Reining it in

I love that my hair is long enough to pull up into the perfect messy bun.  No strays or stragglers.

I love that I opened this window on my left side and a burst of warm summer wind hit me in the face like a pleasant surprise.

I love that my Pandora is playing all the songs I like so I don’t have to waste any skips.

I love that my dog always knows just when I need her to snuggle up against me and be my friend.

I love that my babies are running through my house having fun despite me yelling at them to knock it off.

I know I will miss their mess and noise someday and I only need a moment of intentional gratitude to sober me.

I love that when I stop and take notice, I am overwhelmed with things to say thank you for.

The hardest thing about being a realist is that you’re really only a pessimist in disguise.

To halt myself from traveling down the familiar gloomy tracks and force instead a stroll down a brighter path…

Well, I’m more comfortable sitting in the shade.

My disappointment hangs from my body,

heavy and always inconvenient.

Protecting me from pain but hard to ignore…and if I’m being honest it only makes it worse.

But I am told to be in the light as He is in the light…

and I was.

Spent the fullness of time feeling welcomed and alive.

Now here we are again, and back to being the last resort.

Wasn’t quite ready to come home to the norm.

I have amends to make and bridges to burn, like calories…and we all know how good I am at that.

Frames and galleries of words that crowd my heart, and the space is getting limited in these chambers.

Bolted with hardware and welded to my arteries.

This kind of blockage requires a skilled surgeon.

Blood pumping through paths I’ve carved out to survive.

A masterpiece.
A bypass of emotion.

Today is a new day that has been made for my gain,

taking a new route and a fresh way.

I will choose gratitude.

What other choice do I have?!

I love that I have mastered the art of coming full circle, even when it seems pointless.

I love that a deep breath and honest words can set my focus strait.

I love that I will turn off this computer and leave the tears behind and get back to living.

Excuse my ramblings today. I just needed to rein it in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Summer Prayer

 

If fire is honor, then we’ll stand and let it burn.

Hot and loud as it calms into a deep burning midnight.

Popping and clapping its truths.

Glowing red and warm; a blanket of appreciation.

Shadows of flames dancing on our faces as we gather around and listen.

 

If water is pure,

let us strip off these pretenses and plunge in.

Washing away all of the expectations.

Easing the heavy weight from our bones, bathing us fresh and new.

 

If the earth is nakedness,

let us run.

Let us take to the fields and carry ourselves to the edges of sight.

Let us stomp our feet in the dust,
to the sound of drums.
Dancing unashamed.

Like the children who still live hidden away
under the layers piled on our hearts.

Let us uncover these wounds and expose them to the open air for healing.

 

If the stars are mystery,

let us follow their lead.

Surrendering our proud explanations and false humility.

Gazing upon the vastness and treasuring the wonder that we are so eager to dismiss.

 

If the moon is lonely,

let us be a friend.

Let us set ourselves aside and turn our faces toward each other.

Let us see what we don’t want to see.

Let us forgive and be forgiven.

 

If the sun is victory,

let it burn brilliant and forever.

Let us turn our faces upward in unison to soak up the radiance that is promised.

Let us lift our hands together in thanks.

Like warriors,
moments away from an earned homecoming.

Finishing strong and whole.

 

 

 

Miracle Grow

20140604-104828.jpg

” And she had a will like a root; it was sometimes hidden underground, but it was there, tough and fibrous and sustaining everything she did.”

My cheeks burn as I try to stand my ground.
Speaking my mind.
Having the audacity to challenge credentials.

Hold on tight… I can feel my grip slipping.
And I realize I’m done,
done and onto the next one.

Are friendships supposed to be this hard?
Is this the easy and light yoke that was promised?
What happened to fellowship and sharpening of swords?

It feels so heavy,
but everything about me is heavy, so maybe it’s just me.
Agreeing that yes, I need to die to myself.
So I try.
And try and try and try.
And it chips away at what is left.

And with it,
the belief in grace for all.
Pardon for all.
Faith for all.
Because, it’s taken me so long to figure this thing out,
and now it’s ruined.

Guilt regulating this frigid temperature.
Nothing can grow on this plot.
Hard like a rock.
You can blame yourself.

If I’m rebellious?

Bitter?

I’m disobedient because my back straitened taller when I challenged what you said?

Am I obnoxious because my voice is raised often, and with passion?

Am I lost because I can’t fake what I don’t believe?

The little root and sprout of the woman I’m supposed to be has been curled up and hidden beneath the dark soil.

