Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Twinkle On

There will never be too many twinkle lights
If I could wrap them
around my heart
& through my veins
I would
Something in the glitter & glow
breaks through these bleak December greys
& pulls me toward
the Light of the World
who shines through
this season &
breaks through the darkness & shadows
of a dying year
& helps alight the new

So twinkle on little lights
bring the hope & joy of the Christ child's birth
good will to men
& peace on earth

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

2014 Letter to Mr. C

Dear Santa,

What I would really like for Christmas is self-confidence and renewed hope. I've spent this year making decisions based on fear and because of losing my job and world upending with Children of Change left me struggling to believe that I make good decisions. I want to believe. I want to believe in myself and that I can make good things happen for myself and the people around me. I know it's a weird to ask for this, but if you could find a way to bring that for me...I'd be grateful. 

Say hi to the reindeer for me. 

Merry Christmas,

A Little Too Ironic

My head is pounding and I really should be asleep, but today has been incredibly strange. I went to the doctor today because Mom, Forrest, and I all thought we had strep. Thankfully none of us have strep, but we all are getting over the flu. I was actually told that I'm to stay home from work tomorrow to continue to heal. It's been a little unreal. I love the irony of getting the flu after having had the flu shot over a month ago (and yes I do know that the flu vaccine only covers a certain things blah blah blah). 

My boss called to check up on me as we were coming back from the doctor which was handy considering I was going to have to call him. He was trying to find out how I was doing and to see if I'm really okay with the fact I'm going to have to work this Sunday and miss church. Nope, I'm not okay with it, but I understand. Short of quitting there's not much to be done. He handled my being sick pretty well though. I've got a good boss. I work with good people. I just am going crazy missing church all the time and never feeling like I've slept or seen friends. I feel isolated and miserable. I need a new job before I go crazy. 

On the upside, I spent most of my day reading, coughing, blowing my nose, and not moving on the couch. I still have a killer headache, but more sleep will help. Plus, today Crown Publishing told me I won a tote bag which made me happy and then my health insurance card showed up. Ha. Timing is everything. 

Plus today I looked in my stocking, at Mom's prompting (we've been using them as mailboxes), and I had a really sweet note from her plus a Greek phrase book. She knows my heart. 

Maybe this Christmas feels like a fractured mess because work has managed to take most of the things I love most out of my reach, but maybe the little pockets of joy will hold it all together. I could still really use a Christmas miracle, but considering my tremendous luck this year...I'm not holding my breath, but God only knows how much I'd love to be proven wrong. 

On that note, I'll leave you my list and try to sleep:
Favorite Things of this Very Moment (11:07 PM CST):
• Knowing I can sleep through all of tomorrow if I want to
• Chinese paper lanterns
Getting Rid of Bradley by Jennifer Crusie
• Mulligan's admirable persistence 
• Calle's decision to get me the "pillow" I want for Christmas
• Soft kleenex 
• Christmas lights
• Not being financially destroyed by the visit to the doctor
• My remarkable family

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A Fool Looks for Logic in the Chambers of the Human Heart

I lay beneath the lantern glow
Tired ache creeping through my soul
Knowing I should've been asleep hours ago
But the rush of today
The tangled up thoughts warring keep me here
In the quiet loud space in my mind
How can you logic your way out of this?
I find you in this space
Tattoos, skater hair
It's like I've got my high school 
Skills for picking boys again
You're too young,
I'm too old
This song is on repeat

Once upon a time 
There was a girl who believed her life was planned
I guess I found out too late
That I'm not going to get a fairytale 
And maybe prince charming isn't what I need
I just need a best friend

God only knows what the jumble's for
Time will probably take you away from me,
But for today at least,
I can committ you to memory
Maybe you'll prove to be a better dream

Monday, December 8, 2014

So Here It Is

There's a problem somewhere caught between the girl I grew up being and the woman I've turned into. I grew up with all boys. I've got three younger brothers, and I had mostly guy friends. My mother was a tomboy, and I always have been as well. As a result, I grew up somewhere inside a guy's mindset of going after what you want. 

This made me absurd and brave when it came to love. I lived by the motto that only the one willing to be a fool for love deserved love. I learned a guy, adored him, and then went for him with everything I had. It didn't end well often, but it meant I resolved feelings. It was messy and heartbreaking and chaotic, but I was reckless and willing to risk all for the hope that the guy I was pursuing would recognize the romantic, caring, hilarious bundle that I was. That I was exactly what he'd been looking for. 

It didn't work. 

As I got older, my mom sat me down and told me that as a woman I was meant to be pursued and not to do the pursuing. I didn't understand it. Parts of me still don't because it feels like such a waste at times, but truth be told, she was right. If a guy has any interest in you, he'll come after you. You can get in his way all you want, but unless he's decided you're what he wants, it's not going to matter. 

I have spent the past nine and a half years alone as a result. I can't deny that I've expressed interest in guys during that time and been open and vulnerable, but it's never changed anything. I guess I still believe that you've gotta be willing to be a fool for love in order to be worthy of love, but at the same time, I no longer know how to find the only thing I ever feel like I'm searching for. 

After nearly ten years of solitude, I feel like I'm wasting my youth, but I'm a woman and I deserve to be pursued like I should be. How do I resolve this particular paradox? Especially since I am beginning to think I was born in the wrong decade since I just want to meet someone in real life and not through a dating site. 

