Sunday, August 28, 2016

Seasons

To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven....
Ecclesiastes 3:1

In a few weeks we'll be going into a new season and one of my favorites at that. I love Spring because to me it represents renewal, the plants and trees growing and blooming once again after winters brutal cold.  I love Fall because the leaves changing just before they make the last journey to the ground as the trees prepare to rest is almost a reminder that, well for everything there is a season and remember these beautiful colors during those days when it may not be the most beautiful of days. Life is like that. We all have seasons, I daresay you are in one right now. Some seasons are like your favorite season of weather and some are like your least favorite (winter for me) and those seasons seem like they'll never end don't they. I've been thinking a lot lately about seasons and what season I am in now. I recently was fortunate enough to go to the Outer Banks in North Carolina. At a park I was walking by myself and as I was leaving this little boy about five or six and his little sister began running just ahead of their parents into the park. The little boy saw me, stopped and looked at me quite concerned and said, " You shouldn't be walking by yourself." I smiled and said, "No, I shouldn't, should I?" I thought about that and at first was like I totally just got in trouble by a kid and he was right I shouldn't walk in certain places by myself. I think he is onto something else. I am the worst at trying to walk this ride called life by myself. I'll be thee to help you out any time any day but to let others in to help me with my walk, the struggle is real. But that little boy reminded me one shouldn't walk this ride called life by yourself. We all have seasons, those we need to have someone help us carry these burdens, help us stay on the path and just know we're not alone. Than we have seasons we will do those things for someone else. I think I'm finally getting that, or I'm trying more than I ever have to get it and apply it to my life. I've always thought everyone in your life and even the strangers you pass are put in your path for a reason. As Tyler Perry put it some are leaves, some branches and some are roots but all serve a purpose. The season I'm in now I've been in to some degree for way to long. However, just like in a few weeks it will be a new season, Idon't know when it will happen but I'm about to enter a new season in my life. You know how a window will fog up sometimes and you know what is outside but you can't see the clear picture due to the foggy window. Sometimes life has felt like that to me and I've often forgot all I had to do was wipe away the fog and I could see clearly. And that is why we need to not walk alone because sometimes we forget, sometimes we just don't have the strength and sometimes we just need the company whether we know it or not. So whatever season you are in or about to enter into I hope you remember to not walk alone and you have some roots kind of people in your life to walk with you. I have my hoodies ready and waiting to wear in the fall and my camera ready as we get closer and closer to fall and I have my head held up  thankful for the people that have been placed in my life to help make sure I don't walk by myself as I'm about to enter a new season in my life.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Vines

If I kept a count of my random thoughts I wonder which number this one would be? Probably one I would get tired of saying before I finished the ridiculously astronomical number. Earlier I got thinking about thoughts and how amazing it is that what seemingly is nothing but a simple thought can help or hinder you. Where I live there is this vine, not a clue what it is called, but it is a pain. It is nearly impossible to get rid of and just when you think you have here it comes back again. It was at this point in my thinking I had the light bulb come on and well here I am writing what I saw when the light came on. This particular writing is going to focus on the thoughts that hinder, mostly anyway. I'm going to assume it's safe to say we all have our times where we battle thoughts that hinder us, that take us to a place that isn't good for us, and/or we have fears and doubts that we face. Perhaps you're like me and sometimes have battles with all three, most of the time they all three gang up on me and I feel outnumbered and overwhelmed in the fight. Those thoughts, fears and doubts all to often become like that vine. See that vine didn't really serve a purpose but to take up room and prevent anything else from growing in its place. Growing up on occasion I would see a spot where these vines had taken over and decide I was going to pull up the vine so maybe something else could grow there. At least once while doing this there would be some pieces of the vine that I could pull up and remove with ease and there was some I just wasn't strong enough to pull even though I put every ounce of strength I had in me at the time. Usually it started out the big pieces were really easy to get rid of and I thought oh this is going to be easy I'll get this taken care of and rid of in no time. I was wrong. Once I got the big pieces out of the way I had to try to get rid of the smaller pieces. Those were more difficult to get a grasp on, more difficult to get much pulled up besides what was on the surface. Some of the vines I just couldn't make any progress on without help. Did I mention the blisters I got from trying to get rid of these vines? I think thoughts, fears and doubts can be like those vines. Some can be easy to face and vanquish. Some you really got to fight to get a good grip on and use every ounce of strength to conquer. There are those doubts and fears you may have carried for years, maybe your whole life, I think those are like those little pieces of vines. It can be those pieces that you not only have to sit down and take your time at even being able to get a hold of but those are sometimes the ones you need help with getting rid of them and not just on the surface but destroying the roots from which the lies grow. Just like those vines would look like they were gone and I would think they had been overthrown sometimes they would come back as do the thoughts, fears and doubts of life. This can be discouraging, I daresay even overwhelming even. Don't let it be water to the lies of those thoughts, doubts and fears so that you think you'll never beat these things but instead hopefully you can see it as it doesn't have the hold on you that it once did and every bit you pull up, every time you face those fears and doubts and every time you conquer that thought you have pulled a bit more of the root and ultimately you will overcome this vine or battle. I recently had a really, really, I mean absolutely terrible day. It was one of those I'm still not sure if it was a panic attack, breakdown or both, I'm leaning towards both because well I'll just say I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy. Because I couldn't breathe among other things I ended up messaging someone to ask if they would pray for me. To be honest I felt stupid about it after I did so (I tend to do that any time I open up, not sure why). Anyway the other day they asked how I was I said okay (again who ever answers that question honestly) and I said I felt stupid for saying that and I shouldn't have bothered her and she said something along the lines of it's only bad not to ask or talk. I guess I'm slowly learning that but Lord have mercy it's difficult for me to do so. I leave you with this when you go to pull those vines of hindering thoughts, fears and doubts make sure you have a good pair of gloves and as much as those thoughts, fears and doubts may try to convince you not to it is okay to ask for help. And it doesn't matter how long it takes you to get the vines destroyed just because others may say you aren't making as much or quick of a progress as they did. Please always remember you aren't going to run the race at the same pace or with the same abilities as others and that is great because you have something that will help someone just like you'll meet others that will help you. I think that's what often makes this life bearable.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Sail Away

