Thankfulness

It’s the time of the year to speak of what we’re thankful for and every year I have so much to be thankful for, but this year it feels like I have even more to be thankful for.

Here are just a few things I’m thinking about as we celebrate Thanksgiving:

  • My husband – He’s seriously the best and I love him more and more every year. Every year he puts up with more and more of my crazy shenanigans and he does it with such grace.
  • Work – Moving across the country without a job was crazy stressful for me but God provided for me in such an amazing way and I’m really thankful for the ability to work. I know so many that aren’t working right now or are underemployed and I feel their pain, but I am so grateful for a job (and for a long weekend break.)
  • Friends – Leaving our friends in Tallahassee was so hard. I miss them all every day but I am so thankful for the group of friends we’ve been given out here. Nerdy board game friends,  foodie friends, movie watching friends, awesome church friends  – it’s been so great to make new friends and not feel so alone out west. Not to mention friends that move to California for us (or for the military). 😉
  • Family – I’ve got some awesome family members. I wish I was spending my holidays with them looking at Christmas lights at Disney, spending way too much time opening presents and laughing with and and at some of my favorite people in the whole world. Can’t wait to celebrate the holidays with them one day again.

I hope you have a great Thanksgiving. More to report after it’s celebrated and I’ve decorated for Christmas! Can’t wait!

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The terrible, no good, very bad day

Broken is how I feel today.

Today, just didn’t go my way. I started my day with a cup of coffee and a smile ready to take on the world after a great long weekend. I ended the day slumped in a bathroom stall trying to stop crying. It was the worst kind of day full of nasty attitudes and overwhelmingness abounded. I had reached my limit far to soon and all I wanted to do was run home crawl into bed praying this terrible, no good, very bad day would just drift away.

I feel broken because the world is broken. Because of miscommunication. Because of silly things like envy, jealousness, judgment and pride. It’s easy to see these things in other people. It’s painful to look inside and see them in yourself. In the face of the terrible day, I know that I am no better than those that are against me (even if it takes some reminding).

Tomorrow, I drink another cup of coffee and enter the day with a fresh smile and try to take on the world again knowing that each morning is new and that other people don’t control my actions or attitudes, I do.

Fear and Anxiety

If you’ve been reading this blog  for any length of time you know that I struggle with anxiety. I go through seasons of deep and sometimes debilitating anxiety that is so thick I can’t breathe or move or think. Some days aren’t so bad. Most aren’t. I’ve never been medicated for any kind of anxiety, although I’m sure many doctors would jump to give me medication if I asked. I just don’t think it’s for me. (I’m not against medication, it’s just a personal choice for me right now.)

When I think about my anxiety, I know that it stems from a lack of control. (There are other things that trigger my anxiety, but I think this is the most important part of it.) When I have the clarity to think about it, I know that it is foolish. I know that I am not in control and I don’t want to be, but still the anxiety builds from within me. I know that its is sinful and even if I can’t control it like I want, I am repentant of it.

Sometimes, I can keep it at bay. I pray about it often and I’m encouraged by the commands of scripture not to fear. But, I’ve never been able to keep it fully away. I hate it not only for how it feels (think masses of hot stones building up like tiny bricks inside) but for how it makes me react and treat others. I want to love others even when I am feeling the anxiety build inside of me. I want to be able to ask for help when I need it.

In times like these, I am always encouraged by my husband who loves me in spite of my flaws and is committed to serving me even when it isn’t easy. If you suffer from this kind of anxiety, I hope you have someone like that to help you too. I’m a firm believer that we can’t do life alone.

Every day is a new. God doesn’t see the anxiety I gave into. He doesn’t see the ugliness it creates in me, but He understands and there is hope even on the days when the anxiety is too much to take.

Life right now

I’ve been feeling overwhelmed by life lately. Work has been busy and draining.  It’s probably the busiest and most overwhelming job I’ve ever had. It’s been hard to focus on life outside of work because it’s be so exhausting. I’m hoping it’s just a season and it will change, but right now there is no end in sight. It hard to stay encouraged in this. It’s hard to not live for the weekend.

I’m having to keep much more organized that is even normal for me. I’m afraid that stuff is going to slip through the cracks. I know that it has already so I know I need more structure. This is hard for me to admit.

I’m trying not to let the busyness and draining nature of life run my thoughts into a funk of sadness or discouragement. It’s been hard, but I’m fighting against it. Trying to find the joy in the busyness and reminding myself of how thankful I am for the work I’ve been given. I know this is good for me and that I will look back on this with gladness if I stay focused on my actions and attitudes and I don’t give in to the lazy idleness I crave in moments like it.

Living in today

Sometimes, I dream about the future. I think about where we might live and what our life will be like. I know it will be so different than I could possibly picture. I’ve learned that even just this year, but it still doesn’t stop me from dreaming. Occasionally, I realize I’ve been in this mode for too long and that it’s engulfing me. I realize how consumed I can become with this pretend world.

It makes me realize that I’m not present in my reality all the time. I’m not content with where I’ve been placed or what I’ve been given. I’m always looking forward to the next thing. In some sense, we probably are always doing this our whole life. As a teen, I looked forward to college or to getting married and now I look forward to having kids, but I know that while these things are good they are not where my focus should be now. I should be present in my marriage, with my friends and in my job. I should be happy in the blessings of this season and I should look forward to what’s to come, but not living in that make believe world. Even more, if my future doesn’t turn out like I imagine – if I have to sacrifice the things I think are to come – I need to be prepared to love every season and be thankful for them.

Today is good.

Dealing with difficulty

I’ve been struggling this week with dealing with difficult people.  They type of person that takes out their personal problems and/or bad mood on everyone around them. They type of person that you have to walk on eggshells around them when you assess that they’re having a bad day – you sink down, stay low and silent.

It’s been a long time since I’ve had to deal with this type of anger. It’s frustrating for me. It reminds me a lot of my childhood, which is even more unfortunate. Now, as an adult I’m trying to look at this type of frustrating person differently than I would have as a kid or teen.

How do you love someone in that position? I don’t have the answers yet. My gut reaction is to pray that they’ll change their behavior because that would be easier for me, but is that the right way to respond? I’m not sure. It seems selfish. This type of person isn’t looking for someone to listen to – just a punching bag.  Being that seems wrong on other levels, but how do you love them – acknowledging their frustration is real.

This is a bit of a ramble. I don’t have the answers yet, but I know that I want to be thoughtful in my actions and response.