A friend indeed

true friendsTonight I have been thinking about friendship. I think we all have many acquaintances but it is friends who change our lives. I feel blessed to have four amazing friends. They are with me through thick and thin. I hope that they feel they can count on me to do the same.

Life may not offer many opportunities to experience true friendship. Sometimes things intervene and don’t give us the chance to bond in “agape” love. In my life experiences I can see that part of having this kind of relationship depends on how much we are willing to give. If we are unwilling to share our true selves then deep friendship doesn’t happen. We have to learn to open ourselves knowing that we can be hurt in the process.

I share joy and sorrow with my friends. We hold each other up in the tough times an rejoice in the good ones. We have all had our share of pain and loss and that has bound us even more together.

I guess my hope is that I can continue to be the friend they need and have them remain mine.

breathing space

inside headToday I decided that I needed to heed the statement that cleanliness in next to Godliness. For so long my office has been cluttered with material brought home from the job I left last year and I decided it was time to clear out. I did save some things that are important to me but trashed a lot. It is so nice to see this space neat. I realize that the disorder was connected in some way to my own disorder. When you are not functioning well it doesn’t seem important to be neat. Now I can see that the neatness has made me feel better.

I am not an obsessive neatnik but too much stuff everywhere will start to get to me. I don’t know why I tackled the job that I have not felt like doing for over a year but I am glad I did. Some boxes are gone and only some minor things to file left. I hope this is a step on the way to recovery. When this started I had no idea that so much anger, pain and sadness was bottled up inside. Losing my best friend and her daughter and then my own job within one year was overload.

It has been a tremendous help to be able to share my journey with my blog. It helps so much to find others who fight each moment and keep on fighting. We can conquer the things that stalk us. We can find companionship and peace. Without the ability to communicate we could so easily be alone.

God is good. Our needs are known to him and if we open our eyes we can see his work in out lives each day.

open our eyes

Lord open our eyes.

Grief again!

meeting-grief
Grief is there

Dreams are interesting. Sometimes we can tell where a dream came from. We may dream about something that happened during the day. The dream may be mixed up and ridiculous. It may be prophetic. It may also show us our hidden feelings. Two nights ago I had a dream that related to my past vocation. It seems I was trying to be part of my previous church in the way that I was before. I was rejected and woke up crying. I fell back asleep and dreamed about the church I attend with my husband and wanted to help and was not allowed and again woke up crying. I realize that my grieving over the past year is not over. It is manifesting itself in my dreams. Maybe, in some way, my dreaming about this and crying is helping to allow the grief out where I can confront it.

Grief is not a thing that disappears immediately. It comes back and helps us to cry and acknowledge the loss. This is not a bad thing. We have to accept that grief hurts and arises at strange times.

grief againThe thing is if we didn’t love…whether is was a vocation, a person or whatever…we would feel no grief. Love is never lost. Love is worth it. Our lives would be lesser without love.

Unconditional love

crash and tillieToday I seem to have returned to some equilibrium. This episode helped me to realize how easy it is to run the train right off the rails. With the start of this blog I wanted to find ways to prevent this but wasn’t consistent. Unfortunately, consistency is the key. You can’t use a tool if you haven’t mastered it.

So the journey continues. I have made some good changes but not enough. There was no major crisis in my life but I had forgotten how the little things pile up and become an overload. One thing I can say for sure my dogs really do help. Both are rescues and have had their own share of trauma. Their names are Crash and Matilda. Crash was named that by his foster family because when rescued he was hit by something (possibly a car) and had broken his pelvis. He was so covered in fleas and ticks that his blood counts were dangerously low. He is now a happy, health and slight goofy basset hound. Tillie, found at the pound by a friend of my son’s had little history to explain her past but is loving and stubborn and funny. Both of them are a blessing.

dogIt seems to me that our pets are a true gift from God and certainly an example of how to live. They love unconditionally and share that love always. They don’t judge. They love in spite of our failings. What better example could there be of God’s love.

Starting over

start overThe last few days have been a trial. IBS hit me really hard. Probably because things have been difficult for the last six months. I guess I let it build up until all the little things became big enough to attack me. I realize that I have not followed through with how I started. Had I been consistent I would not have melted down the way I did. I am better now and more ready to start again. Somehow we don’t fail if we are willing to start again.

It seems to be a pattern of mine to fall apart when things start to get better. Somehow I manage to stay together through problems but later it all comes home to haunt me.

I have done so much reading about anxiety and realize that mine is situational. When I am stressed up to point my IBS jumps in and pushes all my buttons. Then everything is a vicious cycle.

So today is a new day. A new chance to make changes. A new time to learn and grow. I know that I can not fix everything so I am turning to the one thing that never fails. I am leaning on my faith and my belief in God and his/her saving grace. We are promised that God loves us and we can’t earn grace it is freely given.

grace 3

Ephesians 2:8-9

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God— not the result of works, so that no one may boast.

Where is strength to come from?

scarsLife is always interesting. It is not always pleasant. Too often we have to struggle to face challenges. The challenge may not be that tough but it is the adding on of another and another. I am almost better at handling one big challenge that the little ones that pile up. They wear us out and we finally crumble under the weight. Things have been that way for me since last summer. There have been family issues, health issues, grief and sadness. None of these individually are that significant. It’s just that your shoulders reach the point where they can no longer bear the weight and something fails.

When we reach the breaking point whatever our weakness is will raise its ugly head. I went along for so long without any major problems. Life was good. Things were simple but after the last months I have lapsed back and am struggling to maintain my focus. I want so much to continue with the things that I know will help me and I am trying. Sometimes it feels as if there is no end to it.

controlEach of us has our own struggles, our Achilles heel. Each of us wants to be on the path to health and wholeness. Many of you, like me, find that the strength to continue the journey in our faith. To be able to turn to something that offers us strength when we are weak, hope when we can’t see the light and love is what saves us.

Every night I have been reading through the Psalms beginning with Psalm 1. I have found great comfort in them in spite of the ones that fuss about enemies. GOD IS truly with us. We do have strength….it is his.

O give thanks to the God of gods, for his steadfast love endures forever.

Heal by helping

on the huntTomorrow I begin a new journey. When I started this new path my daughter said that since I can do what I want I am in “sampling” mode. That is, I can try different things to see what I want to do. I am not a person who can just sit home and I need to do something that helps. I begin Mediation training tomorrow. I will be volunteering as part of the civil court system to help people come to some agreement rather than go to court. I know that this will be challenging but I have mediated so many things in my life that it sounds interesting to me. If it doesn’t work for me I don’t have to do it.

I have to be at the training at 8:00 am and I am no longer used to getting up early so it will be a new perspective. The training is  three and 1/2 days long so I think I can put up with it for that long. I have the advantage to work when I want.The schedule is flexible.

Getting out of the house and learning something new will be good for me. I have not only been vegetating but also less happy. I need challenges and I need growth to keep me from anxiety and depression. I am so much better when I have a focus. I hope that it helps me get out of the rut I have been in and ease my IBS.

helpint healsI am of the opinion that when we focus on helping others we tend to focus less on ourselves. We have less time to obsess and sink into a depressing pattern. Helping others is so rewarding on many levels. We develop a sense of self worth and feel better about ourselves. Just knowing that you have made a difference in another’s life is a blessing. Maybe if those of us who tend to spend too much time in our own minds could lead a life of giving ourselves we would experience some healing.

Helping is healing!