Thursday, December 30, 2010

Im the worlds greatest pretender

TrSo last night I spent hours pouring out my heart on my blogger application detailing even my hang ups about posting and I posted it, but I couldnt keep it there. I deleted it very early this morning.

Apparently I cant be as honest with people as I would like to be. Thats one of the many things I admire about my friend k. Bare naked honesty.

But I suppose privacy and discretion is not a bad thing, even k has expressed that.

So... Chicago tomorrow. Bourbon street, friends, drunken celebration. I'm not thrilled about it, but I want to hang out with my friends, so I go where they go.

Besides, im exploring my rebellious side, right?

(unlikely)

I guess im supposed to make a few new years resolutions. Id really rather not. I'm still working on last years resolutions! (and the year before that, and before that etc. lame.... We'll see if do or not. That's all.
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Sunday, December 12, 2010

I am happy.

Today, I am happy. Yesterday, too. And I suspect tomorrow I will be as well.  I want to be happy.
On Thursday of the week before last, I checked online and found that the BGCA for Valpo had an opening in the art room, so I told my boss at a team meeting that I wanted to try to get the positon. She gave me her blessing and told me to contact HR. Immediately following the meeting was at the Christmas Party, so I decided to wait, even though the HR manager, Tracie was there.  I kind of figured, it's a party... I'll wait.

Well, after the party, I was supposed to sub in the kindergarten kidstop, and I went to work. While I was cleaning up from the kiddo's eating lunch, I was talking with the janitor, who was also cleaning up. I told her the position was posted and I felt like it was right up my alley. So, she encouraged me and actually went and got the Program Director, Tim, to talk to me about the position, and he came and told me to come by his office after Im done and he would show me how to use the voice mail system and leave Tracie a message.  But I went upstairs after cleaning to continue to work with the kindergarten and  I told the site director what happened and she told me to to go downstairs right then because Tracie was in her office and just talk to her now. So I did.

Tracie and I talked and she was working on a flyer or something for the positon to post and she would wait on sending it out, and she would contact the Unit Director Dan, and the Program director Tim, for me and let them know my interest in the position.

So I spoke with her again Tuesday and she told me they were looking for someone with an artistic background, so I asked if I should bring in my portfolio and she said yes. Later that Day I got a call from Dan asking me to come in Thursday at 1pm for my "interview" (since I'm already an employee of he BGC, it wasnt like a formal interview, but I treated it as one).

So I spent time preparing ideas, potential schedules, events, that I would like to see happen in the club art room. I prepared two letters of recomendations, one from Traci at Church, and the other from my normal site director, Kristen.   Then on Thursday I showered, relaxed, dressed up, and went in for the interview and did the best I could.

It was funny because in the beginning during the interview they asked all the questions that I felt like I was incriminating myself by answering them. Like one question was something like What is one thing you've done that you weren't proud of and wish you would have done better, what would you have done instead.  I would almost swear that at least 80 percent of the questions were questions like that. 

But I got past that portion and they wanted to look at my portfolio, so we did and they were really impressed with my work. Then they looked at the stuff I had prepared regarding my ideas and such, and when the "interview" was over Dan told me that I represented myself vey well, and he was proud that the boys and girls club has someone like me on staff, even though my main involvement is with kidstop.

So I left, went home, ate lunch then headed to work my subbing position at Parview. After I got there, I got a call from Tracie, the HR manager to let me know that Dan and Time would love to have me as a part of their team.  Then she said, to be fair she wanted to let me know about another art room position that opened up at the Portage Club in the Art Room that was 5 days a week, as opposed to 3 days at Valpo. She told me a little about the position (also said that Dan and Tim joked about not telling me about the other position), gave me some time to think about whether i wanted totalk with the site director in Portage  and told me either way congratulations. 

I could not believe that in the same day I interviewed for a position that I was not only wanted for that position, but that I might also possibly be able to get the other position.  I went home so unsure of what to do. But I prayed, did some research, talked to a few people. Then on Friday, I went in to the club to sub again for kindergarten and afterward I spoke with Tracie and she told that Dan and Tim were very impressed with me and she asked me what my thoughts were, whether I wanted to talk with the Portage director, or accept the position at Valpo. I told her what my thought processes were, and that I seemed to be feeling some sort of loyalty to the Valpo Club, and that I would accept the position I had just interviewed for.  She welcomed me to the team and then she announced to Dan and Tim that i had made my decision and they welcomed me to the team. I am ecstatic.

Before I left Dan told me that he would like me to come in before I start officially in January and get some work in to get a feel of the art room. 

I am also possibly subbing for Ron at the South Haven Club during those few weeks, so hopefully I will have lots of hours for my last paycheck in Dec.

I am pretty happy right now.

On a side note, I think I want a hair cut.

Friday, December 3, 2010

What is it?

So I've been noticing something that struck me as a little strange. I have always believed there was a spirit of depression over my house, but tonight I wonder if that its all that's there. I know I've been in a bad mood a lot lately, but I've also noticed that the only time I ever seem to really be in a bad mood is when I'm at home. I've been noticing it really strong in the past few weeks, and its been getting worse.I guess I've always attributed it to my situation right now. It does often bother me that I don't have a room or even my own bed anymore, and I am often irritated with money problems. But I noticed and it is truly weird to me that I seem to rarely experience these irritations out side of home, and if I do they are minor, hardly enough to bother with at all.

But what's more is that I often FEEL happy when I'm out, even when my situation is bad, and it doesn't look like I'm happy.

So... Then tonight I came home and I was happy, and in a good mood, and when I walked in the house, I went to the bathroom and there was almost an immediate change in my mood. I was taken aback by how irritated I felt (still feel).

Its this mere association of a bad circumstance, or is there some thing here?
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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Broken in a Broken World

One person going hungry in the richest country in the world.
One person in a crowd thinking no one cares.
One person drowning in pain and despair.
One person struggling with what shouldn't be there.
One person questioning God for what they never had
One person cursing God for their life gone bad
One person confessing sin hoping to find peace
One person starting over looking for a new lease
One person, Broken in a broken world.
We are all one, someway, somewhere.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Blurb...

I am so grossed out. My dad is watching this moie about some flesh eating virus, or something like that. I'm not amused.

I'm so glad its friday in the sense that I can stay up later and I don't have to get up early. It's not so bad anymore, I'm used to the schedule, but sometimes it's nice to sleep in.

I don't know if anyone still reads this. My Bethel friends? Maybe.  Anyway, if you do, less than a week ago my Grandpa Paul (my dad's stepdad) fell and as a result had internal bleeding. He was in a lot of pain, and there was nothing they could do for him that wouldn't kill him anyway, so they induced a coma. Well, he died this morning.  It was actually rather funny (not in a haha sense, but in a oh, what an interesting coincidence sense) that my dads phone started ringing at the exact same time my alarm clock started going off.

I knew immediately who was calling and what for. I've been expecting this for a few days now.

Other than that, I've had a few opportunities to sub or work at the office. Not nearly enough to give me all of the hours I need though. My bills are higher than what I'm making right now, and all Iam considering are my car, phone, and insurance payments.

I started looking for a seasonal job. I considered working at the blue chip casino's hotel and spa, but the application had a blurb about how they were going to check my credit to get an idea of my character. I thought, "My credit cant tell you about whether I show up to work or not, my quality or work, my relationships with my coworkers, how long I will keep a job, etc. And I completely discarded that application.

I also learned today that poor mans copyright (mailing something to yourself through certified mail obtaining the legal US Postal seal and datestamp) can not be used in court to prove copyright, ownership, or proof of date.  However, it was interesting to read that apparently emails are protected under copy right law.  That makes no sense to me whatsoever.   But I guess if I want to "copyright" something and cant afford to get it legally done, I can send it to myself in an email and it is considered copyrighted.   I would do it both ways anyway.

Well, that's all.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

My ridiculous costume

So I definitely dressed up as a banana for halloween. My face was the sticker, I felt like an idiot though. I guess there is a reason why people stop dressing up when they get older. But I wonder if it was simply my costume.

