Into the Depths: August 2006

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Numero 100-o

This is post number 100, so really it should be especially profound. So not going to happen. I really did mean to go to bed early, also not going to happen. Is it strange that on therapy days I spend the entire rest of the day wallowing in unhappiness? Maybe that is normal, being that the unspeakable is expected to be spoken.......which of course it wasn't.

I am so frustrated with myself. There has got to be some way to switch me on, some way to make all that is stored up suddenly flow out. There has to be a way to make the terror subside enough to allow my mouth to open and realness to come out. Has to be a way. She tried to get me talking about one of the big ones, and it took one question from her for me to be on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Of course she didn't know that, but I did quickly, and I do mean quickly, make it known that I couldn't even attempt to approach that. No wonder I never get anywhere.

So, she had us both get a piece of construction paper and tear out our own bodies. You know, like a stick figure type thing, but no scissors. Well, I like symmetry, I like things to be neat and straight, so I did the best I could. It was actually pretty good, though one arm was longer than the other. I trimmed it, don't worry. Anyway, by mine, she said it looked really restricted, then asked if I felt stuck, like I can't move. Hmmm, ya think. Then, about hers, she said it was different than when she had done it before. Typically one arm is angled upward more, like she is leading. She said she wondered if maybe that was because she wasn't sure what to do to help me, to make me trust her, is she failing me. Not a good thing to say to me. I have a habit of feeling guilty for everything. When someone cries for my pain, I feel guilty, when someone says they are sorry for hurting me, I feel guilty, when my therapist feels insecure about her inability to get me to open up, I feel guilty.

I told her that I really was trying and about all that I had done in the past two weeks, just to show her that I really was trying and I did want to move...do want to. She said she was proud of me, and though I dismissed that as though I hadn't even heard her while there, I won't lie that that was my goal, to make her proud since she thought I wasn't making any effort. I did say that perhaps we could start with one of the less traumatic traumas, maybe that would help and than we could move on to the harder ones as things progressed. She said, ok, make me a list. Ha. I asked if she was planning on retiring any time soon, but apparently I have at least five years with her, so maybe we can get through them all. So, that is my homework, a chronological list of any traumas I have experienced. What exactly constitutes a trauma? Can I include the ones that aren't really that traumatic to me, though they should be. Maybe we could start there.

Anyway, point to the story, I wasn't very happy with myself today. Granted, during the last five minutes I was a bit more open than I had been, but geez, you'd think I could just open my mouth and talk. You know, like a grown up. Thoughts are formed, mouth opens, words come out. Can't be that complicated, can it?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Dinner With a Friend

I met Paulette tonight! We had dinner and a nice, three hour talk. I am SO glad we did it. We were both beside ourselves with nervousness, but all the fear had no basis. It was great. If you have never been to Paulette's blog, I encourage you to go and read her story. She has a bit of her life in her archives, and I promise you that you will be amazed at where this woman has been. She is the picture of 'beauty for ashes' without a doubt. I can not fathom some of the things this woman experienced in her lifetime. Yet, there was no bitterness, just a kind heart and a sweet and gentle spirit. What an example. Thanks Paulette, I am so glad we decided to get together.

Monday, August 28, 2006

So Not Deep

So, I have been thinking recently, when do I become a grown up? I don't mean when do I feel old, I have felt older than my years for longer than I can remember. But, I still don't feel like a grown up. When I refer to myself, never do I call myself a woman. I say that I'm a girl. When I put my hair in a ponytail, I wear a ribbon. :) awww. I am thirty years old for goodness sake. Perhaps that is because I didn't really get to wear ribbons and bows as a little girl, I don't know. I was just wondering when I would cross that line and actually see myself as an adult. Maybe that comes with having children, maybe I will be a girl forever. Don't know.

It rained all day today. Let me say that again, it RAINED. I can't remember the last time we had rain for longer than five or ten minutes at a time. I was glad to see it, however, I am of the opinion that when it is a rainy day, you should be curled up in bed, not working. Just my own view. I drove all day, mostly slowly, wishing I were sleeping. None-the-less, that rain was good.

I started reading a book last night and I did not love it. I forget exactly what it is called, but it is about forgiveness. I didn't even make it through the first chapter. It was talking about how people say that your forgiving an offender is for you, and the book said that that was a myth. That if at all possible the offender needs to earn that forgiveness, and in forgiving yourself, you too need to earn your own forgiveness. Well, call me uber-traditional, but that seems completely contrary to the Bible. I am not even close to being holy, and forgiveness is one of those things I haven't even begun to figure out. I do, however, know what the Bible says. If I have to earn forgiveness, I am screwed, and if my forgiving someone else is dependent on them earning said forgiveness, well, then again I am screwed. Simply because it can't be true for one and not the other. So, call me closed minded, but I quit reading the book. I don't mean to say that you shouldn't try to make amends when you hurt someone, but if forgiveness is dependent on merit, than what hope have we? It would be handy if my heart would take in what I just said and really believe it as truth.....one of those things that make me go hmmmmmmmmm.

