juxtaposed: mornings

I used to write poetry. Sometimes I still do. I stopped publishing it, but then I remembered sometimes expression supersedes coherence, as such. To that end, here’s a recent work:

 

one morning

waking up, having maybe never fallen asleep

wandering through valleys of sensation and visions of confusion

held, safe, touched, known,

looking into eyes, losing track of I

in we

in love

in lost-track-of-time, but found-so-much-else

 

one morning

a night that never paused

just lagged

and bent

and breezed in storms of clouds and heads and hearts

now rowing on determined path to remember

reaching out  with left-overs, with dregs, with vapors for this hand-breath

fighting the urge to analyze non-existent lying eyes

fighting to believe promises never made, hopes never related, dreams that cannot find their place

 

 

“I don’t need answers, I just need some peace. I just need someone who can help me get some sleep.”
-Ben Rector, When A Heart Breaks

People Change

a “just a thought” post.

looking in the mirror just now, i felt comfortable. I wondered if maybe i’d lost weight, maybe the tan or the outfit or maybe….. maybe I’m just different.

 

I think i’ve done an okay job on this blog of chronicling the ups and downs of surviving disordered eating and skewed body image. Tell me if i haven’t. But for the last year or so, I’ve just been MOSTLY happy with myself.  Even my “not that chubby” series culminated with: I’m happy with myself.

 

There are some of us who believe people do not change. I used to think that. There are some that think you have to CHOOSE to change. I used to think that too.

 

So I’d love to say that either I’ve always been this way, somewhere, deep down. But that would be a lie. And I’d love to say that I just chose once and kept choosing to love truth more than my perception of it. But, that’s not really how love works, is it?

 

I find more and more that instead of a bright light, a moment of revelation (although, as Paul and his donkey would affirm, those happen), love often happens as a whisper that says, “Hi, I am here, would you like to see me?” And most often, I say no. I would not like to see love. I’d like to see traffic or heartache or hunger but not love. Sure COGNITIVELY i’d choose love. But when I “snap” at someone or fall into despair, my actions are choosing to see circumstances, not love.

 

Love, though, is of all things, first patient. (oh and I am, of all things, often first IMpatient.) And love keeps whispering. And somehow, as I say “yes” more and more, as love convinces me, wears down my defenses with comfort and joy and kindness and always rejoicing, i find the film falling from my eyes.

 

Until FINALLY, love doesn’t have to whisper from across the room. Love knocks on the door of my heart and I am over-the-moon. I smile brightly, “LOVE! I’m so glad you’re here.” And love comes in.

 

and with love in my heart, i look back at all the times I’ve stomped on him, and I become ashamed. I want to turn away, I don’t want him to see me so close, to know just…ALL of me. And with this knowledge, this perfect knowledge of my past and my future, with power to do anything with me, what does love do?

 

Love….loves. There is no fear in love. Perfect love casts out all fear. And When he does, I, now fearless, run back.

 

So…I think people do change.

 

Love changes them.

i found love in the middle of a textile while making a gift. how kind of love to remind me, he's everywhere.

Isaiah 25:8 (He said so)

I get confused at times.

like, i have trouble reading, and will sometimes read the wrong words, or just not understand what they mean. Mostly, i just need to take a moment and think a bit more on the situation, even if i’m just being asked a simple question. I don’t think it’s something wrong with me. But I do feel like I’m different. I haven’t seen many other people have to repeat a question asked of them before they are able to answer.

Have I mentioned (i know i have) that I am surrounded bu the most amazing people? People who love me and will tend to me and be patient and repeat themselves and learn to communicate in a way I’ll understand and even sometimes avoid certain things because they know i WONT understand?

Uhm, anyway… it won’t always be this way. (The way where I get confused and hurt that I’m confused, etc).

I know it’s true, because He said so.

He will swallow up death forever;

and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces,

and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth,

for the Lord has spoken. – Isaiah 25:8

Insomnia/Falling in the Toilet/I’m a Klingon

You see this face?

THIS face

THIS is the face of a girl who just fell in her dang toilet.

