I changed my Facebook profile so that a flag of Paris is over a cartoon rendition of me. A friend drew it when I was trying to publish my “book.” Look to the left: There’s my altered ego, Bipolar Girl, with her journal and pen in hand, ready to take on the world. And while some days I might feel like I can fly… God is really the wind beneath my wings and it is his hand that holds me up.
I read something that was trending on fb that made me mad. Honestly? I doesn’t take much to make me mad… but I’m working through my anger issues. An artist penned a cartoon telling people not to “pray for Paris.” It felt like a slap in the face to me since I’d prayed in tears last night as I read the news. My first response was to pray.
I can’t get on a plane and go help Paris. Sending “music, kisses, champagne, or joy” will not heal what has been broken. I don’t even understand what the artist meant… but all the comments I read were pretty rude. There are a lot of angry non-Christians out there with axes to grind on the necks of people who pray because they care. From my own life, I know that prayers may take years to heal so I can understand how people are mad at God in the wake of yet another tragedy and don’t want to hear about prayers. But I know of no other way to address such horror. Ask me to do anything… but don’t ask me not to pray.
I started to add this with my profile/status update, but realized this particular soapbox was best pulled out in another venue. Here is what I wanted to post on fb, but chose to post here:
Why I Pray for Paris:
6. I hate when evil things happen. So does God. Yet, even now, Jesus is at the right hand of the Father interceding for Paris… and the Middle East… and Ferguson… and every other town, city, or country where evil people continue to chose evil actions.
So, I will display their flag as a show of support, but I will continue to lift up my prayers, not because it’s the only thing I can do… but because it’s the one thing I must do.
I have spent too much of my life fretting the past and fearing the future. The past, with it’s hobgoblins, always had the power to rob me of all joy. The laundry list of wrongs that I’d suffered or the relationships that had failed me continually flapped in my mind like wet laundry on a line hitting me smack in the face. And the future? Why anticipate the future when you can fear it every minute of every day … so much so that you miss out on actually living in today because whatever wrong is awaiting you tomorrow will surely suck the joy right of you. Sandwiched in between the fears of past and future I exist. I don’t live the abundant life that God promised. Jesus died on a cross for something that I’m too afraid to collect on.
A bill came from the emergency room today. They aren’t afraid to collect on what’s owed. My first response when I saw it was anger. I thought I paid the hospital right before the let me leave. I realized immediately that my anger was disproportionate to the “offense.” Plus it wasn’t really an offense. My doctor’s office had run some tests and I was have some really gnarly symptoms. They called and told me to go to the emergency room. It’s actually a long and funny story (now)… I wasn’t laughing then… but it is in the past. I need to let it go — or maybe hold on to the lessons learned and let everything else go.
The first thing they did was hook me up to an EKG to see if I was having a heart attack. I’m 47 years old, surely too young for that. I wasn’t even having stabbing chest pains. But when you consider that I’m overweight. I habitually ate McDonald’s four nights a week; never got any real exercise; and work a really stressful job I can now see why they thought I might be having a heart attack. My blood pressure was through the roof too. Turns out I was having an allergic reaction to one of the high blood pressure meds. It reacted with my lithium and elevated the levels. The emergency room doctor kept asking me if I’d taken a deliberate overdose of my lithium. It was all so surreal. It was NOT how I planned to spend my Sunday night and the whole thing was stressful. I ended up out of work for a week. I wasn’t in the hospital (PRAISE GOD) but I couldn’t drive and I was still having a lot of the side effects. I was a wake up call. Proof positive that my suicidal episodes are a lie. I didn’t want to die that night because I have never really wanted to die.