Sunday, August 27, 2006


Church was good this morning, it was about holding on to God's faithfulness. My only problem is that step 1 was to remember how God has always been faithful to you. So I'm stuck there.
Lunch went very well. The woman I met with was great. She spoke openly of her journey and how God has been faithful to get her where she is today. She was overwhelmingly patient with my lack of communication which made it less uncomfortable then it could have been.

How do you make the jump? What does that look like in tangible terms. Am I close, have I almost leapt. Am I hanging on by a thread. I think yes. I also think that below me are two very different worlds that I can fall into when I pry my fingers off the fraying thread. The funny thing is that they are both scary worlds. They both hold threats and fear and danger, but only one has hope.

It's a crossroads, no doubt about it. I so hope that I can force myself in the right direction for once. And that is what I have decided it is going to take. Just a sheer force of will.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

R U A Wheel Watcher

I went to watch tapings of Wheel Of Fortune tonight. I know you are jealous, you don't have to pretend. So, if anyone needs to know who wins on November ninth and tenth, I got what ya need! It was actually pretty fun, though my hands do hurt because they make you clap A LOT. The second show was won by a Ft. Worth woman. She did not win the bonus round and when they displayed the word the audience reaction was amusing to me. Typically the response is sad for the loser but still pretty upbeat with the "ah-ha" moment. Tonight's answer, though, was 'Humility.' There was a strange quiet that filled the audience and Pat looked out as though he thought it odd. I guess, when you see that word, it takes very little time to realize that whooping and hollering is not a very good picture of it. Perhaps it was a tiny reminder for us all.

Now, on to a very brief moment of mushiness.

Thank You.

You all are so very kind to me and I appreciate you more than I could ever fully express. In the midst of the fear and the sadness, all of you, who owe me nothing, who don't even know me, are gracious and loving beyond what anyone could ask for. So, again, thank you.

Friday, August 25, 2006

The Meeting

Is it ok if I just want to curl up in a ball and cry, for a long, long time? I don't know why I feel that way, but feel that way, I do. If only I could make the tears come out. Anyway, the meeting wasn't terrible. It wasn't great, but it wasn't terrible.

I froze. My mind went blank and I just stared and shook my head. I am such a freaking wimp. So there I sat, looking like an idiot, wishing I could crawl under a rock. The preacher was nice, he does, however, think I should wait on joining the church. Can you say rejection? I know that wasn't what was meant by it, really he wants me to keep coming and see who they are, what they are really all about, and make sure it is really where I want to be. My thought, why would I be sitting in his office feeling as though I was being tortured if I didn't really want to be there. Whatever, rejection or not, it feels like rejection. Part of my distorted thinking I am sure.

He gave me a woman's number and told me he wanted me to call her today. UHHHH. He said call her, tell her who you are and that I told you to call. On Sunday I will introduce you in person. I said, "Am I going to get yelled at if I don't call?" Yes. Ok, this woman is a complete stranger and is going to think I am a complete idiot, but ok.

So, pushing through my failed meeting and willing myself to not give up, just keep trying, I called. She was exceptionally nice. We spoke for about half an hour and I was truly more open with her than I ever thought possible. She asked if I'd like to have lunch with her on Sunday after church, so I guess we will see if I can face her in person.

So, why do I feel like complete and total crap? Here are my thoughts. Either, A) I am ticked at myself for not being able to talk to the preacher and tell him anything of what I had planned to tell him. B) I am just feeling a bit overwhelmed because of the things that I spoke on the phone today....that I almost never speak of. Or, C) The fact that I am so very close to actually moving, to doing what I have avoided for all of my life, to feeling, experiencing, connecting, that I am feeling completely consumed by horrific terror. Terror of the unknown and of being exposed. I don't know which, maybe all of the above. I do know that I feel as though I could easily fall into a million pieces at this very moment. That's all I've got for now.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Big Fat Chicken

Well, the meeting is scheduled. Eleven A.M. tomorrow morning. I feel nauseous. I am so friggin' terrified. What am I so afraid of, you may ask. Let me enlighten you. He could say "Seriously? Did you seriously think we would let you join our church?" Or, maybe something like this, "Yeah, I can see why you think you are so evil." Or, perhaps, "You really are a hopeless cause."

Yes, I realize my fear is somewhat irrational. Yet there it is, gnawing away in the pit of my stomach. I started shaking when he called this afternoon, and I haven't stopped as of yet. I am a big fat chicken. I could just go in and spout off the Roman's road and show that I have the answers and I'm a little holy roller. However, where would that get me? I'm such a chicken, did I mention that yet?

