Sunday, April 24, 2011


I have many, and for almost everything.

My mind works in compartments, boxes, sections. And these compartments don't often intersect; they are separate, distinct. I need them to be.

I wish I thought or functioned in a more fluid, less structured way, but my mind struggles against itself in this regard. I feel only able to define this idea in extremes, imagine that. But, I may not, in actuality, function as strictly as I perceive myself to function. I am after all inside my own head.

This, my tendency, to compartmentalize, can be extremely helpful--but it can also fracture and fissure my mind, my life.

It's sometimes good and necessary to section things off, put something over there or over here, but other times it pulls and pressures, and artificially separates.

And sometimes, it gives one the illusion that something doesn't exist if you've put it somewhere that you can't see it or feel it. But, it does.

I found one of those compartments last night. I thought because I had sectioned it off, put it away, closed my mind to it, that it didn't exist anymore, but it does, and it's painful.

It was a frustrating realization that my compartmentalization had failed me. That my safety mechanism had proven faulty.

But, the reality is I can't simply section something off and not deal with its contents, fully.

This a bit of a painful revelation. But, I want to be whole. I want all of my disparate compartments to be reconciled, somehow.

As a wise woman once told me, "you can't control what you think, but you can control what you do with what you think." This is good advice.

I cannot change how my brain functions, but I can learn to work within my framework, attempting to reconcile the parts and pieces I would sometimes rather keep separate, or even pretend don't exist.

I must learn to face my realities, all of them.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I feel greatly lacking. I'm not sure how to meet all the needs, answer all the questions, help all the hurts, assuage all the fears--I'm not enough.

...But, in the silence a voice assures,

"I know. But I Am."

Yet, I struggle. I struggle to know the scope of my role in the lives of those who have been placed where I can touch, where I can influence, where I can help.

There seems so much, yet I am so small. How can I help? I don't feel equipped for such tasks.


I want to bear well what I've been given, but I fear I will fail. I fear failing those who have put their trust in me. I suppose I must remember the assuring Voice and recall it's not truly me in whom they put their trust. Because, if it was, I would fail.

"I know. But I Am."

I know...

Monday, April 18, 2011


I feel like I'm standing at an intersection, a crossroads, a precipice--whatever cliche you wish to attach yourself to--either way, life feels extremely pivotal at present. It feels like whatever life choices I make in the next few months will determine much, and much more than my mind feels comfortable with. It feels like I could go a thousand different directions, but which is the right one? And what does that even mean. Not sure. But, I'm mildly terrified.

I'm trying to decide something, well many somethings. For one, am I a reacher, or a settler? Like, am the type of individual who will forever be reaching, always striving, always wanting the next challenge, the next thing. Or, am I the type of person who is more content to simply be, to accept my circumstances, to settle. And is one delineation "better" than the other? Or, can we be one and then the other, depending on stage of life? Or, are these delineations altogether false? Not sure.

All of this said, life decisions seem a bit daunting at present, but I can't allow these crossroads to paralyze or I'll never move forward, in any direction.

But, where do I go? What do I do?

I feel like I'm on a round-a-bout, and could be spit off in any direction. But, which way...

I could go, I could stay, I could study, I could teach, I could settle, I could reach, I could love, I could not, I could live, I could not...

What if I miss something? What if I miss out? What if I choose wrongly? Is there a wrongly...?

Wow, that's a lot of pressure.

Maybe I'll stop trying to madly figure out my life and instead entrust myself to a God and Father who holds my entire existence in His hands...

Yeah, I'll try that.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


I feel like I am always performing, always. For someone. And I don't even always know who. Sometimes it's someone, sometimes it's no one. But, I feel like I'm somehow always performing for an invisible, ever-present audience. Always.

And couched within this is the constant desire to please, impress, project, perform. But, for who? I'm still working on that. But, frankly, I'm sick of it and greatly want to be free.

It's exhausting.

I'm so tired of trying to impress "someone." Yet, the irony--there are many--is that most of the time I know I'm performing, I'm conscience of it, and I even attempt within myself to not do it, but even within this there is a strange double layered form of acting.

It's sad.

It's like when you try so hard to be sincere that you end up being fake, and often without even intending to. This is a possible trap. Especially for performance prone individuals like myself. Because I will say, I'm not fake, I aim always towards sincerity, and I do care, very much in fact, and I don't wish to act, but sometimes all of my good intentions get bundled up and confounded in my strange attempt to please, impress, project, and perform.

Perhaps I should try some new acting classes. Or, maybe I should try a new career path altogether, because I don't think I'm very fond of this performer's lifestyle.
Embarrassed. Exposed. Wretched.

That's how I feel.

