Thursday, June 28, 2018

Why Us? (To Be Heard)

I have been insanely busy with this whole thing called life. Parenthood can be rough sometimes, summer sends a shock wave into my neatly written out schedule every year it comes; nevertheless, I adjust. 

The kids and I have been going on adventures every week to get us out of the house and into nature. I have taken some rather beautiful  photos of our adventures & we have experienced some wonderful times. 

We just got back from vacation last week to walk into our home, that I was so ready to be back to, and found out our home had been broken into. To say that this was a violation doesn't even cover how I've been feeling. 

I've gone from completely losing my composure, to not feeling safe in my own home, to being angry & asking, "why, us?" to knowing that God's got us covered. 

My husband told me it happened to us because we're people, too. Which is the obvious answer but it's the truth. We're not exempt. I guess I've just been overwhelmed by it all because when it hits your home, you realize how bad things really are. 

At any rate, I'm slowly getting back to feeling okay again. We're having a security system installed in a few days, I've almost decided on the gun I'll be purchasing for protection, if such a thing ever happens again and I pray that it doesn't, but I will be prepared for next time. 

I'm praying for those who did it. I know there's good in every person but when they're breaking into my home to steal things that we've earned by an honest living, it's hard for me to see the good. It just makes me want to pinch their little heads off.  

I'm praying for me too. I've been having a hard time with this whole situation. I've worried for many years that something like this would happen & then once I stopped worrying about it, it did. 

I know God's got a plan for this storm. I feel it my bones. To someone who doesn't serve the Lord,. I'm sure I sound like some religious fanatic. That's okay. That happens a lot.

There is something the Lord's got in store for me from this situation. I've known He's got something for me for a while now, but He just hasn't made it known to me yet. This just furthers my suspicion.  

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. - Romans 8:28 (KJV)

Sunday, May 20, 2018

He Knows Me (To Be Heard)

There's always a season in life that seems impossible. I had this silly notion that Christianity came with rainbows, moonbeams & skipping through a field of daisies always. You've probably heard me talk about that before. I tend to repeat myself. Repetition is a good way to learn. Wait, what? You mean learning is the whole objective? Maybe one day I'll get it. 

These days I'm learning to have a little talk with Jesus first before running anywhere else. I'm pushing myself to "start with Him". I know that seems like the obvious answer but life can tend to get in the way, if I let it & I don't want to let it. My flesh is impossible some days; okay, most days. 

I repeatedly step out in faith & let Him take care of things. No, I haven't got "there" yet & by "there" I mean, when I give it all to Him, I DON'T take it back, I let Him keep it. Nope, not there yet, but that's the goal. 

I want to walk in victory while I'm here in this Earthly body. I want to curb this flesh from things my sin nature tells me are okay. I'm not the person I use to be. 

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 
- 2 Corinthians 5:17

I thought this would be easier. Wait a minute, evidently I didn't because it took me forever to change the way I was living. And it took a life-altering experience for it to happen. I am so grateful for the experience that changed my life. 

My point?

I've been praying for God to see me through this season & others, as well. For two days, He's told me to Be still. Clearly ironic, if you know me. 

He knows me. 

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Motherless Child (To Be Heard)

When I was in high school Eric Clapton came out with this incredible album of blues remakes called From the Cradle. It was/is on my list of favorites that I still can't live without; google it. 

On this album, there's a song called Motherless Child. I listened to that song on replay with my boombox with the CD player. I was so proud of that CD player. It was the first one that I ever had. 

During the time that disc came out, my mother had disowned me. Yes, I'm aware of how dramatic I am on the day-to-day so you're thinking I'm exaggerating; nope. She sent me a book of a letter with all the pictures she had of me, report cards & my hospital bracelet that I got when I was born. 

I was fifteen years old & everything she had from my life fit in a nice letter-sized manilla envelope. Convenient, I know. 

This day (Mother's Day) has been a festering wound in my side for my entire life because my mother never wanted me. You know the expression "actions speak louder than words"? Yeah, me too. And yes, they sure do. 

