Affirmation 6/21/17

Friend, here’s the thing. You’re doing great. You are. Listen, it’s hard. Being a person is hard. It looks like a lot of people have it easier. Maybe they do. It doesn’t matter. Your life is what you have, and you’re doing beautifully with it. Keep putting in the work. You’re worth that work. You really are doing great.

I’m glad you’re here.

Affirmation 10/12/16

You are amazing. You are. You do so much. You believe in so much. You stand for so much. All the while you hold yourself up. You keep moving. You keep breathing. You keep working. You keep trying. You are amazing. How could you be anything else?

I’m glad you’re here.

Affirmation 9/8/16

Dear friend, you are incredible. Has anyone told you lately? They should have. You are incredible. You’re doing so many things, maybe a lot of them are going unnoticed. I bet they are. Still you work and you play and you create. It’s incredible. You are incredible.

I’m glad you’re here.

Adventure in the Bleak Start of Winter

Winter may have just started, and I know that for so many that means so many scary brain spaces. Having just spent the last 6 months in a brain space a pure chaos, I welcome the quiet. I also welcome the medication. Because here’s the good news.

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I went back to the new family doctor I had previously seen, who had come across as uninterested. This time. She was interested. Or at least her nurse was.  But let’s start with the neurologist. He was condescending. He was unhelpful. He basically told me that because I had not been fired, I had no real cause for concern. He did say he saw no signs of MS on my MRI, but otherwise he also thought I had no reasons to be concerned. Because you know how when you get fired from a job the first thing your family always does is rush you to the emergency room because it’s usually cancer? First sign of a debilitating disease is always loss of job. I’ve taken precautions at work to maintain my work. Notes across my desk. And that’s not to say what’s been going on hasn’t affected my work. It has. Ask any of my coworkers. They see it. They worry. Ultimately, he handed me a prescription for migraine medication he didn’t explain scheduled me an appointment with a neuropsychologist and shoved me out the door. I felt very unheard. Especially, since I know my headaches are tension related.

So when I went back to my family physician and the nurse looked me in the eye, with concern. I got a little teary. When she explained to me that migraines some times don’t mean headaches at all. That some times migraines illicit stroke-like symptoms that cause your whole body to go numb. That some times hitting your head hard enough, especially if it goes unchecked, Dr. Jacqueline Akey, can really mess up the chemistry in your head and affect your memory and your processing. And that some times people who are otherwise healthy and intelligent get pushed aside when things start to go wrong, because they seem to have nothing wrong with them.

Ultimately, she thinks I’m going to be fine. Probably. The medication I am on will take some time to build up in my brain to do its job, so we’ll see about that, but the rest of me should go back to normal. She said to wait it out. If it doesn’t get better, I’m on the right track with the neuropsychologist. It may be more  than the hit to the head, but it’s at least that.

Helpful Tip: Helmet.

Or

Don’t take dares (just kidding. That’s dumb)

Or

Don’t help friends move.

While, I wait on my brain to calm down, enjoy the winter with me. I know so many of you hate it, but enjoy the honesty of it. It’s naked, and it’s real. I think that scares us, because we live in a world where we want to hide who we are. Where we’re supposed to. Let winter show you how it’s done. And if that fails, let it teach you to a little to be kinder to your introverted friends. Because we get so exhausted in the summer with your parties and your porches and your cookouts. We don’t want to miss it all, but we have to reset. Let us have this time. And hey, it’s warm right now. So rub that mud in our faces for a while too.

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My best friend gets me

Adventure in Becoming Okay

I hesitate to say it publicly. I don’t want to somehow condemn myself, but I thought you might be interested to know. I’ve only said it to a few friends lately, but over the last month or so the damnedest thing has been happening. I dare say I’m becoming healthy. Mentally and emotionally well.

Almost two months ago now I started a new job. I’ve been working as a team leader at a local frogurt shop. The self-serve kind. It was just a series of opened doors. I went to church with my parents, and some old family friends were there. And we just asked “Do you have a job?” They own this yogurt place and Ty instantly said “Yes. Just apply.” By the end of service he came back up to me and said “Be there at 8 tomorrow. Your life is your interview.” 25 years. Longest interview ever, but totally worth it.