Now that all of this is clearly in my rear view mirror what have I learned? The body that God gave me… the one that is so wonderfully and fearfully made is in need of an overhaul. God didn’t give me a body and a life so that I could abuse it and neglect it. I’ve known for a while that I needed to make changes, I just haven’t known how. I’ve taken some steps to address my diet, my weight, and my level of activity. I do not know what is going to come next. I know that I don’t want to let the “silent killer” wipe me out. All these years struggling with suicidal ideation I had no idea I was slowly killing myself by lifestyle choices that I was making. My spiritual house needs an overhaul too. I know that I need to put Jesus at the center of my life but I honestly don’t know how. I did all the right Christianese things. I prayed; went to church; served as a missionary; taught in Christian schools and a whole bunch more stuff. And yet I still ended up where I am now: existing instead of living. The one reassuring thing is that if I seek Jesus… no matter how small the steps he promises to be found. I will find him again. He sees my efforts and I doubt he’d bash me over the head for making such small changes. Besides, it’s only small changes until I can make big ones.
Lately, my life has been rather surreal. New medication for high blood pressure sent me on a weird trip… and not the good kind of weird. Without consulting my doctor I diagnosed that I needed to go off it and it’s only a few weeks later that I can see the wisdom of my doctoring skills. It got worse before it got better and I was whining to the ninth level of heaven hoping to get relief from the physical symptoms. I used to have a high tolerance for pain/discomfort, but that last stint in the hospital cured me of that. The fear of having to go back into the hospital makes every little ache and pain seem that much worse. Then, stress kicked in to make everything that much worse and my mental health started to degrade.
I cracked at work last week.
I think this is the second time in the past year that I’ve cracked at work. Damn. I used to pride myself on looking and acting normal at least at work. I haven’t gone postal or anything… but I am ashamed that I couldn’t hold it together last week enough to do my job. I wanted to leave work because I knew there was no way I was going to be able to teach but because so many other people were out sick there were no subs. My boss couldn’t really let me go because my students would have nobody. He said I could show movies all day which I did. The only movies I have besides “Godzilla” and “Scooby Doo” are Christian movies and that’s what they voted on watching.
Aside from their entitled grumblings, my students were ok and the day progressed and I got through it, but I drove home and stayed there. I didn’t leave my house for two days. I slept some. I tried to eat healthier some. I read my bible and prayed some. I tried to just be still because when I’m not still… it’s impossible for me to see God.
At first, all I could see were my feet and my ankles. The meds made them swell. More precisely, my legs and angles. As I looked anxiously at my swollen legs and ankles I thought about how my mom had both her legs amputated because of complications with her diabetes and other health problems. I kept thinking that I look just like her and have a number of the same health problems and how I was going to have both my legs amputated. See what I mean about surreal?
I can’t saw that I heard the audible voice of God in those two days, but I was as still as I know how to be. One funny thing that happened in all of this? My computer died. Not totally dead dead… but dead enough so that I couldn’t use it. And that I was available to get a text on my phone from a friend who is not in the same time zone. My phone is never on and I never call anybody… but that night I needed to talk to her. I haven’t talked to her in over a year. She said she wanted to pray with me and wouldn’t ask questions. It was exactly what I needed and after we prayed she pointed out that if my laptop had been working we wouldn’t have had that conversation. She was right.
We said our goodbyes and then I used the phone I never used to google possible solutions to my laptop problem. It took a little time, but I found a solution and it was a quick fix. My computer was up and running in less than ten minutes. Audible voice of God? Not hardly… but he sure got my attention.
Two days later I went back to work. I was still a bit ill, but I could handle work. My legs and ankles weren’t swollen or burning anymore and most of the side effects had subsided. I could drive without fear of plowing into oncoming traffic so I got to work early as is my custom. I expected to see cane spiders in my room after two days of it being closed up. I did not expect to see a swarm of bees in my room. Hundreds of dead bees were on the floor. I’ve experienced this one other time, so I wasn’t freaked out. All the live bees clumped up and swarming my window was another thing! Can’t recall if I screamed or not, but I did back out really fast. My class had to be relocated for the day. There’s only two bee guys on the island who can remove them. Evidently, there’s a hive in the walls and they’re going to have to break into the wall to find it. Surreal? I thought so… until I found out that Hurricane Guillermo might be headed this way.
Doing anything other than being still would be stupid at this point.
The other day
I had a long blog ready to post
and then accidentally deleted it.