I’ve been talking lately about love. How the love songs I’m hearing and the engagment stories I get to be a part of and the weddings i go to and heck, even the friend’s-future-spouses I pray for just make my heart happy. But you know the point at which all this crap (and i totally say this with a smile on my face) gets old? The point at which your roommate’s fiance leaves the toilet seat up!

a girl's hiney oughta be SAFE in her own home!

I’M LOOKING AT YOU, CAPITÀN!

Oh, and you see this braid?

i like the natural poses

yeah, I finally learned how to do that little lauren conrad braid in a way that stays (i.e i’m not messing with my bangs all day). Except I scrunch up my forehead a lot. So I can’t tell if it’s totes adorbs…

alien look enhanced with hair down

or if I look like I’m half klingon.

he's so saucy.

oh my holy hottness, y'all. Try not to stumble.

so it’s equally likely i’ll wear one all the time or never again. Except for tomorrow. cause I don’t want to wash my hair.

anyway, i have to wake up for FOUR STRAIGHT HOURS of class in the morning, enbeedee. Just can’t sleep so it seemed like a good time for a photo shoot.

On Mondays You Expect a Post

and I’m not sure i’ll be able to write one, so for now, here’s a recap of my day that it’s entirely likely only I will care about.

Mel had hermit crabs at the apt. one crawled out of it’s shell and died. (a bit dramatic of a reaction, i know.) but she asked me to take them up to the high school for the middle school ministry to use (don’t ask) and i did. Except no one was there when i got there, so i left them on a table outside the room where they meet. Later, E, the dude working that site’s jr high event, tracks me down, throws his hands in the air, and shouts,

“DO YOU HAVE MY CRABS?!”

Apparently he hadn’t found them. My cell had a similar message from mel.

“Yes, woman. Eric got the crabs. And THIS is a ridiculous conversation.”

So there you have it. Eric has crabs and I’m probably 15 for thinking thats funny but whatever, I’m putting it all out there.

A cop made fun of my fedora. but a tall good looking man (albeit beardless) complimented me on it and then smiled at me a while, so i’m calling that a win.

I got to teach the lesson to five classes of preschoolers. I hooked em with the line, “BUT THEN, KING SAUL HAD TO GO POTTY!!” and doing a little potty dance. then we all practiced being little creepers. You know, like david, when he crept up to King Saul in the cave where he was pottying. Whatever. it worked and the kids all repeated the bottom line, “GOD HAS THE BEST PLAN FOR MY LIFE.” It just so happens that this morning, a potty dance was in that plan.

The lesson today was so great to hear. Like the one given from the stage. Not the one I taught. Geez, I’m not that vain out loud. And they are recording a live album at my church. I don’t know how I feel about it. I got used to hearing Chris Tomlin live and now I can’t stand his recorded stuff ’cause it’s like Taco Bell compared to gamma’s cooking. i can’t handle the processed, packaged version, no matter how good it is. (I mean, not that Taco Bell is good. Taco Bell is a result of the fall of man, ppl friends.)

in a situation on which i will elaborate later, maybe, I had to take a person aside and say “someone told me that you said something mean about me.” Yeah, i sounded just that much like a 5 yr old when it happened, to. But it turns out that it was a misunderstanding (like i said, elaboration later) and afterward I was able to concentrate on worship. God tell us how to do things for a reason.

During lunch, I did The Dancer’s hair and make up for a wedding. Not her wedding. But “You’re doing my hair when i get married, you know that, right. and you’re pretty much the maid of honor. So you’ll need to live with me the week of the wedding.” “You know, last two times I was pretty much the maid of honor, literally the exact same thing happened. So, yeah, i figured. ” ;)

I also went to a meeting where I had such bad breath that I asked the man leading to step away as I asked a question. He obliged. But he made faces at me. Actually, the faces were earlier. I told him he was imitating me wrong and he said, “Uhm, duh. I’m right. I can see you.” “Yeah, but I can see YOU, and you’re doing me wrong. It looks different with a beard.” “Everything looks different with a beard.” Couldn’t have said it truer myself.

The 5 was so crazy i literally don’t remember most of it. Good crazy, though. OH! I do remember that one little lovey was coloring and all of the sudden stopped, looked up, and said, “OH! And excuse me.” Apparently she’d ::ahem:: released some pent-up frustration. The kind that was making her tummy hurt. She was all smiles after that.