I suck at loving. I am discovering that I tend to love those that are easy to love, but even the pagans do this. I am drawn to what draws me. I seem to love when it doesn't cost me much, and usually and most often when it benefits myself. I love what loves me in return. I seem to love when it's easy, not so much when it's hard.

I am a wretched creature.

I am human.

But I am not ok with this status quo. I know in Christ there is no condemnation, and such realizations should only bring about a desire for growth and sanctification, but in my current state I am drawn to despair and frustration with myself. These are the kind of sickeningly painful epiphanies of self that one would rather ignore,

But I can't.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Tired of being Tired

It's true, I am. I can't recall the last time I was fully rested, in any sense. That's terrible. I feel like I've been running on fumes and grace for way too long. God forgive me.

I wonder if it hurts the Lord's heart to watch me, frantically running around like a small busy ant, pretentiously assuming I can carry my own burdens. Again and again missing out on the abundant life He so freely offers, yet somehow it continues to evade me, or I it. Either way, I'm exhausted.

Sadly though, I think it's mostly my fault. I do it to myself, mostly. I still haven't seemed to figure out how to balance myself: My time, my energies, my passions, my relationships, myself.

I am always willing to spend myself on people, always. And it's always worth it. But, it is? I am beginning to wonder. But, I don't know any different, and I can't imagine any different. Or is it all simply about balance?

God, I beg for something. Something to discern this space and my place in it. How am I to truly embrace the abundant life you have for me, yet remain true to how you've created me? Help me Lord. I pray.

I'm so tired of being tired.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Life Learnings part II

Further revelations that are still settling...

1. I don't need the thoughts of others to affirm my own

2. I am not defined by what I do or what people say about me

3. I can't please everyone, and I'm tired of trying

4. I'm a bit of a insecure mess, but it's ok

5. I am who I am

And there's always more...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Life Learnings part I

I'm learning a lot right now, a lot. It's kind of overwhelming sometimes. There are multiple lists. Such as:

Thing's I'm learning I'm ok with...

1. I'm ok being alone

2. I'm ok with just "being"

3. I'm ok with silence

4. I'm ok with stillness

5. I'm ok with my style

6. I'm ok with staying in on the weekends

7. I'm ok with saying no

8. I'm ok with awkward situations

9. I'm ok with people not liking me

10. I'm ok seeking and maybe not always finding

11. I'm ok with the process

12. I'm ok with not being ok

13. I'm ok with me

And that's the short list...

To be continued.


I do a lot of different things at my job: I take kids to school, I pick them up; I change diapers, I create activities; I plan field trips; I go to story time; I help with nap time; I load and unload groceries; I deal with the daily temper tantrums of two-year olds and all other year olds; I help cook for 30+ people. I do a lot of different things at my job. But, my favorite thing to do is simply to hold the babies. It's true, I'll admit it--I'm a baby holder. It's amazing: I honestly didn't even know if I liked kids before taking this job, and I now I am proudly professing my "baby-holdingness." Life is funny. God is funny.

I spent all morning with one of our new babies, and I got to do my favorite thing: hold him. We can't hold the kids all the time because otherwise they will become accustomed to it and expect it all the time, and we simply don't have enough staff to hold all the kids all the time. But, today I could do what is normally not permitted, just hold him.

So, I did.

It's an incredibly sweet thing, on many levels, to hold a child. Dependence. Vulnerability.

These inverse feelings are new for me, and I am still processing many of them. But, I am enjoying the beauty and newness of it all. In many ways, I feel closer to God through these experiences and understand better different parts of my Father.

For example, as I held this baby today I was overcome by a strange, but sweet spirit of worship, understanding that just as I held this child, so my Father holds me, always. We are all infinitely held. The keen desire this baby had to be as close to me as possible was overwhelming as I thought of my own keen desire for closeness to my Father. I was this baby's source of comfort, and security. If I made as if to leave him, he reached out to me with imploring arms and eyes, wordlessly begging me to stay. If I moved, he moved. If I sighed, he sighed. We were working in unison. As he lay against my chest, I could feel his breath, his hair, his skin, his heartbeat. It was a human moment touched by the Divine.

It was a moment that made me want to be a child again, if only to more fully understand the relationship with my Father, or rather how the relationship with my Father really looks. Sweet moments indeed. And all from holding a baby.

I'll say it again with pride: I'm a baby holder.

Monday, April 4, 2011

What do I want to be when I grow up?

This is a daunting question, mostly because I have no idea. But, does anyone? I'm starting to think not. Yet, I still get this panicked feeling that everyone else really does have it figured out and I'm somehow screwed or more simply, just behind. I hate that feeling.

I have many passions, dreams, desires, yet all of these things feel so amorphous when truly faced with the "what do you want to be when you grow up" question. And said desires feel even more naked when faced with the sheerness of life and its realities. What will you do? Where will you go? And my favorite--How will you support yourself? Daunting. But, I suppose only has daunting as I allow it to be...

