Sunday, October 27, 2013

In Comes the Tide

Have you noticed, when there's some grief or pain or worry in your life that it tends to roll over like waves?  Sometimes it creeps in slowly like the tide, the waves gradually becoming bigger and more overwhelming. Other times, there's a big wave that comes out of nowhere.

When I've been thinking about something a lot, I don't remember how much I've actually written here and how much is stuff I just thought about writing.  In other words, I've been thinking about surrender a lot, and I know I've written some on here, but I don't know how much.

Whether there is surrender or not, it doesn't make the dreams and the desires go away.  And it doesn't make the pain of a too quiet house go away. Nor does it fill the hole left when there's no one in particular to share the daily little moments of life. But before surrendering, I would stand on the shoreline with all my hopes and dreams and plans and everything that had attached itself to those and when the tide rolled in, there were times that it knocked me down and pulled me under.  It's amazing what all that baggage can snag on when you're under the waves drowning.  It's dark down there, and there were times where I was that person that was mad at God and had all but lost hope, and there was bitterness and depression and anxiousness about when or if things would ever turn around.

He's always there, even in the midst of that.  There's a reason I didn't drown at the time and it's not because I'm so awesome.  It's only because He pulled me out.  Finally, by His grace, I was able to turn it over.  He's holding on to the hopes and dreams and desires of my heart, though He gives no guarantees.  He's slowly picking off and tossing the extra stuff that had attached itself, things like my plans and timelines, my idea of what is best for my life, even where I am overly attentive to me and me only.  It's taking a while, because let's face it, I'm not very helpful.

The tide still rolls in, but I'm no longer holding all the stuff that drags me under.  The waves still wash over me sometimes, but He's got me and they wash over me and back out to sea without pulling me into the depths.

At this point, my biggest question about surrender is, why in the heck did it take me so long to hand it over?

Thursday, October 24, 2013

A Glorious Day

You ever have that unexpected day that just hits the spot?  Today is one of those days for me.  It's a routine Thursday in a way, but it's such a fantastic one.

I got up WAY early to do a brutal morning workout.  That wasn't so much fun at the time, but I was working out with a friend, and we were outside, and by 6:30 in the morning I was finished.  I had plenty of time to make a big breakfast (first advantage to a big workout is that it's okay to eat more!) I don't often make sausage links and eggs for the same breakfast, but I did today and they were outstanding together.  Then I had plenty of time for a long hot shower after being outside where it was cooler before I went to Mass.

The one thing I HAD to do today was pick up a few things, so I did that before coming back and heading in for a nice long massage.  Spoiled rotten? Yes, yes I am.  Also, she did a great job working some TMJ muscles that had been bothering me and my jaw feels better than it has in weeks.  Not that it felt that bad, but isn't it great when those nagging things suddenly feel good again?

Then I vegged.  And took a nap.  I guess those are the same things, huh? And it was okay.  You know that drive we all have about all the things that need to be done right now?  Enough of those were at an okay enough place that I could set them aside and not worry about them today.  I ate way too much pumpkin dessert (again, why the workout was such an essential part of the perfect day, even if it required getting up early.)

My paperwork was caught up enough that I haven't had to touch it today. I could do a little cleaning, but things aren't the disaster they sometimes are.  Yes, there are the CEU's, but I had some unexpected free time this week and was able to do some with them earlier in the week.

And I am relaxed enough that there is a little grain of a thought in my head about new challenges to think about trying, but I'll let you know if that goes anywhere.

I didn't mean to bore you on a regular old Thursday, but I guess this blog post is just my version of purring. :)

Hope you've either had a nice relaxing day with your family recently or that you'll get one soon!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

It's the Little Things

Whoa! What's this? Two posts in a mere week? Craziness, I tell you.  I'm pretty excited this morning because I have an unexpectedly late start at work.  It's not great on the bottom line when that happens, but sometimes it's really nice to have a few extra hours in the morning, especially since that's my best time of day.  That's when things like blog posts spontaneously occur.

