Monthly Archives: December 2013

Run, run little girl

Run, run little girl

 

Run, run little girl

Run wild and free

Down the mountain sides

Through valleys and hills

 

Run, run little girl

Away from hurt feelings

And playmates who name call and smear

Run dear girl to your mother’s safe arms.

 

Run, run little girl

To womanhoods thin veil

To crushes, emotions and sleepovers

Run to the fun of those teenage years

 

Run, run little girl

To the driver’s license at last

And long coveted freedoms pass

Run to adventure – toss caution aside.

 

Run, Run little girl

To the boys and the booze

To heart breaks and heartaches

From boy to boy, insecurity and gloom.

 

Run, run little girl

To the arms of your lover

The perfect match – Head over heals

Not a thing can go wrong.

 

Run, run little girl

To your pillow soft comfort

The man of your dreams?

Now the one you despise

 

Run, run little girl

Down the hall – catch your daughter

Giggling delight – she fills you with terror

Your precious mirror of your life

 

Run, run little girl

Look into the eyes of your sleeping child

You’ve run your whole life

From yourself – nothing else

 

Run run little girl

To yourself

To the place in your heart

You don’t want to face

The place you’ll see you

Who you really are

Keep your eyes open

Don’t cower in fear

It’s not pretty – oh no

But it’s the truth about you

Stop running from you

Face the little girl in your soul

Hear her fears – they are real

See her heart – beating true

Feel her tears – finally free

 

Run, run little girl

To your Dad’s open arms

Settle in. Grab a book. Get some tea.

You’ve been gone for too long.

 

 

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Falling

Even though I wrote this in an email to a friend several months ago it’s still true. 
 

I said yesterday that 6 months ago my ‘journey’ started (the part that I felt – it started long before that). Gosh. I’m doing my own freak out today. And stopping. Falling back/letting go into what seems nothingness to me. All while yelling at God ‘YOU BETTER HAVE THIS!!! Because I’m at the end’.

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I feel like I’m living in a world where I grew up clinging to the cliffs scared of falling off. Doing everything to anchor myself in to make myself feel safe (hello rules and legalism).
And God asks me to let go of all the rules and wanting to feel safe and just. let. go. But I still look down and see nothing so (like when you try to float on water instead of just letting yourself ‘be’) I TRY REALLY HARD! And keep falling while I’m trying to look good and impress people while I flail past cussing at God and anyone who says they believe in Him. Sometimes I’m laughing at myself because I know I look completely ridiculous but I don’t want to stop because I would have to stop trying and rest in NOTHING and that is scary because I have no control. And sometimes I don’t want God to be right.
Letting go. Of what I want (to be right. to be liked.). Letting myself feel the fear (which sometimes I create), letting the shame go, letting life be not about me…
 
That happened last night on the way to pick up (a friend). Feeling fear – what the hell God?? Realizing I was feeling what the girl in me felt when all the girls didn’t like me. I was that kid that got picked on and never invited anywhere (not being included hurts deeply). Last night was this crazy talking to God thing where I just let go of wanting to be liked and popular and settled in being me. And I knew it was true when, later in the night, she was talking smack while playing checkers (it was the funniest thing ever watching us play) and I was so aware that she is me and I’m learning to just let myself go.
 
Note: 
I’m reminded of this video. I feel like the last little boy who’s not quite sure what he’s seeing but wants it so bad. 

Beautiful

Beautiful
 
I wrote this word in henna on my hand this week.
 
I forget things a lot. So sometimes I write things on my hand to remind me. Things like ‘Loved’, ‘Beloved’, ‘Adored’, ‘Daughter’ and ‘His’. I forget that I’m not alone.
 
Yesterday as we were sitting around the living room opening gifts one by one it was… beautiful. The snow outside is beautiful. Even if I hate driving in it.
 
And I’m beautiful. Even at the moment as I’m screaming at God because I can’t have my way and can’t have what I want. There is a small voice in my heart saying ‘Hello Beautiful’. I’d rather not listen to this voice, I’d rather ignore it and keep yelling at God and pushing Him and people out of my life (I’m good at tantrums by the way) but I know the truth. I’m beautiful.
 
I feel something beautiful happening in me. Letting go of things and learning to see Jesus. Learning to see through the external and really seeing people. Seeing myself and my shit and letting myself be exposed and not hiding behind excuses or reasons. Admitting my weakness and letting my heart be seen.

Christmas Eve Blahs

I’m not sure I’ve ever not cared for something so much as this Christmas. I just do. not. care. I feel like the Grinch.
 
It feels like trying to impress people we don’t care enough about to take the time to really love and care about. So we get this crap to take up more space in their lives. No thanks.
 
Buying gifts for people seems so meaningless and trivial. The more I try to figure out what to buy people so I don’t look stupid not giving them something I realize that the only gift worth giving anyone is myself. My time, my SELF. I have nothing else worth giving.
 
