Welcome to My Royally Wrecked Space to Chill...

I hope you find comradery...I hope you find peace....I hope you find joy...I hope you find acceptance...I hope you feel loved...I hope you know that your are precious...chosen...and always welcome here...come sit a spell...

Saturday, August 15, 2015

That time I bled out...and other warrior problems...

It's odd... the losing of one's self...the slow dissipation of what once made you alive replaced with monotony and numbness. I didn't wake up one morning gone. It was a slow bleed. A trickle like a finger that had been pricked and bled one drop at a time into a bandage that eventually seeped through the gauze. It caught me unawares.

Everyone who knows me and loves me saw it... saw the drip... rallied me... but they were unable to stop the bleed. I was pale. Ghastly in my soul. Grabbing furiously at bandaids and ointments...but the bleed continued. Books and quotes would lift me for a period but never sustained me into rising again. So...as us medical junkies would say...I bled out.

When one bleeds out, they die. They cannot be resuscitated. There is no hope. Their body is drained of all blood and sustenance to sustain life. I bled out. I can't put my finger on exactly what led to my demise. I was keeping a schedule that was more than insane. I got pregnant in the middle of that schedule at 38. I failed nursing school by 1 percentage point. I quit going to church due to my schedule. I lost my centering time with God. It was a myriad of things. Again...a slow steady trickle... of me not engaging in the things that make me alive and centered.

The sad part is that when my family reads this blog they will hurt... will blame themselves... but nothing could be further from the truth. Family shouldn't drain you... they should sustain you. In the months leading up to my final demise, it was my tribe that kept me alive with their love... it was cooking together... laughing together... being held when I didn't have it in me to ask for touch. They kept me alive. Eventually though, I had come to last the pint... and even those moments could no longer resuscitate me.

When I finally bled out, I quit. I kept my schedule. I worked. I tended to children and walked the garden with my husband. But I had quit. I was empty. Shell like. It was all as if I were watching my life from a stadium seat and the players were blurry. I never stopped. I never surrendered. I kept walking like a ghostly emaciated soul thinking no one noticed. Everyone noticed.

When the final drop hit the gauze, I hit the floor. I hit it so hard that the sound ricocheted through the halls until everyone could no longer ignore it and came running. There I lay... formless... small... and still.

God has often spoken to me through movie reels in my head so to speak. When I'm still He comes to my mind and shows me where He is... where He is moving. He came to me that day. I visualized him picking me up in his arms... carrying me to his lap... and placing my head on his chest. I cried. Sobbed really.... into his glory. He let me. He lifted my chin and looked into my eyes... and with his love said with no words..."I have you." Then he rocked me. Back and forth like I rock my little baby boy... gently... tenderly... for as long as I needed. I've never felt so secure. So accepted. So complete.

I feel like that day God gave me a transfusion of sorts. It wasn't several gallons... but it was a small slow drip of life again. A glimpse into the light from where I had be surviving...a place that I could walk into slowly and regain myself. Regain my thoughts. Regain my passions. Regain my relationships.

While I certainly was probably sad and depressed a bit, I was not clinically depressed. I did consult with my physician. I did talk through the issues at hand. I did admit I was 38 with crazy hormones after a newborn. He agreed. Ha! But no... this was burnout. Pure and Simple. Burnout takes you to places that are hard to bounce back from... because you are numb and you are weary. The thought of doing anything to get yourself back is too tiring and you'd rather just sit down. I get it.

Thing is... no one can save you... and they all want to because they all blame themselves when you're staring into space... but they can't. You have to save yourself. You have to take that one tiny, minute vestige of life you have left and grab onto something solid. God. It's the only way. It's the only lifeline. There are no quick fixes. There are no magic yoga poses that will make it disappear. It's freaking' hard work of the soul, the body, and mind. Oh God the mind. Yes... the mind will take you lower than you want to go when you are burnt out. It will lie to you. It will destroy you if you allow it. Don't. Let. It.

I know I'm not the only one. I've talked to you guys. In the last month. Mothers, single women, all walks... you're burnt crispy... and you're beating the hell out of yourself about it. Stop. Life beats us all down. We all hit the limit. I hope that you will grasp your limit before you do something stupid. I'm not even talking about hurting yourself, I'm talking about stupid decisions based on the angst and the numbness. Don't do that. Read this. Know you're normal. Know you're not alone. Know you are a warrior like the rest of us with real joys, real pain, real needs, and real despair.

It's the only way boo.