I guess I wait. Trusting this to God is consistently the hardest choice I make. I am still not terribly good at waiting. 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Are You Rushing the Plan?

Today I actually got to go to church.  I don't think I can properly explain how much it means to me to actually be at my church on a Sunday morning.  It wasn't long ago that I wouldn't have even considered a job that would make me work on Sunday mornings, but then I got sideswiped by life and took the job that showed up when everything else seemed to say no.  My job is not a bad one.  I get to take care of good people, and this is all good, but words can't express how much I miss my church family.  I miss getting hugs from my Sunday School kids.  I miss talking to my extra grandparents and getting their advice and hugs and love.  I miss talking to my married friends that I only ever seem to see at church now.  I miss feeling like I'm connecting to my family and community instead of feeling like a withdrawn loner.  I miss talking to my cousin and her husband and playing with their little girl.  Not being at church every other week makes my life seem stretched, but not at all in a good way.  I feel like every 2 week span is just one week because nothing feels like it's resolved until I'm back in church.

Today, because we're within Advent, Michael was talking about God's plan vs. our own plans.  Michael asked if maybe we were rushing God's plan instead of waiting and letting God lead.  I don't know anymore.

I want to let God lead, but I'm not trusting the way I should. I've struggled with that for quite awhile, but it seems like lately, if I even try to be vulnerable, if I trust people with small things, I get screwed over. The past couple years have worn what's left of my belief in others and myself down to the point where instead of belief cushioning/protecting me it's like none scraping bone. Nothing is protecting me, or at least that's how it feels. 

I'm sure this is my fault, to be honest. I trusted in people, not God. I placed my future in the hands of people I thought I could trust because I was afraid of being left behind. 

Really, I think that's what Michael was trying to point out. We tend to stop following God when we're afraid. We think the path He's leading us down is scary or it seems like it's taking too long. Instead of trusting, we veer off on our own down a different path. One that looks brighter or seems like a shortcut. 

The problem with that is they never work out. You end up at a deadend where you need to backtrack and retrace your steps to the original path. Or you end up hurt and bleeding and in desperate need of healing. Or you end up fighting battles that could've been avoided. Or all of this. 

Truth is, I am scared. I don't feel like my life is working out. I had a poorly healing wound ripped open suddenly today, and I am wondering how long I'll be dealing with this. I know what my heart longs for, and I know my faults. I know I keep trying to take shortcuts around the loneliness and I know all the justifications I try to make for my bad choices, but it all comes down to my fear that this will be my life forever. That I'll always be the lonely, self-depreciating girl struggling to love herself and to be something good in this world. 

I'm going to try to spend this Advent season retraining my heart to follow where God is leading and trying to heal a little. I'd like to be more like Joseph and less like doubting Thomas...

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Stand Up & Be True

I want to reach out
to every single question
& hold them close to my chest
You ask so many things
I've always wanted to explain
Hearing you say something so simple
It's such a beautiful name. 
It is
It's my name. 
I am the beautiful name
Could I be something so beautiful to you?
Stand up & be true
Those words sink into me
Like a bite into my heart, my veins
Be true. 
Can you be true?
As reminders go,
words visible on your strong wrists
give me a long forgotten hope

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Put Down that Cookie!

Having just had my youngest brother trying to convince me that Arnold Schwarzenegger movies are worth my time (  True Lies is the only one you're going to get me to watch willingly) and having made myself hot chocolate with added booze (for flavor or something), I'm trying to recapture some kind of Christmas spirit.  This season is supposed to be about the birth of a holy child, the savior of mankind, and do you know what I'm thinking about?  Me.

I'm thinking about how there's a big hole where my hope and belief and faith should be.  I'm thinking about how we're going to have to move Christmas plans around so that we can still have a family Christmas together even though I'm working from 11am to 7pm on Christmas day.  I'm thinking about how I'm probably letting fear keep me from a lot of things, and how if I don't start facing some of those fears that I'm going to end up stuck in a miserable job for the rest of my life while probably living in my room at my parents' house because I'll never be able to afford anything else.  And now that I'm adding knockoff Bailey's to my hot chocolate, I can head toward my lifelong goal of becoming the next alcoholic in my family tree.

Me. Me. Me.

Here's the good:
I have a family that actually loves me despite everything.
I have a job (and coworkers and a boss that seem to really like me).
I have a kitten that likes to climb up on my chest and sleep.
I have kind and wonderful friends that love me and let me whine and freak out and generally be neurotic.
God keeps showing up, and I know things are working as they should.  I just don't understand, and I'm struggling to have patience and grace.

Please God give me grace to get through, and help me to find joy so that I can be something good and not a ridiculous burden to anyone else.


Favorite things of this very moment (9:23 PM CST):

  • The epic Christmas music playlist that I have going right now
  • Hot chocolate with knockoff Bailey's
  • The Chinese paper lanterns I finally figured out how to hang in my room this week
  • Jennifer Crusie's writing
  • Warm slippers
  • Christmas lights hung up all over the living room
  • Calle trying to convince me that I'm not making bad life decisions
  • My folks coming in the door
  • Knowing there's a book of poetry on it's way to my door that will be worth all the wait