I work with mostly high school students. Everyone there is at least three years younger than I, but it doesn’t matter. I love them. Even the ones I want to punch. They’re funny. They’re so chill. No one is terribly dramatic. They’re just cool, and I love working with them.

My job is growing. Almost daily Ty sends me something new to work on. I get to use my pop culture knowledge on projects. And I’m doing some writing for our product descriptions. Is it a lot of money? No. It’s not. But my heart is calm. My sleep is returning. I worry about nothing.

I don’t spend a lot of time with people away from work, and I think that’s what I’ve been needing. I don’t feel compelled to entertain or appease anyone. I’m not trying to live up to anyone’s expectations. Sure there are people I miss, and I’ve made some exceptions, but mostly, I work and I watch TV and I sleep. It’s sort of perfect. All I have to focus on is God and my brain getting better. And my brain is getting better.

These crushing emotions I’ve been feeling for the last two or more years are not so crushing anymore. Sure they’ll wave in, but they don’t stay as long. I haven’t unnecessarily burst into tears in a month, and that’s sort of a big deal for me.

In about a month I’m looking to go to Chicago for a weekend to see some of the people I’ve been truly missing in my life. My heart has been pining for them. A whole weekend of seeing some of the funniest women I know. I really can’t wait. And seeing them in capacities I’ve never been able to see them before. In their homes. In their married lives. With their children. In their city. I’m excited, and I hope it works out. Because my heart could stand be surrounded by 10 hilarious women for 72 hours. (And some cool dudes if I can manage it) Sadly I find myself thinking, “But I want more of them. 10 isn’t enough. I want every funny woman I know in one room for 72 hours. Probably five with survive, but it’ll be hilarious while we last.” But I won’t get greedy. I’m grateful for what I’m getting.

Oh that I could see all of these women.

 

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

Adventures in Accepting Circumstance

At the end of January I finished up teaching Hogwarts at Huntington and promptly began a new position at the Herald-Press. Selling ad space in a dying medium. I feel important. I was monstrously excited about the opportunity since I’m not qualified by any stretch of the imagination. As it turns out though, I’m not a salesperson. I’m simply not.

In the middle of February I received an e-mail about my resume which was provided to this particular person via a friend. The friend works for the company, and I thought, “ah what’s the harm in doing these trial assignments? If nothing else I’ll make a little extra cash on the side.” I loved it. I fell in love with the opportunity to have my fingers frantically flying across the keyboard and my brain doing something other than trying to figure out how to convince people to buy things they don’t need. Synonyms. New sentence structures. It was delightful.

I was offered an interview. One day after work I drove down to Indy to interview and have dinner with the interviewer and my friend. I was offered a job. As it turns out though there was nowhere within the office for me to be working.  So what was going to be two weeks is already 3 weeks. And I’ve no indication of starting any time soon.

I press on with a job I don’t understand and am not any good at.

In the meantime I find myself with two lovely roommates. One with a complete lack of understanding about dishes or cleanliness outside of personal hygiene. The other as unkempt in her housekeeping as I am, but clearly some sort of Joey Potter. My wardrobe has grown two-fold. And somehow I’ve become one of those people who loves to clean and cook and bake. I use my Saturdays to scrub. 

The 509 feels more welcoming than it ever has, and I find myself challenged to be better than I’ve been. I struggle to be more than I want to be, fighting the enemy of my salvation doing my best to refuse his pressurings and temptations. The people around me, with no real deliberate or obvious intention, are encouraging me to strive to be as Christ-like as I can. God’s constant grace is covering my entire life. I see him in all of my friends and find myself more hopeful every day.

Maybe the job isn’t the best, but I don’t know what God’s intentions are for me. And maybe this is it. A new job may come along in the future, but for now I’m surrounded by people who offer me love and grace and encouragement. I have more desire to pursue Christ every day. I have a great place to live. Wonderful roommates. And friends whenever I want them.

Who could complain?