Affirmation 6/19/17

Deep breath. Relax into the comfort of what you know, what you have. Let yourself enjoy those pieces of safety.

I’m glad you’re here.

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Affirmation 6/5/17

The world is wide. The universe is vast. There is room for you. There is plenty of space for you. Breathe deeply into that space. Find calm and comfort in the spaces you have.

I’m glad you’re here.

Adventure in Questioning

Eight weeks ago I walked into a local rec center and set up a room for ten 11-year-old girls. The girls were quiet and attentive. Seven weeks later, with a break in the middle because of Super Bowl traffic, they were noisy and distracted. And yet, by that seventh week I heard the girls not answering my questions at all, but asking me questions.

It intrigued me. It’s one thing to answer the questions posed to us. It’s easy to talk about ourselves and even easier to talk about things outside of ourselves; i.e. the media. It takes a certain amount of confidence and/or comfort in a situation to ask someone else questions about her. It’s really one of my greatest failings as a human. I’m quite awful at knowing how to engage a conversation with someone else, and I think, or maybe I’ve learned, that part of that comes from my own discomfort and lack of confidence with even my dearest friends. But to an 11-year-old girl it only takes about 5 weeks to ask “when did you get that?” as she points at a ring in my nose. An 11-year-old girl has not qualms with the socially inappropriate questions “How old are you?” They know which of the two leaders looks more like to be married and asks if she is. While I have a hard time asking people I know moderately well about their childhood or about their families. My knowledge of my friends’ families is mostly what I’ve surmised from their stories or from photos, because I have no idea how to engage in a conversation.

After six weeks in a room with 11-year-olds I don’t know that I taught them much. I do know that after six weeks they felt comfortable with us. Not because they told me. Certainly not because they listened to us. One of them hugged me when I had early, but more importantly they prodded me. So even if I taught them nothing, which I hope I taught them something, they taught me just how apparent my discomfort is with other people. I must get better at knowing how to ask people even the simplest things. It isn’t prying; it’s one of the most basic ways we learn about each other. Because assumptions are only so valuable before they become destructive.

Adventure in Shutting My Damn Mouth

Time is the enemy of comfort.

In recent months, proximally speaking, I have become a very solitary woman. Some days I don’t remotely hate it. I’ve always enjoyed my space, time in my head and imagination. But you can ask my mom and she’ll tell you that I used to talked to anyone and everyone. At the grocery, in line at Cedar Point, didn’t matter. For me now that is the audible, but unspoken, plea for kindred. The constant pursuit of Anne Shirley’s so-called bosom friend, a kindred spirit.

On the whole I’m closer than I’ve ever been, but something has this tendency to get in the way. Outside of the constantly changing lives of 20-somethings. It’s my damn mouth.

If there is one thing I’m not good at doing, it is controlling my refusal of bullshit. I won’t have it. Well, no. That’s not entirely true. I won’t accept it in the lives of others. I won’t let it affect people I love. I take it from people a lot. Often. Regularly. But every so often I snap. I let my passive-aggression spew from my mouth and fingers into the lives of people I care about.

As soon as I do, something awful sets in. Guilt, the shittiest of dance partners. I stew. I apologize and apologize, even in cases where maybe I shouldn’t. To a degree I think the amount of times I apologize a day is not an expression of my wrong-doing, but an apology for my existence. For which I apologize to myself, God and my parents. I’m here for a reason, for which there is no cause to apologize.

Comfort is the enemy of change.

Now as time pulls us apart or draws people together change swells and comfort becomes subtly more and more uncomfortable. Things that were exactly the strength you needed in brokenness are an overwhelming awkwardness. A fumbling attempt to remain the same when nothing is as it was.

Where once beauty came from the truth of brokenness something grumbly rests. Something stirs my confidence, and I retreat back into the person I grew so far from. But that’s my pride. That’s my fear of being someone I’m not proud of. Someone’s whose focus is a little more than lacking. At 24 I wonder when I’ll truly change. And as my life spins around me, as my friends grow closer together in new ways, as I grow further from home comfort shifts. Solitude becomes not something I thrive on nor something I fear. It becomes normalcy, which scares me the most.

Adventure in the end and the next step

I’m currently in my next project. I’ve challenged myself to 30 days of 30 honest letters. I’m writing a letter a day for 30 days. 30 letters to people I feel I must be honest with about all sorts of things.

With that here they are, the last ones. Enjoy.