I had two halloween parties to go to and I was incredibly bored at both of them. Also, at my cousins party, I felt like I was getting made fun of a little.

I just keep hoping that things will be more fun when Brandy gets here.
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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

What is there to say?

AzWell, our internet got turned off today. I have access through my phone, so it's not a big deal for me, but it pots a cramp in everyone's internet usage.

I heard this song today by Nickelback called if today was your last day. I really like the song. There is a line that says each day is a gift and not a given right.

What a beautiful thought. I don't always treat each day like a gift and I probably should.


I get paid tomorroe. Its goinh to be a small paycheck. Ive gotten a it of extra workthis week so im fairly excited about that. I hope for a lot more.

Tbat is all.

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Emptiness

Literally. Things havent been this bad in a while. Bread, milk, butter, eggs, and grapes in the fridge, ice and popcycles In the freezer. In the cabinets we have ramen noodles, oatmeal, and grits.

Other than that we have a few spices.

Its amazing to me how somehow we have been doing alright. What I mean is that our refrigerator has looked this way for the past month and we have had something to eat every night, al-be-it, the meals are hatdly nutricious, but they fill our tummys.

Ive been trying to get my meals at the different things I go to. Monday night group, bridge builders, hanging out with a friend who happened to invite others over for dinner...etc.

I haven't told anyone about it. I think part of me simply doesn't want to feel like some sob story. That and people always ask why we don't go get food stamps or go to some food drive. The simple answer is that we don't qualify for assistance.

But thats okay.

I think what baffles me is how people can live in America and still gohungry or be homeless. Land of opportunity? Well, if you already have money, sure.

The current system we live in caters to the idea that you have to have money to make money.and that system caters to people amassing debt. (ofcourse that also has to do with personal responsibility).

Oh well .
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Saturday, October 9, 2010

My Life is Average

So last night Christine, Doug, Justin, and I went to the Fear Itself Scream Park in Mishawaka. It was alright. The Clown thing was pretty good, and so was the swamp thing. I enjoyed the asylum part too, but not as much as the swamp and clown attractions.  But the whole 4-D thing and the Monkey thing were kind of lame. And ofcourse, it wasn't scary at all.

I was thinking about that as I was going through different things and I was a little dissapointed because it seems that the older I get, the less I enjoy things like that. What I mean is that part of the joy of the scream parks is th adrenaline rush that comes with the fear, but my rational thinking has developed enough that I remember that these things aren't real, and that the actors can't really touch me, and that nothing is going to hurt me. 

So I spent my time pretending to be afraid because I know it makes it more fun for the actors if they can get a reaction out of people, and that made it more fun for me too.

Afterwards, we went to Bethel College and walked around a little bit. I actually saw a few people that I knew. I thought that everyone I knew would have graduated by now, but I saw two people that haven't graduated yet, Adam and Jeremy, and two people that have graduated and just happened to be visiting at the same time I was, Sara and Joy.  :-) And then I saw people that I recognized but didn't know personally.   I realized being there that I don't feel like I'm done with college yet, even though recently I have found myself somewhat irritated with some college antics. I want to go to classes and finish my degree. I want to do homework (wow, what's wrong with me?)  And I do want to live the college life a little bit longer.

I really have to work on getting my bill paid off.  I've been considering going back to camfel productions, thinking that maybe it can help solve the problem of my living situations and give me a few more funds  to help pay off Bethel, and it will be the same amount of pay each month regardless of how many hours I work.

There are a few cons. No job security (but where is there job security anywhere?). I don't know if I can come back to the Boys and Girls Club if I quit. I will be leaving my church behind again.

But I just figured it up and If I manage my finances the way I planned, I could have Bethel paid off in 6 months, and then save up money to pay for the classes I will take.

Anyway, I won't let myself stress over this any more but I will pray about it and prepare for it. :-)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I cannot shake this feeling of frustration. I feel anger, despair, sadness, hopelessness, a sense of urgency, and a whole mess of other negative emotions and I am saddened because this is not me. This depression is not who I am and it's not who I want to be. I used to be the girl that people would say "you smile too much" to. I used to be the person that people wanted to be around because I was so happy. I miss that person. I want to be her again.

I don't think all if it is my living situation. I think most of it is simply my attitude, but I have no idea what happened that my attitude has gone so sour.

My brother, Eric, watched this tv series called "dead like me", and in the show this girl becomes a grim reaper when she dies and it is her job to escort the souls to where ever they would go. In one episode she refused to take the soul of a little girl because it wasn't fair. And the head reaper guy said she had to because the little girls soul has expired and if she doesn't take it it will, simply put, rot away in the little girl.

Sometimes I feel like that. I feel like my soul has expired and is rotting within me

I know the show isn't real/ I want to be happy again. From the core of me I want to be happy.

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Words on a Page.

I went outside to put a letter in the mailbox and had this feeling like I had to watch my back. When I came back in the house, I realized that my family has been watching a scary movie about a corn field and a scare crow the entire time I was writing the letter. The subconscious mind is amazing, isn't it.

Anyway. I've been in and out of irritated, frustrated, angry, depressed, and weepy moods for the past month or so. It has been this incredible emotional rollercoaster ride.  I won't deny that I have not been very happy lately for a number of reasons, but Im trying so hard to pull myself out of it.

I remember back in high school, people actually told me I smiled too much. I want that back. I want joy to radiate from me. I want to be a person who is so full of joy, no matter what is going on in my life, people are drawn to me.  I don't know what happened or how to get it back.

My family has been looking for a new place to live. We have been living in this 2 bedroom house for too long, and we want something that is in better condition.

I really hope that we get a 4 bedroom house so everyone can have their own room and my parents don't have to sleep in the living room anymore. I really want them to be able to have their own room again.
I'm also really excited about the prospect of having my own room too. I feel like I've almost forgotten what it's like. I have been immersed in living like a guest for so long.

I'm also excited about having central air/heat. We've been heating our house using our stove top burners for the past 8 years.

I'm excited about having windows and sitting my house plants in front of them and letting them grow by the light of the window.

I'm excited about having a closet to hang my clothes. And to plug my phone into an outlet in the wall without worrying about where its

I'm excited about a lot of things, but they are all still in waiting right now.  Sometimes hope seems so far off. My family has been through so many negative things in our life, it seems almost impossible that anything good can happen to us. But I still hold on to hope, and I dream, and I try to make it happen.

Today I was reading my Bible and I read in 1Timothy 6.  In verse 17, it says "Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in weath, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment."

Did you catch that last part?  "For our enjoyment"... I have read this Scripture many times. I know not to be a lover of money. I try not to be a lover of money (which can be difficult when the present god of this age is money rather than the true God), and I try to put my hope in God. Lets just say, I am familiar with this verse.But this morning as I read it, I could not help but be surprised because that phrase never stuck out to me before.

What an amazing thing to think that God not only provides for our basic needs but also for our enjoyment.  It kind of makes you think about the whole love of money thing in a different light.  Like it just seems silly to be hung up about money, or to even worry about it.

I know other scripture in Matthw 6 that says not to worry about what you eat, drink, or wear, because God knows what you need, and He will provide it as just as He provides for the birds of the air. I've meditated on these Scriptures before knowing I shouldn't worry about the things I need because God is God, but for my enjoyment!!! That is exciting!!! It brings to life the illustration of God as a Father caring for His children.

I've been reading my Bible consistently lately. This has been something that I have had a hard time with most of my life. But I've been leaving early for work so that I get there between 6am and 6:05 am and I sit there and I read my Bible and then spend a few minutes praying. So far I've read through 1 Corinthians and 1 and 2 Timothy. I think I might stay in 1 and 2 Timothy for a little while.

Well, it's 10:30. I should have been in bed already, so it's time for me to sign off.

Goodnight.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day Sucks

Life is just like this eternal struggle into nothingness. Or at least sometimes that is how it seems.

Yesterday evening was terrible for me. The details don't really matter.  Today was rather low key , but it's more like there is a spirit of depression sitting over me. I don't feel well. I'm fine physically, I am just not doing well emotionally.  The funny thing is that when a person is feeling bad for so long, the desire to feel better seems to go away. I feel almost resigned to say this is my life and embrace it.  Why feel better when nothing ever changes? We know that the logic is really screwy, but we dont feel it.

