Stillness In The Eye of The Storm…

So when I was going through my recent bout of anxiety, I got to the point where all I could do was pray. It wasn’t a pretty prayer. It was me at bottom going God I have no where else to look. I need some answers. I need you to help me with this thing. I need you and I need you now.

God is right on time every time. I listened after I prayed. I was taught a lesson in life. I was taught a lesson in humility. I was reminded of some happy times as a child where I overcame my fears and I was told to reach out to others, which I haven’t done in a while.

God showed me through the art that I do how I am being put through the same fire. It will strengthen me just as it does the glass I work with.

I was reminded that I had always allowed my fear to stand in the way of things and it had cost me hours of fun that once I overcame that it was some of the best times of my childhood.

I was reminded that in times of internal struggle, I should turn outward and present others to the world. Build others up. I have cousins who are photographers and jewelry makers just as I am. My person is an artist, he paints and sculpts and so much more. A friend of mine grows pumpkins, his art is in nature. I have three friends who bake cakes. My sister does floral design. My niece is a cosmetologist, her art is done on the human body.  Instead of waiting for them to promote me which none of them do, promote them, not wanting anything in return, just to be kind. Just to show that talent is all around me. I won’t share everything the post but I will try to help them if I can. There are different types of creativity.

In the middle of the chaos of my own making, I found silence in the eye of the storm. I was made aware of a great deal of things. I have now put them into place. Some don’t and won’t understand it. I have to be okay with that. It is not their life. It is mine. I want us all to win. Simple yet so hard for some to understand.

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It’s Time…

So the last time I wrote, it was about my anxiety. I have a friend who is a nurse and I just sat down and had a talk with her.

We talked about a great number of things. She let me talk as she listened. Then she spoke. She kind of hit me where I lived.

She said, we have known each other a while, yet every time we speak, you put that chair between us. You have a wall up.

You want to let someone in, I see the smile when your phone goes off, there is someone. I had to tell her yes. She said but you are afraid to let him. You have had a big hurt. You don’t know how to take the lead. You are afraid that you will get hurt again.

I understand that change is scary for you. The least little thing can set your anxiety off so you keep yourself being this nice brick wall. Maybe it is time to bust down that wall. You are the only one that can do it. You don’t need to be afraid to let people see the soft person behind that strong persona you put off.

You have lived through the worst thing you could live through. Maybe it is time for you to let someone in, completely.

You need to stop holding yourself to the standard that your do. You give everyone else a pass, you accept everyone’s excuses. Yet, you don’t give yourself the same break.

It is time for you to tear down that wall you have been hiding behind. Maybe it it time for you to love again. It really is okay for you to touch someone you love. It sets off endorphins in the brain. That will help make your life so much better.   You don’t need to be so afraid. Everyone needs to touch and it might be as good for him as it is for you.

It gave me a great deal to think about. Yeah, I think it is time to bust through and find out where things could go if I just throw caution to the wind and live for real.

Screw what everyone else thinks. It is after all my life. It is time for me to love and allow myself to be loved, exactly for who I am.

A woman who craves human contact in the most intimate of ways. A woman who wants to be seen as a sexy beast. A woman who is confident enough in herself to wear that corset she longs to own, for him but more for herself. A woman who wants to be fully awake instead of making love to him in my dreams.

Anxiety is a Sneaky Bastard….

If you live with anxiety, you know that it is more than worry. If you don’t, please allow me to educate you.

Anxiety is a physical, mental and emotional reaction to outside stimuli. (disclaimer…not a physiologist, just a human).

The thing you have been longing for happens and you are excited beyond belief until…..It sneaks up on you.  You are okay with failure because you are used to it but now it is happening and you are on sensory overload.

For me it begins physically. Last night, I thought it was a hot flash, as I laid in bed and chewed my lip raw trying not to cry, wanting to run at 2 am, thinking of all the what ifs, you try to stifle the scream building up inside you.

You wake up and even the smell of your coffee makes you sick.  You try your best to be excited or at least normal. Then you find someone you think will understand and the word vomit begins.

Things don’t always work out as planned. Your silent pleads for understanding are not heard. You need to tell someone yet you struggle to find the words to make them understand the storm going on inside you and you become more anxious until you are in tears.