Don't get it twisted, this isn't a post bashing my mother. Nope. These are just facts & up until now, I haven't been strong enough to type them in a post because I was afraid of what someone might say, or if it would offend someone, but you know what? I've been offended my entire life because my mother has never had time for me, unless it was beneficial to her, or on her time, or if it was okay with her [current] husband/man. Yep, I sure enough just did. I don't mean that in any other way than it's intended.

Several years ago, I sought help from a Christian counselor who performed EMDR on me. I used my mother as an example because she was a huge block in my drug recovery. I found that out when I was working "The Fourth Step - A Moral Inventory". 

My sponsor told me I needed a therapist because she wasn't equipped to help me. HAHA! True story. Well, she was right. I spent the next nine months digging out bad & boy, do I feel better! It's three years later this July & I'm still making progress.

When she performed the EMDR, which is basically a series of questions, she asked me, "what would you tell that little girl?" and out of nowhere, I burst out in tears and said,"it's not your fault."

I'm welling up with tears right now just thinking about how good that felt & how much it helped me. 

It's not my fault that my mother is incapable of being a mother. Some people aren't. For years, I excused her behavior by believing it was because her mother died at a young age and she didn't know how because she didn't have one. 

Guess what? 

I don't have one either but my kids are my first priority. Yes, I am well aware that the Bible says your husband is first, but spend your life thinking your mom doesn't want you and see who you prioritize first. 

God's working on me. He'll take care of everything. He's molding me into what He wants me to be. 

This year, I'm okay that she doesn't want anything to do with me for whatever time this is. In fact, it's better this way. My children don't have to hurt like used to. And if, at this point you're reading and want to comment, "but she's your mother," please don't. 

She only gave birth to me & for that, I am grateful, because I have three beautiful, smart, safe, secure, confident, cherished children that she will never know & a daughter that she's never known.

>>>My God is greater than the pain & praise the Lord, this year, the pain is no longer<<<

Friday, April 6, 2018

Simplicity (To Be Heard)

As I gather my thoughts & decide where I'm headed today, I can't help but appreciate the simplicity of what my life has become over the last several months; not to mention, the last decade. 

I'm working on balance this year. I've always been a procrastinator & I'm coming to learn how to tame the fear that makes procrastination happen for me. I have always been terrified of success. I'm still scooping out the bad (after almost three years) & forming new, more healthy habits. 

The irony in that (for me) is that the one thing I have been unable to tame is my healthy weight & that is the one thing I was working so well at before I started on this self-discovery journey. WHOAH. That was a realization. It's almost as if I gave up one for another. That has officially been noted. Maybe there will be some progress there now that there's been a realization. 

I like how people are able to fix your problems but can't fix their own. My dear friend once said, "if we could all switch problems...", we'd all be good, or something to that effect. Isn't it funny? Everyone knows how to tend someone else's woes but have a rough time tending their own. 

I have had so many posts but cannot manage to make myself sit down to do it. I start writing & then I change my mind. Outside factors get in the way. I'm afraid I'll step on this one's toes, or that one's toes, when in reality, all I want to do is write & everyone is so dang touchy these days. About everything & anything. Seriously, everything. Why can't things be taken at face value & not have another meaning? Can't I just say what I mean and mean what I say? Nope, not these days. People lie. Straight lie. All the time. 

I mean, I get it, I guess. I spent fifteen years of my life lying to myself, my family. I thought -- let me rephrase that -- I didn't care any further than what I wanted whether it was affecting anyone else. See? There I go judging. No, it's just stating an opinion. I struggle with the reality that there is a line between judgement and opinion, as a Christian. I teeter on that line sometimes though. I'm flawed. Not an excuse, just a fact. 

The harder He works on me, the more stuff I find wrong. Like I said, I started digging almost three years ago & I could have totally bought a backhoe with what it would cost to rent one for three years. Yep, I should have been a comedian. 