I resent Labor Day right now. I could have gone to work and earned a few more hours for my paycheck, but the real reason I resent it is because people are taking the Labor Day weekend and going to visit people. As a result hardly anyone was around to have group, so we didn't. I know it's not about me but I felt like I really needed to go to group tonight.   I'm not really close with anyone in the group, it's just kind of like it's a place to fit. It's something outside of my house, with people other than those I live with, whose hearts beat for a similar passion.

I just didn't want to be alone. At my house, I am alone all the time, even though people are always here. Its lonely here.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Beauty Analysis?

I am using the internet to tell me how beautiful I am. http://www.anaface.com/ if you want to torture yourself.

Apparently my eyes are too far apart and my nose is too wide. I laughed as I sat here and read my results to my mom.

It reminds me of a book series I started reading called Pretties. The story line centers around a society where when people turn 16 they have plastic surgery to make them "pretty".  they are all basically made to look the same, but the kids look forward to this day and long for it.  

It's a point of standardized beauty, where certain criteria have to be met. Your nose can only be so big, your eyes should sit only so far apart, your ear to nose ratio has to be just right. If you your proportions aren't symetrical, you are ugly.

Even though I know the book is fiction based (although, I do believe the author is purposely addressing a very real issue in our society), I see this standard of beauty showing up in nearly everything I encounter. I mean, I was just able to do a beauty analysis on my own face, doesn't that say something? 

I guess my question is   Why is symmetry considered beautiful? and who determines what is beautiful anyway?

You, my friends, are beautiful to me, no matter what anyone else says, and I know that God calls me beautiful no matter what else the world may say.

Peace be with you!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Huge

There is an ABC Family series that started a few weeks ago called Huge. It's a series about several people who have found themselves in "Fat Camp". I caught the premiere and decided to watch it for a few episodes to see if I like it or not. Amidst finding myself irritated over one character or another every single episode, I find myself growing increasingly fond of the show. I think its because I find myself emotionally connecting with each episode, and with different characters in different ways. But mostly I look at emotions and events in the show and it seems so real to me. There is real pain, there is real struggle, and there are real failures, successes, and everything.  Let me explain this further:

The most recent episode centered around the first weigh in of the camp season. Undoubtedly an intensely emotional time for everyone.

During the episode, one guy was goofing around and twice got busted by this dictator-like work out insructor. She got in his face, yelled at him, embarrassed him, told him he wasn't trying and asked if he wanted to be there, to which he meekly replied yes.   Ouch.

Several people went to the scales and found out that they had only lost one or two pounds at best.  A few of them specifically were very upset.  "All this hard work and I've only lost one pound?" one asked.  Another asked, "Why is this so hard?" and his friend replied something like "because we've got so much more to go."

Another girl, one of the main characters, Willamina (Will), the obstinate rebel who didn't want to be there to begin with, was very put off, as she has been the entire season, that people are buying into "a load of crap" that worth and beauty are determined by a number on a scale or the size of your waist. She has been very adamant that she should not have to change what she looks like to be acceptable to anyone.

and so on...

I suppose to some people this show is just another sob story, but to others who have spent their entires lives struggling with their weight and the stigma's attatched to them, it's real.  And I absolutely love that there is a series like.


I know my own struggles with my weght have been very trying with a few highs, and many low lows. I'm not into offering excuses for myself, but I guess my hope is that for a moment people like those who tormented me  nd others over our weight our entire lives would see an episode and get a glimpse of what its like, nd then maybe they would have a little mercy.
I know I'm a dreamer, but can you blame me?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Insignificant Prayers

Today I was overcome with sadness because of a conversation I heard at work.   As the kidstop kids and I were heading to the computer lab, I heard the club staff laughing and sharing a story. One of the club staff is an ordained minister and he was telling a story from Church. 

It went something like this: Prayer Request were being taken at church, in the midst of prayers for dying uncle, cancer patients, families suffering divorce, etc, a little girl pipes up and asks for prayer for her cat.

Anyway they were laughing about it and joking about how kids say the darndest things, and passing the duct tape to the parent.

I couldn't help myself, I spoke up and said "Doesn't God care about them all the same?" And the response I got was something like yeah, some people wouldn't see it that way.

I left the conversation at that, but there is so much I wish I would have said, and a few things I am glad I didn't. I know that I was still on the clock during the conversation so I don't know how much I could have said anyway.  But either way, I am saddened by the lack of value placed on a childs prayer.

So we dont pray for animals because there are more important things to pray about?

That is so like us... isn't it?  To prioritize and qualify prayer needs...

Why? By requesting prayer for that cat, that little girl was learning to trust God in all areas of her life, for the 'big things' and the 'small things.'  If we can't trust God with the 'small things' why would we bring the 'big things' to him? Also, who's to say that this cat isn't as important in this little girls life as any member of her family, or a dying cancer patient or distressed family? We all place value on different things.  By saying this kids prayer is not as important anyone elses invalidates not only the childs feelings, but our own God as well. We serve a God who is big enough to handle prayers about all sorts of things, there is no quota, no waiting list to be heard, no order of importance... God hears all of our prayers and He is perfectly capable of answering each and every  one according to His Purposes.

Furthermore Jesus rebuked his disciples for rebuking those who brought their children for Him to lay hands on, and he said in Matthew 19:14 "Let the children come to me. Dont stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children."

And another time, when asked who would be the greatest in Kingdom, Jesus replied in Matthew 18: 3-4  "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. "

Little children pray and want prayer for 'insignificant' things. Maybe we should all take note.

By the way, if you reply to this, please don't judge or belittle my coworkers, that was not my intentions. It was just an issue that weighed heavy on my heart.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A new month, a new start, as far as I am concerned.  It feels refreshing.
The Porter County Fair has been going on for the past ten days. Today was the last day. I am actually quite glad to be done.  It has been such a long week and a half. I worked at the fair today running the booth for Life Bridge and when I got home I felt like it had been three days since this morning. Today felt like a Monday.

The Church Building flooded just over a week ago. The damage was bad enough that professionals had to come in and tear out the walls as high as four feet. They showed the video during church today (which was at the fair in the Radio One tent). It made me so sad to see the colorful walls torn up. I know that we were planning a remodel soon. I don't know if that included repainting the walls, but it still made me sad.  It's good though, that the insurance is covering the repairs.

On Friday  I went to Deep River Water Park with my cousin Brandy and my coworker and her kids. Brandy got five free tickets and then the people who were planning to go couldn't, so she and I decided to go, but couldn't find anyone else for the other three, so I offered them to my coworker. She and her kids really enjoyed it. It was my first time swimming there. I loved the River thing, but the wave pool looked somewhat lame.

After Deep River, I took Brandy home and headed to Michigan City to hang out with Christine and Naomi.

Saturday we went to the fair, then dinner, then walmart, then home then to the train station so Naomi could go back to Chicago and spend the rest of her time here with her family before she goes back to Chicago. But we missed the train because my GPS had an epic fail. So we stayed at the trainstation until the last train came at 10:22pm.

I want a day to just sleep.

I haven't been to cardinal fitness in a really long time. I think I need to go tomorrow morning, but I don't know if I am going to be motived to get up early enough to go simply because I don't know if I will have the energy.

It seems like a lot of my friends have been having babies. It should't surprise me because this is the time when my friends will be getting married and starting families. They all have the most adorable babies. It's interesting to see how they are so excited about the first pregnancy and posting pictures and belly photos. I am interested in seeing if the trend continues for baby number 2 or 3 and so on.  But it makes me smile that they are so excited. I can hardly wait until I have that kind of excitement in my life.  It's all in God's time though.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Collections of musings.

I feel buggy, like something is crawling on me. At best, it is one of the ants I found in the kitchen. At worst... It is a flea that one of our dogs might have picked up.  Either way, I feel buggy and I don't like it.

