Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Ten Years...

Today has been an amazing day.  I woke up knowing it would be difficult.  However, God had better plans.  I love days like today, when I think one way, then my God shows up and shows me His incredibly amazing love.  And, even better yet, on Valentine's Day.   

A brief glimpse at the past: Ten years ago, I went to work not knowing that particular shift would forever change my life.  This night so many years back, I was proposed to.  I accepted and at seventeen thought that the phrase "Will you marry me?" was bound to bring the most incredible parts with it. 

Fast forward through an entire decade (wow, I sound old!) and I realize that even then God had incredible plans for me.  I am beginning to realize that had I chosen a different answer then, I wouldn't be me now.  Because of my choice, I faced many demons: unplanned pregnancies, abuse, miscarriage, alcoholism, depression, single parenthood, along with quite a few others.  Because of His grace, today I face a bright future.  My unplanned pregnancies gave me a few of my three greatest joys.  The abuse allowed me to be able to have compassion on and say the right prayers for those who are going through it now.  Miscarriages are harder, as I still long for those precious babies, but know God had a bigger picture.  However, if I had had even one of them, I may not have the beautiful little girls I have now.  Alcoholism is another tough one, however, I have learned how easy it is to just look the other way.  I will never again judge an individual for not standing up to someone for causing such incredible harm and pain against others they love.  Never again - I get it.  The battles I have faced in the last year are among my hardest fights, but also my greatest victories.  I have my life.  I have the joy of raising three little girls to be strong women of faith.  I can not only help them through life, but also show them how to live it and walk it out.  It isn't easy, that is for sure.  I have the best support system a girl could ever ask for.  God has blessed me with the opportunity of an incredibly fun job, all while going to school so that I can really support myself and my daughters.  I can't say it enough: God is SO good!

And friends.  I don't even know where to start with this one.  I am one really blessed lady.  One year ago today, I remember sitting alone on my couch, thinking pitifully sad, lonely thoughts.  Thoughts about how difficult the day was, pondering where life was going to lead me, how would I survive?  I remember feeling like I had nobody I could call.  Today, God has shown me that sometimes in those lonely times, He wants and desires for me to talk to Him.  I am so much better now because I felt I had no one but Him then.  I can't help but feel that someone is going to read this at some point and feel as lonely as I did then.  Let me just say this.  If this is you, please, stop reading and pray.  Let God know that you are lonely.  Let Him know how bad it hurts to want someone - anyone - to talk to.  He will fill you to the point you can't take anymore.  And, really, it is so much easier to depend on God for the things I need (even something as simple as friends) than to worry and stress over what I think I need, or that I am not getting what I need/want when I think I need/want it. 

I woke up this morning with a prayer for a few things.  One was a new situation at work.  The other was for strength to get through the day.  And let me just say this: He came through bigger and better than I could have EVER imagined. 

Hoping this Valentine's Day was as incredible for each of you as it has been for me! 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A Rough Day

Tonight, I had an experience that hurt me, causing me to again rethink the events of the last twelve months.  The questions that usually nag me bothered me for quite a while tonight.  When I mentioned to a close friend the angst and pain I was feeling, I was so gently reminded how very much I am loved.  After the pain, I was allowed to expand my wings just a little more.  I am really thankful for the experience, as well as the blessing that followed. 

I was at a community event tonight, where several hundred members of the community came to support a great cause.  I am always a little anxious about doing things that might have an unexpected situation that forces me to be a stronger person than I feel I can be.  This was the first time I have done this particular event truly 100% solo, and it was slightly intimidating.  I ran into a group of friends I used to see somewhat often and really enjoyed their company.  I have recently realized that divorce not only separates man and wife, but also man's family and wife's family, man's friends and wife's friends, and man's family's friends and wife's family's friends.  This has been a difficult process.  Needless to say, I saw a group of friends that I thought were somewhat neutral.  After a somewhat short, uncomfortable conversation, I realized they weren't on "my" side (and I hate that so many situations have to have a side. I try to use that term as little as possibly, as it reminds me of conflict - I hate conflict), even though not a single person in this group has ever asked me what my side was.  It hurt, more so than I thought it would.  I knew I would run into a few people that I knew, and in those situations, I typically get a little nervous before realizing I can face so many things I once didn't have the strength to. 

Anyway, after the uncomfortable discussion, I was talking with another friend, who I think picked up that I was antsy and a little restless.  I guess I was mad, or hurt, or something and it had affected me visibly.  When I explained briefly what had happened, she reminded me how incredible my friends really are.  She let me know that sometimes God puts people in your life for a quick little jog, and others are there for the full marathon.  While she might not have said it exactly like that, that is what was placed on my heart.  So tonight, I am really grieving the loss of so many once dear friends, but praising God for the ones He placed in my life for the marathon.  I don't just have one or two, but many who stand behind me and fight for me, remind me how strong I am, as well as the place the reminder that Christ will give me the strength/wisdom/courage I need to continue putting one foot in front of the other.  I am truly sad that in the last twelve months, I have lost so many I loved dearly, and for many years.  The grief is overwhelming to me at times.  Tonight, though, I am going to focus on those who surround me continually with love, support, and prayers.  You know who you are, and for you, I am thankful.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


So, today something tragic happened to someone I am close to.  My heart is breaking, and while her circumstances are not quite the same as mine, all the emotions of my losses keep coming back to me.  Emotions can be such a great thing.  And, yet, it seems like they are stored inside when it would be the most detrimental to come out.  It was a rough morning, and finding out this news is almost too much.  The sadness I know they are enduring, the inability to say just what needs to be said, the need for comfort that just is almost impossible to find.  

My heart is breaking, as this friend of mine is losing her baby.  I do not know the ins and outs of the situation, but remember the ins and outs of every single time I lost a baby.  Regardless of how many times it has happened, it never gets easier.  I remember several times waking up in recovery in such sorrow I couldn't bear it.  I remember feeling so angry with God.  I remember thinking it would be easier to literally rip my heart out than to feel the emotions of knowing my baby would never make it into the world. Wanting to go to sleep without waking up knowing I was no longer carrying that longed for child inside me.  I honestly don't think a woman can ever heal from losing something they carry so close to their hearts.  So, if you are reading this, please say a prayer for my friend.  My heart is heavy for her today.  I know God plans all things for our good, but at the time of loss, it is often hard to see how magnificent His plans truly are. 

Monday, February 6, 2012

A New Adventure

So, last year was a year of total adjustment.  I tried to focus mainly on surviving, with little tidbits of healing and focusing on being happy.  It worked for last year, but this year, I want a completely new start.  A new beginning, so to speak.  I want to know I am doing life the way God wants me to, wherever that may lead.  I am still trying to figure out just how this whole blog thing works, so bear with me.  :)