Thursday, January 8, 2015

The impeded stream

I'm feeling like wrestling with deep issues today. My house is quiet, my little dog is cuddled up beside me and I feel like digging deep.

I'm reading a book by Jenny Simmons called _the road to becoming._ it's an interesting read about her journey from being in a band, Addison road, which had success, to figuring out what to do when the band called it quits.

It's a book about burying a dream, grieving, being lost and following God on the road to becoming. I bought it because her father in law is our music minister and I like her music, but God is showing me some beautiful truths through it.

About a month ago,I was contacted that my birth mother had written me a letter and I had to give permission to receive it. I did. The letter opened the door to emotions buried deep within me that I wasn't even aware of. Tough. Added to it that I'm in this existential weird place of trying to figure out what "Laura 2.0" will be now that I'm headed back to work. it's a lot to sift through.

I've given myself permission to feel. anger spikes up at times. I feel like I've worked so hard to please everyone around me and what has it gained? Not much. I learned a while back that I have to work to stay in touch with what I want because I'll easily be swayed along to make others happy.

I won't go into it, but the letter wasn't what I had hoped for .I've heard that it's common for adopted people to have an idealized vision of their birth parents. I had been told a set of information that made me think x. The letter showed y.

Making peace with that is hard. I profess to be a Christian and give lip service to giving my life to Christ, but when "y" was the reality,I was shaken to my core. Who I always thought I was seemed to be ripped away. I thought I really believed that my identity is in Christ but I didn't.

Now I see I was mourning the loss of my dream. I'm working to accept reality. It's hard. But I can trace God's hand as I look at my own growth.

In Jenny's book she quotes Wendell berry "it may be that when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work and when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our true journey.the mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one sings."

Wow. I'm wrestling right now with deep issues of worth and identity. At 36. I didn't sign up for this. My stream was impeded enough with 3 little boys,a husband, 2 dogs, a new job, etc before all this came along. But it's here anyway.

So, today I'm choosing to wrestle with it. I'm reminded that regardless of my DNA or the circumstances of my upbringing, I'm a loved child of God. I can't earn his love or lose it. It's mine to accept.  Who will Laura 2.0 be? Still loved, regardless of the job I take or whatever I do. Victory is mine in Jesus if I'll lean into him and choose to let go of my perceived ideas of who I am. I'm enough. I'm loved. I'm amazing. I'm victorious.

Friday, December 19, 2014

white space

The concept of white space intrigues me. Without the white space on the page there's chaos. The challenge is to allow for that margin of white space in our own lives.

How do I do that? By choosing wisely. I've found that white space is what energizes my soul. Today it was watching son #2 enjoy the magic of his school Christmas party. Seeing the joy in his eyes was precious.

Before the party,I cleaned of the stairs. A task that took less than 15 minutes made me feel fantastic. Afterwards,I played Christmas songs on the piano. Sweet #3 asked me to get out the musical instruments so we could jam. And we did to "Go tell it on the mountain". Sweet moment.

My boys are home and our routine is out the window. Today I'm still going to fold laundry and cook supper, but I'm also intentionally taking time to build in white space. I'm looking forward to doing my fave yoga DVD later today.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Christmas binder

I made a Christmas binder a few years ago. I saw the idea on a blog and thought it would make for the perfect Christmas. I've learned through the years a few lessons about that.

1- expecting anything in life to be perfect is a surefire way to be let down. The more I plan, the more can go wrong. I married a man that is anti planning. I've learned that so much of his time is dictated in his job that when he's home he really wants to be free. I haveto accept where he is in his life which can be tricky when I love a good plan.

2- I've learned to plan activities in pencil and keep expectations low. It's taken time, but I'm learning to be more of a Mary and less of a Martha.

3- i'm also learning to enjoy parts of the binder that are uniquely mine. For example, I write a letter to myself every year. Sometimes it's an actual letter and sometimes it's an after action report written in bullet form. It's very useful for this time of year.

I already have my Christmas cards done.I learned a few years ago that waiting on them stresses me out so now I take advantage of sales on shutterfly and do them in Oct. I like that they are done and in my closet waiting for me.

4-Gift giving isn't my strength. Aaron loves it so he has that job. When I let go of that Christmas got a lot more fun for me.

5- I used to wait to get the binder out and then be surprised by black Friday. No longer. I am going to shop on black Friday and am looking forward to it. I need new boots. I have lovely cowboy boots from last Christmas but I need to replace my riding boots. Great sales are coming for those. Here I come!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

changeless

This morning we took our boys to a mythbusters exhibit at a museum. Very fun. Now we're back home and I'm working through 48 days. I'm finding it's a tricky thing to be relaxed enough to take the time to search my soul and dream about the future. I'm accepting that I can do what I can when I can and I'm ok with that.

Today's brain candy: "the only way we can handle change around us is to know what is changeless about ourselves." -Stephen covey

There's a lot there. What is changeless about me? I'm not all that sure. Motherhood has done a number on me. I'm glad I chose to stay home, but it's been rough.I'm seeing this year that being back at work while being a mom is a new challenge.

Friday, November 21, 2014

advent calendar dilemma

I love advent. I grew up celebrating advent at my church. It's a time of getting ready for Christmas.

Enter motherhood. When my twins were 2, I remember using an afternoon naptime to make an advent calendar. It was precious. We had a wonderful time with it. At age 3 I got to watch them really get that Jesus is the reason for Christmas. Super cool.

Last year, my brother gave my boys a Lego advent calendar which they loved. I looked for another one, but they are pricey.

Now, I'm thinking that maybe it's ok to not do an advent calendar this year. I'm torn.I want Christmas to be special, but I also know the more stuff I add to our days the less of me I have to give.

I'll keep thinking on it.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

wingman

 I have a cold. Yuck. Not bad enough to not teach my class at 1230, but bad enough to want to rest. So,I asked my husband to take #3 to mdo so I could stay home to rest until I need to drive to my school to teach. He said yes and was happy to help.

This time at home this morning has been a huge blessing.wise choice on my part. Figuring out how to balance work, home and motherhood is rough. Today I think I made a huge step in doing it well. I didn't spring the request on him. Instead,I asked nicely and gave him plenty of time to be able to say yes easily.

It's good to have a wing man.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

48 days for some direction

I haven't blogged in a while because my computer is misbehaving. My IT guy/ sweet husband is on it, but it's slowed down my blogging.

Well, I've had my new teaching job for 1/4 of the school year now.  There are parts of it I love and parts that are thumbs down. I'm learning some great lessons as I go. The best so far is that I can't let my emotions ebb and flow with how my job makes me feel. I'm teaching middle schoolers for the first time after teaching elementary my whole career; needless to say I've had a steep learning curve. Not so fun.

I'm fluent in Spanish and love the language. I love the way the grammar flows together and the elegance of the way the language sounds. Writing on my Spanish blog makes me soul sing. Teaching it to beginners just doesn't. Part of me feels like a snob but the other part of me sees this as a gift. I'm getting a chance to try on something new. It may be a great fit with some tweaks or there may be something else for me.

I believe that God called me back in 2002 to teach. I loved it. It's 12 years laterand I'm not the same woman I was. Motherhood has matured and humbled me. The other day while talking to a friend, she pointed out that my passions about being a bilingual teacher didn't really involve teaching; they involved being the champion for the families and children as they assimilated into American culture. Could it be possible to find a job in that arena but not the classroom? I hadn't even considered that.

So,I downloaded 48 days to the work you love by Dan Miller. Aaron read it a few years ago and was blessed by it.

Now it's my turn.