The earth is fresh and damp and warming up under the beating sun.

Soon, there will be a new thing.

A bloom.

Rooted deeply and rooted onward by the ONE who created my lungs to fill with my own words.

I feel it coming back again,
the hints of something special.
That nudge that I was made for something special.
That you are special too.

Pound the shovel down and pierce what would have died,
with freedom.

I am exactly who I’m supposed to be.

“And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”
– 2 Corinthians 3:18

* the picture and quote I shared are from an Instagram account I follow
http://instagram.com/prettynpaleoatx *

Image

Every summer has its own story

I thought it would be fun to revisit an old post from last summer. Especially since it has a nostalgic vibe to it. Enjoy!

Mandimonologue

20130731-094023.jpg

The summer I turned sixteen seems like an exaggerated moment in time when I think of it. Summers were long and lazy when we were younger. Watching cartoons, random tv and playing in the back yard with my siblings while our parents were at work filled the daylight hours. Lots of fighting with each other and calling mom at work only to get in more trouble for having bothered her in that way. Day after day of boredom and drowsiness.

At night I pretended to be more mature than I was and I would sneak out from my bedroom window to hangout with friends or even sneak them IN to hang out with me. I’m pretty sure that was the summer I felt like I was painfully in love for the first time and spent my thought life day dreaming of ways to see him at night. The kids I…

View original post 512 more words

Image

Realology

 

 
The real me.

I don’t think you can handle the real me.I don’t think I can handle the real me, which is why I spend so much time and energy trying to dress, suppress and cover.

The real me keeps up with Kardashians and enjoys every ignorant drop of pop-culture, and  I know you do too…or they wouldn’t be rich. We all watch.  The real me has been known to set the DVR…don’t want to miss any rubbish.  The real me watches all the awards shows, red carpets and live coverage even though I pretend like I’m above it.

The real me sings “laa laa laa laa, wait till I get my money right” while I type this.  Because sometimes, the real me listens to some dirty, filthy rap and hip hop.

It’s poetry.

I love it.

Can’t help it.

I’m jealous of it.  Its art.

It is.

It’s real and raw and I can’t help but appreciate.

The real me has the mouth of a sailor. I try not to, but sometimes…you just gotta…I’m tired of pretending I don’t.

I have the sense of humor of 8 fraternity brothers.  Every damn lewd thing under the sun I think is hilarious and it’s probably extremely inappropriate.

The REAL me likes a good love scene in a movie. You won’t catch me blushing or turning away.  Bring it on, I’m not afraid.  My husband has no complaints.  He knows the real, real me and luckily he loves me anyway.

The real me thinks its funny.

SO funny!

The real me can take a joke and surely throw one your way.  The real me will likely make fun of you, it’s an unfortunate self survival technique.  Because making fun of myself is what has kept me alive.  It has saved me.  It’s what I know..so I also know how to apologize.  They go hand in hand.

The real me likes to get tipsy every now and then when my kids aren’t around.  Tie one on and have a silly good time.  Sing oldies at the top of my lungs and laugh at everything.  I like a margarita or a simple beer…which is a sin nowadays.  Everyone is a beer snob and expert.  Maybe I’m just insecure and lame because I feel like the fancy beer tastes terrible.  The real me won’t care because if she drinks enough (which is rare) she likes to smoke a cigar.  The really sweet and cheap ones from the gas station.  The real, deep down me wont feel gross, guilty or in trouble…because she has nothing to hide.  

 

The real me knows..that God already knows.  

 

He already knows the real me that sneaks leftovers from the fridge when everyone is asleep.  An extra scoop here, a bite there.  The real me that over eats to stuff down the urge to go ahead and just be the real me, and let it all hang out.  The real me that loses battles against pastries, bagels,calories and food journals.  Clean eating plans that fall short despite how hard I try or how firm my resolve.   So I try, but I want to have my cake and eat it too..and show no evidence of it.

Don’t we all?

The real me questions God and the bible and if this whole thing isn’t just a big scam.

The real me wonders if I’ve been brainwashed all along.

The real me knows I can’t say these things out loud because (gasp) what would everyone think?

Well, the real me doesn’t need your prayers.

God is always here for me, however that works.  The real me knows that God is real and loves, even the real and raw hidden me.

 

The real me needed your true friendship …you know the kind that you thought you had already given to me and then bailed on when you found out that I was TOO much?