Your head is telling you to stop. You heart is begging you not to let them see. Yet you can not stop. They roll down your cheeks as you try to control the sob rising up in your throat.

The more you speak the deeper you dig the  hole until you see no way out, so you stop talking.

You suck it up and deal with it the best way you can, on your own. You use those coping skills you have learned. For me when it gets awful, I need touch. I have to have a stress ball, play dough, something that is forgiving to work with. Sometimes, I need to feel the bark of a tree, moss, something created by someone bigger than me.

People don’t understand that you really have no control over it. You really try to, but you don’t. You cope.

The best comparison I can think of is my aunt. She is totally blind. She has been for years. You can’t tell someone with anxiety to stop worrying any more than you can tell her to see. She has eyes. Her eyes are open, she is coping with her blindness but she can’t see like we do. She uses her hands to “see”. Telling people with anxiety to stop worrying is like telling a blind person to see. You can tell them until you are blue in the face and it won’t change a thing.

Looking Deep Inside….

Recently, I saw a man I had a great deal of respect for laying in a casket. His time here is over. Now, I am a firm believer that respect is earned, it not automatically given. Much like trust and loyalty, I hold this in high regard so if I respect, trust and am loyal to you, you have to be something special.

I have been very quite over the past week. I have been deep in thought and taking some time for introspection through this process. What am I doing with my life? If I die today, was my life worth living?

I have decided that some changes need to take place. Very few noticed that  I haven’t been talking as much. So if no one misses what you have to say, it really must not matter, so stop talking. If anyone wants to know what you are thinking, they will ask at some point, then I will talk until , just say nothing. If you implode, maybe they will realize that what you said mattered.

I am going to stop promoting a business that is not working for me right now. I will not bore people with what I am working on, I will continue working but once again in silence. I will only share it with those who care about it, not the public.  When you feel like you have little support, you do it for yourself not for others. You make what you like. You enjoy what you are doing even if no one stands and applauds. That is passion.

I am going to make the most of the days I have remaining. As I heard two days ago, we are all one step away from death. Do I want to spend the rest of my time chasing dreams that may not happen or am I going to do those things that stir my soul? I would rather stir my soul. If people like it cool, if not, that’s okay too.

I want passion, fun, life. I don’t want to spend all my time worrying about what I am doing wrong. I don’t want to try to measure up to what others think I should be, being the perfect daughter, sister, aunt, employee whatever…. I will never be the perfect anything. I promised myself a long time ago, no regrets, I don’t intend to have any. I will use the words “I love you” more. I will follow my passions. I will not allow myself to settle. I will be happy with who I am, what I look like at any given moment, what I love to do and who I want to be with. It is my life and I want to live every moment of it. I like the rush I get from trying new things. I like it when I am busy and my mind is racing a hundred miles a minute on something creative or constructive. I love that feeling. It is like jumping out of an airplane and free falling.

I want to live every moment, not just exist because, some day, someone will be standing over me and reminding people that this is coming to all of us some day.

And Then Came Peace…

In my last post, I wrote about my pastor. What we were afraid was going to happen, happened. His transition has come. Sunday night just before midnight, he left his Earthly home.

My folks called and told me. They called the other members of the church and told them.

Sleep did not come that night. Plenty of tears but not a moments sleep. The next day was my great nieces birthday and we had planned a girls day to take her to breakfast. My mom questioned if we should continue on, we decided that we should.

We went and had breakfast. I didn’t eat a lot. I had no appetite. I went back to my mom’s to take a nap. It never came. I rode to town to speak with my supervisor in case I needed to take off work. My person wanted to go have lunch. Once again, not hungry for food just his company. I told him what I was thinking. The loss, we as a collective group, was feeling. How it was effecting my parents. I just needed to be near him. I needed to know he was there.  I was tired. I hadn’t slept much on Sunday and none on Sunday night. I wasn’t much company but we were together. It helped to talk to him.

I worked last night. I had plenty of time to think. I firmly believe that we as humans are eternal beings in a temporary flesh dwelling. We are not meant to stay here forever. We are here for a limited time. Yet, I still struggle when someone I loves leaves their flesh house.

I use the term flesh house because a house is a dwelling. Not to sound cliche’ but home is where the heart dwells.

