Monday, July 21, 2014

Rays of sunshine

I'm thinking of one of those beautiful moments when you step outside and get a beautiful a glimpse of the sun's rays breaking through in the midst of deep, dark clouds.  The clouds don't diminish the sun, but somehow reveal it's beauty in a whole new way.  Think about it for a moment... close your eyes and imagine a bright sunny day (this is hard for my northern friends)... You step outside and could almost miss it (for my southern friends who see the sun as unbearable heat sometimes), but unless it  follows weeks of darkness (which literally happens in MN) or see it in streams through the darkened clouds, you're likely to literally miss the beauty of it.
This is how I feel today...
Some days it's hard to see the amazing blessings in each day when the clouds of difficulty surround me.   I am frustrated at the fact that it can take mere moments after great encouragement for me to feel so completely lost and discouraged.  My emotions can totally take over me and drive this boat if I let them.
My boyfriend reminded me today that I can negate the good by focusing on the bad.  It wasn't the words he used, but coming from my salesman I know that he has to focus on the good in order to remain positive and keep "knocking on doors."  He's my optimistic side and I like to call myself the "realist"... he might say "the pessimist".  It's a hard line to tow.  Sometimes we need to cry and admit the tough emotions, but sometimes we have to choose to focus on the good over the bad.  It's tough to find the balance between pretending and not dealing with things by pushing them down and trying to hide them, or simply choosing to not dwell in them.  I guess feeling vs. dwelling may be a key factor?
With me, admitting the struggle is the part of letting it out on paper.  It frees me to deal honestly with how I'm feeling by "saying" it aloud, and then move on.  Often there are lies I'm believing, but I can't address them until I identify them.  The danger is hurting the ones who are fighting on my side of the pain with me.  They don't like to see my struggle when they're moving heaven and earth to the best of their ability to be part of the solution. 
Changing my focus today... It's funny because admitting the struggle helps me see the rays better or differently somehow.
In case you don't read my posts regularly and have missed my "high points," Here are a few more recent ones...
  • My boyfriend hates when I do this, but I can't bear to leave his part out.  He doesn't need me to affirm him in public, but my need to focus on my blessings cannot skip over him :)  He works hard to help me physically as soon as he steps through the door each day, as well as on the weekends; and mentally trying to figure out a pace I can maintain.  I don't really know what I need yet, so my struggle is hard for a guy who just wants to fix it.  I see it all as part of the process of moving and readjusting, but as a man, he wills for me to figure it out so he can provide for whatever that may be.  He wants me to be healthy and happy, but there's not a simple solution.  
  • My girlfriends on the street, stop by to lend a hand or bring a gift much more often than I deserve.  I seem to be brought to tears with their thoughtfulness one moment, but overcome with another struggle and all too soon it gets covered up and forgotten in that moment.  The struggle doesn't lessen their blessings, but my lack of focus on my gratefulness is my disappointing reality and constant temptation.  It's ugly... Lord, help me :(
  • My disability moms share similar overwhelming commitments and schedules, yet make time for me at least once a month.  They text, leave messages and are a grace based community for me.  Our server one month actually thought we were a group of nurses!
  • My Danielle gave me two weeks already this summer to share my struggle, as well as some skin and bruises.  She was beat up in my place for two weeks!  I tried to fully enjoy our time, but I kept wanting it to be something other than it was... totally restful instead of enjoying the more restful.  I wanted to spend "non crazy" time with my friend, forgetting that my life is crazy personified and that was what she came for.  It was what I wanted and not necessarily what she expected.  I spent too much of her time with us beating myself up for needing her too much and wondering if she was enjoying her time with us.  I need to get out of my head sometimes and just enjoy and stop the "what ifs".  They really take up WAY too much time and zap today of it's joys.  
  • Princess Ballerina Camp for MA & art camp for Belle... VBS & pool access whenever we want!
Expectations can be soooo unfair...
  • I expected to have the time and energy I had in MN with full time help with Abby... eventually. I may not have said it, but I keep fighting for that rather than enjoying the new normal and blessings of this season.  It is not an easy season, but I do have more time with Abby than I've taken in several years.  
  • I expect to be the same mom I was before.  I focus on all the work and the time taken from the other girls instead of trusting my big God to fill in the time gaps with grace that only He can give when I cannot be the wife, mom or friend that I think I should be.  
  • I expected to find help and a place for Abby to go this summer, so I could do things with the other girls, but instead I could be glad we are doing more as a whole family than we've done in awhile.  If my expectations were to stay at home and make it through the day, I would come out on top; but I often think I have to do more than I need to do.  
  • We sit down and have dinner out at least once a week.  If I expect to not make a scene than I'm going to be frustrated, but if I embrace the chaotic "free show" we put on for everyone, I grin and I'm thankful we got our bellies full without me making the meal, right?  I'm educating others on differences and helping them to adjust their lives to ours and others like us.
  • I can focus on all the stares and lament the glass house I live in or pray that somehow my transparency can be a blessing to those who are looking (and that they don't feel the need to call child protection when they see me placing a restraint on my beautiful Blondy & don't understand).

This is my journey... praying for growth to sneak up somewhere in this process because the good Lord knows this is one tough nut to crack...
Welcome to my World :)

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