I worked at the Porter County Fair all day long yesterday (Saturday) for my churches booth. And then I was at the fair a good portion of the day today, the church service, randomly helping Tammy in the trolley, hanging out with Brandy and Stevie during the evening. It was a good weekend.
 
So... I figured I should put up some pictures from my friend Stephanie's wedding.  Here they are:

The Bride with her Cowgirl Boots
Bride with her parents right before walking
Bride and Groom.... and CAKE!
Bride and Groom leaving
Bethel College Students Unite.

Well, those were just a few ofthe clearer quality pictures. I don't feel like putting more into this blog, so goodnight for now.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Wanderlust: The fight between Will and Sanity

Do I dare to ask God to tame the wanderlust in me? I feel so unsettled right now. I was journaling in my Private journal about who I believe I am, and when I realized that I have wanderlust. I looked up the word because I was like "Wait a minute, do I really know what that means?"
It was a pretty simple explanation:

Wanderlust: [won-der-luhst]
-noun. 1. A strong, innate desire to rove or travel about.

The word that really stuck out to me here was the word innate.

innate: [ih-neyt, in-eyt]
-adjective. 1. existing in one from birth; inborn; native
2. inherent in the essentil character of something
3. originating in or arising from the intellect or the constitution of the mind, rather than learned through experience.

Innate seems an appropriate word...It feels set so deeply within me...I don't know where it comes from or why it is there, but when I think about it, I feel unsettled about where I am. Its like my will is planning to go on an adventure,while my sanity is trying to convince my will that I need to stay put.

Sanity says "You have a great job that you enjoy, you have a church family that you want to serve, your friends and family surround you right now. You made plans to make working at the Boys and Girls Club your career, You were going to become CEO after you finally finished college. You were going to move out of your parents house when you could finally afford it and start a life of your own."

Will is very quick to reply: "How boring. A five, ten, or even fifteen year plan? Since when were you a planner? You are miserable in your parents house and you're obviously not getting out of there by working at the Boys and Girls Club. You can't even get what you owe to Bethel paid off, it's going to be a long time before you finish school... And CEO... really? Is that a passion for changing lives, or does that have more to do with the yearly income you saw posted on a job listing, or the idea of moving up in your career because it's 'what people do'? As for Church, Family and Friends, they got along okay without you before and they will be able to do so again."

Sanity replies: "You need to be a stable person. People don't respect a person who can't settle down and you will never get anywhere in life if you don't get your degree. It's a reasonable choice to want to move up in your career and it's perfectly natural to want to make more money. You may have to suffer for a little while, and it may take a few years, but you will get out of your parents house and be on your own someday. Besides, you made committments. You are committed to Project Valpo, to Bridge Builders, Community Groups/Bible Studies, to the Boys and Girls Club, and to many, many other things!"
Will: "Yeah, okay, and how many of those committment have you been pulling away from? How many of them have you resented at any given time because you would rather have been anywhere else? How many of those committments do you feel like you're failing with anyway? How many of them did you pray about before becomin involved? And what of these plans for your life, did you pray about them? And if you accomplish these plans... what's next anyway? Will that change life for you at all? Will they challenge you to go deeper with God? Will this enable you to help others to walk together with God? Do they reflect Gods plan for your life?"
Sanity: "It's secure. It's logical. It's SOMETHING!!! Where would wanderlust take you? What will you do? Where will you go?"
Will: "I don't know yet."
Sanity: "Maybe you should figure that out before you let go of what you have already secured. You'll look pretty foolish if you have to come crawling back."
Will: "Since when did God call us to security? Since when did God reveal the big picture before he called us to step out in faith? And when did he say that the things he has asked you to do wouldn't look like foolishness to the rest of the world?"
Sanity: "So you think God has called you to wander?"
Will: "I don't know. I just feel restless, like its time to move on."

Sanity: "But you don't even know where you will go!!!"

Will: "I know.."

Sanity: "But you've already decided in your heart."

Will: "Yes... and No... I can't move until Sanity gives up control. "

This is my real internal dialogue. An argument between my sanity and.. well, Im not quite sure who will is... perhaps my spirit. I dont know. Will feels like something deep inside of me. I guess I don't really know who Sanity is either. Sanity doesn't feel connected to me like will does though.  I need an outside perspective. I need thoughts. I need wisdom, wise counsel. Someone who knows me and can tell me something about me and God's perspective on this.


AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHRRRRRRRRGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!! (That was a scream of frustration and confusion that I couldn't do outloud lest I wake everyone in my house)
I suppose I should be sleeping but I think that I do my best thinking at night. I don't know if it's just because I encounter less distractions or if I am simply a night person and this is the best time that I function. I don't know, but It makes sense to me that anyone who is a night person would be one because distractions and obligations ( or time limits) are very much limited.

During the day the rest of the surrounding population is awake and can pop in at anytime and many of us expect the distraction. We also have schedules to keep and things to accomplish. But at night those things things go away. It's quiet. I have no where to be, no one to bother me...there's a kind of freedom in being a night person. But you also don't always have the option to call up a friend, and anyone who is mindful of the people around them will know that being quiet is probably a very smart decision. So I a way this with the responsibility of being silent kind of puts a person into thinking mode. Oh what things get accomplished ...

I love silence. I don't know if I've ever had the privilege of absolute silence. Background noise is always in the background somehow... The loud hum of an air conditioner, the snoring of the person next to you, cars on the highway a quarter of  a mile from your house... One of my new goals in life will to be to hear what absolute silence sounds like. :-)
Posted from Blogium for iPhone

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Close the Flood Gates!

I feel like someone is playing games with me, like a cat chasing a peice of string, or a dog chasing a laser light. I can see the object (or objective) that I am pursuing and I go after it, I get so close, I can almost taste it... but alas, it is pulled away from me at the last minute. Why? Am I a cat that I should be toyed with?
The fundamental difference between me and a cat is that this is not a game to me, and I don't find it fun to chase and never obtain.

It feels like that is what is happening with everything in my life right now. It's just like this constant game... I don't want this anymore.  I really thought I would make it back to Bethel this year. It seemed like things were falling into place, then a huge boulder fell in my path. I thought maybe I could get another more reliable car, another boulder.  I want to get into my own apartment, another boulder.  I thought maybe I would be able to go to Alabama for a friends wedding who is very dear to me. Things were falling into place, then wham, another boulder is blocking my path.

And then there are the other problems like feeling like my friendships are one sided, my mom suffering from Vitamin D deficiency and diabetes and losing her job, my grandma (the one I'm close to) suffering from a lump on her pancreas that could be cancer, but we dont know because we are waiting on the biopsy, and pancreatic cancer is inoperable,  use of illegal subtances by some family members, the excessive use of legal substances by the same family member...

This burden is so heavy. It is as though the floodgates of hell have opened on me and everyone I love!

I feel so... I don't even know if I can describe it... its seems like melodramatic emotionalism to say I feel like I am in my own personal Hell.... But it honestly feels that way to me right now. I can not find a word strong enough to convey the tormentual agony I feel.

I keep waiting for the day when I fall apart. I long for that day. I embrace it.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

http://lonepoet.deviantart.com/

Maybe it's a foolish plan, but maybe it's a God given opportunity.

I'm seriously considering moving out of my house. I know that has been my desire since I have been here, but despite the fact that I don't have anywhere to go, I dont feel like I can stay here any longer. I hate being here, so I don't want to do it anymore. I hate the fact that people don't respect my space.What a joke of a space anyway. I live out of a suitcase that sits on top of the kitchen table.

...

I suppose I could sit here and make a list of all the things I hate about being here.  But I've already done that in countless blogs that I don't pulish. I just want out. I want things to change, I don't want to be so dependent on my family.  Maybe thats what I need... to become less dependent on my family.  Would it be an exciting adventure or a foolish mistake to move out?

I certainly can't afford my own apartment. I can't just up and live with someone else because that would defeat the purpose of leaving my home here. I have no where to go, but yet I seem to have everything I need.