Well something is going to happen with this post just for the sole reason that I came up with the title before I even typed this first sentence. I have been thinking and trying to figure out how to type what I want to say and have been pondering on for a few days now. I'm still honestly not sure or to terribly confident I'll get it wrote the way I want to but I suppose it's time to quit procrastinating and just type. As with most of my posts they are courteous of a song and/or a book that in turn produces a list of thoughts mostly over thinking probably but still certain things just seem to have a way to bring things out and help thoughts and/or situations make just a smidgen more sense. And I'm sure somewhere in the past I've written something similar to this thought but maybe, albeit a slim maybe, I haven't. Shall we move on with the show.

Recently I was listening to a song and in part some of the lines were, 'Call me to the ocean but all I see are winds and waves...My ship is in the harbor but You're calling me much farther...' Am I the only one that seems to notice themes or patterns in things, for instance the current theme that seems to be popping up quite frequently for me is dealing with ships and water but I digress. These lines in particular stuck out to me and it got me thinking 1) Wow that's how I feel right now and 2) people are like a ship. I really have quit trying to figure out how my brain gets to these routes I just go along for the ride nowadays. So there is this quote and I'm not sure who said it but it goes like this: A ship in the harbor is safe, but that's not what ships are built for. I won't be able to write it all to tie it together but I promise at least in my head it is all tied together and makes sense and if it does make sense awesome. A ship is usually in harbor for a rest if you will but it's not built to live out its days in the harbor. Can you imagine? A ship is built and someone looks at it and thinks, ' That is to pretty of a ship to risk sailing it into the rough waters or to let anyone on it to put scuff marks on the wood or to have it carry cargo only for it to spill and damage this masterpiece.' and the person leaves the ship in harbor and doesn't allow anyone on it thus the ship doesn't get to serve its purpose and wastes away in the harbor. Here's why I keep saying people are like ships. We're not meant to stay in the harbor, or comfort zone, all of our lives. Sometimes we need to stay in harbor for a rest or to come back to harbor to restock our supplies be that our rest, energy, strength, faith, etc. My problem isn't getting to the harbor my problem is leaving it. Because you see I to often only see waves and winds when I look out into the ocean, or this life and I get rather intimidated and think who am I there's no way I can make it through that. I think I'll just stay in harbor for a little bit longer. The bad thing with that is 1) that storm may be way out, in fact that storm may not even cross my path if I ever left the harbor 2) just like a ship can endure the winds and waves I can endure more than I think I can. Funny how a crashing wave can look like a mighty mountain sometimes and my mind goes straight to, 'nope can't do it.' Another thing is the anchor, now the anchor is meant to help the ship not to hinder it but you got to be careful what you are using as an anchor. I'll be honest I think I use fear as my anchor more times than not and it has hindered in so many ways. See when fear is my anchor it keeps me in the harbor for way longer than I was ever supposed to stay there. It causes me to tuck tail and run at the slightest sign of a storm without even thinking how to avoid it or if I can even get through it with minimal damage. Storms aren't always bad not always fun either but I think the storms make the ship stronger just like the storms of life can make us stronger. We realize what looked like a storm that was going to destroy us might have knocked us down or caused us to stumble but we just made it part of the dance and are better for it. Some ships use sails here's how we can be like those sails. Say we're in the harbor and looking around at the other ships sails. Some of them have that brand new look, some made out of the best material, some may have intricate patterns or details on them and than we look up at our own sails. What is this there is some stains on my sail and is that, it can't be, oh no it's a small tear and let's not even talk about how faded the sails look. Comparing where we are in our walk with where others are only helps us see our faults and hinders us from seeing how far we have made it. We forget the strength and way we faced our fears to go through the storm that caused that small tear. Furthermore, we most likely don't know the whole story of where those other ships have been and how much longer they have been on these sails to get where they are. Judy Garland said, ' Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.' and I absolutely love that because when you are first rate version of yourself that just magnifies the amazing person that is you and what is awesome is that version of yourself could be the very thing that could help someone else get out of the harbor or through a storm. So I guess what I'm trying to say is don't let fear be your anchor to keep you in the harbor and don't think because your ship may be smaller or what some may call less majestic that it can't make a difference in carrying that cargo wherever it is supposed to go or that it won't make it through the storm. And it's okay to let others on your ship to help out. So go to the harbor and rest if you need to but don't forget you were made for so much more so pull the anchor up, raise up the sails and let's sail away because there are some amazing adventures to be had.