At the 7, I got to hold a screaming baby. Which may not sound like your cup of tea, but I prayed for the Holy Spirit to come and calm his heart, and every time he calmed down, I prayed out loud, “Let’s thank the Holy Spirit little baby, for giving us peace in our hearts.” And when he would cry ‘daddy, daddy,” I could say, “I know baby. But Jesus missed his daddy too sometimes. He understands your pain and he can comfort you.” Eventually he calmed down and we went upstairs (he kept asking to go….turns out he wanted to hear the music!! he “sang” along, too) where two men who have better things to do gave me mad props for being a super nanny. Yep, i’ll take it. I’ll take the compliment knowing full well it’s 100% the Holy Spirit, but I’m glad he chooses to work through me.

Plus the baby was ADORABUNS. Total chick magnet. And dude magnet. Better than a puppy.

Speaking of better than a puppy, I found a cute little baby opossum (seriously, he was cute!! like if someone made a stuffed animal of an opossum that didn’t really look like one but was a cute version of one, that would be the little baby i found). I tried to play with him by enticing him with left over chipotle on a fork. He was gonna go for it, but i was late and had to go. Poor thing. he’s probably sad he missed the chance to play with me.

then i drove home and blogged. cause im cool.

LOVE YOU!

assorted array

::A list of things that could each be their own entry, if time had allowed, and equally randcom photos::

Churches aren’t perfect, neither are people. And neither am I.  But I want to love churches. I want to love people. I even want to love me. Because God says I’m special to him, and that He loves me,so that seems reason enough for me to do the same.

 

I like to call this, "asking for trouble"

 

 

Some people have trouble loving others. Some have trouble loving themselves. Both of these things reflect pride – a belief that their judgement of a situation is more perfect than the judgement of the One Righteous Judge.

 

In grad school, you get to use a big-boy hole-punch. 40 PAGES!

 

 

The cannon of beauty takes into account none of the beauty of surprises and idiosyncrasies. Your big nose and little eyes and wonky ears and veiny feet were on purpose….

she said….just before she wondered what place that purpose has in a child with a cleft lip, or mal-formed hands. Did God mean for Quasimodo to have corrective surgery?

You should love your tree.

 

Red Raider, Tech Logo, Goal Post and....RAINBOW UNICORN?!

 

 

When we err on the side of being conservative, we are still erring. Yes. Some people call us conservative. And just because it makes us more comfortable doesn’t make it right.

The happy medium may not be on the narrow road.

I still love the sunshine on my skin. And have crispy face right now.

I’m a sinner. Even though I spend a lot of time at church.

If I saw as poorly as i slept…..oh wait.

You know, “Are you okay to drive?” Is a rather silly question to ask when someone  has trouble recognizing you from 10 feet away. I can see cars. I don’t have to be able to tell you if they had a ding 3 inches below the back passenger door handle to effectively navigate a highway.  But thank you for caring.

 

SPECK is a ONE YEAR OLD! And what a mature one. Ate his birthday cupcake with a SPOON.

 

 

“I don’t want to waste my time if she has a boyfriend,” leads me toward thinking you feel that caring for and pouring into a person regardless of the benefit to you is seen as “wasting your time.”  To which I lovingly disagree. But you’re a busy dude, I understand what you meant. ;)

The books of Acts is crazy. It should be an HBO mini series.

COWBOY UP, CREAM PUFF, BE A MAN. By which I mean, pull up your britches and do the dang thing, whatever the dang thing is, regardless of your gender. ‘Cause we don’t want to waste our time.

 

Gluten Free cookie MIX tastes awful. But baked, these babies were beautiful.

 

 

Lady Gaga is brilliant and I’m rather sure that if I met her on the street, she’d be kind. And if I could wear a sign that said “satire” I’d walk around singing Born This Way everywhere I went.

Most people tell me they don’t understand most things I say.

“It was only a kiss.” I’m Latin.

THAT IS NOT SIN, IT’S JUST COMPLICATED.