So, now you know. The interview is scheduled, I am afraid. We'll see, I guess.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Annoying People

Can I just say that people who have known me for many years, who were a part of my life during some of the darkest days I've known, they suck if they try to argue about something that could change my life before they know anything about it. I am a tad frustrated, in case that wasn't obvious. So there is this dude I have known for nine years now. We have been 'friends' during my most severe bout with depression, my marriage, my divorce, my hospital stays. He has seen the cuts up and down my arm and in his defense, has tried to instill in me some sort of hope for many years. To no avail, as is apparent.

Up until four months ago, I was sure that he was the 'holiest' person I knew. By that I mean that I knew of no one who seemed to seek God and actually do his best to live it out on a daily basis as earnestly as he did. That opinion changed, not because he screwed up, though he did, but because the authenticity that I believed to be the backbone of his character seemed to be nothing more than a veil. Granted, part of that is just hurt feelings talking. I thought, truly believed, that I could put our situation behind me and still carry on as normal. I couldn't. I didn't feel extreme anger or anything, I guess my trust was just broken and that was hard for me to deal with.

Now, however, I feel myself becoming pretty angry with him. Since our ordeal in April I stopped going to the church we saw one another at each week, or at least every other week or so. So, out of guilt I am guessing, he has continued to text message me on a regular basis, usually when he was feeling down about something. How thoughtful of him, huh. Anyway, when he sent me a message Sunday night I told him a little about what I learned on the emotional/spiritual connection. Two days later he texted me and said he had been thinking about it and decided it was wrong. That a Christian can just pray and God will fix everything and emotional maturity had nothing to do with it. Luckily I am smart enough to not listen to him. I think that while at one time in my life, not very long ago, I would have completely blamed myself for everything that happened between us, I did, as a matter of fact. Now, though, I am beginning to understand that there were a lot of his issues at work in that ordeal as well.

I am annoyed that he felt the need to squash my new hope. I am not sure if it is a little out of jealousy on his part, or if it is more about his denial of his own emotional issues. I am leaning toward the latter. Did I mention that he was my preacher? Anyway, I had no point to this except that I have been upset about it and felt the need to type it out.

Monday, August 21, 2006


Alright, here ya go. You will want to be sitting for this, well, I was glad I was sitting, anyway.

So, in typical Baptist churches today, you are required to take a 'Pastor's Class' if you are considering joining that particular church. This church also requires an interview with a staff member before you may join, but that will be another blog later this week, after said interview. Anyway, I went to the class after church this Sunday. I was expecting the typical, this is what we believe, this is what the Bible says about it, yada yada, heard it all before. It began pretty standard, you know, salvation. What came next floored me. I have to quote the pastor's book, because my words will not do it justice.

Excerpts from "Hospital Church" by James Reeves

"Simply stated the principle says, You can never be more spiritually mature than you are emotionally mature. The principle can be expressed in several ways. Your spiritual growth will never go beyond your emotional growth. You can never have a more intimate relationship with God than you are capable of having with other people. Your level of emotional maturity will always create a ceiling for your spiritual maturity! All of these statements ultimately communicate the same truth. There is an unbreakable link between our emotional health and our spiritual health."

"That is because God has created us as both emotional and spiritual beings. These two are intricately linked according to the design of God. The result of addressing only one, will always be the realization of less than our full potential in Christ. Far too often in the Christian community we only address the spiritual. In fact, many in the Christian community have been unwilling to even acknowledge the connection between our emotional development and our spiritual development, much less address it adequately. The result has been spiritual stagnation and frustration for so many who genuinely desire to grow in Christ. Not to mention the pain and devastation of failed human relationships along the way."

Now, obviously the book goes into greater detail, but for the sake of room, I will leave it there, and if you want to read it, I will email you a copy. There are numerous scripture references to back up this principle, which I am thankful for because I don't believe in something when there is nothing to back it up. And I REALLY want to believe this.

This was my glimmer of hope. To me, this states that maybe I am not Esau after all. Maybe it isn't that God hates me. Maybe it isn't that grace and mercy and the love of God were meant for everyone but me. You see, as a Christian of twelve years, who hasn't moved an inch, I believed that it must be that I was wrong. Not that I was doing something wrong, because when I applied the Christian disciplines, I knew what they were and I knew how to do them, so I deducted that it must simply be me, at the core, that was wrong. Each time I applied my life to the Christian walk, in time, through desperation at my inability to ever move, my consistent stagnant state if you will, I would give up in hopelessness. That is why this principle nearly knocked me out of my chair. I was shocked and dumbfounded and for the first time in some time, actually sensing a bit of hope in the depths of me. It makes perfect sense, why had no one ever told me this before, why hadn't I thought of it? It is huge!