Here's the song that started this whole train of thoughts...


And here is another song that I've hit replay on a few times....

Sunday, July 17, 2016

I Wish I Had A Good Title For This

As I am writing this I am sitting in church, no there is no service going on at the moment, just me sitting here. I live an hour-ish (an hour or less if I break speed limits, a bit more if I drive right) from where I go to church so sometimes I just hang out at the church between services on Sunday. I'm weird I know God knows I've gotten all kinds of looks because of how far I drive to church and because I sit in an empty church between services. I don't get why. There is something peaceful about sitting in a church. I love sitting in the little church at Dollywood and going in the little churches through Cades Cove in Tennessee. It may just be a building but there is just something about it that calms me and gives me a bit of peace. And in those churches they just have the simple wooden pews, no cushions, no air conditioning but I never really notice. Don't get me wrong I am all about the cushioned pew or chair and A.C. but there is something so simple yet powerful getting to take a step back in time and sit in little country churches of old (or replicas as is the case at the church in Dollywood). Moving on...have you ever seen someone and you can just tell, even feel, that they are not okay, that they have something on their mind. I do that sometimes and other times i'm completely blind to it. I'm not sure which is worse cause when I see the person and/or feel that hurt I don't know what i'm supposed to do, if I should even do anything. I ask how they are but that question causes people to lie more than any other question around, I am convinced of that. And back to the hugging thing I saw someone and thought I should give them a hug...I didn't, couldn't make myself but at least someone did give them a hug. Maybe that was the answer and I ignored or fought with it to long and I missed the chance to help in a very small way. Maybe I think I have to have the right words and don't say anything because I just know I'll stumble over my words, repeat things and it just not make any sense but maybe i'm wrong. I don't always have to say anything and when I do does it matter if I stumble over my words or it takes me a bit longer to get a simple i'm here if you need to talk said. Sometimes I think I am a rather selfish person, more concerned about things I shouldn't be instead of just being...being present, being there for others, being there for myself. Because really in allof the times people have been there for me when I said I was okay but really wasn't I don't remember if they stumbled over their words I remember that they cared enough to say and/or show they were there for me by simply saying they were there if I ever needed to talk or just giving me a hug and the looks! I say the looks part mostly joking but I'm fairly certain I have gotten a look from those i'm closest to or been around. You know the look, the you want to try that again cause you and I both know that's a lie. Maybe that's why I don't do well with the whole eye contact while talking I ain't looking at you I can't see the looks you're given me. That and if you can't see my eyes you can't as easily see any hurt or anything else I try to hide. You know it's funny we seem to think we have to do such elaborate things to show people we care but oh how much a simple you doing okay, did you make it home safely, be careful, can prove just how much you mean to someone. I don't have a good quote or video to end this with so I'll just say I hope you are doing okay, have a good week and be safe whatever you do.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Current Title Missing