I would have typed it again
over the weekend but I couldn’t
scrounge up enough energy.
Father’s day had descended.
I’m past hating FD.
I did not have any emotional
But it’s hard to get all worked up
over this holiday.
My bio dad tried to kill me when I was eight.
He died before I hit puberty and I never
got closure with him until I became a Christian.
My stepfather sold porn at the swap meet.
I was exposed to his stash and developed
an addiction to porn that lasted well into my adult life.
And…the only time I ever remember being hit in my life,
my stepfather picked me up by my feet and hit me
with a broken kite stick that belonged to his daughter.
I had to go through years of therapy to work through
all of that.
I do not have any warm fuzzy daddy memories.
And as broken as I am, I’m pretty much given
up on the notion of getting married and having a
happy family of my own…
and they hysterectomy took care of
So FD is an empty holiday for me.
I love God
and I know he is my heavenly Father…
but it’s not the same.
I would give my left eye for a
good relationship with either of my fathers.
I’m not joking.
I say “left” eye because I’ve got major vision problems
in that eye and I’d be ok with out it.
I know God loves me and will never forsake me…
but yesterday was just another empty holiday
where I had reminders all around me of what
I didn’t have growing up
and what I don’t have now.
I avoided Facebook like the plague.
All the happy families and the posts
about how special so and so’s dad is…
or how you should repost something if you had a great dad.
What about the people who don’t have that?
It used to be like a knife in the heart for me.
Last year’s Father’s Day was when I just stopped
going to church.
I couldn’t take it anymore.
The shining light in all of this?
I had a totally horrible morning at work today.
The last such morning sent me falling
down the Bipolar Staircase and I didn’t rebound
for two full days.
My horrible day was followed by a visit
to the OB/GYN.
I thought the hysterectomy took care of that…
evidently, I was wrong.
Sitting in that waiting room surrounded
by all those pregnant women added insult
to injury. They are large with life…
Me? I’m just large.
The nurse checked my blood pressure–
it’s higher than before I went on the medication
my job may literally be the death of me.
So… for all intents and purposes, I should be
a basket case tonight.
I should be wallowing and whining
and standing at the top of the staircase
ready to do a nose dive.
Only thing is, I’m not.
I’m stressed and frustrated about today…
but I’m ok.
My bio-dad and stepfather might have screwed
me over in ways they could never have imagined…
but my heavenly Father sees me and knows me.
He knows when I’ve had enough and can’t take anymore.
His arms cannot physically hold me
and I don’t have photos to post on social media…
but he was very much with me today
and his arms were outstretched to catch me.
It isn’t the same…
but it’s enough for now.
Today was a good day.
One of those days that
I’m happy I live on an island.
It was beautiful
and it reminded me
of how awesome
The day got even better
when a student asked
me to pray for her.
We stood outside
on the fire stairs
outside my classroom
and the incredible
view from my
but give thanks.
So it’s the last day of my four day weekend and I got up at 5:31am. It felt crazy but it wasn’t really. This was prime driving time and I couldn’t lose my edge. I had a few cans of pork and beans, some olives, and some instant jello in the house and that didn’t bode well for the next week. Ok, I had more than this… but I needed to get food for heading back into the real world not hermit grub. I usually hire a student to go with me to do all the heavy lifting and to act as a buffer between me and the world. I can still walk relatively well… but I haven’t been able to manage my three store stock up without using the disabled scooter. WalMart, Safeway, and Costco are hard for my physically…but they also stress me out which is why I got at 5:31am. Less people to get mad at.
Unfortunately, there was some miscommunication with my student and she wouldn’t be there with me. I’d planned to go on Thursday since it was a holiday, but I chickened out. Then I planned to go on Friday, but the thought of going shopping stressed me out that I saw a movie instead. Funny Sidebar? I went to the movie to de-stress.When I got my ticket for the matinee and walked in during the previews I realized two things: a) The preview was REALLY scary and b) I was the ONLY person in the theater. Fear mode kicked in immediately. I felt sure some serial killer who stalks matinees was going to shank me before I reached the back seat. Why do I have to sit in the back seat??? Because I freak out when people sit behind me, but this time walking to the back row felt that scene in the movie where you tell the girl not to open that door. She doesn’t listen to you and gets killed. That’d look great on my tombstone: Killed by serial killer in a matinee because she had to sit in the back row.
