This is my view tonight. I sit here, struggling beyond belief with two stupid assignments of a class that is so over my head. I have cancelled this course twice (yeah, you did read that right. TWICE.) because it is just hard and overwhelming and scary and the list goes on quite a ways. I am not allowed to postpone it, change it, or drop it. Or I get dropped. Pretty plain and simple. So, eventually tonight, I am going to have to bite the bullet and get the stupid assignments done and go to bed. My thoughts just overtake every ounce of me tonight. All day, I couldn't put my finger on it. About dinner, I realized about a million reasons why I should be allowed a really really good cry. Except I can't let myself. I am terrified if I start, I might not stop for a while.
I know you are wondering why in the world I posted a picture of a slightly cluttered but inspirational workplace in a very public setting. First, because it inspires me. Second, because I am feeling the need to put off my homework for just a little longer. I am so not looking forward to doing it and know I will not allow myself to be dropped, so... Third, because when I write I feel better and why not write about things and people who push me harder and believe in me more than I do myself? I always feel better after processing a little bit, anyway. And typing is so much easier than grabbing a pen, so a public place it must be...
Ok, so quickly glancing... My monkey sings "The Fireman Song" and does this silly dance. Except it's batteries are dead because I couldn't help but push the button. All. The. Time. Almost two years ago, I ran the Princess Half Marathon at Disney World. My sister and I were somewhere between miles 6 and 8, and let me just say, we were too far to stop, but way too far from the end for my liking, well, until we rounded the corner and saw firemen. Amazingly handsome, hunky fireman. Dancing on the roof of their truck. Oh my, yes. :) Disclaimer: Previously mentioned firemen were in broad daylight, fully clothed. On Disney property, people. So, the song they were dancing to (which was "Dynamite," for anyone wondering) has become know in my house as the fireman song. So, I can't help but laugh at finishing what felt almost impossible every time I push the button. Probably one of my favorite things is this big red heart, from one of my awesome kiddos from last year. He struggled all year to write his name and cut with scissors. And, not only did he cut that heart out all by himself, he also wrote my name and his name on it. And, he told me I was the prettiest teacher at the school. So, yeah, that heart reminds me I do at least one thing in life right. I give my all to those kiddos. And I love every (ok, almost every) second of it. I find myself giggling at Toy Story Lego magnets that I would probably go off the deep end if someone stole from me. They are just way too fun. I love that my to-do list from last March is still hanging, waiting for me to buy wipes and food and all sorts of stuff. I look around to Jessie's artwork, to Sara's homemade Mother's Day card, to Cassie's heart magnets, all their hard work and creativity in front of me. Happy little girls, with brightly colored pictures. It brightens up one of the most stressful spots I have. I look at a card from one of my sisters that reminds me how much better I am here instead of where I used to be, and that I just gotta keep smiling through it all. I have at least four pairs of headphones, reminding me I should be running more. I am not even gonna go there. I so want to run. I really need someone to just tell me to get my butt up and get out there. I have one of my favorite quotes within a hands reach, "Sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage. Twenty seconds of just embarrassing bravery, and something great will come of it." Don't even know where I heard it or where I can hear it again, but I love it. I have my favorite kiddos all with Mickey ears and princess tiaras, reminding me of my best Disney trip yet, and that I am sure there will be more. Most importantly, I am surrounded with some of my favorite scriptures, and the reminder that even in this dark place I am in tonight, God is here. Reminding me that in order to reach the prize, I gotta keep pushing on. Reminding me that every single step I make needs to be with God-centered purpose. No random strolls. That His strong Hand holds me and keeps me from drowning, this very second when I am so tired of trying. The reminder that my weakness provides Him the perfect opportunity to remind me of His strength and grace. That I need nothing more than that.
Come January, I can't seem to escape from where I could still be. For so long, I have looked at this month as this place of inner turmoil, sadness of past hurts, disappointments and lack of caring. I hate that I allowed myself to be in such a position to feel so desperate, so alone, and so weary of just taking the next breath. I hate that I allowed myself to hope for so much more. I hate that I expected anyone to be a better person, especially because I wanted that person healthy, whole and happy. I hate that I have an amazing story to share with people, because sharing is so difficult. I hate that I know part of who I am going to be now and forever is because of what I experienced every day of my past.
However, amidst all those I hates, I have a lot more I loves. I love that though my past is painful, and this month reminds me again and again how many times I was let down and hurt, this amazing relationship and bond I have with my Creator takes the sting out of it, and replaces it with this promise and hope I cannot explain. I know that I am worth far more than any bottle of beer or picture of a naked woman on the computer. My value is far above either. I love that God can take this cracked vessel of a person and mold it into the most amazing, intricate piece of art. There is this scripture in Ephesians (I think it might be 2:10?) that talks about each of us being God's masterpiece. Not one more valued than the other, but each of us equally loved and treasured, priceless in the eyes of the Artist. And, you know, I love that God saw and is creating a purpose through my pain. I love that God has given me a promise that I can stand firmly on, even in the middle of these rough nights. I love that God will give me the strength and grace I need to fulfill His plan and purpose for my life.
I guess in all of this, I just have to remember, I could be sitting in the same place I was two years ago. And, sadly, I remember exactly where I was two years ago right now, and I never want to go back. I gotta remember to keep my eyes focused on where God's redeeming love has taken me from so that I can see and do the amazing things He has in store for me. He has not forgotten me, nor have I forgotten what He promised to do for me. Regardless of the dark, regardless of the weary, regardless of it all, His word remains true. For that I am thankful, for that I can say I am blessed. He hasn't changed His mind, and the adversities being thrown my way will not make me doubt the good things He has promised for those who wait. I will wait. And His promises will come.