Monday, February 23, 2015

10 Things to Say When Your Friend's Not Getting Pregnant

I started this post a LONG time ago and honestly lost momentum.  Honestly.

After initially posting about our struggle to conceive, I suffered from what Brene Brown would call, "A Vulnerability Hangover."

I had bled all over the internet, and I wanted to run away limping.

But I also found that talking about "the crazy" really helped to settle "the crazy."

And this post in my drafts folder kept hanging over my head.

And I have written and erased and written and erased.  And pretty much erased 3/4 of the intro. Which I might add, included calling myself "The Mayor of Crazytown" and requesting cupcakes at my intervention. ;)

 But the one sentence remains...

Maybe this post can be a tiny plank in a very long bridge that connects people who are hurting to people who don't know what to say.

So. Here we are. Lord help us all





1. Use the word family.  People often refer to having a baby as "starting a family."  And they often ask when someone is going to "start a family."  This can kind of stink for people who don't have kids.  We don't have kids, but we have a family, and I LOVE my little family.  I'm so proud of us, and I'm so glad they're mine.  Talk to your friend about her FAMILY.  Say nice things.  Ask questions.  That one seemingly small act that can really be a catalyst for healing.


2.  "I accept your weirdness."  Your friend totally has the unfulfilled need to nurture something right now. And it aches.  Yo. It aches.  So...that need probably gets *somewhat* met in seemingly odd places.  Like right now...I am "overwintering" plants.  Read.  I am stupidly optimistic. I brought some plants in before the first frost...you know.  Just hoping for the best.  Things did not go well with the dahlia's.

 I was chatting with Tim the other day, and he looked at my second plant and said,

"Yea.  Your geraniums are gonna be fine."

And I'll be darned if that wasn't like, the most loving thing a person could say.

I DO NOT HAVE BABIES YOU GUYS I HAVE GERANIUMS!!!

My favorite thing in the world is when people ask about my dogs.  I was on the phone with one of my friends a few weeks ago, and over the phone, I could hear her husband ask about my dogs. Bless him.

The other day, one of my friends left a Facebook comment and called my dog "beautiful."

Oh my word.  The most loving think you can do for a childless woman is to call her dog beautiful.  I am being dead serious.

People who cannot have babies often become crazy dog people.  Can we all just get over it?

About 18 months ago, I got strangely attached to a stinkbug that had taken up residence in between our plastic and fabric shower curtains.  (((Happy New Year, Lyle!)))

Do you guys remember the article about the tiger who lost her cubs and became depressed so the zoo gave her piglets dressed in tiger vests to care for?  DO YOU REMEMBER?  (Upon further research, I don't think this is the entire truth, but just stick with me, guys).

I'm sure her little tiger friends were in the background like, "Oh MY WORD, You guys! Harriet is nursing TINY PIGS WEARING VESTS!!!"

And everyone else was like, "Hey.  Be cool.  She's in a weird place right now.  Leave her be."

That's right, people.  Leave her be.

3.  Any decision you make is going to be the right one.  Crazy Baby Stuff takes a lot of money, time and EMOTIONAL ENERGY  (fertility treatments, home remedies, etc.).  It's easy to get "stuck."  Sometimes, we just need someone to encourage us to make a decision AND reassure us that ANY decision is going to be the right one.  Even if you're not sure about this.  Please just SAY IT. ;)

Sometimes, the decision not to act is...in itself...a decision.

Last weekend, I had a sweet friend tell me to "Put my big girl panties on and deal with it."  She used expletives and everything!  It kind of frightened me (haha)...but it helped.

4. You are not alone.  Holiest of all holy cows.   Um...loneliest road ever?  For sure.  I tried giving examples, but all the stories made me sound like a bitter, old, childless hag.

4 1/2.  I prayed for you when...  Over the past few weeks, I had several friends say to me, "I was praying for you in the car the other day..."  or... "I couldn't sleep the other night, and I was praying for you."  This is a habit I'm trying to adopt more in my own life.  How many of us have said, "Oh, I'll pray for you."  Only to later forget?  GUILTY!  SORRY!  I'm trying to be more intentional in my relationships as they pertain to my prayer life.

