Worth The Wait.

Hey there! It's Five-Minute Friday (on a Saturday) time! I meant to do this yesterday, but just couldn't get my act together in time; thankfully, this community is full of grace, am I right? Anyhow, if you've stumbled onto my blog from elsewhere, welcome! To find out more about Five-Minute Friday, click over here to get the full scoop

Prompt: Wait
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I am learning to wait. It's not a strength of mine, unfortunately, so this is a particularly difficult endeavor. When the impending news is good, I'm kind of a wreck, so when it's bad?! *whistles*




These days, the act of waiting is the hardest adjustment to make because much of what has come down the pike has been the worst news I've received in my 33 years on this planet. The skittish worry-wart in me fights the urge to brace herself, to dread what each morning will bring.


However, in the midst of this darkness, I am finding light and joy and peace and comfort and humility and growth and grace and love. From the Father, from my precious husband, from my sweet babies, from dear friends. Just heaping helpings of gracious love that sustains and makes no demands in return.

One of the great side effects of going through tough times is focus. All of the things—and people—I thought were integral to my existence have fallen away, while what's left are my truly priceless treasures. That level of clarity and wisdom is most assuredly worth the wait.




You Got To Fight.

I just finished reading "The Color Purple" (I know, I know! Took me waaaay too long to do it!) and it was just as beautiful and heartbreaking as I thought it would be. From the beginning, this thought from Celie resonated so powerfully within me:

But she keep on. You got to fight. You got to fight. 
But I don't know how to fight. All I know how to do is stay alive.

When I read that passage, it hit me so hard, I had to sit for a moment before continuing to read. Alice Walker summarized me in two lines.

Yesterday, though, my own story took a turn. I leapt forward toward the life I wanted to live. I fought. It was such a small act to someone else, but it took everything I had in me.

I treaded water for decades before realizing I could swim. I kept waiting for something to happen to me, not knowing I was the one that needed to move. In order to tackle my dreams, I have tend to all those experiences that had threatened to break me so long ago. I have to face those demons and reset those wounds so they heal properly.

This is, by far, the hardest journey I've ever taken. My deliverance doesn't look as pretty as I thought it would, honestly. It's nasty, filthy, necessary work, but will give way to something glorious.

So not only will I fight, but I will emerge victorious.





Into the Sunrise.

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For those of us trying to survive our pasts, there is hope. I'm knee-deep in this process of healing, but every movement forward is worth it, no matter how small. If you're even the least bit interested in Five-Minute Friday, please head here to get the full scoop. It's a wonderfully loving community and your presence is welcome. Should you decide to link up, you can do so right here.

Prompt: Share

Up until a few months ago, I truly believed I could outrun my childhood abuse, that there would be some magical moment when a switch would be flipped and I would finally be free to whistle happily into the sunset. Instead of confrontation, I succumbed to a hopeless cycle of rationalization, minimization, and excuses.

Unfortunately, traumatic experiences have a way of popping up rather rudely and insistently until we choose to acknowledge their presence; the longer we delay, the more likely they are to seep into every area of our lives and engulf us.

Starting at the tail end of last year, I began this healing process in earnest. I'd tried to accomplish this task over the years, but was utterly unprepared each time. I was too afraid and too weak to attack that looming mountain of pain on my own. Today, though, I am ready, armed with guidance of my Heavenly Father and the power of his written words, and also the loving support of my partner and soulmate. As I mentioned in my previous post, the goal is healing, for me, as well as those who've hurt me. (I realize I have no control over the latter, but it is my prayer, nonetheless.)

Now, I am doing this work, hand-in-hand, sharing this heavy burden with my husband, as He gently leads us into the sunrise.

"Our society gives greater permission to keep secrets thank to seek help...We're fools to pretend that even the strongest kids can endure such stress and still end up contented, stable adults, unscathed and undamaged." Karen Stephens, For Children's Sake, Prevent and Confront Child Abuse 

One Word 2015 || Healing.

I'd heard rumblings about "one word", but never really felt the need to investigate further. I have this terrible habit of assuming I won't be interested in things if they're not somehow related to my regular routine and/or the way I see myself. Lately, I've begun slowing down long enough to start paying attention to these knee-jerk assumptions because the fact of the matter is, there are parts of myself I don't know very well (but I'd like to).

Anyway, on a whim, I googled the term and a post made by my cyber friend, Mrs. Tee, popped up! I immediately read her post and knew I'd stumbled onto something I wanted to dive into, waving away unhelpful thoughts of "but, January's more than halfway over!" and "you're way too late!".  I continued searching and found this beautiful post by Cristal Stine via (in)courage about how her word for the year sought her out. Beyond that, I came across the One Word 365 site, which allows folks to connect and encourage others who share the same word. The outpouring of support and hope I felt before I'd even started was enough to spur me on. I knew I'd made the right decision.

The next step was figuring out what my word would be. At this point, I began to sort of unravel.
One word. 

For an entire year.

I can barely decide what to eat on a given day. 

Why am I doing this?! 

After a few deep breaths and several quiet minutes with my journal, I'd found it.

Healing.

Healing is grace. Healing brings transformation. Healing is acknowledging the occurrence of trauma and lovingly tending to the wound to prevent infection.

I've gotten really good at highlighting my many faults. I can recite them backwards and forwards if need be. There is always something I'm failing at. Some days, I feel like a walking apology; all slumped shoulders, eyes to the floor, heavy heart.

This year, though, I am focusing on allowing Him to mend my being and make me someone altogether new. His healing effectively removes every excuses to operate as I have been for decades.

His healing gives me rest, while also holding me accountable and keeping me committed.

His healing carries within it the promise of better, of transitioning from broken to whole.



The Importance of Sending Mail.

Man, this post is so surreal! One of the first things I did this morning was peruse Kate Motaung's site to find today's prompt for Five-Minute Friday. Upon discovering that it was "send", I immediately logged off as my mind went blank.

Send...send? What the heck do I do with that? All I can think about it mail. What's exciting or interesting or insightful about mail?

Frustrated, I busied myself with everything but sitting down with this word. Of course, it loomed above me, taunting me, knowing I had absolutely nothing of value to share. *sigh*

This is SO accurate!
{Image source}

I was determined, however, and once an opportunity presented itself, I forced my butt into a chair, logged back onto my computer, and promptly realized that "mail" was the answer. See, I love mail. I love picking out whimsical stationery and accompanying stickers and/or labels. I adore stamps, both rubber and self-adhesive. The acts of composing the contents of a letter or card in my best handwriting, sealing it in an envelope, and popping into the mail slot make me giddy. Further, the time and effort taken are how I show that I care for the recipient.

Having been alive before computers and the internet were ubiquitous, I cherished the privilege of hand-written correspondence. It filled me with so much joy! Awhile back, though, I stopped doing this thing I loved so much. With the advent--and efficiency--of email, there didn't seem like much point to it. More honestly, I quit writing because my peers didn't "get it". So, like many adolescents, I sacrificed something I enjoyed to the finicky gatekeepers of Cool.

Recently, I've been taking stock of myself and unpacking the baggage of my life. Sifting through the years has allowed me to separate my authentic self from the person I pretended to be. Now that I'm older, I'm free to shed light on the things I hid and embrace what makes me different. Before I started writing this post, I had no idea that something as simple as "the mail" would be a reflection of this journey, but it feels darn good, nonetheless.

How awesome is this bundle of stationery by A Beautiful Mess?! It's part of their Happy Mail monthly subscription service, which sends you groovy new stationery every month. If this isn't confirmation that I'm on the right track, I don't know what is...
{Image via A Beautiful Mess}