The pastor relayed this principle than stated that he was in the process of writing a book and would email what he had so far to whomever was interested. I of course was. I got home from dropping my nieces off around six last night and started reading. I took an hour off for my walk, then came right back to it. I finished the book around midnight than wrote the pastor an email to thank him for it.

Here was my email to him:

I spent the evening reading your book, and first, let me say thank you. Secondly, since you asked, I think it was thought provoking, full of depth and more importantly full of authenticity. You told in the chapter "A Safe Place" about last Sunday when you spoke about your own 'grasshopper tape.' Your having told that story, and the genuineness with which you shared it, convinced me that Celebration is where I want to be, or need to be, not sure which, I just wanted to thank you for that.
Perhaps you could tell by my dumbfounded look today, (now you are wondering which face was mine) that I was shocked when you told of the correlation between spiritual maturity and emotional maturity. I won't tell you my life's story, I don't do that, but I will say that today was the first glimmer of hope I have noticed in some time. If it proves to be real and true, which seemingly it does, what a relief. Maybe that sounds odd, maybe not, I have just always, at least since I learned the story, assumed that I was Esau. That from my mothers womb God's hatred toward me began and He hadn't decided to change His mind as of yet. In that single statement there lies the potential for a different life.
So, I wanted to ask if you would mind if I mentioned this stuff in my blog. Yes, I am a geek with a blog and I am not ashamed to admit it, by email anyway. I would of course be sure to quote you and acknowledge whom I was quoting. You could even read it first if you wanted to. The few who read it always get the bad, I figured they deserved some good, however minute it may seem in the beginning. Really though, it isn't minute, is it. Potentially, it is huge. It is the difference between life and death really, even if only figuratively speaking. Ok, for one not telling a story, I sure have rambled.

Here was his response:

Thanks for your words. I am thankful that you got a
glimmer of hope today. Let's see to it that becomes a bright and
shining light, how about it?
Stephanie, I would love to hear your story in its fullness if you would
trust me to hear it. Either write it to me in an email if you feel more
comfortable doing that or give me a call and we will schedule a time to
get together. I really would love to hear it so I can give you better
direction about how you can move forward from here.
Esau you are not! Soon, let me hear from you.
(I will say that I found it amusing that he was sounding like Yoda.)

So, then came the debate. I read his email before I left for work today, so all day in my truck I was thinking. Do I write him, do I call him, do I tell him anything at all? Can I? Should I? Is there a point to that? So first, three hours later I decided that since I am ok with writing as I am still able to stay separated, that I would email him some of my story. I started typing in my office but people kept walking in and I couldn't handle someone catching a glimpse, so I saved the draft and went about my day. All day I wrestled within myself. Finally, it came down to this. "If you always do what you've always done, you will always get what you've always gotten." My thought was if I am really going to take the plunge, if I really do want to move, I was going to have to make a decision. I would have to decide that I wanted it more than I feared it. For me, that first huge step was to call and speak rather than take my usual route of writing my life and experiencing none of it.

So, I got home a little early and made the call to the church office. He had just left for the day. Hmmm was that a sign, maybe, maybe not. The pastor of a church with approximately 800 regular attenders, also included his cell phone number in the email. So I started dialing then hung up. I was terrified. I said, "God what do I do???" I didn't know if I should call, I didn't want to bother him, but it wasn't quite five yet. I dialed again and he picked up on the first stinking ring. "Hello" Uhhhhhhhhhh. I told him who I was, and he seemed genuinely glad that I had called. I of course mumbled and fumbled my way through everything I said. I gave him an extremely brief background, and he wanted more, uhhh. He said, I don't know how much you are comfortable sharing....I said, no, questions are good, ask questions. So his first, "Were you sexually abused as a child?" Well, let's just jump right in. He said he could tell by my email that I had been. I am not sure where he read that, but he has been doing this for a while. Anyway, he read me a story that he had just sat down to type for his chapter on forgiveness. It was the testimony of a woman in the church and it was overwhelming. "How interesting" he said, "that you called just as I began to type this." Yes, I concur. Anyway, he had already gotten the paper I had to fill out yesterday for the interview. They divide them up between the pastors and he had asked for mine since he knew we would be communicating. Interesting.
I was embarrassed that he had already read it, because in the spirit of desiring a new life, I was quite honest with the questions.
What areas have you previously served in at church: Sunday school teacher, counselor at both children's and youth camp, nursery worker.....but I wouldn't recommend me.
What special talents and skills do you have: None that I can think of.

I was honest. Ok the point to my extremely long post is that I am cautiously optimistic. apparently I am quite optimistic because I have made more strides today than in the past, well in a long time. I had dinner with a friend I hadn't seen in three years tonight. She and I are a lot alike in our emotional scarring, but she typically handles things in far more healthy ways than I. She is a therapist who works with abused children. She and I had a great talk tonight, probably more in depth than we have had in the entire 9 years we have known one another.