After the movie I tried to go Safeway. I even made it through the front doors, but all of the disabled scooters were in use and the place was PACKED. Oh! The humanity… was all over the place and I couldn’t take it. I grabbed a Strawberry Crush (comfort food) and got out of there fast. Friday rolled on by, then Saturday. I started thinking that maybe I didn’t need any food. I like pork and beans. Mix ’em with a little instant Jello and you just might have something. Yeah, diarrhea or projectile vomiting.
Since neither prospect sounded good to me I found myself getting up at 5:31am on a Sunday and driving all the way into town. There was NOBODY on the road. I had it almost all to myself. I could have driven 10mph while straddling two lanes and nobody would have been around to see it. I made it to WalMart without incident. I saw a former student working there. In class he used to drive me nuts, but I was genuinely happy to see him. We talked for quite a while.
Safeway wasn’t all that busy either. I got a scooter and cruised around buying healthy stuff. Now that I’ve got high blood pressure I’m more aware of what I eat. No, not really, but maybe if I say it enough times it’ll be so. I was at the self check out rather pleased at my military precision like organization, when I couldn’t help but hear this old guy yelling at the clerk manning the self-check out stations. She was calmly trying to address his needs, but he was just getting louder and louder. I understand large scale mean like violence and wars. I don’t understand this kind of petty mean. He started cursing at her when it was clear to everyone that he was wrong. I wanted to say something to him but I was afraid. I saw this one news segment about this woman who got the crap kicked out of her because she confronted a woman in a store. Everybody just stood around and watched. What is it they say about bad things happening because good people don’t do anything? I don’t consider myself a particularly good person. In that instant I wanted to club the guy over the head with my imaginary bat. After he left I heard her tell a coworker she was going on break. She deserved it. That’s when I felt like I had to say something. I did that “come here” thing that people do with their fingers when they want people to… come here. She bent down to hear me and I said (rough paraphrase):
If you were his wife or his daughter or any other female family member he would be angry if somebody treated them the way that he treated you. What he did was wrong, yet you handled him with grace, calm, and professionalism. I would have wanted to club the guy, but you didn’t. Every time I’ve come in here you’ve been helpful and kind and if your Manager was here right now I would tell him that he has a really awesome, professional employee.
She was visibly surprised that I would say anything. So was I. It wasn’t until later that I realized that God had answered a prayer. I’d asked him to give me his heart. I wanted to have his eyes to see the things I overlook… the people I fail to see because I’m too wrapped up whining about all of my dramas. I felt bad about not standing up to that horrid old man, but now I see differently. I didn’t need to say anything to him. His anger would have fueled my own and I just might have run him over with my scooter. No, talking to him would not have ended well. Black woman causing disturbance in Safeway? It wouldn’t have gone well, but it probably would have gone viral. I needed to talk to her because none of the other dozen or so people who stood there watching him humiliate her did. If I were her I would have wanted to cry… followed by wanting to quit. I would’ve wanted somebody to say something… anything…to care…
So God gave me his eyes.
When I was in high school I wrote an essay and won an all expense paid trip to Norway. I was one of thirty Los Angles students to be chosen by Scandinavian Airlines to help celebrate their 30 anniversary traveling to and from Los Angeles. I had always dreamed of traveling the world and it looked like my dreams were coming true.
When I was at Berkley, mania convinced me to backpack across Europe. With Youth Hostel card and Eurail pass in hand, I cut a wide trail around Europe. It didn’t bother me that I was traveling alone because nobody was ever a stranger for too long. Mania makes me hyper-social and everybody I met was a friend. I never spent a day alone on my trip. Amsterdam…Belgium…Germany…..Brussels…Austria… France… Spain…
Every dream I’d ever had about traveling the world was coming true.