You get the idea.  I think this is applicable in all situations.  Not just infertility.

5.  My kids love you/ thanks for loving my kids.  Sometimes, I feel totally inept around young moms and their babies.  My friends are all like...up at 6am on a Saturday busy keeping children alive, and I'm like...uh...I brushed my teeth and watched Netflix...?

It feels good to hear, "Hey. Childless friend...I would trust you not to drop my infant.  Thanks and good job."  ;)

6.  You are not a horrible person.  Uh...if you have a child under the age of 3, I probably have a voodoo doll of you in my closet somewhere.  I'm totally kidding.   It's a BABY EXPLOSION out there, folks.  My closet is not that big.

All joking aside, one of the hardest parts of this journey is the fact that it gives you somewhat uncontrollable, negative feelings about your mom-friends.   When they have babies, you are simultaneously filled with LOVE! SO MUCH LOVE!  And then you are blindsided with...

GUILT, JEALOUSLY AND RAGE!!!!

THEN MORE GUILT!!!

THEN DID I MENTION THE LOVE???

Needless to say, it's a very confusing, exhausting time.

I think we walk around feeling 10% heartbroken, 5% jealous and 85% guilty for all of the above.

It's that 5% that will get you down every time, am I right?

We need some grace.  Actually, we need lots of grace.  I have my fair share of friends I need to call back.

7.  You are made in his image and you are perfect.

Your friend feels like a broken, old, busted up mess.

When she stands before The Father, He doesn't see her has broken.  He sees her as whole and highly favored.

Tell her that.  Text her that.  Write it on her bathroom mirror.  Slip a note in her car.

Whole & Highly Favored.  Does a more comforting thought exist?

8. Someday, this won't matter.   Infertility is a hole that is just really hard to see out of.

     I am very much looking forward to my late 30's/early 40's.  Ha.  By then, I know I'll have more peace about whatever has happened.  We'll either have kids...or we won't. And if we don't, I am very much looking forward to being the wealthiest, most well-rested person in my entire circle of friends. ;)

But...I am so glad my marriage is going to survive this.  I am so glad my friendships can thrive through this.  The more the merrier, am I right?  ALL ARE WELCOME TO TAKE RESIDENCE IN CRAZY TOWN! Moms and non-moms alike!

(((And also, when I say "someday this won't matter," I mean...you know... heaven and stuff))).

Aren't you glad the this is not the end of the story?  The story ends with The Kingdom of Heaven.  Beauty. Redemption & Grace.

Forever & Ever Amen.


9. God wants to make you whole.  Your faith will make you well.  I recently heard a sermon about how Jesus didn't just want to heal people physically, He wanted to heal them spiritually at the same time.  I really loved that.  He wants us to live full, whole, spiritually healthy lives. He's on your team.

10. Your road is hard and I'm proud of you.  After my November Meltdown of 2014, I had two friends check up on me the following week (if someone is weeping in your car, it's probably a good idea to follow up. ;) )  They both told me they were proud of me.  No statement has ever made me feel more safe in a friendship.

Don't tell your friend, "Life without kids is easy."  Your friend is struggling to have kids, and THAT IS HARD!  No amount of 11am Saturday wake up calls is going to fix that.

It's true, on Saturdays, she gets to sleep in, but she also desperately wishes she had a reason to get up.

Love*

*and a giant fist bump to those of you who are struggling.  You are stronger and more courageous than you realize.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Unicorns Make Me Nervous: A post about God & anxiety

Hi. I have issues with anxiety.  I feel like it's just time to call it what it is, you know?

Let's make a list, shall we?

HOUSE FIRES!
BEAR ATTACKS!
KIDNAPPINGS!
DOGNAPPINGS!
SIDS!
BABIES IN HOT CARS!
STRANGER DANGER!
(sidenote: I worry a lot about our unborn kids. You know, the ones we "might not be able to have" / can't afford to adopt) ;)
MY HUSBAND FALLING OFF LADDERS!
MY HUSBAND FALLING OFF ROOVES!
MY HUSBAND FALLING OFF SCAFFOLDING!
MY HUSBAND NOT EATING ENOUGH FRESH PRODUCE!