The real me has few real friends.. you wouldn’t approve of.

We laugh at crazy stuff and talk about the dark things that crowd the soul with the practice of keeping them silent…but when they reach the light of day the power hold they had on me fall to the ground like a pile of rusty chains.

Hold on, there’s more.

The real me likes to be alone, but its hard to do things alone.

The real me wishes she could beg for help but she wont because shes prideful.  So,so, so prideful.

I’d rather die than ask you for help again.  Ever again.

The real me wishes I could say that to your face but I wont.  I know that deep down, the real me isn’t that polite.  The real me would shrug and keep walking because the real me doesn’t pretend like everythings fine. The real me is so damn tired of taking the fall.  So tired of taking the blame .  So tired of being responsible. So tired of being at fault.

But the real me cant say that out loud.  We must always keep up appearances.

 

The real me has secrets and regrets.

Darkness. Beyond what you could even imagine.

The real me has carried it a long time.

The real me is so sorry,  You wouldn’t believe how sorry! I could never express. It’s buried too deep.  But the real me is on her way to freedom.  Digging these old things up and letting them go.  So, let go and just let the real me hang on out there…good, bad and ugly, this is what it is.

We’ll see whose still standing here after.

We are all liars, thieves and pretenders.

What would be the harm if we just sat in our discomfort and exposed who really are and what we really feel?

So lets just get real.

Realology.

20140522-114847.jpg

One year of blogging and looking ahead

20140212-095633.jpg

It has officially been one year and I have the same heavy body I had last February when I started this blog.

I’m writing from the same couch. Same living room. Same house. Same warm dog lying next to me.

So much has remained the same but I know that when I stop and think, I’m at least a little older and whole lot wiser.

A lot can happen in a year.

If I’m being honest, I really thought that if I gave myself over to the honesty of writing and sacrificed myself on the alter of this blog, that somehow all of my excess weight and self doubt would magically melt away by the sheer power of humility.

I would NOT hold back and I would come out of this transformed and on my way to being a big deal. Spiritually, mentally, physically and creatively superior. Ready to impact the world with my success story.

Well, that didn’t happen.

What has happened is REAL life, and not the la-la land I was imagining where magical things unfold without any work.

One thing I’ve learned is that love hurts. Sometimes, love means turning the other way. Destructive and repetitive family cycles are agonizing to remove yourself from, but for wholistic health, it must be done!

When trying to soak up someone else’s pain only makes them sicker and you, sicker…the downward spiral deepens. Having to let go of someone you love because you can’t be their savior…walking away from their pain?
About the worst thing I’ve had to attempt and see through. Somewhere along the way I’ve believed that taking care of others is way more important than caring for myself. I’ve learned the hard way that this is just simply untrue. I have no idea how or what that looks like.
Still working it out.

Because of not knowing how to properly care for myself and my own needs, I’ve also learned that I can’t trust myself around food and REALLY can’t trust myself around a bible.

My spiritual life is connected to my tangible eating and breathing life, is connected to my creative life, is connected to my mental life is connected to my spiritual life…blah blah blah. I know that the more I struggle against my creator the worse I seem to struggle mentally, creatively and physically.

So why the struggle?

I know all the proper “theological” answers. I am a sinner who wants to be my own God…I want to captain this ship of mine on my own, and thus will suffer from these ill navigated waters until I surrender.

Boo.

That’s really not it.
I’m just desperate for an authentic faith. I reject being boxed into a “Christian-living-looks-like-this” box. As much as I try to not care and act aloof about the whole thing, at the end of the day I just want to press in and get close enough to Jesus to touch the hem of his garment. To push through the crowds and see him for REALS. Be near Him. Be healed. Without anyone telling me I’m doing it wrong, or interpreting it wrong, or questioning if my motives were biblical…or WRONG.

I’ve let my distaste for our audacious “Christian culture” and all the rights and wrongs create distance between me and the source of love and life.

It’s weeks like this past week that bring me back down onto my knees where faith and reality meet head on.

A beautiful friend of mine suddenly passed away from a violent athsma attack. She was my age. A mother of 4 young children and a wife to a husband whom she adored. Her death was shocking and heart breaking. A few days later, the news of another friend from high school, taking his own life.

No matter who you are or what you believe, when your heart is breaking you look for the goodness of God. You search to find light to chase out the darkness. To fill in the cracks of what’s been broken.

