Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Worry + Stress + Fear = Thankful Reflection

*sigh*   Been awhile since I've blogged huh?  Between finals and moving and surgery and not having internet access it's been pretty crazy!

Life is changing quite a bit for me lately - I moved out of the dorms into a house, I'm now missing my gallbladder (which is awesome, don't think I've been this healthy in over a year!), I started an awesome new job subbing at a Christian day care, I'm officially a senior in college, and my boyfriend is moving halfway across the country so that we can be together for the next year.  I get a little freaked out by it all sometimes.  Freaked out might not be the best term....more like stressed, frantic, crazy....  These changes are all good, I know.  But somehow, even good change sends me into overload.  I find myself wondering how it's all going to work out - creating every possible scenario so that I can "prepare myself" (and yes, those scenarios are typically negative...).  What if I don't have the money to pay bills because I didn't sub a few days last week?  What if Justing moves out here and we find out we're only good at long-distance and we're really not as compatible as we think?  What if I can't handle the stress of my senior year?  What if they were wrong and my gallbladder wasn't the problem?  What if?  What if?   And then I hyperventilate when my cornbread burns because my nerves are at their last end...It's a never-ending process...and not a healthy one at that.

So I find myself questioning why I'm like that.  Do I doubt God's ability to take care of me?  In a sense, I suppose I do.  But that's silly - especially if I take a quick look at the last month (or a little more) of my life. First of all - started to stress about finding Aly and I a place to live...we were cutting it pretty close with less than a month of school left.  I had about given up - prayed one of those prayers of desperation: "God, Aly and I really need a place to live...please help us out."  I accidentally hit the refresh button on craigslist (don't ask me how...it just happened) and there's a new listing for a house in Moore, cheaper than anything else I'd been looking at (and closer).  So, I respond...find out the day we go look at the house, that we have a mutual friend with the realtor - automatic in!  Found out soon after - Aly and I's apps were approved and we could move in immediately...though we chose to wait until the beginning of May... God gave us a house - cheaper and closer than we had planned!

So then...I find out I need surgery...and its conveniently scheduled for the same time frame that my parents and boyfriend were ALREADY planning to come out and surprise me and Aly with beds!  Though the whole time I thought Mom was flying out...they're all pretty good at lying...lol.  Recovery doesn't go quite as well as expected, so Mom decides I need to come home with them...conveniently a certain individuals graduation whom I had resolved to miss was the first day I was able to leave the couch without horrid pain...  God worked it out that I had my mom, dad, boyfriend, and best friend with me for my surgery and then allowed me to be at Justin's graduation!

He works things out when I don't think there's a remote possibility!  And He does it beyond what I would have ever expected.  So what reason do I have to doubt??  I don't.  But I still do.

I am thankful that God is working with me, that He doesn't give up on me.  He knows that my worry, my stress, my fear are issues I'm aware of and trying my best to get past. And even though I fail over and over and over again....He is still there working everything out as He forgives my weakness and continues to love me as He encourages my growth.  I am thankful that He has given me a mom (and a grandmother) who deal with the same struggle...that way I'm always understood.  I always have someone to turn to when no one else understands...they can empathize and encourage me in the right direction because they've made the same mistakes.  I am thankful that He has given me a wonderful, wonderful man in my life who, though he truly cannot comprehend, will never give up on me, who continues to listen to me cry night after night about all my concerns as he assures me that everything will be okay, who is helping me grow in ways I'm not even sure he sees.

I've had an interesting past couple of days.  But upon reflecting, I see the truth:

God is providing - He always has, He always will.  He will give me what I need to fulfill His will for my life - whether that be spiritual, mental, or physical.  And He loves me through all my failures (stress, worry, and fear) - always has, always will.  :)

My family is irreplaceable.  I have a mother who loves me more than life itself.  She hurts when I hurt and finds joy when I do.  I will always, always need her in my life - no matter how many time zones apart we may be.  I have a father who also loves me more than I could ever understand.  He will always be there to protect me and help me grow.  And I will always and forever be his little girl.  I have a brother, grandparents, aunts, and uncles, and the Lays crew who care SO much....its unfathomable.  Not to mention the handfuls of "extended family" who also do much more than I expect or deserve....

