Saturday, September 29, 2012

be still

so I've been pretty singularly focused over the last while.  and for good reason.  my life has been school, school, school, hockey and school.  it's like that every september.  and this september has been no different.  okay, well a bit different.  this september has marked the start of a new school, a new school year and a new job description; add in some personal things that I've been working to confront head on, trying to keep tabs on eating properly, a seven year old that has fallen in love with hockey and all that comes with that.  it's created a perfect storm of insular focus.

in being wrapped up in my own self, I've missed some pretty significant signs that have been trying to point me in a slightly different direction.  however, it's not anything that is unfixable.  it's just that I lacked some perspective.  what I've grown to appreciate is that I'm surrounded by a community that cares enough about me to tell me when I'm not looking past myself.  like I said, it's not like anything drastic has happened or that I dropped the ball on something or someone, I'm just really grateful that I have friends who cut me some slack and shine the light of "the other side" of things happening in my world.

I've been actively working on bringing an attitude of gratitude into my life and replacing worry with gratitude.  sounds simple, right?  ha!  this weekend has challenged my ability to be grateful and I've been fighting worry tooth and nail.  money stresses me out.  STRESS!!!!  and in my world, stress equals worry.  and overeating.  and in the case of the last 48 hrs, lunches consisting of pumpkin pie.  exclusively.  I feel like today I was given the opportunity to change my perspective and begin to change my priorities.  I am excited about what this holds.  I want to live a life where gratitude is central and where worry gets beat into a pulp.  I want to live a life where relationships are my priority.  I want to live a life where I'm not overwhelmed, but enjoying every moment.  deep breaths.  and I'd better go get some sleep...we have hockey in the morning!!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

heart of a girl

I am selfish.  selfish with my time.  selfish with my words.  my actions.  I don't give freely enough.  I live under a measure of obligation.  I don't trust.  myself or others.  I let people in, but often at arms length.  I overcommit and undercommit based on my wants.  I am selfish.

but I struggle with the tension between needs and wants.  between obligation and respect.  between sacrifice and martyrism {yes, made that word up!}.

I'm not sure where I'm even going with this, but I feel like I live in this tension.  there are things that I must do as an employer, mother, and wife.  I don't always like scrubbing little boy pee off the toilet, but I must.

okay.  I can't formulate a thought today, so I'm going to save this and come back to it.  it's like this idea is a bit of an itch on the edge of my consciousness but I just can't see it clearly yet.  I hate that and love it all at the same time!!

I think this is where I was going the other day.  we live in this dichotomy.  this tension.  good vs. evil.  judgement and mercy.  grace and holiness.  one of my biggest life struggles is finding balance in all things.  and practicing reckless love.  balance and recklessness.  in tension with each other.

balance is so elusive in my life.  I live in the extreme.  I'm an outlier.  chaos is my world.  I stand and move for days on end.  and then I sit.  I don't know how to do balance.  the middle.

but it's not all bad.  I'm learning.  I'm figuring this out.  and I am learning that I have so much to be grateful for.  a community that surrounds me and holds me close.  health.  cars that keep working when they should be dead on the side of the road.  bills that can be paid at the end of the week because it's finally payday.  a kid that loves playing hockey.  in the equipment we were given.  my house.  our home.  amazingly irritating yet lovely children.  so much to be grateful for.

I may not have this whole living life in balance figured out, but I am going to focus on who matters and loving them recklessly.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

the rising tide

and it continues.  the chaos.  no surprises.  and in the middle of it all, I'm faced with the opportunity to extend forgiveness.  and grace.  it's really hard.

and I wrote a really good post just now and lost it.  it had dorothy and red shoes and tornados.  and how I know I don't deserve grace and forgiveness but yet how I am truly worthy.  and if I am worthy, then the people around me are too.  it looked {my last post, my real post}, in word, like nothing I am about to attempt.  but it felt the same.  LOVE that when perfection is lost with a button.  ha!

forgiveness.  grace.  change.

redemption is possible.  I crave it, yet should model it.  in the giving and the receiving comes knowledge of change.  for so long I've expected it from others and have seen myself time and time again judge.  and expect.  and judge.  I have become judge and jury in my relationships.

in my chaos, I find myself sitting in a tension.  like the middle of a storm.  my feet are pointing in the right direction {away from the door}, but not yet engaged in the process.  my soul is screaming for reprieve and yet none comes.  alas, that is not entirely true.  in my swirling, twirling bit of chaos.  change comes.  reprieve from the crazy.  a lone light in the darkness of my heart.  in the choosing of silence when anger seeped through my pores.  in the allowing my heart to settle before saying words that I couldn't replace with a million years of kind actions.

I am no longer a child that gets to act out and react out of pure emotional frustration.  nor do I get to play the games of the passive aggressive.  that child in me needs to figure it out.  she is no longer.  she is the past, not the future.  in learning this, the tantrums have stopped and surrender has begun.

so as I ramble through this week, this life, I know that I will fail and I know that I will succeed.  two steps forward.  one step back.  mired in the chaos of my life.  the consequences of my choices.  the words that escape my lips.  the thoughts that haunt my dreams.  failure.  success.  both.  neither.  and the paradox that I live with.

and in the calm of the storm, I see more clearly.  like dorothy {wearing some kick-ass shoes}, in the middle of a tornado, needing to make choices that would help her find her way.  colour.  imagination.  and a road full of adventure.

