Change Your Life

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In theory, your life is in your hands to do with as you please.  I read a book recently where the author is talked about making the choice to step away from the life she had been living and seek peace.  What do I want to change in my life?

The biggest negative in my life right now is the stress that I feel like I’m living with and under.  I don’t know how to let go.  I am tense, I have frequent headaches, and I’m not sleeping as well as usual.  It is so difficult to get to a place of surrender.  I need to see and believe that I do not have to be perfect, I do not have to be everything to everyone around me.

One of the pitfalls of being a single mom is attempting to do everything on your own.  I don’t like to ask for help, but I am finding that when I reach out to others, they have so much to give.  It’s not just about having people do things for me, which has been necessary at times, but about living life with a community.  When I tell my friends the difficulties I’m having right now, I am not just asking for help, I’m sharing my life with them.

After going through a divorce, my world was ripped apart.  My husband had been my best friend, and the other people in my life were mostly shared friends and family.  After the divorce I lost about 75% of my support system.  My mother and brothers stuck with me, but because of the pain and betrayal, I wasn’t very open to relationships with anyone.

What I have learned and am still learning is that having friends is necessary to leading a satisfying and productive life.  When we sit down and talk, when I have the chance to bounce my feelings and ideas off of my friends, I not only hear myself more clearly, but get constructive feed back from them.  Without them, I would not be where I am now.

 

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The Call

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I like the idea of being called to something.  I listen to and watch a lot of preaching and teaching.  I feel called to do something like that, but I’m not sure what.  I hate not knowing.  I want to do good things, I want to share my faith, share my story, let people see what God has done for me.

That’s why I turned to blogging in the first place.  To be able to say what I need to with anonymity.  My story is very much like everyone else’s, full of up’s and down’s, pain and joy.  But if I tell it, and it helps anyone to see God, and him working, it is worth the time.  It is worth being open.

 

online dating

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“What the heck!”  I’m a single lady, I’ve been on my own for over five years now, getting close to six years.  I began to explore the option of online dating recently, and I am flabbergasted at my lack of success.  I’m a decent looking person, I have a great personality, I love to laugh.  It is so frustrating to have no prospects, no hope of a future partner in life.

So now I’ve given it up.  It’s been a few months since I started this blog post.  I had such a feeling of helplessness, and such a desire for someone to share my life with.  I don’t think it’s a bad thing to be looking for someone, but when that takes over your thoughts, when you can’t refocus on what needs to be done in your life, it’s time to change your course.

Dating, especially online dating can take over your whole day.  There is a constant pull to check the site, see who liked you, which person just checked out your profile.  Then there are the messages that start coming in.  It’s like a drug (from my limited understanding of what drug addiction is like).  You get a rush from seeing the smiling face of someone who is interested in you.  The first message from a new person is another high, making you giddy with excitement, the possibilities fly into your mind.

I have a very strong imagination, my parents really encouraged that when I was young.  Every new man who showed any interest in me was a potential life partner.  The fantasy began.  I could picture what kind of house we would need to fit the family we would make together, what area we would have to life in to accommodate both our families and jobs.  I would estimate our joint income, and envision future vacations.  Living in a fantasy world has it’s benefits, but is counterproductive.

Not a single one of those men lived up to my expectations.  I finally figured out, no one can live up to my expectations, so expectations have gone out the window.  I am learning to love my singleness for now.  I have heard it said many times that you can’t find fulfillment in another person.  I have been guilty of believing someone new in my life would ease my burdens, make my life more complete.

My brother tells me to live my life, and stop trying to make things happen.  It will happen when it’s right.  I have begun to realize the importance of handing my life over to God every day.  If I am to seek him, and serve him, I can’t really have my own agenda.  I have desires, and even tentative plans for my life, but ultimately, God will lead me, probably down a path I’ve never dreamed of.  How can he do that if I’m so caught up in what I want in my life?