Oh my word. What else?

That's like, not even 1/4 of the list.

I worry that I am not accomplishing enough at my job.  I constantly second guess my decisions.

     You know when, like...a teenager gets in a car accident because they are driving too fast, and people sigh and say, "People never think it's going to happen to THEM."

Are you kidding me?  People like this exist?

Whenever I am given an anxiety-worthy scenario, I ALWAYS think it's going to happen to ME!

     I also feel like it becomes a problem when something GOOD happens, and I somehow find a way to twist it with worry.

     I feel like you could give me a unicorn that poops 100 dollar bills and somehow, I would find a way to make that situation scary.

     Quick.  Before we move on.  I need you to picture your unicorn.  Mine's white with a turquoise and hot pink horn.  By the way, if your unicorn is anything other than white or pastel, then we need to have a serious conversation.

     And by pooping, I don't mean gross horse poop.  I mean, you walk out to visit the unicorn every morning, and there's just crisp bills lying all over the floor like hay.

You know what I mean?

Wait.

Do unicorns eat hay?
What do unicorns eat?
I'm thinking donuts with sprinkles?
I don't even know what my UNICORN WILL EAT!?!?

You can see how we have a problem, here.

And I am slowly starting to realize that it's not so much a problem with anxiety as it is a problem with sin.

Kablamm-o!


I feel like maybe if I knew God better, I wouldn't be quite so freaked out.


You know, like I am  99% of the time.

I look at people that I know who are deeply rooted in Christ and I feel like...maybe they aren't rattled by the same stuff that rattles me...?  #bearattacks

I have been...like... FACE DOWN in the book of Psalms since November.  Psalm 29 is just ALL about God's power and how He can like, shake mountains...and how His voice can strip the forests bare.

And it kind of blew me away.  I had never read that about God until now.

I am also finding a direct correlation between my tendency to intentionally look for and express gratitude and my anxiety level.  < Lots of words in that sentence (!)

The more grateful I am, the less I freak out.

Here. I made you a blurry line graph.  You're welcome.




See what I mean? Gratitude is a nice distraction.  :)  It keeps me centered.  It helps me focus.

Oooommmmm.... That is the sound of me meditating.

I used to be really diligent about praying with the acronym ACTS (or CATS)... I need to get into this habit again.

Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication

But I often struggled with the adoration part.  It felt cheesy and lame.

Why does God need ME to tell HIM how awesome He is?  Does He just need an ego boost?

But  I do not think the "hallowed be your name" part is for his sake.  I think it is for mine.

God does not need the reminder.  I do.

     Sometimes, I picture myself walking into a coffee shop with all my STUFF.  Work stuff.  Money stuff. Home stuff.  Bear Attack Stuff. And God is there in the booth in front of me, and I just shove it all under His feet.  Out of my line of vision.   I stand up, winded because the bear put up a fight, but I look at God and God looks at me, and He says... "This is all mine, now.  The days is yours."

The day is mine... to do whatever I want with and not worry about a thing.

It's true, you know.




Love & the day is yours,


Saturday, January 3, 2015

Whole & Highly Favored: A Post about not getting pregnant


     I do not know how to begin this post, but my macbook keys have been pumping their little fists and chanting "Write! Write! Write" for a long time, and I told God that if I made it to 2015 without a baby, I would start writing about it (a little).  With Tim’s consent, of course.

AND HERE WE ARE, GUYS!  

And I have prayed and prayed and prayed about this.  Should I write about this?  What are my motives?  Do I want pity?  Do I want attention?

And God was kind of like, 

"Holly.  Get humble.  Stop being a weirdo.  
Just start writing about this and stop making it about you."

Duly Noted.

I DON'T KNOW, GUYS! I JUST DO WHAT I'M TOLD! 

     A year ago, I thought I was pregnant.  I was just shy of one year off birth control.  We had lived everywhere from "Actively Trying" to "Not Trying/Not preventing" in terms of conception, so I shouldn't have been excited.