I am the type of person who cares far less about what I'm doing, or even where I'm doing it and far more so about who I'm doing it with. This is mostly true, in that I do care about what I do and where I do it--I'm not simply an amoeba responding to stimuli. However, I do value above all else people in the midst of experience. I find I can like much and tolerate much if the relationships I'm engaged in through the process are worth it. It's always come down to people for me, relationships. And I battle with this in myself.

There are two types of people--well, there are many types of people, but for the sake of this illustration, I shall restrict myself to only two. There is the type of person who forms their lives, plans, pursuits, etc. separate from the impeding factor of others, more or less. And then there is the type of person whose life forms itself in and around the lives of others. The second perhaps is like a chameleon, that person adapts and adjusts to its surroundings and mainly, the people in those surroundings.

Uncomfortably for me on some level, I think I'm the chameleon. I have always seemed to simply adapt myself to the people I'm around, more or less. Not entirely of course, I'm still me, but I'm me along with a whole bunch of other impacting forces. It makes me wonder, who am I really? And along with this theme, what do I really want? I'm not sure I've truly considered this question yet. Or, maybe I'm just getting to the point where I can really ask it. I'm not sure. But, I want to start figuring this out. And maybe in the end I still won't know the answer to the, "what do you want to be when you grow up" question, but I hope to at least start figuring. We can only move forward with what we have right now.

So, let's start moving.

Friday, April 1, 2011


Rhythm. Rest.

They feed into one another, and create a self-sustaining cycle of life--if we practice them.

But, how does one find a consistent life rhythm when there doesn't seem enough energy to sustain even another day? Herein lies the problem, I'm afraid. We are so exhausted, as a culture, as individuals, that the ideas of rhythm, much less rest, are sadly distant concepts.

We live so thoroughly in the relentless day to day that we don't leave ourselves space enough to explore the possibility that life could be anything else. Sadly, I believe so much of this vicious cycle is self-inflicted. I know it is for me. I have convinced myself somehow that this is just how it is, or this is just how I am, and thus have become trapped within an idea of the world, or an idea of myself.

We convince ourselves that certain things in life are immovable obligations or essential to our existence, but it's often these very things--good and bad--that are killing us, so to speak.

For me, it's people. People are my passion. My heartbeat is relationships. Relationships for me are extremely life-giving. But, simultaneously, I am a person of extremes and in regards to relationships this can be one of my biggest detriments. I struggle to strike a balance, as with many things. I will continually push my boundaries--physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual--if it means relationships are pursued and maintained. Nothing is as important to me. Yet, I often do this at my own expense. I will forfeit sleep, health, other priorities, etc. for the sake of a good conversation or a meaningful interaction. It's all worth it to me. But, is it?

And it's something different for each of us. But, we must strive to identify our own individual imbalances, which are the perpetuators of this self-inflicted vicious cycle, in order to find remedy. We can be free, but it starts with us. And we have to want to be free.

It's ironic--rhythm, rest--are created and instituted by God, for our good. He desires us to live a full and abundant life, that's why he created such patterns. But, due to our own willfulness, and continually pursuing what we want, I believe we often miss out on that abundant life that's so freely offered us.

A friend told me recently that he needs rhythm in his life. He said, "I still want adventure, but I desire discipline." What an apt way to put it.

I don't think God views my emphasis on relationships as negative, or thinks my pursuit of them is evil, but He does know that when I place that pursuit as more important than my pursuit of Him, which entails a pattern of rhythm and rest, than something is wrong. God doesn't want to ruin our fun, quite the contrary. In fact, He wants us to live and experience Him and His blessings as fully as possible. But, we have to learn to live within the boundaries that He's given us, which include those of rhythm and rest.

For our good, we must learn to submit to these boundaries and patterns, and stop being like stubborn, foolish little children who refuse to lay down for nap time...

I don't know about you, but I'm getting tired.


It's amazing to see how far you've come, when you look back.

Growth is almost imperceptible while it's occurring. We aren't usually aware of the minute or slight alterations of character, or changes in our person or habits, until later. But, we do see it, eventually.

That's one of the beautiful things about time. It reveals in the future what we can only strive towards in the present. Time carries us steadily and ever onward, with or without our consent, yet always forward. And along this journey we grow, with or without our consent, and often in spite of ourselves. That's a comforting reality.

But, growth can only be truly recognized through reflection. We cannot learn from what we do not seek to understand, and if we do not seek to understand, we shall never see the change inherent in ourselves.

We must reflect in order to see growth and we must seek growth in order to require reflection.

Yes, it's cyclical. But, so is much of life...