Vacation

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The kids and I are leaving for vacation tomorrow. Finances being tight this year, and having so many kids, we are driving almost completely across the country. I’m really looking forward to it. By the end of it, I’m sure to be exhausted, but it will be so full of memories for them and me. My oldest will not be coming, he has to stay at home and work. It will be the first time without one of the kids. I knew it was coming, this growing up, becoming their own people. We as young parents get warned all the time by the seasoned that it goes fast, enjoy them while they’re young. We don’t believe, we can’t understand the reality of waking up one day with kids old enough to move out. He hasn’t offered to move out yet, and he hasn’t caused enough trouble for me to suggest it. I know that day is coming, so I’m holding my breath during this time of us all living still under one roof, because now I see. If I breathe, it will be gone.

Stop doing

The idea that we are all doing too much is not new, but it seems a hard one to learn and hang on to.  I take pride sometimes in how impossibly busy my life is, but it’s wrong to leave no breathing room.  I need to stop feeling so overwhelmed, stop saying yes to every obligation that comes my way, stop letting life sweep me along, and start making the choice to stop.

I’ve never been an organized person.  I grew up in a chaotic environment, with two intelligent, educated parents.  The posters and signs that insisted clutter is a sign of creativity and productivity, I internalized the idea that it’s ok to be a mess.  But the older I get, the less I can handle anything out of place.  I think I’m starting to embrace my neurosis.  OCD is actually in fashion now.

The Bugs Dance

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There is a spot just off my patio where the bugs dance.  There is so often a tiny swarm of them in this spot that it seems natural for them to be there, just another inconsequential part of the scenery.  But today I fully see them and the beauty of their dance.  The movement of the bugs seems beautiful to me with its fluidity.  They are often around this season, but winter will come again, and they will not be here.

This season of my life is busy.  It feels overwhelming some days.  But there is coming a season when I will no longer have young children needing me all the time.  We will run out of days that they need dropped off at school, there will no longer be friends’ birthday parties to take them to, and no more soccer practices to sit through.  Frequently, I look forward to that, but today my throat is tight at the idea of this season being gone.

 

Loving Myself

There are so many things that God says to me, through the bible or through teachers and preachers.  What I have been hearing lately is how much he loves me.

I struggle with love for myself.  I can fake confidence.  I actually have pride in who I am and what I have accomplished.  I truly love my children, and many others in my life.  But I cannot say with confidence that I love myself.  I’m not even sure how to do it.  I try to take care of myself, get enough sleep, eat healthy, spend time in prayer and meditation, exercise, yoga.  I thought that it was enough to treat myself well, but there seems to be something missing.  What does it really mean to love myself?

caught up

I don’t normally have trouble sleeping. There’s no struggle for me to keep my eyes closed even if the sun is out.  But, every once in a great while, I just don’t want to go to bed.  It’s not that I don’t want to sleep, I’m just enjoying what I’m doing too much.

I’m frequently in the middle of a good book.  Sometimes I pause before plugging my phone in for the night to check in on facebook, and two hours later realize I better get some sleep.  And tonight, I’m writing.

I don’t want writing to be something that I must do, another item to check off my list.  But it is a choice I must make, an actual effort to sit down and make words come together.  I suppose that’s like everything else in life.  If it is to be something of value, it will take time and energy.  Otherwise, what’s the point?

Daily Prompt: Passionate

When a topic or an event has great meaning to me, I can become quite passionate about it.  I lean toward the extreme, to think that something can only be one way, to think that my truth is the only truth.  It has been a long time since I have felt really passionate about anything.  I have spent a great amount of time learning to be open minded about others’ opinions and beliefs.  In the process, maybe I’ve lost some of my passion.  Passion is one of my favorite experiences, second only to peace.  How can I get that passion back but still be open to new ideas?

via Daily Prompt: Passionate

Reading; Fiction vs Nonfiction

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I haven’t been reading as much fiction as usual.  Maybe I’m burned out on it, or maybe I need the self help books more right now.  If you have not seen the study about how reading affects our brain, I recommend looking it up.  It’s fascinating research.

I read because some days that is the only way for me to have a sane moment.  My life is chaotic, I’m sure I’ve mentioned that before.  There is so much to do everyday, so many ways in which I have to be present in my life.  Getting into a work of fiction is my escape, a moment of peace, excitement, anticipation and joy.