After college depression convinced me to move to Maui. My life had been slowly unraveling and I needed a place to hide. I was no stranger to hiding, only this time I wanted to hide somewhere warm. I didn’t know that mania and depression would collide once I got there. The bottom fell out of my world and I was smart enough to look up as I fell. Jesus caught me and put me back on my feet. He built me up and made me feel normal for the first time in a long time. I told him that if he could love me knowing everything about me… all the horrible things that I had done… I’d follow him anywhere. So he reminded me of my dreams of traveling the world. He put me on a big white ship in Australia then had it set sail around the South Pacific. And I thought my dreams of traveling the world would never end… until the bottom fell out of the boat and I began to sink.
That was years ago and my dreams of traveling the world for God were shattered. Life happened and continues to happen and with it comes “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” perpetuated by outrageous people. The wounds grew into scars until I found that not only was I afraid to dream of traveling the world, I’m pretty much was afraid to leave my own home. I drive to work. I drive home. At 6am in the morning on a Saturday I will drive to get groceries… but that’s about it. When I am behind the wheel of my car this fear grips me… it wraps itself around my neck like a boa constrictor and squeezes the life out of me. And once the fear takes hold the rage swoops in to scavenge what’s left.
I grew tired of telling people that I was afraid to drive or that I had road rage. They would only say that lots of people dealt with anger issues or fear. Maybe Bipolar Girls wear those emotions differently. My fear and my anger are keeping my captive in my home. Good thing God moved me out of that critter infested place I used to live in. I’d hate to be stuck in that place when I wasn’t at work. Now? I love my home, but it’s a far cry from my dreams of traveling the world. Now I travel from my bedroom to the kitchen. I feel so weak. I feel stupid. Day three of my four day weekend is almost over and I’m going to be forced to drive again. I hate driving. The fear and the rage are going to overtake me and the peace that I’ve had these last few days will be but a dream.
Could it be that part of my problem is that I’ve been trying to figure out what I could do to combat the causes of my fear — as if I could rescue anybody. Unfortunately, I keep giving in to the rage. I see every other driver on the road as my enemy. Seems like Maui has become a tailgater’s paradise. Men in giant pick up trucks seem to think I’m fair game. People follow me so closely that any closer and they’d be in my passenger seat. I’m not a slow driver. I’ve got the speeding tickets to prove it. There is no reason to tail me other than petty meanness….and yet it happens every day. It’s dangerous and fear is just waiting for the crash. On the highway. On winding roads. On my own block. And I tell God that I want to buy a bat. Once, I made a tailgater think that I had a gun in the glove box. You should have seen him move WAY back. I would love to say that I feel the appropriate amount of Christian remorse for that… but I don’t. I feel the hatred grip my heart every time I drive and I don’t care. I know my anger is disproportionate to the cause. I know it’s wrong, but it’s what I feel and I can’t make it go away.
I just want to live my quiet little life without all the fear and the anger. Could it be that part of my problem is that I don’t see and accept my weakness for what it is? It is an ugly reminder of my sin nature. People who know me don’t see it because I don’t feel that way towards them, so they’ve never see it. They say that I’m being too hard on myself… but I see it and God sees it. And the only one who can deal with that is God. If I’m to be made in the image of Jesus… Fear and Rage have to go. They weaken me and they weaken my faith. Yet, when I am weak… then HE is strong and the only strength I’ve ever had was in him. I found him by writing my truth no matter how ugly and petty it was. Fear and anger led me astray and I got lost. It time to start writing my truth again because I know, without doubt, that if I write it…He will find me.
Four day weekends.
Gotta love ’em.
Generally, I sleep them away because it’s always been easier to sleep and let life pass me by than it has been to actually live it. I don’t have to wrestle my own thoughts when I’m sleeping. My chronic nightmares of the past are gone. When I sleep now it’s to get away from things that scare me during the day, so I was looking at a whole lot of sleep this weekend. The 50 billion dollar question? When did I become so afraid of life and all that things in it?