I have reduced my stuff so much that I can simply put it all in my car. 
I can shower at cardinal fitness.
I can do laundry at the laundromat.
I can charge my phone while I am at work.
I have coolers to store some food as long as I don't need to keep anything really cold, plus I have options to eat meals with friends.
I can sleep in my car.  The doors lock, I have blankets, and I could easily make it so that people cant see into my car. I can park my car in Walmart parking lots. 

And maybe by winter I will figure something out. I know that I can't live through out the winter in my car, otherwise I might die, but the summer... I think I could do it in the summer.

I would be out of my families hair, and no one else would have to know.  It's not like they know whats going on now anyway, nor does it seem like they would really care.

Maybe doing this would be a God-opportunity.  I don't know how or what the benefit would be.  I've been reading this book called In A Pit With A Lion On A Snowy Day. It has been a good and interesting read. It talks about this guy, Benaiah, who wrestled a lion in a pit on a snowy day and came out victorious.

Why would anyone do something like that.  What foolishness.... But that's what the book is talking about, where there seems to be foolishness, there is instead God's providence.  You never know what opportunities might arise in the future because of what seemingly foolish thing you do now.  How much of a food Noah must have seemed to the people around him.  Who knows.

I remember in college there was a guy who spent a semester living on campus, but not in the dorms. LOL
Calvin. I remember at first I was put off that he was doing that, but then I actually kind of admired that he did that. It's kind of revolutionary. He didn't mooch off of anyone or anything. He was simply there living. I respect that. A lot.

I want to step out of comfort for a while. I know it probably seems weird to say I want to step out of comfort when I am complaining  so much about living with my family. But that's not the point. The comfort factor is that I am so reliant on my parents. I have never been out on my own. Except maybe during the time that I had worked with Camfel Productions, but even then I had a company credit card that I used whenever there was a problem like the van breaking down or if my tour partner and I had to stay in a hotel.

It's time to cut the umbilical cord.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Some of my Photography

The only editing done to this photo is that is a cropped photo of the original, but I was really proud of this photo and the clarity and richness of color. I love my camera. It took quite a few tries to get a picture of this little guy that was so clear. I love the original, but to appreciate it for what it is you really need to see it big.

This is another one that I'm pretty proud of.  This picture is 100 percent completely unedited.  I was really shocked when I looked at after I took it. I think these flowers are beautiful and I hope I was able to capture that.


I also really love this picture because the flower is against the grain of the wood. I love the wood in the back ground.  A wooden fence (or staircase) makes a fantastic background (In my opinion).


I also took another photo from this angle using my Sepia feature. I'm not sure which I like better, full color or sepia, but I have to admit, I really like this one too.


Well, that is all I will share for now. All of these photos except for the first one are completely unedited, and the only editing done on the first one was that it was cropped so we could see the grasshopper better.  I put a few of the ones I thought I did a better job with on Deviant Art.  I know that I've got a long way to go before I can make astounding photography, but I enjoy the process and I hope you enjoyed viewing my photos

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Cardinal Fitness

So, I had been sacrificing and saving money so I could get a membership at Cardinal Fitness, and I went to the facility today to sign up and they had a special going on where there was no starting fee, so I only paid $15 dollars to join today. That is so much better than $120 plus the first months fee.  Dawn signed me up, and she was amazingly nice.  So I went and worked out tonight. It felt really great. 

But the even better surprise was that I saw Brian and Kim there and I did some strength training with them for about half an hour.

I did 35 minutes on the elliptical (including cool down time). It was pretty low key and I had gone 2.4 miles. My heart rate stayed around 157 beats per minute.

It was a good workout.

That is all.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Something has got to give...

Happy June. Maybe a new month will bring better days than May offered us.  My mom has been having a lot of health problems lately.  It started with her having chest pains last month and she was checked for heart disease, angina, and for having had a heart attack. She went on leave of absense for work, ad  She had blood tests, and a stress test and there was nothing to indicate that anything was wrong. There was no scar tissue to suggest she had a heart attack, her test all came back fine. She does not have angina or heart disease. But she wasn't feeling any better so after more tests she was diagnosed as having low Vitamin D. So her doctor took measures to get her vitamin d back up and sent her back to work.

She was there for two hours and passed out. So she went back to the doctor and had more test, and they have diagnosed her as having type 2 diabetes as well as being severely vitamin D deficient. She has tried to return to work a few more times, but has come home after about 2 hours each time because she has been getting so dizzy and sick.   She has to take four pills every morning, two in the afternoon, and six in the evening.  She gets sick to her stomach everytime. I don't blame her. I could not take 12 pills a day and keep from feeling sick.  She has also been very emotional, cries everyday a couple of times a day. It's not like she doesn't have reason, considering everything that she is going through in addition to the struggles we face as a family and in our daily lives.

With everything that is happening, and the stress that she has been facing, I sometimes worry that my mom won't be around much longer.

The family has really been struggling financially latey. We already struggle as it is, but with my mom being unable to work for more than a few hours she has not had a paycheck that she can use. What she did earn wento to cover her health insurance so she doesn't end up with $50,000 in hospital bills and doctors fees. So what we have now is almost half of what we would normally have.

Even though my brothers and I are digging deeper into our pockets to take care of one another, it doesn't do a lot to help.  We have all let a bill or two of our own go unpaid for the month so that we can help eachother out and survive.  When my parents went shopping for food, they only bought dinner meals, so quite often, dinner will be the only meal we eat. Occasionally, someone will bring something over for us and we will have cereal or ramen noodles, or even pancakes mix for a few days, but we are not strangers to doing without.  The sad thing is that this isn't even half of what has been going on at home.

Do you ever feel like something has got to give?  Do you every feel like you've hit bottom and just keep going down?

Recently I updated my facebook status with the statement that I felt like I was living week to week and day to day, and that I wanted to live life on purpose, but it is hard to do that when my time is spent trying to simply survive.   (and then you get comments from people who think they know what to say, but in reality, they just make you feel worse or make comments that are irrelevant).

I was thinking about that though, how even though there can be moments, long moments that seem to last for a long time, and we dont see hope for the future, but yet there is this innate desire to keep going. Instead of letting ourselves die, we continue to fight for life.  Oh, some of us want it all to end, but despite any misery we may be feeling, something in us keeps us going. I find that truly amazing.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Heh.

I love it that the weather has been warmer, but the jump in the temperature has been crazy. I start sweating before I even get into my car because it gets so hot that when I open the door there is just a rush of hot air. Also, the drivers side window doesn't work, and my passenger window was acting up today. Wouldn't be so bad, but it's humid too.  So all in all, it feels like a beach day. I want to go to the beach. Alas, I work from 3pm to almost 6:30pm every day this week in addition to my morning hours.  The beach will have to be a Saturday or Sunday thing.

Soon I will be moving from a 6:30am starting hour to a noon starting hour. Very excited about that. :-) I actually enjoy getting up around 8 am, but one thing that I have noticed about myself is that I seem to do better when I go to work immediately after getting up because then I don't have the time to think about not wanting to go to work for whatever reason.  But I like my job, so I don't know. I guess I can like my job and still not desire to go when it stands in the way of me doing something else I like.  For example, Brandy wanted to go to the beach today,and Christine called wanting to go for a walk between her internship hours. :-(

Yep.

I am so ready to be in my own apartment. I need my own space, outside of my parents living quarters. I think I just need some independence. (and a bed.I need a bed).

I guess technically I don't need it. I'm surviving now, but I would really like it. I do strongly desire it.

I heart the community group I go to on Monday nights.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Low Income/Poverty vs. Obesity

I have been reading a lot of articles and news stories that have been showing up recently that address the rising problem of obesity in America. Children and adults alike suffer from this "epidemic," and every one is offering their own solutions. For example, Santa Clara County in California thinks the solution is to ban happy meal toys so that children aren't tempted to choose the less healthy options. I actually see fast food get most of the blame, and I do think that is part of the problem. 

However, I have been struggling with my own weight since I was a small child. (I was 'dieting' as young as 2nd grade as far as I can remember), and eating out was not a regular part of my diet.  My parents only took my brothers and I out once in a while. My entire family struggled with our weight. 