Ok, done rambling, just wanted to give some good since you get the bad every other day.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

I have something to say..........

really I do, but I have to finish a book first. it is, scary as it sounds, almost positive. I'll get back to you.

Ok, I have to get permission first, don't want to infringe on any copyrights or anything. I will go ahead and say that what I heard today actually provided a glimmer, however faint, of hope. Something that is not common and often looked upon with cynicism by me. It is interesting and perhaps, in time, life altering. I know, you are on the edge of your seats, but bear with me. ;)

Friday, August 18, 2006

Run Forrest, Run

Ahh, the almost infamous night after therapy blog. You know you've been holding your breath. Today I found out that it is all my fault that I never get anywhere. Ok, that isn't exactly what she said and I already knew that. What she said was that I was like Forrest Gump. That isn't very nice if you ask me. Luckily she wasn't calling me unintelligent. She said I run and run, don't know where I'm going, but I just keep running. Yeah, I guess I knew that. I told her I needed a 'how' when it comes to unlocking myself and letting me out and someone else in. Her response, "I have some pretty good 'hows', but you don't want to do any of them." Ouch. Do the hows have to be so dang scary? She asked what we could do to enable me to trust her. Well, duh, if I knew that I would probably trust people. She also asked how my mood had been over the two weeks since I last saw her, I had no clue.

So, my homework is to finish my forgiveness books, try to figure out 'hows' as to opening up, and to start keeping a mood journal. Now at first that made me glad, it has to be better than the 'happy journal.' Then, however, it occurred to me that that could be quite difficult for me. I have a difficult time trying to pinpoint how I feel. I think I probably try to avoid knowing how I feel most the time. Thus the point, she wants to get me out of my head so I will start actually experiencing feelings rather than simply analyzing things to death. I have to write in it three times a day, does that sound a tad time consuming to anyone?? But, since I don't like feeling like a failure, I will do it just as directed. Surely you already see that she will be expecting me to be reading from this thing in therapy next time.

Am I just being stubborn. Why do I freeze. I am sort of strong willed. It seems that if I really wanted to make progress than I would use that will to make myself do the work and feel the crap that I don't want to feel in order to be free of this life that I say I hate so much.

So, about this song. Scars, by Papa Roach. It is not my absolute favorite of theirs, Last Resort is the greatest, but Christian folk wouldn't come to my blog if I put that video up. I do like this song a lot, though. My favorite part is the chorus when it says "The scars remind me that the past is real." I love that because sometimes I wonder. I find myself thinking is it real, was my life the way I remember it real. But the scars, some figurative, many literal, remind that is was real and it is me.

I have Cas and Nattie for the weekend so we can go get their school clothes. I made the mistake of telling my parents that I would have them, so now I have to take them to meet my parents for breakfast in the morning. I am dreading it, but the girls will enjoy it. That is a whole other blog though, and I have heard if your post is too long than people get bored and quit reading. ;) Later.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

To Sleep or Not To Sleep

I am really, really tired. Profound, huh? Every night around ten, I start telling myself, "Self, tonight you are going to bed by 11." Then at 11:30 when I check the clock again, I say ok, by twelve. Eventually, a little closer to 1 am, I take myself upstairs and get ready for bed, read, then pass out. I am afraid I do this unknowingly on purpose. Yes that does make sense. ;) I know that if I get in my bed before I am bone tired, then I will lie there with thoughts racing through my head, completely helpless, or seemingly so, to make them stop. So to avoid my own brain, I stay awake until I know that when the light shuts off and my head hits the pillow, it's over, and I'm out. I don't just stay awake to stay awake, there is always something I can do. Watch t.v., wash clothes, clean something, read blogs(that is what I do most of the time) check my email, shop eBay, whatever strikes my fancy. Wasn't this an exciting post. I'd love to say good night, but I know that I will instead keep watching t.v. and checking out blogs to see who might be up for a late night post. Here's to being exhausted again tomorrow night.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Why I Should Quit Reading

I tried to tell everyone that perhaps reading is no longer a good idea for me.....no one listened. ;)

In my homework this week I am reading a book about forgiveness called "When You Can't Say I Forgive You." (I would underline it, but I don't know how.) Anyway, all was going along fine, until.....

Luke 5:18-20

18Some men came carrying a paralytic on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. 19When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.20When Jesus saw their faith, he said, "Friend, your sins are forgiven."

So, you are thinking, what the heck is wrong with that. Well, nothing is wrong with it per se. I have heard that story plenty of times, but for some unknown reason, last night it struck me as odd. Perhaps because of a recent blog that has gotten some interesting comments, perhaps it is just the first time the notion struck me. Here is my question.