One of the things that I have been figuring out about surrender and interior freedom and all of that is that sometimes it's just the little things.  One of the things that I have struggled with a lot as a single person is this desire to give myself up for a husband and children.  To put their needs first.  (And, granted, the reality of that would probably look a lot like someone trying and then falling on their face a whole lotta times- and sometimes not even trying that hard-, but sometimes a girl's gotta dream, right?) So one of the frustrating things about being single is that there's a whole lot of life that's just about what you want to do.  Now, of course, it's this great opportunity to volunteer and so forth, and be this small part in other peoples' lives, but it just doesn't seem like much to offer sometimes.

I guess sometimes that's what God asks, though.  Sometimes it's the little things that He wants.  Why should I get mad about not being able to live for God in one way because it's not "big enough" in my eyes?  Why not just focus on the little part that I could be doing now?

There is this older woman who serves as a crossing guard at the school down my street.  I've driven by there a few times when school is mostly in session, but she's still standing there for a few stragglers.  When she is not helping anyone, every car that drives by gets a big, enthusiastic wave. It makes my day every time.

I have had a hard time feeling like I fit in at any of the churches I have been to (and am still struggling with it), but at my current church, there is this one deacon that had a big welcoming smile and made a point to say hi every time I walked into church.  That meant a lot and still means a lot.

I know.  The idea of doing little things with great love has been around a long time, and there is a reason that we all love St. Therese.  But I'm a little slow and I think that there was a part of me that really just felt like that's what I should be doing for a husband and children, so what am I supposed to do as a single person? Turns out, maybe I should be looking for moments to wave and smile at a stranger.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Just Hangin'

That, there, is my entire excuse for my sporadic posting of late.  I would like to tell you that there is something very obviously going on that I'm so busy that I can't blog (like I'm training for a marathon, while started a new post grad degree while working a first time job, but nobody's that crazy.  Oh, wait.  I mean nobody else is that crazy). I am very busy, but I haven't quite figured out what is making everything so crazy.  I mean, there's work, but that's been the case for as long as I've been blogging.  There are a couple of evening activities as well, but those are also something that has been around most of the time.  I don't know.  I just know that I don't worry about it too much.  I'll blog when I can, and read when I can and post when I can.  Stressing about it is silly since blogging is a stress reliever for me.  I refuse to add it to the "to do" list.

This last weekend, I did get to return to the Midwest to visit a couple of friends.  I can't believe it was only a week ago!  What is it about the best of friends, that time is so skewed?  When I'm with them, it's like I saw them yesterday (even though the calendar said it was a year), and somehow time is not important for those all-too-few days that I'm there.  I mean, it passes WAY too fast, but I don't know, it's also different.  And then I leave, and it already feels like forever, even though this time last week I was in the middle of staying up too late talking to them given the early morning flight I had on Monday.  If you think I have an unhealthy attachment to some of my friends, don't worry.  They already know that I love them a creepy amount.

Other than that, I gave my chronic pain presentation, and it seemed to go well.  I still really want to finish some posts about that. When I wrote this post, it was more to give an example for when I try to explain the more technical aspects of things. I really don't have much of a pain in the neck anymore.  In fact, I aggravated it a little last weekend, and instead of becoming a thing for a week or two, it was calmed down in a couple of days.  There are things that really can help with chronic pain!  I love it!

Beyond that, I think I'm going to try a spin class tomorrow morning.  I have never in my life taken a spin class, but we'll see.  I want more cardio during the week, but remember the part about being busy? I might be flat out nuts to be trying to add in more exercise right now!  I'm not completely insane. I just got a week's work of free passes to the gym to give it a try.  If it's too much to try to add in, I'll just do my week and call it good.

Ooh, and I applied for a passport!  I don't know why traveling out of the country has never happened (okay, yes I do, and it was mostly money or lack thereof), but it hasn't and I don't have one.  I'm going to try to rectify this, and hopefully use it soon.

I'm also stressing because I have to take A WHOLE BUNCH of CEU's in a VERY SHORT period of time or I'll lose my athletic training certification.  It's not necessary for my current job, but it sure is nice to have on the resume. And I haven't even figured out when I'll have two spare minutes to work on even a tiny bit of that requirement!