Sleeping on the first day of a weekend (long or otherwise) is allowed because I’m recovering from the work week. Teaching drains me emotionally, mentally, and physically… and yet God keeps me in the classroom. I tried leaving teaching. Twice. And thought I had God’s green light. yet twice (after a brief season away) God drew me back into it. So as much as I might wish to be doing something else, I stay because I know without a doubt that it’s my calling. And if you’ve EVER read anything in the Old and New Testaments… you know that just because something’s your “calling” doesn’t mean it has to be fun or that you have to like it.
I am called to teach.
(long pregnant pause)
That only just occurred to me right now. This minute. I mean I know exactly when God called me to teach and each time it was in ways that I would not forget, because without such crystal clear recollections… I’d doubt. I’m one of those “when the going gets tough” kinda women. Teaching is tough… and that’s if you like it. I would leave and dust the dry erase marker off my paws without looking back if I didn’t know that I know that I KNOW that this is where God wants me. Unfortunately, I’m like Jonah minus the whale…
Everybody seems to think that we should pursue our “passion” and that once we find it we’ll be happy. Teaching is not my passion. It was many many moons ago, but the sun set on that moon. I can do it and I do it well… but it’s not my passion. I always thought a passion would pump you up and make you feel alive but when I left teaching to pursue my passion I crashed and burned. Guess my parachute wasn’t the right color. Teaching, like my bipolar, is more like a cross I have to bear.
So when I get these four day weekends I generally see it as a opportunity to set the cross down, close my eyes, and enjoy the peace… to embrace the silence. Today? Day 2? I did something different. Because while regenerative sleeping can be a good thing, if I’m using it to hide from the world and everybody in it then it doesn’t matter that I’m carrying my cross M-F. I’m missing out on living the abundant life God intends for me today. I want to be passionate about teaching. It has it’s moments and occasionally give me joy but that’s not enough. I need God to call me to be a different kind a teacher. I lost my passion for teaching and tend to teach from the head rather than the heart. This girl needs to be interrupted because bipolar is causing me not to live a life. Hiding is not living. Fear and anger and a whole slew of emotions are drowning out God’s still small voice.
I listened to a song tonight that said so much of what I feel. It’s not a sin to lose your passion, but it is a sin to ignore God when he might be trying talk to you about it. This song? It interrupted my pity party of one. It’s in my head and I cannot help but think it for me. God trying to get my attention. God telling me that he understands where and when I lost my passion and how I can get it back. Is this my call waiting…? I guess I’ll really know when I pray and see God’s answer…
Seems like I post once a month
and in between those posts
I fall into a pit
and can’t seem
my way out.
What a difference
a day makes.
May 9th I was ok.
I’d managed to shake
off of me
striving to live
in the light.
What a difference
a day makes.
In the span of a
I went from
To as far from
Ok as you
and still be alive.
washed over me
in wave after
All I wanted to do
was end the pain
and I had no idea how.
From the vantage point
I can’t remember all of the details.
Crisis has a way of blurring
Mother’s Day played a factor in it
but probably not for all
the reasons you might think.
Sure, it makes my heart
go all warm to know
my mother hated me
so much she died
without even asking for me…
but that wasn’t the only
rain on my parade…
Health issues, work issues,
issue issues all combined
to push me to a place
I don’t like to go
and generally manage to avoid.
What a difference a day makes.
The following week
started out stressful
and the stress only continued
to build until I cracked.
I pride myself of being
able to function no
matter how dysfunctional
I might feel inside.
I refuse to let people
see it on the outside.
What’s the saying about pride
going before destruction
and a haughty spirit
before a fall?
I fell and I couldn’t
For the first time
in years I had
to take mental health
leave from work.
The idea of going
to my job
and trying to act like
I was ok
was beyond me.
I stayed in my house
behind the locked
door basically looking
at the walls.
It was only for two days
but it was enough to
make me go see my doctor.
I tried to make myself
calm down and breathe.
I talked to God
and then talked to God
I’ve found out that
another log has been
added to my personal
I have really high blood
shouldn’t surprise me.