If Jesus could forgive people before His death on the cross, without the customary O.T. blood sacrifice, why was it necessary for Him to die. I am not arguing His death or trying to sound ungrateful. Please no 'hate comments' or 'lecture comments.' I am just curious, if He could forgive this man, why not all men. Was there some time lapse clause that the Bible didn't mention. 'Said forgiveness only to become effective assuming recipient live to Easter weekend of the year 33 AD, at which time Forgiver will atone for said forgiven sins thus making them once and for all forgiven.'

That sounds bad, but put your preachers voice out of your head for a second and allow yourself to step outside the little box and really ask why He could forgive that man with no sacrifice but had to die in order to offer that same forgiveness to everyone else in the world. I don't get that.

I am guessing there are a couple people that this pissed off, and I am sorry if it did. But it struck me when I read it and I don't know what to believe about it. I don't understand it at all, as a matter of fact. I am sure there is some explanation or surely other people would have the same question.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Partial Possession

Typically speaking, I am not one to rehash a sermon, unless it be to find all the points that I found inaccurate, against my personal beliefs or just plain ignorant about it. However, I actually liked what the dude had to say today. It may not change my life today, but perhaps it might be a catalyst for change down the road.

The title for today's message is 'Partial Possession.' Please turn your Bibles with me to our text, Joshua 17. (cute how I really sound like a preacher, isn't it.)

As is customary in the Baptist church of the 21st century, there were three main points.

1) The Israelites enlisted what they should have eliminated.

2) They avoided what they should have attacked.

3) They wasted what they should have utilized.
(Why do they find the use of alliteration absolutely imperative?)

Ok, number one is not that great to me because he hadn't really grabbed my attention yet. :) You have to spark my interest before I actually start listening. However, I pretty much get it, using things that we should have gotten rid of, yada yada.

Number two is where I started getting involved in active listening. Doesn't sound that great, avoided what they should have attacked, but think about that, without even knowing the story (unless of course you have the old testament memorized) you can still pull importance from that statement. But, since not everyone has it memorized, I'll give you a little of what is going on. This is where the Promised Land is being divided among the tribes of Israel. The tribe of Manasseh eventually begins belly aching that they do not have enough room. Well, the reason they don't have enough room is because they were commanded to drive the Cannaanites out of their land and they were too darn chicken. (Later when they were stronger, they could have gotten rid of the enemy but instead used them for forced labor, but that goes with point one, not sure why we went backwards, but, details.)

So the point to point two was the chicken part. The preacher talked about a little thing called the 'grasshopper mentality.' For this tribe, said mentality began way back in Egypt when they were slaves, and the tape never stopped playing. You know the tape, the one that says, I am not strong enough, I am not big enough, I am just a slave, I am unworthy. The tape that leaves us curled up in a ball in the corner, feeling like an outsider in our own skin. I am sure it is becoming evident why I liked this point. Israel, much like a lot of us, never overcame this tape. This is where the standard preacher would say, that is why it is so important that you renew your mind, then he would move on. Luckily, not the standard preacher this time. Instead, he told of his own grasshopper tape. I still wasn't fully convinced of the authenticity here, because he just as easily could have said, this is what I struggled with until I renewed my mind, but now I am a holy, perfect preacher. Instead he was vulnerable and real and said that everyday he struggles. If he lets his guard down, even a little, the enemy steps in and the tape starts playing the old reminder. He said you have to press the erase button on the old tape, the lies, and press record on the new, the Truth. Not once, but everyday, sometimes all day everyday. I loved his honesty. I could even hear the old tape struggling to break through as he spoke. It was evident that it was a real and genuine struggle for him to overcome. Another thing he said, that he might be having buyers remorse about having shared that come this afternoon. But then he stopped and said, no, I won't, because victory is in the confession. It is the secret that destroys. I loved that, too.

Last but not least, they wasted what they should have utilized. The tribe of Manasseh had all this land, they refused to utilize it. They were told to drive out the Canaanites, they didn't. They were told to clear out the trees, they didn't. How often in life (of course I am speaking mostly of myself) do we look out on what is our life and realize that most of our space, our room for 'blessing' is still overrun with our enemies, the enemy, however you want to look at it. You know, you could get all spiritual, I don't do that. What I choose to see in this is that all of the bad in my life, that I can't see past, overruns my life. It is all I have room for. I don't know how to get rid of all that bad yet, but I know there has to be a way, and I think seeing it for what it is, well at least that is a step. Maybe not even a step, maybe just a quarter turn. But, it's something.

Ok, that was a ton of rambling, but I liked the message which very seldom happens, so I needed to at least run through it again for some processing. Maybe you like it too, maybe it means nothing to you, doesn't matter much. The fact that I liked church today, the fact that I saw authenticity in a preacher, those are huge for me.