But my period was later than Mariah Carey at an NBC Christmas Rehearsal (I've heard things, guys).

And I thought that was going to be our story.  All the clichés .  You know, you really aren't supposed to "worry" until after you've been trying for a year, and we were one month shy of that.

"Because, guys.  God's so funny like that, and His timing is perfect..."

And blah. blah. blah.

And Tim was getting excited, too.  I did the whole song and dance. I took 100 pregnancy tests and called the doctor.

But I wasn't pregnant. Throw all the things...cry all the tears. You know the drill.

And I spent the last week of 2013 with my head in my hands and Ellie Goulding's 
"Deadin the Water" on repeat.

And I haven't gotten pregnant since.

     Tim and I often joke that he is very OLD TESTAMENT.  He is the The King of Hard Truths.  He's all HAND ME MY SWORD!  I'm not kidding.  He asked for a legit sword for Christmas.  STAY OFF OUR LAWN, YOU RASCALS!

And I am like allll about The New Testament.  Give me the sweet, soft stories of Jesus.  No plagues.  No beheadings.  I'll take my quail and manna to go, thanks.

On the same side of that, I am very much "Your Kingdom come."  Right now, I am taking the wreckage and trying desperately to bend it into an arrow that will point us closer to Jesus.

I’m also in the “eat all the sugary cereal and weep into the bowl” phase of our baby-making journey.  I'm kidding. Kind of.

If the bowl is mostly 2% milk, but also partially filled with human tears...does that lower the fat content? I'm asking for a friend.

While Tim is very much, "Your will be done." He is drawing a map to get us out of here...as in, "Unless The Lord wills it, we'll never have kids."

You can see how we would have problems there, huh? ;)

And this whole busted up mess is really just about two broken people trying to point each other home.  MARRIAGE, am I right?

Sometime in Mid-November of this year, I kind of cracked.  Ok. I really cracked. Or I don't know...I like, melted or something.

Do Americans have a word for "Lost all hope and wept in all of my friends' cars?"

Cause that's what I did.

At one point, I sent a message to one of my friends that said, “I’M SORRY I WAS LATE PICKING YOU UP... I WAS WEEPING INTO MY CLOSET!”

     The past year has been incredibly lonely, but I’ve honestly never felt more supported or loved by my sweet, beautiful friends than I did when I went absolutely bananas last fall.

And I think the overall message has been, "HELP IS ON THE WAY."

REDEMPTION

I wrote several of the friends I've met online through The InfluenceNetwork.

"I AM PRETTY SURE THE SHIP IS SINKING AND I JUST NEED HELP!"

     And they came running. They juggled midnight feedings, homeschool schedules, and a hundred other "mom tasks" and built for me a safe and sturdy life raft.  

Lord knows I couldn't do it on my own.

My bestie met me in Kroger parking lot on the way to pick up her baby when I just needed a breather.  

Three of my best pals from college listened intently while I sobbed my way through our 10 year college reunion (but I really did have an amazing time, my friends).  

Sometimes, I think we are the blindfolded children holding the pin and the tail while God is the poster with the donkey.

And he's all "A LITTLE TO THE LEFT!"

And we're all "YOUR LEFT OR MY LEFT?"

Honestly, it has been hard for me to think about "Making Things Happen," and 
"Goal Setting" in the New Year.

     I feel like the approach for 2013 was very GOD GIVES US THE DESIRES OF OUR HEARTS.  For that reason, there's a onesie from The Baby Gap with the words "I Love Mommy" embroidered on the front shoved somewhere in the bottom of one of my dresser drawers.

And there were parts of 2014 where I basically said, “Uh...God? Don’t bother me and I won’t bother you, ok?”

Now...HEAR ME OUT, people...I have sought lots of wise counsel on this one and it’s getting BETTER!

I have a Bible reading plan I love and an ever-growing prayer life.

AWAY WITH YOUR HOLY WATER...THERE IS NO CAUSE FOR ALARM. ;)

     For a while, Tim and I had the tradition of writing down the things we wanted in the coming year and shoving them in the toe of our stockings as a way to enjoy and reflect the following year.

