...and by "relax" I mean, I still work and go to church. I still keep house and occasionally slaughter the dust bunnies overtaking my closet floor. I'm still cooking (oh, and I've been trying this new thing, it's called "eating the same thing almost every evening" and/or "alternating meals". It sounds lame, I know, but it is rather glorious in a couple of ways...
1. We don't have to dirty a million new dishes every night.
2. Our sink isn't overflowing with pots and pans on a regular basis
3. Our little house isn't busting at the seams with the smells of fish, chicken, garlic or black beans (or whatever fragrant dish we had for dinner)
4. We don't have to wash more than a couple plates, some silverware and a casserole dish or two at the end of the week!!!
See!!!! I told you... GLORIOUS!
I've still been hanging out with people, trying to reach out to people, and Jed and I are trying to navigate the world of 'Young Adults' ministry. Mostly I just think it's a fun excuse to spend time laughing like little kids with a bunch of big 'kids' who are all in a similar place in life. I'm enjoying in quite a lot! I've been praying that God really directs our steps in this and blesses the efforts of all the wonderful people who are participating with us. I know first hand how necessary it is in the church and how easy it is to fall into the cracks as a young adult... either fresh out of high school, fresh out of college, newly career bound or newly married. It's quite an adventure. For most of us there are quite a few years of transition behind us and many more in front of us. So we need a safe and encouraging place to grow and learn and figure out our 'iDENTITY' (In Christ, in our church, our families and workplaces and world)
*see what I did there? shameless, I know. ;)
Mostly though, I've been taking some time to just let God 'do what He will' in my heart and in my mind.
As you may know, I'm not a big reader of novels or biographies. (I know, I know ...but I'm a huge reader of articles. Maybe I have the attention span of a goldfish, but I'm telling you, after focusing all day at work, I enjoy a nice, challenging, encouraging and inspirational article... and then I enjoy staring into space or 'Pinteresting' until there's nothing left to pin.) :)
With regards to these articles, I've been finding a great deal of encouragement from this blog gracefortheroad and a few other random places that have been helping me on my recent journey. I'm trying to fill my brain with lots of good things. Lots of encouragement, lots of stable thoughts and LOTS of wisdom regarding Christianity, finances, career and family.
I've been sifting through a lot of baggage. I've been trying to get the voices out of my head (the ones from childhood, my teen years, my college years...) and simply focus on God's voice. It's terribly difficult sometimes to sift through so many thoughts and feelings, experiences and fears. Some days are great, some days I'd kind of like to hide in a nice cozy nest of blankets in my bed and stay away from people and away from my own thoughts.
I've been praying a lot lately. I've been praying for family things going on, for grace, for mercy, for understanding regarding other's choices and actions, praying that I react appropriately, praying that I am able to let things 'roll off my back'. I've been praying that God rids me of the fear of being disappointed or trampled and really creates extra compassion within me for such a tender time for myself and those around me. I've been praying that God uses the my struggles and struggles of the people around me to shape me and them, grow them and teach us a deeper meaning of compassion, understanding and mercy.
Over the last few months (okay, more like years) I've been in this difficult battle of emotion verses thought verses belief. It's kind of crazy sounding, but it's truly amazing how conflicted one can be when all of these elements don't mesh well.
Trying to direct my thoughts towards God alone, is quite a challenge. My beliefs(A) regarding Christianity, service, my passions, my love for people, my love for God are all often counteracted by by thoughts(B) which are almost always a knee-jerk reaction... based on experiences and hurts I've had and then my emotions(C) which, well, are just that... this ridiculous emotional outpouring of all the confusion and anxiety bottled up inside.
A+B+C = OCW.
One Crazy Woman.
Oh, so on that note, we've made a rather interesting discovery regarding my hormones recently (which explains a lot)...
A brief run-down of the year of crazy: Within the last year, my thyroid stopped working (almost entirely) making me feel anxious, exhausted, unable to sleep, unable to concentrate and remember things (all while starting a new job). That ordeal lasted for quite a few months. The doctor couldn't treat it so he just tried to fix some of the symptoms... which really just threw other things off and caused other symptoms... but it did get better. ...and then there was another lovely adventure with my weight once my thyroid kicked back in. Thank God that issue is resolved!
...but more recently (after lots of female pains) I finally went back to the doctor and am now I'm on my way back to the endocrinologist. Apparently my hormone levels are way out of wack. Which, oddly enough, it's kind of "nice" to hear. Now I know I'm not entirely insane. At the same time, it's a bit scary. Because if feels like something that can only be made "better" by trial and error. For anyone who's ever had to deal with hormonal issues before, it's not pleasant. There's almost always weight gain, emotional chaos, tension and a million other physical issues that come with putting things in your body that aren't made by your body. (like... progesterone, estrogen etc...) It's like trading in your spoon for a bowl of ice cream. 0_o There are no winners.
These hormones cause constant nausea, weight gain, stomach troubles, apparently they can intensify migraines, cause acne, and the list goes on. In and of itself these things may not be all that dramatic... but considering my very strong desire to tidy up my heart and mind on top of my desperate need to feel "normal" again (emotionally, spiritually and physically) all this change and a lack of 'easy' solutions has been taking a toll.
Normal twenty-something uncertainties + physical imbalances + new things + sifting through old things + decisions + pain, exhaustion and aggravation = you guessed it... ORCW.
One REALLY Crazy Woman.
On a lighter and truly happy note: I'm so very grateful that I have a very, very, very patient, gracious and merciful husband who knows my heart (even it's flaws) who loves me, deals with my drama and still takes such good care of my tender little heart and spirit even when I'm basically a crazy person.
I've really, really been trying to rest. I'm trusting that God will provide what I need, when I need it. I'm hoping that by 'taking care' of myself now, in the way doctors suggest, won't end up hurting my body later. It tends to be cause and effect with these things. The choices I make now could have a significant effect on my ability to have children and issues like heart issues, cancer, diabetes and other diseases. And I'm legitimately trying to find the best options without being overcome with worry about my future and my future family plans. I'm really hoping that eventually my body will be in some sort of balance. If it requires me to sacrifice certain things, then He will give me the strength, energy, and peace of mind I need.
He didn't create a mistake, so I've got to believe that I'm supposed to be physically 'out of wack' for some reason right now. And God only knows why...
It seems to be the family curse. Hormonal issues, female issues, cancer and several other major medical issues. I have to admit, it's my biggest fear (hands-down) to be unstable. Physically and (even more so) emotionally and mentally.
I've seen 'unstable' first-hand, and it isn't pretty.
But... I'm truly working on only listening to God. I'm doing everything in my power to seek wisdom, fill my head and heart with good and mostly.... I'm relying on God to orchestrate it all.
and that's the update <3