A big hello and how goes it to the two people that read these posts! Hopefully life is treating you kindly. I sometimes feel most of my life is spent turning in circles scratching my head while trying to figure out how I got to that spot and/or how I can get to another spot. But life is still treating me kindly, I have deemed 2016 the year to go to concerts which works out since I again haven't gotten to travel very far or have any decent getaways. This past week I was able to see Martina McBride which was a fantastic show and she had been on my singers to see in concert bucket list. I have to say though that my favorite part may have actually been before the show started. More repeat stories if we're friends on Facebook and you saw this status...but while sitting on a bench this older couple came up and the man asked if I was saving the seat for him and I said yeah and he said you're alright kid. Me and his wife talked for a bit too, apparently the west side of Michigan is prettier than the East side FYI. I absolutely love older people. One, they have fantastic stories and the wisdom they have is better than any self help book one could buy (no offense if you like those kinds of books). And not to mention they just make you want to hug them. That's a bit ironic since I am utterly backwards about hugs, people should probably be glad about that cause I have a feeling I would be a hugger if not so awkward, backwards, what have you. I realize how bad it is when people say i'm going to hug you. I feel I should apologize because any of those people I really am okay if they hug me I don't mean to be so whatever it is that I am. And truth be told there are a couple people that give those good hugs where it just makes you feel better, hugs like my grandma gave, it's rare but those people I don't mind at all when they just give me a hug. I have no idea why I went on so long about that, didn't mean to! Anyway, I do cherish those times I get to hear any bit of someone's story or a nugget of wisdom they share. But my next concert will be getting to see Wynonna and I wasn't even trying but somehow I got a front row seat, super excited I am. So it's no secret I love to read I don't love how I really haven't been able to read like I love to. Not due to any books to read but I have trouble staying focused and it seems sleep decides that's a perfect time to show up, sleep truly hates me. Sometimes I just don't enjoy reading like I normally do, which is quite sad but luckily a book does come around to help end that. I don't know you ever feel like you're on a roller coaster ride of emotions? My ride stops at the worst places and sometimes takes forever to get moving again. Back to the books, I try to stay away from certain story lines, they just hit to close, almost open doors I try to keep closed. But I bought one of those books the other day. I just started reading it tonight, still not sure I will like it or be able to finish it. I'm having trouble getting into the story but not sure if it's just due to me not liking that kind of story anymore or cause I know part of the storyline and I just don't want to get there. Speaking of opening doors I try to keep closed I realize how I probably need to do that and how much that scares me when a few weeks ago something happened and I suddenly felt like I was in a time machine back to events I don't like to think or talk about. I have also decided I am fat due to all of the stuff I keep bottled up! That and I found every fat gene, not to mention every curly haired gene, in my blood line. I swear there was something about that dream I had about going through those briars, weeds, etc to get where I was supposed to go for whatever reason, or not i don't know. So my  absolute favorite show is Call the Midwife and I think I will end this with a quote from an episode I just watched (i'm still playing catch up and am just starting season four, tear jerker warning if you haven't seen season three finale)...

Invisible wounds are the hardest to heal, for their closure depends on the love of others, on patience, understanding and the tender gift of time. - Jenny (Call The Midwife)


Tuesday, July 5, 2016

I Just Wanted to Write...so I did :)

As the title suggests there really is no rhyme or reason for this post (is there ever though?!) other then the fact that I just wanted to write. Funny isn't it how just typing a few letters together to combine a word then another until you have some random sentence can help calm your thoughts or just get rid of a few thoughts floating around. This past weekend found me getting to drive around and get to take a few pictures, something else that really calms me and is just something that I truly enjoy getting to do. I'm not sure how weird this is or if I'm the only one to do it but quite often when I'm driving around in places I've never been I tend to imagine what it would be like to live there. Sometimes I even see a house I like and wonder what it would be like to live there and the important things like wonder where they go to the store at (that one always cracks me up but I'm all about food so there you go and some of those places are way out in the country) and wonder where you could go to church at. I'm just trying to live up to the times I get called weird! And I love finding these abandoned buildings, the old churches and schoolhouses being my favorite find. Although it is a bit sad to see them abandoned my imagination has a field day when I stumble across them. I imagine what they looked like in their prime and make up stories and envision people being there. Sometimes I feel like I'm constantly trying to figure out where I belong and not only just where I want to live, although I wish I could hurry up and figure that one out too. I'm restless, which usually means I'm about to have a breakdown or a breakthrough or both (can you have both? I think so). It reminds me of, this dream I had a couple or so weeks ago. Granted I don't know if it meant anything or was just another one of my very vivid dreams, I'll go with just a dream. Dreams are weird aren't they? I tend to have themes that show up quite often in my dreams, mainly water and bridges but I digress. Oh the dream that I had...so it started with me and another person in a paintball competition with two other people in this quite difficult maze. At one point the only way I could keep going and make it through was to have the person on my team help me so I said as much to the person as we talked through the plan to get out of it. I don't know if we ever made it or not but skip to another part of the dream and I'm climbing on this tall hill, I suppose you could say it was a mountain, but either way I was at the top or close to the top and looking down in the valley. Again there was someone else there and again I couldn't really see their face but both times I was comfortable around the person and knew I could trust them and they were there to help me. So at the hill there was a place where the person said I needed to go through to get to wherever I needed to be. The only thing was this place was grown up with briars, tall thick weeds and such. The person said I could just stomp them down and make a path. I looked at the overgrown mess and back at the person and back at the weeds. I'm scared I want to go through but all I can think is I can't, that's going to hurt, I'm going to trip and fall. Somethings don't change even in my dreams. And I looked at the person and said, "I can't." yet I so very much wanted to..again somethings I am the same even in my dreams. Anyway I don't know if I did go through or not because I woke up. I'm sure it was a dream but if I'm honest I do feel like I'm at that stage presently. Do I walk through the weeds and briars and risk the getting hurt and tripping or am I going to stand there looking at it forever stuck in my uncomfortable comfort zone? Can I tell you what I hope I do? I hope that I walk through and try to make a path no matter how many times I get cut by the briars or how many times I trip and fall because let's be honest I trip on air so I may as well trip while trying to get somewhere that may be where I'm supposed to be.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Now what?