It has not proven to be as meaningful or fun as I imagined it would be when we started.

I don't wanna do it this year.  Cause I can't bear to put one more neon colored post-it note with the words "a baby or pregnancy" in the trash.

The other day, I asked Tim, "What are you looking forward to the most in 2015?"

Because I am "the girl" in our relationship and it's my job to ask the girly questions.

And Tim said, "I'm not going to answer because I don't even know what's going to happen."

And I was like, "Boooyyyy, I hear you. I hope we at least make it to the ocean this summer."

     I think I could be in exactly the same spot next year and still be happy.  My tryglicerides and overall cholesterol have dropped. The living room is now this really pretty color of light green that I kind of can't stop looking at.  The coffee's on.  My sister keeps making these beautiful, blonde haired babies.  

And of course, there is beauty in not knowing, am I right? Cliché after cliché...maybe if we just keep our expectations low, we won't be disappointed, yea?

That's like...the opposite of a TED talk.  I should write a book about not caring about anything in 2015. Ha.

I saw this on Tumblr the other day and just had to re-post it.  So sad/funny.

Ok. I feel like this was meant to be kind of light and funny, and it's taking a turn for the worst.  Ha.

WHERE DOES THAT LEAVE US!?!?!

I kind of wouldn’t trade this road for anything. Is that insane? INSANITY? YES! 
And also proof that God exists.

Well, this is the part where I get snarky. Are you excited? Are you surprised?

     A while ago, I read a post where someone briefly mentioned redemption, and it was over THE SILLIEST thing. I don’t mean to diminish anyone’s pain but...God does not need to redeem our mistaken coffee orders, you guys. He just doesn’t. Buy a new cup and get over it. That kind of stuff drives Tim crazy. You are not a martyr because the guy at Macy’s told you “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.”

     All that to say, I am so glad I will experience the depth of God’s power and love and ability to redeem through this struggle. I’m so glad I am outgrowing the “redeem my cold coffee” camp as harsh and egotistical as it sounds.

I seriously can’t find a nicer/less jerky way to write that while still giving it the power it deserves.

     Now, I can look back and see that the loss I felt last year is representative of the heartache God felt when He lost Jesus. I ache for a baby the way the world aches for Christ and He for us in return.

And I’m thankful for that perspective.

     This year has taught me that no matter how absolutely smashed up and broken and shameful and embarrassed I feel, when I stand before The Father, He sees me as whole & highly favored.

     And this year, I can stand next to my husband with empty arms and a weary heart and still believe in the promise and power of Redemption.

     And I am also exhaustedly wise (?) enough to know that Redemption will not necessarily equal "baby."  And the past 6 or so weeks have been about making peace with that.  Even if it friggin' kills me, guys.

Soon, I am posting a list of Ten Things to Say When Your Friend's Not Getting Pregnant.

Kind of like... conversation starters, if you will. 

 I wanted to add my story to it to give you all some context instead of being like, 
"Surprise! Here's this random post about something that may or may not apply to me.  Just act natural."  

And I tried to add my story to it, but guys...it was getting long.

So this is...Part 1, I guess.

In closing, this is the last of my snarky-ness, I promise.

     Please be sensitive with your comments. You know, maybe this isn’t the place for “fertility suggestions.” or “I was infertile and then I tried this and got pregnant” stories.  

Maybe there’s not enough relaxing/adopting orphaned babies/green tea/lying on your back for 30 minutes/etc. in the world to get me pregnant, and that’s ok, you know?

Cause all the TRYING...it’s like...hard, guys.

So, please don’t flood my inbox with herbal tea recommendations and directions for how to buy ovulation predictor kits in bulk.

This is not my first rodeo, guys.

And THAT rodeo drove me CRAZY and was not good for my mental health/marriage and I’ll gladly get a little bold/snarky in order to protect those things.

Also, I am smack dab in the middle of the book Taking Charge of YourFertility, and it’s amazing, thank you very much for the suggestion.

Also, I hope I am healthier/faster/stronger/lighter (?) this time next year.