I thought it would be easier. Okay, no I didn't. I didn't think living right would be easier, or I would've done it sooner. And by living right, I mean what's best for me. No drugs, no alcohol, & serving the Lord the best I can every day for the rest of my life. 

I fail miserably. I dust off. I try again. I know without a shadow of a doubt that God is in control of my life. He is what keeps me going on those days that I can't seem to do anything right. When I feel like a complete failure as a mother, a wife, a human being. He knows everything about it & loves me because He knows who I am. He knows who I'm striving to be. He knows what I'm capable of. 

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. - Romans 8:18

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Because He Loves Me (To Be Heard)

When you envision your life, is it what you're living? Are you doing the things you thought you would?

Several days ago I started this painting. I express myself through art. I was in the feels. Emotions can be painful sometimes. You know when you hear a song & it takes you a to a place where you use to be? Or when you hear a song and it takes you to where you are? Are you ultimately happy where you are?

I've been going on and on about balance this year.  I made it my goal to balance myself, my life, my responsibilities. I can't say that somewhere along the way my balance shifted because honestly, I've never experienced balance in my life. I've always, for as far back as I can remember, been unbalanced.

I'm experiencing a whole new life. A life reformed. A life without drugs. Without alcohol. A life with boundaries. YES! Boundaries. No, boundaries are HUGE deal. Maybe you're normal & you've always had them in your life. I've not & I'm learning that's okay because I get to learn now.

I am who God makes me on the daily. Not everyone will love me, but He does, and for that, I am eternally grateful.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 
- Matthew 22:37 (NIV)

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Awakening (To Be Heard)

Four-something o'clock this morning my beautiful eight month old little lady woke me up. She was hungry. It was time for food. As I made my way to the kitchen, she's almost sang herself back to sleep. 

I picked her up, snuggled her close, we rocked, and she drank until the milk was gone. Back to bed she went. 

Over the last six months, give or take, my anxiety has been off-the-chain high. The older I get, the more I have found myself battling mental illness.

There, I said it, I struggle with mental illness.

I've never actually said that actual statement before; outloud anyway. No one wants to associate themselves as being mentally ill, do they? I mean, I have never wanted to. 

With growing older, less of the things that use to matter, actually matter anymore. I aim more towards personal growth in Christ, than measurement of worldly successes. Not everyone would agree that best for them, but we're not all the same, are we?

Last Saturday, the Lord spoke to me. He's trying to grow me. He's trying to show me. 

His conviction lays heavy on my heart. He wants all of me. Not just what I am willing to give. Everything. He wants to saturate every area of my life.

As I laid Laurel back down for bed, my usual is to get "10 more minutes" before I've got to get up. This morning, it just so happened, God didn't want me to sleep in.

I put Awaken Essential Oil on my wrists & settled in for some eye-opening Yoga. As I practiced, my goal was to release, relax, and be present in the moment. 

Today, my aim is to be present. 

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. - 1 John 5:4

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Sunday Feels (10 Years CLEAN!)

Man, I feel good today. 

Don't you just love it when you can say that? Some days, moments, months, heck, even years can feel impossible. Yes, I said years. 

The first year I was clean, I didn't think that I would make it through it. I was so overwhelmed with life. I got clean when I found out I was six weeks pregnant. Blah, blah, blah. You've probably already heard my story. I feel like such a broken record sometimes. I feel like people get tired of hearing it & start nodding off mid-sentence. Oh good grief, here she goes again. Ewww. 

Let's fast forward a piece. I would make a fast forward sound but I don't know how to spell it. 

Oh look, SHINY!  

I cannot stop it. My husband asks me, "do you even try?" Nope,  I gave up trying to change me. At least the things that I love. I love the spastic part about me. I like to call it spontaneity. Yes, we'll go with spontaneity. 

Geez, I get sidetracked. I sat here for an hour looking through old burnt discs for a photo of me before, when I was in my addiction. There is this specific photo that I'm looking for & I think I inadvertently deleted it & have no copies of it. 