Sometimes I think I don’t know how to do this. But I actually do. Listening and hugging and not giving those bible verse answers. That’s all it is. Just loving people.

Controlling Christmas

 

Every Christmas I try to be like everyone else. Including gifts for everyone wrapped in delicate paper, tied with natural fiber string with a handmade label that’s sprinkled in bright glitter. The whole thing looking effortless. Fresh cookies in an antiqued cookie jar. A tree that looks like it flew out of the Williams and Sonoma catalog. The dining room table (non-existent in my home) set with beautiful heirloom china, delicate crystal glasses and brightly polished silver ware. A fresh wreath on the front door with a big red bow.  Smells of pine mingled with the scent of fresh cookies and hints of orange and cranberry wafting through the house… 
 
This year I announced on social media that ‘NO ONE IS GETTING CHRISTMAS GIFTS!!! NO ONE!!!!!!!!!”. It’s one week to Christmas day. I have no gifts bought. I leave in 36 hours to fly to my hometown to watch my best friend marry her long time friend (though both of them would agree they were frienamees for many of those years). I have a ticket to get there and no return ticket purchased. My life feels out of control. 
 
And I stop and realize… control… since when have I had control of anything? I’ve thought I did. Mostly of my husband. But all wives know deep down they have no control over their man. When I sit down and let myself slow down I realize that I have no control and yet I’m still clawing for it. I still want it. 
 
Especially at Christmas time. I want EVERYTHING to be PERFECT!! The reality of my home is that I have a wreath with a red bow on the front door. The stems on the poinsettia snapped off within an hour of bringing it home a few days before Thanksgiving. I can’t find the cord for my light up table top Christmas tree so I just decorated it anyway. With the ornaments I made into earrings a few years ago. Yes, my Christmas tree is a glorified earring holder. Well, was. The cat attacked the tree and I got tired of fishing my earring ornaments out of the litter box and picking the tree off the floor. 
 
The table this tree was on is actually a 18″ x 18″ folding table. The only one in the home (which have I mentioned is an RV?). I pinned cloth Christmas napkins (which I was never going to use as napkins since I hate doing laundry) together to form the tree ‘skirt’. 
 
 ImageAt this moment 90% of my Christmas decorations are stuffed into a cloth reusable shopping bag (I know I’m not the only one who never actually uses those things for shopping) and sitting in the middle of the floor. Hey, the one string of lights are still up!! 
 
 
That smell wafting through my home? Is not the country salt cured ham. It’s the litter box that I haven’t cleaned out in way to long. Except to take the toys and Christmas decorations out. The ham is sitting on the floor too. In its cloth bag. Where it’s going to stay until AFTER Christmas. 
 
This morning I’m feeling stressed. Because I know I don’t have what it takes to create a beautiful Christmas of my childhood. There is no food, no decorations on a banister, no tree, no beautiful smells. In fact my husband keeps blowing out my pine scent candle. Which is fine because I have pine scent spray (which makes it smell like I have an 8 foot spruce in my home).  
 
The reality is that if Christmas is going to happen in my home it’s not going to happen externally. We all know Christmas isn’t about gifts and food and pretty decorations. But we still try to make it all happen anyway. And while we do we usually fight with our loved ones about things no one actually cares about. 
 
So I’m choosing to let go. To not cancel my dinner with dear friends, to go ahead and schedule a lunch meeting with someone I love, to pack up my few winter clothes and make sure I’m on time at the airport tomorrow night. To focus on letting Jesus hold me in the confusion and questions and self criticism. Mostly the self criticism. 

 


Hiding from normal

Last weekend, as we were getting home from a long day out, my husband asked me to bring his backpack into the house from the car since he was checking the oil in my car. I reminded him that no, I could not lift that heavy thing into the house. He looked at me like I was crazy. ‘Remember Cramps?’ He still looked at me like I was just trying to get out of work (I would have used a better excuse).

A while later I was getting ready for bed and commented that I hadn’t dealt with cramps this bad in a while. He just looked at me like I had transplanted my big toe onto my forehead.

“WHAT???”

“You’ve been fine all day”.

“Seriously? I was up at 4 am with pain so bad I couldn’t sleep. I’ve been drinking coffee and tea all day because it’s hot liquid and really helps the pain. And eating food every 4 hours to take medicine, and wearing a heating pad on my stomach all day. I’ve been far from fine!!!’

“But you looked fine.”

“I know. I have to. Half my body might be swelling up and the pain worse then some toothaches but I have to keep going. And I’ve been dealing with this for almost 20 years. So I’m used to it.”

Later as I slowed down enough to feel how much I had pushed myself that day and how much my body changes for a few days a month, my husband and I started talking about how I don’t talk about my period.

I’ve always thought of my period as something to hide, as something I should be ashamed of. Especially since I’m part of the percent of women who have extremely painful and debilitating periods.

