around certain holidays.

Our annual family Easter picture.  You're welcome.
Some people opt for matching outfits in springy field of bluebonnets.  We roll post church style, youngest child in back-up outfit because he spilled a gallon of bubbles on himself, sitting on our friend's back deck with Easter eggs.  This is who we are.

I hope when the boys are grown, they have piles of these pictures in their own personal collections.  Remembering that this day in all of it's remembrance of Christ and His sacrifice and resurrection, came with celebration and fun as a family too.