Here's the funny part. There's always a funny part. I was smiling so big in that picture. You would think I was so happy. Sure, in that very moment, I was. The black under my eyes was awful. I don't know how long I had been awake & there is no way I could tell you how long it had been since I'd eaten. 

I was extremely unhealthy. I was smoking, eating, drinking, snorting, breathing meth. How could I not be unhealthy? I was unhealthy, insecure, mean, vindictive, and spiteful. I was a liar. I lied to myself, my family. I was thin. That's was an important factor to me, to be thin. Sad, isn't it? Straight truth, nothing but. It didn't matter that I was slowly killing myself, sometimes quicker; just depended on how much money I had to blow. No pun intended. Harharhar. At least I can joke about it now. 

I wasn't always able to joke about it. When I first got clean, I didn't want to talk about it with anyone. I was embarrassed, ashamed, and a number of other adjectives. 

I felt like everyone was judging me. Living in a small town is hard sometimes. Everybody knows everybody and not everybody's kind, Christian or not. People love to see people fail and when you know everybody it's hard to escape the judgement. No, I'm not that naive to think it doesn't happen everywhere, I know that it does. This is just my story; no one else's.

I was pregnant. I was going to be a mother. Oh my gosh, I was terrified to be a mother. What if I turned out like my mother; absent? That's all the room she gets in this post because this isn't about her. She gets no glory for me being clean for a decade. Zero.

Only God gets the glory for His. He and He alone, set me free!  

If I tried to say that getting clean was as easy as reading some inspirational quote that motivates you to make it happen, I'd be lying. That's a complete load of garbage. Getting clean isn't easy. If it were easy, everyone would do it. Nobody would use drugs. We'd all be skipping through a field of daisies, happily, hand-in-hand. 

I think I took that a bit far. That's me, the envelope pusher. At least it's not dope pusher. 

Don't get me wrong, everybody's journey is different, but there's likely to be some speed bumps; no pun intended.  I'm pretty punny today.

Alright so, I figured I'd go with some things that I've learned over the past ten years and maybe I won't get too off-topic. Oh, that was funny. I'm very likely to get off-topic. It's in my nature.

When I first got clean, I was so scared I'd lose all my friends. I did. All of them. I don't hang out with any of those people anymore. The expression, "all you have to do is change everything," was spot on for me. 

Here's what I learned:

1. Those people weren't my friends to begin with. They just needed someone to do dope with & share my dope with them. Yup. Go on and marinate on that for a minute. BOOYAH. 

2. Some folks gonna forget where they came from. That's okay, let them. The only way out is through. Sometimes it takes a lot more time to get through when you don't want to face things. They are not your responsibility; YOU ARE. It took me a minute to learn that one. 

3. "People will be people," are the words of my handsome husband, Andy. I use to want to cut him when he said that. Bleck. Just plan 'ole poke his eyeballs out for being so evolved. Yuck. Perfect people get on my nerves. Here's the truth bomb: HE'S RIGHT. They will. So what. Let them be. 

4. People pleasing is the pits. Stop it as quick as you can. It's not a good thing. It's a flaw. I'm still learning this one. 

5. You have to set boundaries & STICK WITH THEM. Not everyone will like the clean you & that's okay. They don't have to. I found out I like myself so much more when I'm not around people who project their insecurities & hatred for self onto me. 

Don't feel guilty about that. Some people just aren't your people. When you use, you tend to mix and match with all kinds of folks because you've got drugs in common. When you no longer have drugs in common, you find out who your friends are. QUICK. 

Okay, so there's five things. Those, of course, are not the only five but I'll have to stop now because this has taken me the course of a day to get this written & if I don't post soon, I won't get it finished. I'm a super starter, but finisher? I'm still working on that.

I'm working on me. Well, He's working in me much more than what I'm doing, just as long as I let Him. 

Seriously people. Choose Him. He will  see you through. Let Him.

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28‬ ‭KJV‬‬