I’ve held many jobs over the last 12 years where I just had to be okay. There were a few times when I had to leave work early, or explain to my female bosses what was going on. But with time I’ve gotten good at hiding what every female goes through.

Recently at a party I realized that, because I had taken some medicine, I couldn’t drink. That night I told no less then 5 women that, because I had super bad cramps, I took very strong medicine. I didn’t mention this to any men.

My husband and I talked about this. He mentioned that may be more men needed to hear this and needed to be more understanding.

Every few months he and I will have a conversation with a (usually single) friend and the subject of birth control comes up. As we talk about options and personal choices he usually brings up the mans responsibility in birth control which somehow leads to talking about how bitchy and demanding I can be during my period (Hello. Let me punch you in the gut repeatedly!).

Not long ago I was driving home from work and felt the tears coming on. I am not a crier and I don’t do the emotional mood swing thing. So this was a surprise. There was nothing wrong. No one I was mad at, no one had hurt me, there was no reason to cry. But it felt right. It felt like I could just let myself be ‘not okay’ for a little while. My brain knew that in a few days I was expecting my period and that this was most likely just me being emotional. And that was okay. I let myself weep, not bottling or holding back because someone might see or because I had ‘no reason’ to cry.

For the past few days I’ve been wondering what I’m hiding and I think the answer is that to talk about menstrual periods I would have to admit that I’m distinctly different from men. And I don’t like that. I want to be equal. The same. I want to meet that bar that exists only in my mind. The one where I measure up to the men in my life and I’m not weaker.

Because when I’m curled up in the fetal position at 3 am, yelling at my husband to make me hot tea and go to the grocery store and get me ginger ale and take me to the hospital because I am going to DIE… I’m weak. I’m not even able to care for myself. I cannot be super female.

This feels like not being enough. I SHOULD be able to function 100% all the time, no breaks, no down time, no self care. I know that’s a lie. But when I’m in the middle of life, of downing pills and making sure my supply of magical stick-on heating pads (the person who invented those things should be Person of the Year somewhere) never runs out I’m not interested in saying ‘I can’t do this. Please help me’ to either women or men.

My husband has been by my side (getting yelled at almost every month) for over 5 years as I’ve dealt with this. I remember the first time I let him see me in this very vulnerable place. We had been dating for a few months and I knew that he eventually needed to (and I wanted him to know) this part of my life. I remember him holding me as I explained the pain and what I had found to help it.

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Before this it was my mom getting up for me and bringing me hot tea in the middle of the night. There was a year I decided not to consume any caffeine or medicine (prescription or over the counter). No pain medications of any kind. I look back and can’t imagine how I survived. I did a lot of research into herbal medicine (there were several midnight tramps into the garden for blackberry leaves) and I did a lot of self care. I didn’t push myself to do any thing besides take care of my own pain.

Now, in the craziness of my life, I have found how to survive several days of some of the worst pain in my life, every month. I talk to friends and moms of teen girls, giving advice from years of figuring it out on my own. I wish someone had come along and told me I was normal, that I could be not-okay for a few days, that I could admit I was in pain. This is what I tell 12 and 13 year old girls who are putting on a brave face because we don’t talk about what (almost) every female ever born experiences for most of her life.

‘Dealt with’ and ‘survive’ are words I’ve used to describe my period. I wish I didn’t have to and may be one day I won’t. But as I make a conscience choice to embrace the femaleness of my body, to not feel shame that I can’t be strong all the time, I’m hoping I can start to not hide from people, from women, and from men. And that I can admit when I’m weak, when I’m in pain and when I need help.


Whose we are

Last week I found myself writing a lot on online forums. This was one of those posts. 

 

I’m seeing a common thread of guilt in posts this morning. So I’m going to address this. 

I think we’re confusing guilt with shame based off of rules and ideas we think we are supposed to be following. 

Shame is the feeling of ‘I’ve been caught’, or ‘I need to change to make it better’. Sometimes we don’t realize it’s shame. We have to stop and think ‘I feel uptight and feel physically _____ whenever he/she says ___ or does ____. I wonder why?’ 

Example: Last week my boss was really quiet one morning and I found myself wanting to hide and wondering what I had done wrong. That’s shame. I had done nothing but was reminded of my relationship with my dad as a child. It was not about my boss – but about my past. 

Something else I’m seeing is what we think God wants us to do. Whether it’s try harder, believe in Him, trust Him, or any other ideas of God. 

There is only one way to address any of this and that is to stop and see you as God see’s you. YOU ARE BELOVED!! Beloved. Loved. Adored. Precious. God’s Son. God’s Daughter. You belong!! You can feel safe in knowing that YOU are GOD’S! 

I’m reading posts this morning feeling my heart go out to each of you because I want you to see yourselves as God see’s you. You are all so beautiful. And I’m crying as I write this because I don’t know how to reach through the internet and give each of you a hug. I wish I could visit each of you and remind you Whose you are.