Lastly, I hope nothing in this post has made anyone feel bad/uncomfortable/sad/whatever.

I’m in a really lonely season right now. The last thing I want to do is alienate people.

PLEASE BE FRIENDS WITH ME! ;)

     I know I joke a lot about weeping.  Sometimes, my "blogging voice" thinks it's funny to exaggerate emotions.  Please do not be alarmed.

I'm very sad and I'm grateful and I'm fine and I am learning that it is possible to be all of those at the same time.

I am so glad that I can be scared/sad/anxious/insane, and God will still work.

Lastly, I would have died 1,000 deaths by now without That Tim.  
Hug his neck next time you see him.

K? Thanks. Love you. Bye.


Hooray! I think it’s ok to say "Hooray" about this! 
You are catching me on a good day. ;) 

I am like, equal parts terrified and relieved just getting it out in the open. 

So. I'll end there.  

Love and a weight has lifted, 


Friday, January 2, 2015

A Very Brief 2014 Update

     Let's be completely honest here, guys.  Any kind of Christmas Card/Snail Mail/New Years letter just isn't going to happen.  And I was stressin.' Which I know is silly. Really.

But I wanted to do SOMETHING to update people far and wide that didn't include an order from Shutterfly and $100 worth of stamps.  And my brain was like, "Quick! To the blog!"

I'm like...I PAY $10 a year for the domain name! Why not make it WORK FOR ME!

Haha...

     True, it lacks the personal touch and sentimentality of a real life card, and I'm sure people from The Greatest Generation are rolling over in their graves, but I've included an x-ray of my dog in this whole mess so...it should be worth it.  ;)

And...without further ado...I'm giving you A Very Brief 2014 Update. Love you bunches, and Happy New Year!


We'll go in order of cuteness and start with the dogs first. ;)



     After 11 years on this planet, we finally managed to find a bed that Noel deemed "worthy" enough to sleep in.  This was a big deal, guys... as she has much preferred any hamper, duffel bag, or storage bin over the multiple beds we've purchased for her over the years.







WE HAVE A WINNER!  

She seems to have mellowed out in her old age.  The highlight of her Autumn was attending a "Strut your Mutt" event with almost NO BARKING!  :)


      Scarlett surprised everyone at the vet when we discovered she had huge gallstones!  She had minor surgery in October and has healed nicely.  See if you can spot the extra amount of naughtiness in her x-ray.





     Our vet was able to have her stones sent off to be analyzed in an attempt to figure out what's causing them...so whenever you are having a bad day at work, just remember somebody out there has a job that requires them to dissect my poor dogs gallstones.  ;)

The Girls are a huge blessing in our lives, and we're so glad they're ours.  "Dog people" unite!

     Tim's business is doing well.  He is, hands down, the hardest worker I know.  He spent a ton of time this fall helping remodel our church's "sister campus" about 20 minutes away from our house.  I think it was the most "involved" job he's ever finished, but also the most rewarding.  It was the same church my grandpa (my mom's dad) helped build in the 50's, so we've truly come full circle.  

God is good.

A blurry picture of new paint, lighting, and floors, among MANY other projects. 


     He is still busy with wood-working and various other hobbies.  He built a beautiful speaker cabinet this year and plans to build more in the future.

     The year held lots of changes for me on a professional level.  In August, I accepted a position teaching second grade at a private, Christian School about 10 minutes away from our house.  This job was truly The Lord's Plan- as I wasn't even been looking for a teaching job at the time.  The students and staff have been a huge blessing, and I love teaching there.

     In September, I attended The Influence Conference in Indianapolis for the second time, and loved every minute of it.  It gave me the chance to meet some online friends in real life and listen to some amazing speakers.

    Another highlight was attending my 10 year college reunion at Mount Vernon Nazarene University.  It gave me the opportunity to see some of my favorite people on the planet, and it makes me smile just to write about it!

     Twenty-Fourteen was certainly a blur.  In fact, as I was writing this, I felt like August 2014 was AS FAR BACK AS MY BRAIN COULD GO...haha.  No matter what, we're glad for the time we have together in our tiny, little house with a red front door.  We're never sure what the future holds, but we know that God is on the throne, and He is a dad who takes care of His kids.   We wish you the very best in 2015.  May His peace, comfort, and joy ring true in your hearts this year.