981) If you can’t spell it, don’t use it until you can.
982) A soda between friends is as important as any other beverage.
983) Sit in the line as long as you must.
984) Do not love for your sake.
985) Do not comfort people through touch simply because you do not know what else to do.
986) Make sure the love you give to someone in pain has nothing to do with you.
987) Work ahead.
988) Never let people go without understanding how much you love them.
989) Emotions are important.
990) Do not use them to manipulate your circumstances.
991) If you come to a word you don’t know the meaning of, stop and look it up.
992) There is always an opportunity to be honest. Take it.
993) Make sacrifices. For no other reason than anyone but yourself.
994) Give.
995) It’s okay to come back.
996) Do not let your mouth do all of the talking.
997) Some of your most challenging teachers can become your dearest friends.
998) Love the brotherhood.
999) Fear God.
1000) Honor the king.
1001) LIVE

Adventure in Persistence

301) When you give yourself a task, ridiculous though it is or even off the cuff, follow through. i.e. “I’m so grateful I could bake you a pie” (bake that pie) “This is so dumb that I could write my own 1001 rules for my daughter. I can’t have her reading stupid internet in the future” (write the rules)
302) It is more rude to point out when someone has not thanked you than to not thank someone.
303) Make beards out of bubbles in the tub
304) Style your hair fun ways when it’s wet
305) Wear what you want, even…especially if it doesn’t match
306) Under water you are a mermaid.
307) A true favor doesn’t need to be repaid. Do it anyway.
308) You’re never too old for bedtime stories.
309) The way you love others may be the way you want to be loved, but rarely will you be loved that way.
310) Pop culture is a great cross reference, don’t make it your only knowledge.
311) Spend as much time as you can near the ocean
312) Love with no expectation of being loved in return.
313) People are mean.
314) Trust them anyway
315) You aren’t going to look like your friends.
316) So dress the way you’re most comfortable
317) Good friendships are not always easy to maintain. But good things require some effort.
318) Some friendships are not worth fighting for any longer. Know the difference.
319) Self-confidence is more attractive than being dressed perfectly.
320) Don’t let your self-confidence become a swollen ego
321) Everyone makes mistakes. Some times really big ones.
322) Some times the best way to keep your girl friends is to be someone who doesn’t spend every moment with boys.
323) People might not value you like they should, but you are more valuable than you can understand.
324) You are worth something, and it is a beautiful thing.
325) Don’t compromise your principles
326) If you have any doubts about a man, especially in college, you’re probably right.
327) You might have to suck up and kiss some ass some times.
328) Unfortunately it’s most often about who you know and not what. Don’t neglect what you know because of it.
329) It’s ok to speak your mind.
330) Know when to keep your mouth shut.
331) God made you beautiful
332) God created you for a purpose.
333) Girls are manipulative. Rise above that or know when to use it.
334) Your period is not an excuse to be a bitch.
335) People are going to make fun of you for who you are and things you can’t change.
336) Be confident in yourself. It will still be hard to hear, but it’s easier when you know who you are.
337) Shop at thrift stores. You’ll love what you find.
338) It’s just a car. It’s purpose is to get you from a to b.
339) Start a club with your friends.
340) Know what you believe.
341) Don’t get caught up in the stereotypes the world gives out and be careful of those who do.
342) Some times it’s ok to believe in nothing.
343) I will from time to time be wrong.
344) Some of the best things are found at your next door neighbors garage sale. Or a total stranger’s.
345) When things start to go wrong on a space ship the escape pod is not always the best place to hide. Those things can eject into black holes.
346) Run on the beach.
347) Walk without shoes in the mud.
348) Climb trees. 
349) Your appearance has nothing to do with your value or quality.
350) Share your clothes with your roommates

An adventure in finding my place

So I’ve been going to the 509 for a while now. I love it. I learn sooo much there. More than I ever have at any other place of worship. I went to the service bonanza tonight because I feel like I need to be giving back in some capacity. I have pride issues so I can’t let myself be in a position where I will be acknowledged. And while I’m sitting there trying so hard to let God show me where I belong I write this.

 

i do not belong here. even someone who doesn’t go here is more comfortable sitting in this room than i am. i do not belong. i am not comfortable. i don’t know the handshake. i don’t know the password. the whistle. i don’t know why i am here. i don’t belong here. i have pride issues. i can’t do things people know about. i can’t watch people taking and not relinquishing control, and not accepting help or letting other be known for helping because it means they aren’t the focus. it’s hard to watch a leader of the church needing to be congratulated/thanked/known. i don’t belong here. i don’t. it’s tiring. it’s tiring trying to belong. i can’t do it. i don’t belong. i’m not meant to be here. i need to be behind the scenes getting no blatant recognition, but it hurts when doing the same job as someone else who is. i need to be never seen, but too much credit is dealt out. i can’t. i don’t belong. i’m not meant to belong anywhere. i don’t belong. i’ve never learned or grown more than i have here, but i just can’t fit.