I can look at all the reasons why. We weren't getting enough exercise, we ate the wrong type of food, we ate too much of the wrong type of food, we were all emotional eaters, and having grown up poor, we developed a mindset that we needed to eat everything that was put on our plate, even if we were full, because we might now have anything to eat tomorrow.   It was faulty and there was a lot that should change, but that was our experience. 

As I have stepped out of my parents guidance and have taken responsibility for my health, I have been addressing these issues one by one, and I have even been keeping an eye on new ideas to help me out.  But one thing that I have seen very little that addresses the fact that the unhealthy options, microwaved, fatty, and fried foods, are much cheaper than healthy, wholesome foods. (but maybe that is because everyone is attacking fast food as the problem, I don't know)

It cost more money to buy a bag of grapes than it does to buy a few cans of spaghetti-o's. And I can get a 12 pack  of soda for less than what it would cost me to get a gallon of milk or orange juice. 
It's just crazy if you think about it. Even in the fast food business, it cost more for me to get the salad and/or fruit and water than it does for me to get a double cheeseburger, small onion ring, and medium soda.   WOW. 

With the economy so messed up, and people having to keep a tight reign on their money, it is no wonder that the obesity rates continue to grow.    EATING HEALTHY IS EXPENSIVE!!!

I've been trying to see if there have been any studies done that link low income/poverty and obesity.  Look at what i've found. 

"While obesity rates are climbing among all ages, races and incomes, evidence shows that the poor are more likely to weigh too much than wealthier Americans." (http://www.seattlepi.com/national/190061_obesity09.html)

and 

"In King County, nearly 22 percent of adults living in households with incomes of less than $15,000 a year are obese, compared with almost 15 percent in homes pulling in $50,000 a year or more, according to an analysis by Public Health -- Seattle & King County of survey data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention."
(http://www.seattlepi.com/national/190061_obesity09.html)

But you know, in this very same article I was surprised to read this: 

"Between 1985 and 2000, the cost of fruits and vegetables shot up nearly 120 percent, while the price tags on soft drinks, fats, sugars and sweets increased by less than 50 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture."

And thats without mentioning the fact that outside of eating, exercise can be expensive.  Joining a gym, joining a sport, buying equipment.  Of course you don't need any of that to be able to exercise. I walk for exercise, but what if, because of my income, I lived in an area where going for a walk or run in my neighborhood was dangerous? That option for me would be closed. 

Here a few more links I found connecting Low income and obesity:
http://factoidz.com/why-lowincome-and-obesity-are-linked-together/
http://www.scientificblogging.com/news_releases/study_low_income_equals_high_obesity
http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/abstract/127/12/2310
http://www.news-medical.net/news/2004/12/02/6603.aspx

I know that it won't be a magic cure to the obesity problem, but I do think that it would help to lower the prices of healthy and organic foods, and raise the prices of foods that are less healthy. 

Friday, April 30, 2010

A little Bit of Good News Today!

Wow, today feels like a busy day. I worked from 6:30 to 9, came home, ate breakfast, watered my garden, took Brandy to her probation meeting, went to the Boys and Girls Club to pick up my check, and now I'm home. In a few hours I am going to head to Walmart, then to Life Bridge at 3 to meet with Traci, then to Kouts at 6 to meet with Tammy.

At some point I would also like to walk a few miles. I don't know what I will do because right now I want to relax because I feel a little overwhelmed.

When I picked up my check today I got some good news. I am getting the position at the South Haven location for the summer which means it is closer than the Portage location,  and it is in the afternoon. I am very excited.

Friday, April 16, 2010

RIP Howser

In the past 20 minutes, our dog Howser passed away.


Thursday, April 8, 2010

It's official

I am now officially an employee of the Boys and Girls Club.

Just though I would share.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Job I Want....

The job I want...

The job I want is fun.

The job I want pays well. Really well.

The job I want is filled with purpose.

The job I want is flexible. I want to choose my own schedule and have the freedom to change it on a whim if I so desire (and/or be able to take my work with me and do it where ever).

The job I want uses all of my talents and skills and passions and hobbies.

The job I want encourages me to grow.

The job I want doesn't require me to adhere to some bizarre dress code (or any dress code).

The job I want doesn't seem to exist.

So what shall I do while I dream about this job that doesn't seem to exist. I had my interview with the Boys and Girls Club last Wednesday, and I am waiting for them to get my background check and to finish calling my references.  I think they liked me in the interview. I will hopefully find out if they are going to hire me by Wednesday.

I have been looking online at different opportunities and job openings and thinking about what Iwant to do as well as what I can do with my limited education (4 years of college and no degree... I'm trying really hard to get back to college and finish up my last 20 some credit hours.)

I'm really discouraged and I hate it when I feel like that. I wish I could describe the discouragement.

This discouragement is like....

...standing in an eternal limbo... a waiting that never ends.

...hope is gone, only the question of why we keep this up remains.

... feeling like the path to success is being blocked...like there is an obstacle at every corner that further delays whatever it is that I am seeking.

... anxiety.

...inescapable.

...despair.

...a confusion... whats the point? What's it all worth in the end?

... a desire to make it all just end... like hoping the problem will go away is futile, you just want your existense to end.

All this over not being able to find a job and being dissatisfied with what is available. Can we say drama queen?   I'm just glad that this feeling is short and fleeting.

This life will never be what we expect or hope it to be. Are we setting our standards too high?

Or do we long for something greater because we were made for something greater! And our desires reflect that.

I think about why this hopeless despair sets in, and I think that though we are made for something greater, there is a deep and troubling reason for it.

Not everyone has the same opportunites in life.  I worked with a girl who believes adamantly that everyone does have the same opportunities and those who don't succeed in life are lazy underachievers who want everything to be handed to them. 

An interesting thought for someone who DID have everything handed to her growing up.

It's hard for me to think about this.... It's hard trying to succeed in life. It's hard trying to get back to college and earn my degree.  I'm still pushing toward it, but the fact is that it's hard. 

I'm fine with hard work. Anything worth doing is not going to be easy.  But there comes a point when you are constantly swimming against the current that you just become physically and mentally weak and tired.

Swimming against the current is a pretty good analogy.  Everyone is fighing against the flow of a mighty river to achieve some goal.  Everyone moves at a different pace and it will be easier for some and harder for others. 

Some people are naturally born with a powerful engine operated boat that moves them with ease and they reach their goals fairly easy and with little standing in their way.

Others have smaller boats, some with motors, some requiring manpower.
Others still have nothing more than a rowboat or a raft.
And others still are simply swimming, they are moving upstream through their own power with nothing to aid or protect them from the dangers of the river.

Who do you think is going to find their goals first and easiest?  Who do you think is going to struggle more?

Who do you think is in danger of giving up or becoming too tired to keep going?

The swimmer.

The swimmer has everything against them. The current of the river, rocks, debris, storms, the coldness of the water, fatigue from their own manpower being used, inability to replenish strength because there is no where to carry anything for any form of renewal.

One can be a strong swimmer... the strongest even.  But the current is strong and it is pushing against the swimmer.  Rocks and debris in the water, like speedbumps, trip up the swimmers, potentially cause harm, sometimes prevent the swimmer from being able to take the necessary paths. etc, etc. etc.

Obviously this is not about swimming and its easy to keep going with the analogy. 

I guess the idea is that I feel like a swimmer.  No amount of trying is going to put an end to the obstacles that I am facing. Its like society is directly opposed to success if you weren't born into a family that can wave a dollar and remove all obstacles.

It's probably a good thing that I am stubborn.

No more ramblings for tonight. I'm still discouraged.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Door Closed.

It's 2am and I am hiding out in the bathroom.  Why? I just feel like it.  It's quiet and I can be alone for a little while. I just hope no one has to use the bathroom any time soon.

I just want some time. I am beyond tired right now, but I am not ready to sleep yet because I just need some time.  I wish it were warmer, because then I would just sit outside with my laptop and enjoy the spring/summer nights.