As for the song, I have never heard of her, but I am egotistical and all, so since her name was Stephanie, I listened. I think it is just a darn pretty song.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Why I Don't Swim When I Can't See The Bottom

This is Blayne. (Well two years ago anyway)

This is Blayne's foot with a fishbone pushed an inch inside of it. GROSS and OUCH!!
He went swimming in a friend's pond today, and this is what he came out with. The doctor had to cut his foot open to get the jagged, extremely nasty, dirty bone out. It went all the way into the bone in his foot. It is a good thing that he is all boy so he pretends to be tough even when it really does hurt, and will LOVE telling the story when he starts school next week, on crutches.

That's all I've got, nothing else worth mentioning anyway. Later.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

I Don't Get It

Can I just say, I don't get it. I know you don't know what it is that I don't get, but trust me, I don't get it.

I don't get why, if he didn't want me then, he suddenly wants me now.

I don't get why I am the only one I know who is alone.

I don't get why I am the only one I know without children.

I don't get why I would ever think I would deserve to have one.

I don't get why I can't just fix my life.

or my brain

or my heart

whatever it is that makes me this way.

I don't get why I can never find the video for the song I really want.

I don't get why I can't just grow up and get over it.

I don't get why I do things that I don't want to do, all the time.

I don't get why I still say 'I would never' when thus far I have on all accounts.

I don't get why forgiveness must be so extremely complicated.

I don't get why the Bible says forgiveness is free, then puts a stipulation on it.

I don't get why I am typing this crap when I should be getting ready for bed.

I don't get why the only people I can express myself to are strangers behind a computer screen.

I don't get why I run from the things that I ache for.

I don't get why I hide from what I should cling to.

I don't get why I can't simply be content.

I don't get why I can't just be happy with my house and my car and other people's children.

I don't get why God's love, peace, forgiveness, God in general, is so elusive.

I don't get why I can't get over things like normal people.

I don't get why I am me.

Or who it is that is me.

Or why anyone would care.

Or why I care.

This was happy, eh.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Evident Avoidance

I should be washing my hair. I should be washing clothes. I should be getting ready for bed. I should be doing a lot of things. Instead, I sit at the computer and try to think of something that matters enough to blog about. There are a couple things that come to mind, yet I am not sure if I want to go there.
Let's see, my sister didn't complain about my paint ideas for the girls rooms. That's handy for me. I hate to have to remind her that I am better in the decorating realm than she. ;) She mentioned they will be coming down this weekend which means I have one less week than I thought to wash all of their clothes. Better get to that. Let me just say, as I seem to be whining about that, I have an extremely kickin' washer and dryer, so really, I don't mind washing! They have touch screens, how can I complain about that.
I have exactly zero friends or family members (that count) who do not have children. I'm a loser.
My mother finished chemo last week. She starts radiation in two weeks, then they will do some test, maybe an MRI, I forget, to see if they fixed her. I think the radiation is everyday for 30 days, something like that. Then we will know if we are on the road to recovery or the road to start all over.
My nephew has started his occupational therapy and will start therapy for communication next week. We are taking part in the "Walk for Autism" in September, which I think will be good for Brendon and his mother. He will be homeschooled this year. I am not quite sure how that will work for my not so organized sister, especially since the doctor says that consistency and structure are the most important things for Bren. I guess we will see.
I was instructed for homework to find a book on forgiveness. That sounds easy, but there really aren't all that many written specifically for that subject. I did find one called "I Can't Say I Forgive You." Haven't started it yet, so I don't know if it is any good. I am kind of in a place where I don't know that reading more is going to get me anywhere. How much head knowledge does it take to change a life?? No clue.
I bought another book that I have started. It is called "The Healing Choice." I am not ready to discuss it yet, but I will say that so far it makes me sick to my stomach, so I don't know how it will turn out.
Ok, that is all the rambling I have without bearing my soul, so I will force myself to go take part in some personal hygiene. Later days...

That is not a giant bouncy seat or a giant hand, just a tiny little baby with some long, skinny legs. She is darn cute though. I only got pics of one b/c I just happened to be holding her when I thought of getting my camera out. They really do look a lot alike. My sister dresses one in dark onesies and the other in light so that they can tell them apart. We are going to have to figure out something more scientific before long, I'm afraid. I spent 8 hours cleaning my sisters house Saturday. Not because I'm nice, don't start, simply because it was nasty and I hate the thought of her children growing up like we did. It probably won't help unless I do it every damned weekend, but what do you do. I started to redo the girls rooms. Got them new bedding and plan to go with dressers and deco next. I will go back down in two weeks to take back the five garbage bags of clothes I brought home to wash. I plan to start painting the girls bedrooms then. Casta is getting pink and orange stripes, Natalee will have blue with white polka dots. My hope is that if we make their bedrooms a place that they can be comfortable in and actually take pride in, than hopefully, despite their parents, they will at least keep their own little spaces half way decent. We shall see. I don't get it. I can't fathom why anyone would be ok living that way. I DON'T GET IT. That is probably evil of me to say, but I never said I wasn't evil. K, have to go to bed, should have gone a couple hours ago. I suck at this seven hours sleep a night thing.