I wrestle with what I know and what I feel. What I know is that they are relieved of pain and worry. What I feel is selfishness, plain and simple. That is what grief is. We have lost that familiar. We have lost that thing we never thought we would lose yet here we are and we helpless and out of control; because WE ARE. We don’t control anything.

Today, I got ready for work and I hadn’t  been  around people. Something kept telling me that I needed to go to my church which is just outside town. I drove up there and I was listening to the song “something in the water. “

As I stood there, I took a picture of the three crosses in the church yard. There was a  cloud looming behind them. As I stood there, a light mist of rain began. It was almost as if there was something in the water. Peace, peace came to me right there on the side of a hill.

When The Heavens Cry With You….

My pastor is “dying”. I prefer the term transitioning to his permanent home.   He was sent home this morning, from the hospital with Hospice care. He was transported to one of the big hospitals on Thursday. This morning his wife and children heard the words I have heard before. “We’ve done all we can do”.

That very moment is when you start functioning in survival mode. You have arrangements to make. You have to make sure someone is there to care for them. Luckily, this is a family of a wife, 3 grown children and 5 grandchildren who are old enough to help out.

When he heard the news, he told them that he wanted to go home. So they went home. Last report, the nurse was with him where he resides getting him settled in.

We live in a small mountain community and we are a very small but loving congregation. We have been in constant contact for the past three weeks since he got severely ill.

He has been at our church for 23 years. He has driven 50 miles, three times a week to preach to us. He made numerous trips to the same hospital and others when things were going wrong in my world. He has been in my home when we were facing death to let my husband know that he was loved and cared for even when his own family would not come around.

When my husband died, he was right here in my home providing love and comfort.

After making sure my parents were okay after getting the news, I went for a long drive. I was alone and I could cry as hard as I wanted. It was raining buckets almost as if the heavens themselves could feel my pain.

I cry for his wife and his children knowing what they will be facing. I cried for our church, we have a heartache that unless you have felt it, you don’t understand. My tears are not for where he is going. He is heading to Heaven, where his heart and lungs will not be an issue. I cry out of selfishness. I will miss him.

He has been our spiritual leader, our burden bearer, our under shepherd taking care of  the flock. You have a tremendous amount of respect and love for him.

We are independent. We don’t have someone to come in and fill that spot, not that anyone could take his place.

So for now, we as a collective group try to carry on. We will have a fill in preacher tomorrow. We do what we have to do to cope. One lady went and rode with her husband in a dump truck so she would not  be alone. My mom carried beans to the can house to stay busy. I went for a long drive and had a good cry.  We all handle it differently.

My prayer for his is that his crossing be gentle. He has been a faithful servant.

My solace??? I can just imagine my husband looking at him when he crosses and saying “Well Preacher, what are you doing here?”

 

What The Heck Is Wrong With Me???

I have that feeling of unsettledness at the moment. Not sure where it is leading. I just something is not quite right.

It is one of those times when I am wondering what I have done wrong, although nothing comes to mind. No matter how anyone treats me, I blame myself, if someone is not talking to me, I have done something. I may not have but it is ingrained in my personality type, it is always our fault.

It is the end of the long week at work for me so that could have something to do with it.

It is during that week that I feel isolated. I don’t have much human contact outside work. I work, sleep and eat. You don’t have anyone to sit and talk with face to face. Because, you wake up in time to get to work.

That is the week I don’t get enough fresh air, sunshine and exercise. I start to get into my own head and the overthinking starts.

The negative committee begins to chatter. There is no way he can want you. You are not good enough. You are not smart enough. You feel like your thought process is so simple compared to his world view. What could you do better? Why even though you are trying to lose weight, it seems to hang on for dear life?

You fight against it with all your might. I am as good as anyone else; I am no better but just as good.  I may not be able to do what others do but they can’t do what I do. Don’t sit in the chair for 12 hours. Walk more than you have been walking. Leave the house just a little bit earlier so that you can get more fresh air and sunshine.

Still you struggle. Making yourself mentally and emotionally weary. You just have to carry on and do the best you can. Don’t let anyone see you are not okay right at the moment. You will be again, just not right now.

Tomorrow is my first day of the short week. I have to be at my part time job at noon, so still no rest but human face to face contact. It is a place to start.