I checked my email when I got home from dropping Rachel off and I had a letter from the job I was supposed to interiew with saying that they basically weren't going to hire me. I haven't even had the interview yet. It was supposed to be at 3pm today. but I guess thats okay because I didn't really think i was qualified for the job anyway.

Do you ever wonder what God is up to? Ofcourse you probably do. Know one really fully knows the mind of God, do they?

I wonder what opportunities He is going to open for me now... and how many more He is going to close before He opens the door I can walk through.

I do now want to be unemployed for the next 5 months, so please, God, open doors for me and provide.

I guess that's all really. I'm too tired to do any more.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Home Again

Wow. It has only been since Friday that my employment with Camfel Productions has ended but it feels like a month ago.  That may be that I just checked out mentally after we got the news.

But that's okay, I see such an opportunity right now for me to cultivate the relationships I've been yearning for.

Today I brought Brandy with me to church, and tomorrow Rachel and I are going to the twenty-somethings group.  Then on Tuesday I have an interview at 3pm.  

Waiting on God to lead...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I am Sad, but I'm not disappointed.

I guess today was the "ides of March" and it completely passed me unaware. That would be funny if the same thing happened on St. Patty's day. Although we will be making our way to Chicago at that point, so it might be hard to forget.

It's been a long week, but I have some news.

It's more than me getting the process of returning to Bethel started. (I already made mention of that).

I was recently laid off from work.  Now this not necessarily a bad thing. How many times have I said my heart was no longer with Camfel Productions.  And despite my heart longing for other things, I stuck to my committment to excellency over adequacy.  Katey and I found out on Thursday when I called the team leader to do my weekly call in. He let us know then.  It sounded like he was having a hard time telling us. But we were assured that the reason we were being let go was due to the economy. It's actually been this way for some time now that schools have not been ordering shows. The company has scrunched schedules together, and we really just have nothing scheduled for us after this Friday.

My team leader was very adamant in the fact that we have done nothing wrong and that he believes Katey and I are excellent Technicians. We were not the first team to go, and we won't be the last. He even said he would personally write letters of reference to each job that we applied to, and that if we should ever decide to return to Camfel, our applications would be a formality and we would already have the job. 

I thought I would be disappointed, even though I have been desiring to do something else because I was fully prepared to wait until June. I even wanted to wait until June because I wanted to stick to my committments and my contract had me going until June.  But I found that disappointment was actually quite the opposite of what I was feeling.  I was at peace.  While it is true that I am certainly experiencing some sadness (I had some great adventures and learning experiences with Camfel), there is no disappointment.

I have this sense... I have been thinking about this... I went into Camfel Productions knowing and believing that God had me there for a reason, He was teaching me and changing me, perhaps even restoring me.... and now "It is finished." are the words I keep hearing in my heart.

You know, it really didn't even dawn on me until I had typed the words just now that part of my reason for going to Camfel was for restoration, for healing.  It makes sense that there is a point that everything had to be stripped away from me. Whether by my choice to give it up or by force, I had to be left with nothing for a time. I had to learn to rely on God more deeply and I had to give Him room He wanted to work in me and through me.

The wonderful thing is that I do feel like I have been restored, that I have gone from broken to beautiful.   That peices of the puzzle that were not in place before have found their connection and I am a whole being, complete in the image of God.

I realized that I've been laughing again.  Truly laughing! I'm not afraid to be a little silly. I feel like me again!

I also feel that I have been refined. I have been through the desert and the jagged edges of me have been smoothed away by the sand to reveal the glory and imagine of God. I know who I belong to, my convictions stand stronger and more powerful than they ever have. Jesus is my Lord and I belong to Him.

I find it slightly ironic that just a few days before I spoke with my teamleader, I had started filling out applications for places like the boys and girls club.

God has His hand on me and on my tour partner and He is leading us each step of the way. 

I wonder what he has in store for me next. Certainly, I am sure He will be watching to see if I pursue the ministry and relationships I desired that working with Camfel would not allow me to have.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Returning to College

I feel almost like a prodigal child planning my return home, except I'm not wallowing in shame, I'm full of determination. I'm feeling stronger than before... and wiser, more focused, more goal oriented.

So Im not back in college yet, but the process has been set in motion, and I'm excited for that.

Jeremy Higgins



I knew Jeremy and his family through the church I attended when I was younger.  I didn't really have any contact with them after my family moved, but this is still important. So I just wanted to pass it on with the verication that this is a real person and a real situation, and not just some forward I'm posting in my blog

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

It's not... but it is.

It's interesting, the way things seem to turn... I wrote a letter to a group of people and mailed it today, and in some of it, I was talking about how I feel ineffective in ministry, and how I want to be more relational.  Well, today the two guys who helped us set up for the assembly just opened up to us right away, then after the first assembly a junior high school student came up to me and said Thank You and hugged me.  It was a little strange because I was unsure whether I was suppose to hug him back or not (schools get weird about that), so I did the sort of half hug pat you on the back hug. 

Then after the second assembly, a girl walked up to me and started talking about how she was bullied in Middle School and how now she stands up for people being bullied. I told her the school needs more people like her. 

It was the first time in a while that I felt like our video was actually making an impact.  I mean, I'm sure that the video impacts people more than we can know, but there seemed to be a lot of response today. Today felt like a very relational day. Of course, there isn't much of an opportunity to follow up on the people we talk to, but for the moment, I hope they see that I can be someone who cares because I don't just forget about them after we leave the school.

On another note, Katey and I tried out the couch surfers website, and we had a positive experience. We stayed with a married couple with three young boys last night in Muncie, IN. It was great to be able to meet them (except we didn't meet the boys, they were in bed). They were curious about what it is that we do and we had some great converstations.  And I'm still alive to tell the tale, so that's a plus. 

I'm really excited that tomorrow I get to sleep in.  I don't have to get up until 6am!!!  Over the past few days, we've had to leave the places we were staying by 5:15am. I normally give myself half an hour, so I am going to get an extra hour and a half to sleep, which is good, because I haven't been getting enough sleep lately. I think I've been averaging between 5 and 6 hours on most days, which is not terrible, but day after day of doing this, and you really start to feel it (hey, that can help explain the mood swings too!).  Then also, Katey read something that was along the lines of: for every 4 hours of driving you do, you need an extra hour of sleep in addition to the 8 hours you're already supposed to be getting. I laughed because we regularly drive 4 or more hours in a day.

Anyway, I have to wake up in 7 hours and 15 minutes, so it might be time to say goodnight.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

to be a woman... That is the curse

Isn't it amazing the mood swings that women can go through?

Yesterday I was feeling so inspired and ready to change the world, to bring a message of hope... but today I can't even find it for myself. 

Why do I have days like that?

I am an emotional creature. I am looking forward to a future that seems so far away. I must try not to be discouraged at the wait.

Friday, February 26, 2010

I've been reading the Freedom Writers Diary for the past few days and every time I pick it up, I find myself drawn into the lives of the students who wrote the diary. I don't know who they are, but my heart connects to theirs. I could relate to a few of them on minor levels, but mostly I know that they have suffered in ways that I can't even have nightmares of.

My heart connects to theirs because I want the same thing that they, as freedom writers, were striving for, social and racial justice.  

I am inspired by these students and by their teacher. It really forces me to think about what I can be doing to make a difference.

Maybe that is actually why I love Camfel's video Balance of Power so much. I feel like Balance of Power Speaks to many of the situations that the students had faced. Obviously it's not even close to touching on all of it, but it's something, and I think it's something powerful.

But I do wonder how many of the students who would see the video and have had experiences like the Freedom Writers did... how many of them would write the video off, or simply not even pay attention. 

Can a video alone make an impact?

I hope that schools and teachers are following up the video with the resourses that Camfel offers. 

The Freedom Writers found themselves inspired and ready to change because someone dared to get dirty with them.  Ministry is relational.  I told a friend that I was struggling because I want to get in the dirt with children and teens rather than press a play button and give an inspiring conclusion.

Today Katey and I were playing the Ninja game and some of the students from the middle school we were at joined us (and beat us... they were good).  It was so cool, just to play a game with them...because it felt more personal and more relational and more like ministry to play that game than it did to talk with them and ask them what their favorite school subject was while setting up or tearing down.