You can't get up off that floor anemic on your last drop of blood without help. Get your tribe together. Even if it's one friend. One advisor. One random therapist. Get help. Step off that floor and breathe. I promise you life is not as serious as it looks staring up from the linoleum. And when you are rising... be kind to your tribe. You've probably scared the crap out of them and they are staring at you like you've lost your marbles. It's ok. They love you. They want you back. But the only way back is through... and through you must go. Through the recovery of what makes you you. Through the recovery of building your physical reserves back up. Through the hard work of bringing your mind into subjection with what HE says about you. THAT is the biggest key. THAT is what will heal you.

I say to myself over and over throughout my days. "I can do all things through Him. He strengthens me." It's a mantra. It centers me. It reminds me that no matter what... I'm not going back to the floor. He's filled my body with all I need for the next round. Find your own mantra. Chant it to yourself. Then don't quit. You have too much to give. Too much to shine on the world. Too much to show in color. I believe in you. Hey, I'm WITH you. We can do this. We ARE doing this.

Warriors don't get victory unscathed. Some scars are necessary to be remembered as powerful and legendary. Wear your scars. Keep fighting.

Grace n Peace,

A ~

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

From Swampland to Concrete

I lecture my kids...a lot.

It often begins with..."let me speak something into you that you need to know..." followed by eye rolls and "NO NO!! We get it!" They don't. But my hope is that eventually one day when they are in a college dorm room with a broken heart and it feels like the world has just ended...they will remember.

I've felt like that a lot this year myself.

I've had an epic year. Marriage, Nursing School, Pregnancy, Blended Family...it's been a lot.

A lot of awesomeness...a lot of work.

I've had those dorm room, heart broken moments this year. Not per se due to any one's fault...but because I'm living...breathing...and so is the rest of the world...and well...let's face it...crap happens.

I've begun to live out my own lectures. All the ones God deposited in me over the last 10-15 years. It's been stupendous, humbling, aggravating, perpetual work, and down right freeing.

I've learned it IS better to accept and wait and than be aggressive.
I've learned faith is only acquired through waiting.
I've learned I don't know everything and defensiveness will get you nowhere.
I've learned that standing is sometimes the strongest thing you can do.
I've learned that not everyone loves me like Jesus and my Jelton... and not everyone has my best interest as their motivation.
I've learned to let these people go and set boundaries with people that "despitefully use me."
I've grown a thicker skin that I hope is still porous enough to seep His light still while maintaining self protection.
I've learned true love.
I've learned that my defensiveness in correction lengthens the lesson.
I've learned to listen more...talk less.

In all this learning...the one true thing I've absolutely come to know...trust...chew on...claw to hang on to...is THIS:

JESUS AT THE CENTER OF IT ALL. No other foundation. Period.

I was reminded of this in my reading today...

"Don't you understand the foundation of all things?" Isaiah 40:21-24

One sentence. Summed up an entire lifetime.

He is the foundation of all things. Simple...yet exactly what I needed for the next leg of the journey.

You see...I falter. I question. I fear. I worry.

When I begin these steps, I step back into the place of knowing as quickly as I can...because I realize I've stepped off my foundation into the swamplands (shout out to my Cajun friends). I've looked down at the raging waters rather than looking straight ahead at Jesus and the shore behind him...Foundation.

I lost myself a bit last year. I was keeping a schedule for full time nursing school that was RIDICULOUS at best...husband working out of town...blending a family...working full time...then ended it with a 38 year old uterus getting pregnant...

I lost my way for a period.

I didn't do crack or cheat on my husband. I didn't beat my children senselessly. I didn't rush a baby gap with an oozy...but I lost my mental way. I lost my foundation. I stepped off the ledge. I allowed my mind to take me to places that were not solid. Not truth. Not my manifesto.

Then I failed nursing school by one percentage point.
Then my husband and family rallied me. Loved me. Reminded me who I was.
It was a dark few weeks.
I had to force my feet out of the swampland and back on to the concrete foundation of God.

In more simplistic terms....I had to steady myself in the Word. Speak to the thoughts. Rally.

And I did it again today. And yesterday. And the day before that. And the day before that...you get the picture.

I'm human. I'm fragile. I'm in need of concrete in a swampland world.

I continue to learn this. I continue to cling to the concrete. I continue to find peace in acceptance and flee aggression. I continue to trust when it's the hardest part of being alive for me.

I continue to LOVE MY LIFE. Because this is all part of it...

Those lectures...they sustained me. Rallied me. Kept me. Returned me to Him and myself.

Returned me to the place of "knowing"...the place where you can see one thing with your eyes and another with your heart. The place of unshakeableness (I realize this is not a word)...the place where you slip, slide and sway but keep standing because you KNOW...you just know...

My prayer for all of us today is that we continue to flail, fail, and flourish. That we listen to the lectures and lean in....
May we be reminded we are solid. Foundation secure. Nothing can destroy us...only solidify, rectify, and remind us...

Grace n Peace,

A ~