Friday, August 04, 2006

A Glimpse Into Therapy

Let me play you a little conversation, then perhaps you will see how exchanges can take turns for the worst in the blink of an eye.

Therapist: Been on any dates lately?

Me: Uhhh, I went out with my ex-husband a few weeks ago.

Therapist: Oh, tell me about your marriage.

Me: Uhhh, not much to tell, it was pretty uneventful, married two years, lived together ten months of those two years, not consecutively. Got divorced four years ago.

Therapist: *stare that says, please expound*

Me: He was very young, had been taught that when things are tough it is ok to walk out, and we both knew before we got married that we shouldn't get married.

Therapist: Why weren't you ready to get married?

Me: Well, let's see, we dated, got engaged, broke up, I began dating someone else...who was dating someone else...tried to kill myself, went to crazy hospital, got out, went to next crazy hospital, got out, three weeks later we got married.

Therapist: Oh. blah blah blah about the crazy hospital, blah blah blah what? They closed while you were there?

Me: yes, they said you can go to the state hospital or you can be better. So, I was better. I did get a lot of drugs out of the deal though. Which probably didn't help my marriage out much.

Therapist: Why?

Me: Found out I was pregnant a week after we got married, miscarried two weeks later, presumably due to Depakote consumption.

Therapist: Tell me about the miscarriage.

Me: Uhhh, what do you want to know??

Therapist: When people don't deal with traumatic experiences, which you have a lot of, when they happen, they get stuck. (ya think) Miscarriage is a painful thing. (ya think) It is a death, it has to be dealt with. When you go back and talk about it, then you can move on.

Me: Ok, we talked about it, can we go down the list one by one and just fix me.

Therapist: You have to identify the feelings, and then feel them.


Therapist: How did you feel during the miscarriage?

Me: Uhhh, (yes that is my favorite response) scared, angry.....long pause......what is the word for the feeling that you are getting what you deserve?

Therapist: False guilt.

Me: No, not false, it is deserved.

Therapist: I guess it would be guilt, why do you feel like you deserved that?

Me: You are a therapist, you know exactly why I feel that way.

Therapist: So, you had an abortion?

Me: See, I don't even need to talk you can do this by yourself.

Therapist: Tell me about the abortion.................

You can see where this is going. I didn't even have to argue about reading the letter. We never got that far. She almost broke me, several times. Doesn't she know I don't cry in front of people?? Thankfully I managed to keep my composure. It seems to me that therapy, for someone like me, slightly, not quite, but slightly, unstable, is somewhat counterproductive. With my self destructive tendencies, leaving a session with an 'open wound' if you will, doesn't seem that safe. Especially one that leaves me feeling dirty, worthless, evil and desperately, utterly hopeless of any future good. But what do I know?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

blah blah blah

I have decided to start sleeping with any man I can find until one of them gets me pregnant....o.k., just kidding. I will say, though, that a weeks worth of getting cribs, bassinets, car seats, bouncy chairs, crib bedding, bottles, pacifiers, play mats, bathtubs, etc., is enough, no, more than enough, to make a thirty year old woman really want a baby. I wanted one before, granted. However, as I drive around, alone, in a car that seats 8, with two empty infant carseats behind me, the ache for someone to fill them is overwhelming. Alright, that is all my whining for tonight. However, I will add on that after my bath tonight instead of Bath & Body Works, I used baby lotion. ;)

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Nada Zilch Nicht

I got nothin'. When I go into shut down mode, how on earth I get there I don't know, but when I go there, it is just......empty. A welcome and disappointing reprieve all at the same time. The pressure's still there, I can feel it, physically. Emotionally, however, nothing. This is the time in my 'sick cycle carousel' that I would typically quit going to therapy. Leave well enough alone until the next time things start creeping back to the surface. But with satan's, I mean, my brother's wedding looming in the air, I know the next meltdown may be just around the corner. It will probably be sooner than that since my therapist has been on vacation and I go back Friday for the first time in three weeks. So, I haven't had to face anything or think, or feel, so everything just went back where it belonged, with very little coercion. Come Friday, things may look different. We get to read 'the letter'. If I can stay locked away, maybe it won't be all that hard. That is wishful thinking, I bet. Well, like I said, I got nothin', just thought I should type something so as to not nullify my existence completely.