Holly, Tim, Scarelett & Noel









   


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Ouch. How to set goals and fail with grace



MY FRIENDS!

Well, the last you heard from me, I was all set to walk roughly 30 miles in 30 days and then...crickets.

Am I right?  How did you do?

My progress didn't go so well.  For various reasons, guys. Excuses, Excuses, am I right?

Well, the good thing is, at least I got a post-idea out of the whole mess.

Aren't you so thankful for fresh starts and grace and the chance to just begin again?

Yes. Please. Forever and Ever Amen.

Well, this is what I've figured out so for...

Step One...

Realize that you are a terrible human being and then focus that energy for good.


Ha.  I'm totally kidding on this one.  If you've set a goal, and it's fallen flat, chances are, you're feeling pretty crummy.  Let yourself feel crummy for a while.  It's ok.  That's kind of the point of setting a goal, right?  You feel good when you meet it...you feel bad when you don't.

Right now, the idea of getting over this hump and setting some NEW GOALS for the winter has me feeling weirdly excited.  Focus on the ideas below, and you can also find that strange balance of disappointment, excitement, and determination.

Let's be weird together. ;)

2.  Stay the course.  Think about your goal.  Did you accomplish anything at all?  My guess is...you probably did! And congrats!  If your goal was to pay off all your debt by the new year, and you only made it half way, that's still cause for celebration!  Keep doing what you're doing.  It's working, my friend!

3.  Find something to celebrate.  In the midst of all this November Craziness, I did manage to up my vitamin game.  I have been the Vitamin Queen these days.

You guys.

What should my crown look like?
...a crown made of vitamins?
Who's going to make it?
Can we hire these kinds of things out?

All this to say, my overall goal is to focus on my HEALTH so...I'm happy about that.  Vitamin-taking was a habit I had really let fall by the wayside, but I'm back at it.  Folic acid for days, y'all.  ;)

4.  Time travel.  Uh... let's be honest.  I worry about my weight and overall fitness level in general.  When I think about giving up, I picture myself 30 years from now.  Heavy. Tired.  Bored.  When times get tough and I don't think I'll ever find a way to maintain a healthy/active lifestyle, I think about Future Me, and she wishes that in my 30's, I would have found a way to make it work.

Powerful stuff.

Don't worry, Future Me...I'm comin' to the rescue!

So.  What's next?

I went to the gym the other day, and it just felt really good.  It feels good to be surrounded by people who care about the same thing you do- maintaining an active, healthy lifestyle.

My overall goal has been to "pick up momentum" in terms of exercise.  I had a health coach tell me one time that "A body in motion stays in motion."  It's so true.

I don't know that my momentum is back in full swing, but I do know that the ball is rolling...the wheels are turning, and such.

Good things are coming, and good things are already here.

Love and you can do it,






Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Old Joy #482

Guys. I wanna make this long. Like reeeeaaaallll long.

But, I ain't gonna.

Last week, Jen Hatmaker wrote about her mom's cancer diagnosis and how much she had feared  it would shake her faith...and how much it actually hadn't.  (I'm paraphrasing, obviously).

My friend (I wish), Jen Hatmaker is able to look her mother in the eye and declare that God is still good.

And I get it.  Kind of.

Tim and I have whispered the same prayer for about 2 years running.

Oh, for heaven's sake.

It is one of those requests that you never imagined having to pray over and over and over again.

But, you do.

It's the kind of request that ignites public weeping.  Very public weeping.  Sorry, Panera.

Do you have those, too?

Are you ready to give up?

Me too.

Wanna trade?  You pray for mine and I'll pray for yours, and it'll all come out in the wash.

'Cept when you accidentally end up being the one who gets blessed with a furry, brown dachshund, don't come whining to me.

Kidding.

But...imagine my wonder and surprise to discover, after all this time, that I can look my husband in the eye and declare that God is still good.



September 2007 

Forever and ever Amen.