Perhaps that is why he allows us to endure hard things, so that we will put down our rubbish and shenanigans and get back to finding and staying near to the source because we certainly aren’t guaranteed tomorrow.

So, this year I will continue to do just that. Seek out He is who is the source and stay near to Him. I will continue to write and throw myself onto this blogging alter in that pursuit.

No expectations of crazy miracles or outcomes, just me, keeping it real.


*I was surprised by who was on the sidelines cheering me on at the start of this blogging journey and am equally surprised by who remains and is still here pushing me onward.

So, in honor of my one year blogging anniversary, THANK you so much for loving me despite what a maniac I am.

Image

A little moment in the sun

20131024-163024.jpg

I’m siting in my car right now, taking a few moments to let my daughter sleep. We have had a crazy busy day and she has been a polite little trooper who has earned herself a nap. (I will be kinda sad next year when she starts kindergarten and retires her post as my daily side-kick.)

Some days you just gotta do this.
Push the pause button on the day and breathe. Moving them out of the car into the house after they fall asleep will most certainly wake them up…and sometimes it’s more than worth it just to put it in park, roll the windows down and chillax.

So here I am. Chillaxin. (I actually typed that word out twice just now, how hip of me…)

Soaking in a lovely Nevada afternoon. The sun is shining, the air is crisp, I’m feeling so very “Octobery”.

Yet, despite my peaceful little moment here, I can’t help but have a heavy heart. I keep staring at my messy, sleeping little baby girl and my heart swells with love and a little fear. Its hard NOT to be afraid right now if you are a parent.

My mind keeps wandering to the candle light vigil I attended last night with my husband, children and friends in response to the school shooting that happened here on Monday. Honoring the life of a man who died this week in my hometown, protecting students at the school he taught at. It was (and is) surreal that it has happened here, but it comes as no surprise to any of us anymore. As if to say,” Well, I guess it was our turn?”

No matter how we try, we cannot escape suffering in this life. It just HAPPENS to each of us in different ways. But, for just this quick quiet moment, I feel like no matter why or what may come…I know that God is big enough to be trusted with it all. Even with MY babies.

So I can let it go…and tomorrow when I try to take it back into my own hands and be afraid, I will remind myself of this:

“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!”
-Isaiah 26:3 NLT

Image

Revisiting my steps

20130918-132021.jpg


“You’re blessed when you’re content with who you are – no more no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.”
– Matt. 5:5 (MSG)

I keep reading this over and over.

I feel like I want to brand it into my forehead where I can see it everyday.

These are living words.

This is the “message” translation of Matthew 5:5 which is part of the beatitudes that says,”blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”
I love “The Message” bible because I feel like its written in the everyday language that I use. It helps me understand what the heck the bible is talking about sometimes. I’m not a scholar, I just want to understand in lay men’s terms what is going on.

I think this scripture resonates so deeply with me because I feel like I am my own worst enemy. The war that I wage is against myself. I feel like a lunatic at times if I’m being honest. You probably wouldn’t trust me with your dog, let alone your children if you knew the levels of crazy I had going on in here. I get so sick of myself.
I’m ready to be free of the ways I hold myself back! I realize this isn’t a one time decision, but a DAILY one.

“As water reflects the face, someone’s life reflects the heart.”
-Proverbs 26:19 (NIV)

When I look around and see that my life reflects what’s in my heart, I am sobered by the truth of it.

Once again, I will make the choice to LET GO.
To unclutter my life, my home and my time to declutter the mess that lies waiting to grow in my heart and mind.

One day at a time, making the right choices even if I don’t feel like it. Managing what I already have and being thankful for it will bring contentment and hopefully peace. Surrendering it all to God who is big enough to handle it.

Image

Where were you?

20130911-134358.jpg

Being an adult is just becoming more and more aware of what darkness people are actually capable of.

Today I find myself thinking about where I was the morning of September 11, 2001. I was waking up to walk to my preschool teaching job at my church. Scared and wondering what else might happen. We hardly had any kids that day, most people stayed home. We watched the events unfold on a tv that we had out in the kitchen so the children couldn’t see or hear. It felt like the entire adult population was holding their breath.

I’ve been reading accounts from others about where they were when they heard/saw what had happened. It’s interesting how this one major event is branded into each of our minds and with poetic justice draws us all in close together again.

Remember all of the American flags??

They were everywhere.

Everyone prayed that day. No matter what religion or tradition, we were all gathered up together grieving, hearts bleeding for those who were suffering. Brimming with pride for those with unimaginable courage. Asking God, of all kinds of names, to comfort and bring peace.