 

before

 

 

While talking about the newest controversy, I bemoaned the hurt hearts of a religious leader’s followers who may now feel betrayed. The roommate bemoaned those led astray by his faulty teaching. I said I wasn’t worried about them, becuase the ones meant to know the truth would, in the end. “This,” she finished,”Is the difference between a harmonizer and a persister.”

 

after

 

 

I truly believe that if I stay single forever, life will be brilliant, beautiful, awful, exciting, painful, and adventurous. I’m on board for that, jic.

possible new header

 

I’m Not Sure I’m Gonna Make It

Let’s not be too dramatic here, I’m referring to getting to Lent.

For lent this year, I’m doing away with social media. I’ll celebrate the usual way and break fast on Sundays, probably to give updates, but otherwise, no facebook, twitter, or blog.

I have to keep The City (i mean I joyfully keep it as part of the job i love…and am obliged to even if i wasn’t joyful about it).

And I have posts enough to last me until March 6th, when Lent starts (oh yeah, less than 28 days so start thinkin’) but most of them I’m not going to post. Because they’re about feelings. Feelings about the break up. And you know what I’ve learnt (purposeful misspelling for the country charm)?

Relationships that are considered public domain can be tricky.

Breakups that are public domain (and especially not just the info you put out there, but the conjectures others feel free to share) are AWFUL.

if these birds break up, they're in for a world of hurt. puttin' it out there ain't easy, folks.

Oh yeah, and going live w a relationship during the Holidays, when ppl have lots of time off, that’s not the safest thing either. That’s not bitterness talking, it’s just a quick word-to-the-wise.

i thought the trash blocking the light was a good spiritual analogy.

Anyway God is sovereign over my feelings and the relationship and people’s conjectures and the timing of Holidays, but all of that has taught me that some people already believe what they’re going to believe. And it isn’t good. And if I want smiles I might oughtta just keep my little mouth shut. (Really, did you know my mouth is ironically too small for my tongue, widthwise? Particularly ironic cause my tongue is too short to stick out of my mouth.)

And, again, let’s not be too dramatic, but I am…

oh how can I say this?

BALLS TO THE WALL OUT OF MY MIND ALL OVER THE PLACE. And yes, by balls I mean the bouncy ones on the kidstuff logo cause i don’t even know what else I could mean . Duh.

So crazy that on my snow day, i ordered iced coffee. I usually even order my water withOUT ice!

The other week in class, i kinda-sorta (not really at all)got tricked into saying that i have recurring nightmares, right in the middle of when we’re discussing Freud. And if you don’t know, like i didn’t, that freudian theory says people with recurring nightmares are, professionally speaking, NUTBAGS, you kinda feel foolish after admitting such a thing. my reaction? (thank the Lord’s good grace it was not out loud) was

“HOLY FLAMING CRAPBALLS.” Again with the balls. Sorry guys.

just me, or ubercuter?

::mybad, y’all. nuggets. it was holy flaming crap NUGGETS. (i wrote it down)::

Oh yeah. And, last night, I spent no less than three whole minutes searching for my glasses. THEY WERE ON MY HEAD.

no i was not this cute while looking. i was squirrelly. like a squirrel attacked by fireants, patting things down lest my glasses be beneath them

Anyway, I just thought maybe, what with the angry north wind outside and dark menacing skies that, if they were music, would be the soundtrack to The Dark Knight, I would share. Laugh with me, people friends.

Indifference

-Part of the Six-Months-Later-Series-Written Summer 2010-

Let’s be honest: the man’s not capable of winning at this point. Either:

He acts like he’s in love with me, it tears both of us apart that we aren’t together. (One might ask, then, why aren’t we together. In all honesty, i just don’t think that, even if we both are madly attached to each other, we’re mature enough to know how to do this right now)

He acts like just him, a person I adore, and I want to play and hang out and that makes him want to feel like he’s in love with me, back to scenario one.

Or, he stays way the hell away from me, ignores me even, because it’s the closest to healing he can get, and it hurts my feelings like crazy. I am not crazy for hurting due to being ignored. Moving on.