I think so much that I want to change the world. I really do want to start a revolution. That's not just the title of my blog.  I want to inpsire change. To be a revolutionary...

I feel so alive to think about it.
 I feel like this is what I was made for! 

Maybe it was.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Half way through?

Wow, I haven't updated this thing in a while. I've thought about it several times, but when it came down to actually doing it, I guess I just wasn't really motivated.

Not much of any particular interest has really happened.

My cousin Christopher was bailed out of Jail recently, and I guess he is staying with my family.

My friend Christine's uncle died recently, plus there are other private matters going on in her life. I wish I could be of more help than feeling bad for her and feeling guilty that Im relieved that it's not me dealing with the issues.  I hope we do get to hang out soon.

I ran away from my issues. That was probably the best solution for me because it removed me from them, and now I can look at them from a new perspective. I have a... sort of... have a plan for when I have to deal with them again.

I have a confession to make.  The idea of being in a (romantic) relationship with someone scares me to no end. Perhaps I deliberately sabotoge myself.  Regardless, I feel content until God chooses to make any changes to my relationship status.

Speaking of relationships, I sent one of my guy friends a Valentine because he posted on his facebook that in Korea girls give Valentines to the boys, then he made a comment to the affect of "So ladies, I'm waiting" then other people told him not to expect anything, so I went out and bought him a card, candy, and a stuffed animal and sent it to him. So now he can say in your face to the people who said he'd never get anything. LOL.

We've had about 9 days off without any shows so far. Our next one is Friday. Tomorrow (Thursday to me) Katey and I plan to go roller skating with her friend Anna Marie.  Christine doesn't know if she will be able to see me or not even though she will be in the chicago area.

And by the way, my work partner, Katey, is one of a kind.  My life is richer for knowing her.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

I've been feeling it coming on for a little while... I feel like I'm changing. Or maybe I'm just getting in touch with who I really am. It's a mystery to me.

Lately, I have noticed that I feel very antisocial most of the time.  Sometimes I just want to get away and be by myself, even if I am doing nothing at all.

I used to thrive on being around people, not so much anymore. I still enjoy being around people, but I've been really valuing and appreciating the times when I am by myself.

It feels calmer... more serene.  I find peace in it.

"Be still and know that I am God."

Maybe that's what it's all about.

I was reading my Bible last night and  I was in Genesis reading through a lot of Abrahams story and I was struck with a realization.  It seemed that it was an honor and a blessing for a guest to stay at your house. This was such a revelation for me because I think a lot of times people look at having a guest either as a burden or an opportunity for ministry. And I think at times it can truly be both.

But what a way to look at hospitality though... Instead of being the blesser or the burdened, it was like a  special privilege to have someone stay with you.

I don't think I have the gift of hospitality, but imagine how amazing it would be to carry that perspective.  Maybe people who have the gift of hospitality do think that way. I don't know. But I think the idea is beautiful.

 I've also been thinking a lot about my role as a guest in people's houses.  I think a lot of times I feel extremely uncomfortable and I feel like a burden. I fear that I will say something or do something that will offend the host.  I think that probably stems back to when I was ten years old. I was at a friends house for a birthday party sleep over and my friends dad looked at me and said "You know what I've noticed about you, you're really rude." 

He later apologized to me for saying it, but I wasn't sure what I had done to offend him, and ever since  I've always felt uncomfortable being a guest in someone's house, especially overnight.

Anyway, I wonder, how I as a guest can make the host feel as though having me in their house was a blessing to them.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Supersize Me

Anytime I feel like I need motivation to eat and be healthier, I can watch Supersize Me and suddenly I am very inspired and health conscious.   My work partner, Katey, and I are watching it right now.  I feel sick watching him eat it all.

It seems crazy to me how eating fast food effected even the persons mood. I believe it. It's just an eye opener.  Fast food has addictive tendencies.

I think that is one of the reasons I am glad that we have had free housing for the past ten days. Just about everyone who has housed us has cooked for us. Last night we had veggi soup, thanks to a friend parents who housed us.  :-)

Katey and I have also made it important to work out together at least 3 times a week. I have a 30 minute (Turbo Charged Fat Burner) tae bo video  and a 90 minute aerobic and cardio workout, and Katey has a 3-mile walking program.

sigh

Sunday, January 24, 2010

I think for me silence is a part of the fight or flight response. When I dont feel comfortable where I am, I am silent. It's the flight part of the response, only I cant truly flee or remove myself from the situation at hand, but I can figuratively by being quiet. Silence in essence, makes me disappear, it lets me go unnoticed. If I go unnoticed then I cant bother anyone. If no one is bothered by me then they cant reject me. So silence is my defense mechanism.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

And all I can hear is blah blah blah...

I hate packing.  Have I ever mentioned that before? Well, it's true.  I think that probably stems from packing so much during my life. Moving to another house, another school, going to college, coming home again. To me it is overwhelming.  Even when all I have to do is wash my clothes, fold them, and put them in my suitcase.  Overwhelming. It's probably overwhelming because there is a part of me that does not want to leave.

I'm not dreading going back on the road. I'm sure once I get going it will be a welcome change. But I am very comfortable where I am at right now (well, mostly... I'd be better with my own apartment).  I guess the thing is that I've had my grand adventure. I've done my traveling. I don't think it's all out of my system yet, I think I will always be a little wild, but a part of me desires something a little more steady, and... dare I say it?... predictable.

I like going to the same church twice. I like going to the same Bible study every week (I just like going to a Bible study at all!)  This past Monday I brought my friend Rachel to a Bible study group I attend when I'm home. She really liked it. Even though we needed to leave and meet up with Christine (because Christine was taking her home) she wanted to stay longer, and she wants to come back again.  I just feel like if Iwere more permanently in Valpo, I could bring her every week with me.

I know that working for Camfel is pretty much living ministry, but I feel myself being drawn to a more relational ministry where I see the same people over again and can build relationships with them. 

One of the really great things about Camfel is that my first ministry is to my tour partner. That is definitely relational ministry, but it's different than where I feel like I need to be, or will need to be.  I believe whole heartedly that God brought me to Camfel, so I know that I am right where He wants me. In June (ish?) when my contract ends, that may change.  I will definitely work for Camfel again if God wants me to stay.

I really want to get my degree in Youth Ministry and Adolescent Studies.  Part of that could be that I just miss doing homework. I am too weird, I know. I see a whole world of opportunities opening up for me just by getting a degree. I don't think it matters what degree I get. My opportunities seem greater just by having one. But I want the one in Youth Ministry.  I don't know where I will go with that degree... Facilitate a youth ministry... work for a para-church organization... be a dorm mom... continue with Camfel Productions... work at KFC and do living ministry...  I hope all of my ministry is living ministry.

I just want to be effective. It would be nice to see tangible results every now and then... to know that I'm making a difference, to know that people are seeing that God loves them so much and wants to be in a relationship with them... to see people realize that this life is not the end, that something greater exists and they have access to it, not just when they die, but here and now... The Tangible Kingdom...
I don't see the growth of students because I don't usually see them more than once.

Monday, January 18, 2010

"Sometimes one of the most Spiritual things you can do is take a nap"

Have you ever been so tired that when your alarm clock went off in the morning you wanted to cry.  That happened to me twice today. I haven't been sleeping very well since I've been home, I suppose that could be due to the fact that I don't have my own bed.  And because of one of our dogs, Nina...

Emotions were high today.  I was feeling very crabby, but right now I'm kind of in a mood where I just don't care anymore. sleep.....sigh.

So it's probably a good thing that I will be starting my tour five days early. I found out last Wednesday that I will be starting my tour this Wednesday.  It will be good to be working again. February might be a little rough money wise because I won't get a very large reimbursement (ten days worth?) and I'm not sure when my next pay is coming. But it's all good because I know that God is taking care of me.

So, on January 9 I started this read through the Bible in a Year thing on crosswalk.com, and it takes me through the Bible chronologically (cool!) and I have already missed a day. I am so lame.