It shouldn’t be any different today.

We will pray for peace.
We will pray for courage.
We will pray for unity.
We will pray for justice.

We will pray for strength to trust in God even when it seems hopeless.

We will pray to see LOVE swell up around all the ugliness, just like all of those american flags that we draped over ourselves like warm blankets all those years ago.

And then we will know that once again, we have seen Gods love at work in the hands of those who help. In the arms of those that carry. In the eyes of those who weep. In the hearts within us beating…and we will keep carrying on.


“Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord : He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him. For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Though a thousand fall at your side, though ten thousand are dying around you, these evils will not touch you. Just open your eyes, and see how the wicked are punished. If you make the Lord your refuge, if you make the Most High your shelter, no evil will conquer you; no plague will come near your home. For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go. They will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone. You will trample upon lions and cobras; you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet! The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who trust in my name. When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation.”
-Psalms 91:1-16 NLT

Image

Keep me where the light is

20130906-105817.jpg


“Until we have seen someone’s darkness we don’t really know who they are. Until we have forgiven someone’s darkness we don’t really know what love is…[until you confront and acknowledge your own darkness, you will never forgive].”

– Marianne Williamson

I hate having to face myself after a binge.

After making the choice to go out of bounds and indulge myself, I always have to look myself in the mirror afterward. It doesn’t feel good or rewarding in any way. Giving into the temptation always seems like it will bring relief but temptation is a liar!
It sucks.
The only thing yielding to it brings is shame.

Truthfully, I hate having to face a lot of things about myself…but the whole point of Realology is gaining the faith and courage to face the truth and tell it.

But, sometimes it just seems easier to keep things hidden in the darkness, even though the only things that grow and thrive in the dark are toxic.

Like black mold. Infiltrating the overlooked nooks and crannies of your house before finally showing itself. Revealing its destruction and rot. The only way to get rid of it is to gut it out.

Can’t paint over it. Can’t build walls around it…it would only spread through eventually.
Self deception is like that. Sharp and clever and we are skilled experts at it. But eventually…you can’t avoid the stink, and the walls have gotta come down.

The hardest part about trying to live in freedom, without relying on food (my drug) for comfort, is that I have to be constantly faced with my own ugliness, and choose to have a willingness to be honest about it. Choose to turn myself and my affairs over to a trustworthy God. It’s not like ill have it all figured out and “cured” one day. It’s a daily struggle…I will probably grapple with my entire life.

The beauty that emerges from this ugliness is that facing my own darkness gives me the ability to have empathy for others…which helps me to KNOW and FORGIVE as I learn to KNOW and FORGIVE myself. We are all dealing with the same issue…it just looks different for each of us on the outside. Understanding and love can grow out of this…that is a miracle.

What I’m learning is that it’s easier to look myself in the eye when I’m in the light.
Basking in it.
Soaking it all in and letting it reach every corner and crevice. Instead of fighting it and running from it, but instead, letting it dry up all those dark, soggy parts that beg to stay hidden.

One day at a time, praying, “just keep me where the light is…”


“For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. If you make the Lord your refuge, if you make the Most High your shelter, no evil will conquer you; no plague will come near your home. For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go. They will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone. You will trample upon lions and cobras; you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet! The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who trust in my name. When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation.”
(Psalms 91:3-6, 9-16 NLT)

Image

Previous Older Entries

>>New adventure<<

&andshelivedhappilyeverafter

ultimatemindsettoday

A great WordPress.com site

Lipstick and Laundry

Celebrating Imperfection One Pile at a Time

WRITE TO LIVE

A collection of words to spice your existence by KAYO LOGUN

Anthony Hymn

Thoughts, Feelings, and Rhythms.

Kelsey L. Munger

writer. storyteller.

STORYTELLING REVIVAL

ORAL STORYTELLING BROUGHT BACK TO LIFE!

Pew Theology

Faith | Life | Society

KURT★BRINDLEY

WRITER★EDITER★PRODUCER★CONSULTANT

Dana's Journey

Who you are today does not determine your tomorrow.

Operation Fat Removal

Lots of Kettlebell and a Whole Lot of Motivation

Laura's 180

Turning my life around, one day at a time.

Lifting My Spirits

A lifelong dream deferred no longer- transformation from fat chick to bodybuilder after age 50.

Elan Mudrow

The Ridges of Intertextuallity