OOOOOOr, like yesterday, he sees me after going away for a while, re focusing on priorities, getting a lot of healing and treats me….. not like he treats anyone else, but not like I want to be treated. Like he’d prefer me not be around, like I’m a bother.  And yes, it makes sense because he’s just trying to kick this darn heartache, he’s tired of every song reminding him of a woman he loved and can’t have, of mistakes he can’t make up for, of a path he wants and can’t take. Of things he just, according to his reasoning, can’t do anything about.

Does it make sense that he would do any of these things, that he has done ALL of these things, within the last month? yes.

Does it make me happy about it?

No.

Because what I want is above all consistency, and while we’re at it, consistency at loving me, at loving me enough to make plans and figure things out and yes, goldarnit, work for it sometimes. Because we WORK for the things we want. Because we WANT them. And they are worth it.

And because if not, I feel like it’s because I’m not worth it.

It’s a lie, though. There are lies the enemy throws at me, and this is one of them. I will believe, (in times of doubt and pain where light is blotted out by sin and grief and I, like nebudchanezzar, am as a beast of the field,) that I am not worth it. But God’s blessing is that eventually, i will turn my eyes to the heavens and my reason will return to me. The truth about my worth is that it is infinite, because a God of infinte love and mercy sent himself, his son, down to the miry clay to die for me and come back to rescue me, that he LAVISHES me with his Spirit and every spiritual blessing.

And sometimes, I blog just to walk through all the idiocy so I can come to the other side, see it for what it is, and throw some Gospel at it.

The Compliments that Rip Out Your Heart

-Part of the Six-Months-Later Series- Written in June 2010

That title is rather dramatic.

But so is this feeling.

When C broke up with me, I didn’t just lose him. I lost his family.

C is in Tennessee right now. I know this because tonight, when his youngest sister ran into my arms, she greeted me with, “Chris is in Tennessee!”

Later, because her parents were helping tear down the service, and because I’m wrapped around her little finger (i didn’t very well protect myself from falling head over heals in love with C’s entire family, thinking they would some day be my own) I stayed and played with her until the family went home.

She drew this picture in my journal (the note on the left is from one of his other sisters). If you can’t read it, the note above is what she said to me when asking me to please please come over. “I loved seeing you at class. I love seeing you all the time, even when you come to our house. That’s you and me!”

I don’t know if I CAN go over to their house. I don’t know if I’m supposed to or if I’m allowed to love them. I don’t think I can. I mean… I don’t know if I, a broken, fallen, though redeemed creation, am CAPABLE of healing from C (“This is as forever as I can see.”) while still interacting with this family that I thought would someday be mine.

It hurts to talk to his mom, knowing that I can’t talk to her like I once could, like a daughter. Now I’m not. I’m her son’s ex girlfriend. And the friend of some of her other children, yes.  But I know better than to push it when it comes to a woman’s first born.

I wonder if the kids know. By the kids, I mean all 6 of his siblings.

One has not acted in the slightest differently than he ever has around me. He is possibly the most consistent (and one of the funniest) 17 year old I’ve ever met.

One, the one to whom I am closest, she embodies such patience. She’s had the unfortunate luck of being around me during several breakdowns. And she just waits, patiently. She’s UBER aware of situations, ushering me out of uncomfortable ones and herself out of times when she thinks C and I may need to talk.

And another, who has more a visible gift of wisdom than anyone under 40 I’ve ever met, she just…comforts. And she’s honest. She’s never busy or silly(in the bad, john piper is against it, kind of way) or anything other than caring, loving, kind. I remember the week after C broke up with me, two of his siblings had birthday parties.  I drove up to one to have her walk up to my car, stay by me, and just be for the duration of the party. Not to be nosy, not for any other reason than to just be there for me. She’s freaking 14.

I’m screaming at myself. Or something is screaming at me. How can i NOT have them? How this it worth it? How can it possibly be for my good to become so close to and then be torn away from them? I love them. I loved them before and I learned to love them so much more in those short months when C and I were together. HOW is this for my good? HOW is this for my best? What, that I learn to be distant, next time, should there be one? Many trials I can see exactly why it is for God’s glory and my good. This, i confess, is not one. I can only see this:

God’s promise is that this is in His plan, that he loves me and will use all things for my good, that HE is good. I cling to his promises as I look around and can cling to none else.