my soul longs to be on fire, yet it doesn't trust me.  earning trust with oneself is a complicated process.  a process that does not happen overnight.  yet, I keep putting one foot in front of the other.  with my silent exit to my back and restoration in front of me.  sometimes slow is best.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

a matter of time

there is so much rolling around in my soul right now that I can't process.  or see the pattern.  although I know there is one, just waiting on the cusp of discovery.  if change is in the doing, then change is happening.  I am no longer standing still.  I wrote this yesterday:  I'm feeling like I'm beginning to move away from the back door {the one where I exit quietly from and run away from my life} and I'm beginning to cut myself some slack.

do you watch the show touch?  kiefer sutherland is the main actor.  it's hard for me to hear his voice and not hear jack bauer.  ha!  I really like this show though and I think it's because it touches on connections; how the action of one can impact in ways that you'd never see or know.  that connections and actions are not random, but the result of conscious choice.  I watched the season finale today and the first episode of the new season.  everything thing happens for a reason.  there are no coincidences.  this is the premise.  that's how I'm feeling right now.  it's all connected, but I can't quite see the thread yet.

this I know to be true.  I am being pursued.  the word surrender has nipped at my heals, grabbed my pant leg and isn't letting go.  I can't escape.  so here is the random connections that my brain is making right now:

1.  I listened to a podcast this afternoon.  recommended by someone who knew I needed to listen to it.  it's no coincidence that I listened today.  nor is it a coincidence that I had coffee with this friend this week.

are you tired of existing?  do you want to live?  what am I passing on?  death and despair or life?  there is a future waiting to be unleashed through my future, through my faith, through my life.  God is waiting to do something extraordinary.  surrender.  {paraphrased from erwin mcmanus}

2.  I'm glad that jason was quick enough to tweet this quote from church this morning:

and the question that was asked:  is your soul in hiding or is it wild?  {the answer, for me, is glaringly obvious}

3.  and I can't get this song out of my head:

in these bodies we will live,
in these bodies we will die
where you invest your love
you invest your life

awake my soul
awake my soul
awake my soul
for you were made to meet your maker
{mumford & sons}

this thread that is surfacing and making it's way through my life and through my head is weaving in and out of my consciousness.  the busy chaos that is my life squelches its music.  it's in perpetual tension.

but a revelation has occurred.  change, for me, is not linear.  it's not a + b = c.  I've been looking for linear, a straight progression of "do this" and "this" will be the result.  it's not me.  it's not how I operate.  I am a mind map of colours and images, not an equation.  and it's taken me 40 years to figure it out.  {okay, well 30...I wasn't so cognizant in my early years!!  ha!}.  and it's in the realization, peace has come.  

grace.  surrender.  peace.  joy.  life.  the essence of my soul.

I'll keep you posted {but of course!!} as things surface.  'cause you know I spin in circles.  and hear music in strange places.


Thursday, September 13, 2012

flesh and bones

5 days.  and the new killers album drops.  SWEET!  I do love them...

okay, what I was really going to blog about tonight.  ha!  sooooo unfocused.

it's hard to paint a true picture of my world right now.  kid #1 is to my right, trying to do homework {that was due today} and kid #2 is on the couch watching fishhooks {HATE this show!}.  meds have been doled out, supper was probably skipped.  I walked in the door at 620 and john left at 625.  that's the longest we've been in the same room in the last three days.  lunches made, dinner made and the kids refused to eat my pasta.  I am too tired to care.  completely exhausted.  nate just broke his pencil and threw his homework on the floor and I don't care.  exhausted.  every september this happens and this september is compounded by a new school {building only!}, a new job and being over committed.  oh, and some pms.  now {20 minutes later}, I am using rio to entertain the kids because I need three minutes of no whining, no touching, no "mom!  I'm STARVING" and no interruptions.  yes, it's their bedtime, but I want to be in bed.  I don't want to do bedtimes tonight.  they are just as exhausted as I am.  between being a mom and being at school, I am pulling 15 hour days.  I am hanging on by a thread.

that all said, I get asked all the time, "how do you do it?".  they want to know how I manage a high stress, fully involved job and being a mom to two very energetic boys.  although I always give my pat answer, today I was reminded of how honest of an answer it is.  I do not do this alone.  parenting is a two person gig.  and when the other person is on nights and this mom is feeling like she can barely do this for another minute, my mother-in-law calls to tell me that she'll take the boys overnight tomorrow so I can have a break.  and she tells me that I'm doing a good job.  and she tells me that she prays for me.  how do I do it?  I am not alone.  I am so grateful for my extended family.  I am not alone.

oh, and it's now 912.  nate is tucked in, ty is listening to music {that settles him} and I'm going to find some stuff on pinterest.  I can do this again tomorrow because I know rest is coming.  oh, and I'd better fire off an email to nate's teacher explaining the homework situation!

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

it gets better

the first day of a new school year.  really, it's my new year.  pencils sharpened.  smelly markers and new lunch boxes.  backpacks and eager faces.  and that's just the teachers.  {sad but true!}  this year, this start up has had a ridiculous amount of challenges, yet I go home at the end of a long day and I'm happy.  I am so grateful that I am able to go to work everyday with people I love to spend time with.  I work with a team of the most dedicated, diverse, crazy, passionate teachers.  and today, amidst the crazy disorganized mess that was the day, I laughed hard and whispered quietly.  I experienced ups and downs.  all in one day.  all in one building.  where we work to create community.  and hope.  so today, I'm grateful for my job.  my calling.  my passion.

{oh, and I can wear my pink-kick-ass-tall-cork-wedges and I'm normal!}

what are you grateful for today?