And that is my life currently.  What's going on in your neck of the woods?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Giveaway Winner!

I'm sorry, I'm such a bad blogger right now, but I really am going to giveaway an awesome book by Jacque Phillippe called "Interior Freedom".  It's such a great book, and I'm happy to share it.  I used a random number generator and the winner is...

Amazing Life!

Congrats, and I will be in touch o get it to you!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

It Turns Out... I Believe the Bible!

I was having an interesting conversation with a friend the other day.  She has started reading the Bible for the first time ever.  She does not believe in God, but she is searching for more that she seems to know is there (prayers for her would be awesome!)  Anyway, she is starting with Genesis, and we were discussing a bit about the Creation accounts.  I told her that while I believe that there is truth in the accounts (that God created the world), I also tend to believe that certain parts of the story are telling us important truth, but not literal truth.  Like the fact that the account with six days of creation points to a certain orderliness and logic of creation, but that I don't believe that the world was created in 6, 24-hour days (I do believe that God could have done that, but given my understanding of science, I don't believe that He did.)

The conversation moved on fairly quickly (I think we got distracted), but later something occurred to me.  The Creation account starts with chaos and moves to light and water, then life in the form of plants, then gradually more complex creatures. It doesn't necessarily directly correspond to evolution, but it is the same general idea. Now, I have to say that I don't believe that life started spontaneously where there was no life (so, a Creator).  I believe that there was a Big Bang, but God seems to be the kind of God that starts things off with kick sometimes.  And I do believe that evolution occurred, but I also believe that when there was a transition from animal to human (having a soul), God was directly involved in that.  But then again, I also believe that the world is too orderly and diverse to have all happened randomly.  Plus, things left to themselves don't tend to get more complex, but rather tend toward entropy (chaos).

Then, for some reason I was thinking about how, according to evolution, humans can track our ancestry back through apes, other mammals, reptiles, etc, down to the first amoeba or whatever single-celled life first came out of the soil.  And then it hit me.  Where else have I heard about life coming out of the soil?

[T]hen the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed 
into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.
Genesis 2:7

Oh, yeah.  There.

Maybe there is more literally true about the Creation account in the Bible than I thought.  It's just because I had this anthropomorphic image of God shaping clay into human form that I never saw it before. So, yes.  I believe the Bible.  And I believe that evolution happened.  I don't have all the answers for either, and though I do like that these kind of go together, I'm not suggesting that we turn to the Bible for scientific answers any more than I'm suggesting that we turn to science for all the answers to the meaning of life.  I'm just saying that they are not as incompatible as some (including me, apparently) seem to think.

This is the view of creation, formed through billions of years, that interrupted our conversation.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Angry about "Women's Health"

Someone I know just got to leave the hospital after at least three days due to a severe infection.  Despite the fact that they were draining a lot of pus, they were denying the infection. The cause of an infection? An IUD. This is NOT for birth control, but rather for someone that has horrible PMS symptoms and can't take regular hormonal pills due to other health factors.

She could have died if things had gotten much worse.  She is single, and I think we all know far too well what the scarring from all of this may do if she gets married and wants to have children. And she still thinks that she needs to get another IUD when she is healed enough because her monthly symptoms are too unendurable.

She could have died.  She will miss at least 3 weeks of work. She may now have infertility, though given the symptoms she was already probably subfertile.  AND SHE STILL DOESN'T KNOW THERE'S OTHER OPTIONS!!! This makes me so freaking angry!

There is a chance for actual healing.  No, it's not an easy road.  No, it may not be complete healing.  But chances are, she could get actual healing to the point of keeping things manageable and not putting her life at greater risk by getting yet another bleeping IUD!

I don't know for sure if I will be able to bring this up to her (though I will certainly try), but you can bet I said something to one of her closer friends who will almost certainly bring it up to her!  I know Napro's not perfect, but it's done a whole helluva lot more for actual HEALTH for women than the good ol' freaking double P.