Lastly, I have a boyfriend who loves me more than I can understand.  He is in this for the long run.  He will work through whatever problems present themselves and love me through all of my failures.  I don't have to be perfect for him, he doesn't expect anything near perfect.  Though he may get a little frustrated with the things he doesn't understand, I know he will never, ever give up on me.  He would give his life for me (and in a sense, he already is....).

Thank you, Abba, for all of this...and so much more!

Monday, April 5, 2010

50's Housewife

At the age of 21 (well...in a week), I find myself longing for the next stage of my life.  With just a year and one tiny month of school left, I often think about the future and what that might hold.

I so badly just want to be a wife and mom.  Sometimes I wish I could just quit school and make that happen now.  But I know it's not quite my time.  If I can have my way, I will be that cliche 50's housewife...cooking dinner for my wonderful husband while he's hard at work all day, baking pies on the weekend, and loving on my children.  :)   (and, yes, I know...I make it sound way easier than what it is...)

People ask me what I want to do.  I tell them and get all sorts of looks or comments.  Women just don't do that anymore.  It's like we're expected to work, make something of ourselves.  That's ridiculous!  I know plenty of women who I respect greatly that are stay-at-home moms.  And I pray that when I have my own children, I can do as well as they have.

I think God intended it to be that way, to make families work.  Society has ruined family with the necessity of having two working adults in order to even maintain a home.  Families need to spend time together in order to be healthy.  If mom is working full-time, dad is working full-time, and chores have to be done in the off hours...that doesn't leave a whole ton of time.  Plus you throw in church and activities the kids are involved in...the hours dwindle pretty quick.  My campus pastor told me the average married couple spends 2 hours or less together a day.  Pretty depressing isn't it??  That is something I don't want to miss out on!  I don't want to drop my kids off at daycare everyday because me and my husband are both working 8+ hours a day....I would miss out on their lives, on their silliness.  I don't want some random stranger to see my kids more hours a week than I do.  Ideally - mom stays home, takes care of the kids, runs crazy errands, does everything around the house...while dad is the breadwinner.  While stuff will still have to be done when they are both home...it leaves a little bit of time for them to actually be together, to just relax, to spend time with their beautiful children, to be a family!  I want that.

Rewind to the 50's?  Totally wouldn't mind.  At least then people wouldn't look at me like I was crazy.

Stay-at-home mom?  Yes please!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Blogging....and Plants

     So...my first blog.  Where do I even start?  My minds been going all afternoon - what will I blog about?  Am I actually going to stick with this or is it just going to be a fad I leave behind?  I still don't know.  Sat here for awhile messin on facebook tryin to come up with something intriguing to write about for my first post.  I didn't get anywhere.  lol.  But I am really excited that I got on the ball and at least made a blog.  It should be interesting.  I'm sure I'll blog about some pretty random stuff - sometimes profound (I hope), sometimes silly, but always me!  I think I'm most excited about the chance to talk about the simple joys in everyday life - like the laugh of a little girl as she tells me I copied her cereal (Oh Ava...), or when I truly noticed the beauty of spring, the new growth, the colors...

     Speaking of noticing spring - I think I have Justin to blame for that.  He loves plants so much.  I love to watch him talk about the shrubs and trees we pass as we take our walks...he just lights up!  I've learned more about trees and shrubs and flowers and other plants in the past 9 months (!!!) then I ever even thought possible.  All that to say....now I catch myself admiring a plant or two here and there when I normally would have never noticed thanks to that wonderful boy of mine.  God has given us such beauty, such splendor...and I think we miss it too often.  His creation is right in front of us every single day!  So if you think about it, take the time to stop and admire, breath in His beauty - it's most definitely a breath of fresh air.