Can't never could do anything....you know my brain goes about 100mph with thoughts, like constantly, and y'all think I'm quiet take a ride in my head it's loud in there but in it's travels thus far this morning those first few words came to mind. Actually I was thinking about something and thought I can't do that then I thought I say I can't a lot and then I thought can't never could do anything...Keeping up so far? I'm not so there's no telling where else this may go. Funny how sometimes I'll be going through something, not having told anyone or just be thinking something and it seems I see something or someone says something that goes right along with what I'm thinking or going through. Today keeping with the can't theme for a bit longer I saw a painting/drawing of a bear holding a pencil marking something out. On the wall was written 'what if I can't' but the bear was marking out the t so it now said what if I can and I loved the quote the the artist wrote with it (by the way it was on the Facebook page for My Painted Bear, you should check out her page or website) but she had written: strength doesn't come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn't. You are so much stronger than you think.... You also ever notice how the fears, lies and such get so very much louder and more intimidating the closer you get to where you are supposed to be even if that getting closer is just taking one step forward. Like you manage one step forward thinking oh that wasn't that bad I can do this and BAM!! out of no where here comes an army of lies and fears and junk that makes you want to tuck tail and run - figuratively cause I don't run in real life, thirty two years and some days I still can't quite get the walking thing. but what a shame one can't literally lose weight from the figurative running from things. So here's where I find myself, I feel all of my life has been nothing but being stuck on a carousal  of going in circles of the same fears, lies, etc. then the past year or so has been me trying so very much and failing oh so badly at trying to move forward and I have made a few steps forward but I've been figuratively running back more times then I can count but each time I feel like I'll start to run back and after a few steps I have a wait a minute what am I doing moment and stop and have a stare down with the walls and stuff keeping me from going forward. Some days I win and get that step forward, some days the fears, lies, etc. wins and either runs me back a few steps or at least stops me from going anywhere. In a way it gives me strength and hope because it has to mean that place where I'm trying my absolute best to get to must have an amazing view and something big is going to happen when I get there or it wouldn't be such a fight, would it?

So apparently quiet people can make people nervous, who knew? I'm just content in my little corner listening but I guess sometimes it can seem like I'm not listening or what you're saying isn't getting through to me. As I briefly wrote on a FB post I promise I am listening and am making notes to what you are saying. Now sometimes it's a struggle to listen because you wouldn't believe the battle that is going on in my head but still most of what you say is getting through and though it may take me a while to apply any advice given it is there and I'm fighting with everything in me to take the advice to heart and apply it. I'm not sure who said it but I read once that quiet people have the loudest minds. I'm not sure how true it is but I tell you some days I do wish I could find that mute button. But either way I don't mean to be rude in anyway if I ever come across that way.

I titled this 'Now, what?' and if I had to answer that I think today I choose to face these fears and lies and such even if it is with trembling knees even if it means today I get that step forward but tomorrow I get knocked down because I will get back up and face them again because though I may be quiet I've a feeling this quiet girl has an amazing journey if I just keep moving forward.

You must become unshakable in the belief that you that you are worthy of a big life ~ K Lohr

 He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
Psalm 91:4