How can you live
a life of anger, fear,
and more anger and fear
bitterness and resentment
and not have it manifest
I feel like mental illness
is eating away at me.
I don’t know why I feel
what I feel,
think what I think,
or why none of the bad
ever seems to go away
But I do know that no matter how
surreal my life gets
God is still God.
He is God of the roller coaster.
He is God despite the darkness.
He is God when I falter
and God when I fail.
He is God when I fall
and God inside the pit.
This gives me comfort.
This is what I know.
This is what I cling to…
as I deal with the
current storm —
As I wonder…
will the next
After my last post I fell into an emotional black hole… you know how it is. I got sucked into the darkness and then had no idea where I was. My health took a turn for the worst (as if being mentally challenged wasn’t enough) and I wondered when God was going to cause any of it to stop. Add that to the stress of that unresolved conflict with my co-work and you set that stage for my suicidal thoughts to return.
I would like to note that I am not suicidal but that doesn’t stop the thoughts from overwhelming my head.
I do not want to die.
I never have — even the times that actually I tried I didn’t want to die. I just want my world to stop spinning out of control. And as much as I love God, I have to be honest about my walk with him. Rarely has God just swooped in and “delivered me.” Generally, I have had to take the slow walk through that “valley of the shadow of death” until God eventually leads me through to the other side. As I’m walking, my thoughts tell me that surely, death would be a quicker way. I spend days… weeks… months fighting with myself for my life can be overpowering.
I know in the midst of the struggle that God loves me… that he is with me… that he will never leave or forsake me, but that never makes the long dark walk any less scary. And people always assume that I’m not trusting God enough, but they have no idea what trust looks like when you wear my shoes. I wish I could be “Super Christian” for them — able to recite the four spiritual laws in single breath; able to witness and convert ten people in the blink of the eye; and who never ever ever complains about the current trial in the never ending series of trials that God keeps sending my way. Unfortunately, my first response is fear. My second respond is anger quickly followed by my third response: self-pity. It is a GOOD thing that God made it a point to put a one liner in the book of Jude: Have mercy on those who doubt… because it’s easy to condemn those who don’t bear up well under suffering.
I love God, but I’d be lying if I didn’t doubt the circumstance he continually dumps me in. Isn’t there any other way at all for me to learn these particular lessons? And how come I never really seem to become a better person as a result of said trails? I’ve stopped asking people these questions because they can’t fix anything and my depressions only worry them. So, through it all I keep talking to God… because not only does he KNOW what I’m thinking and feeling… but he’s not going to judge me because of it. He will have mercy on me who doubts. He will have so much mercy on me that it will eventually overflow into my thoughts. I will eventually stop berating myself and will be still enough to listen.
I ended up communicating with that coworker, but it took three weeks of stressing about it. I’d pretty much been avoiding her until God reminded me that I needed to “speak the truth in love.” We had a good talk. She apologized. I still don’t think she really understood me… but few people do. The air is clear and that’s all that matters. That Friday I went home early because I was in a lot of pain. My pain level has been really high. I keep waiting for my kidneys to rupture. I never did go off island for those tests my doctor wanted. I can’t afford the co-pay and refuse to have anymore surgery, so it seems moot to me. If my kidney does explode, I will have nobody to blame but myself.
The pain is pretty bad and my stress at work is really high, but I’m fairly functional for the most part. Yesterday, however, I was on a different assignment at work and I started to have a meltdown. I started crying and rushed to the bathroom before the meltdown went full fledged. But even with this much crap hitting the fan, I see God. Even with all of the stress and pain of yesterday, his hand on me was so evidently that I’d have to be an idiot to miss it.
And now I’m home alone. It’s Saturday and I’m safe. I feel so Bipolar during the week. All my buttons get pushed continually and I register everything. All I register right now is the wind in the palm trees and a cool breeze through my door. I don’t have to deal with any of the circumstances, people, or things that are triggering me once I come home and shut the door. My little cottage is a place of refuge given to me by my God because he knows I need it. I still wonder when these trials will go away but this place gives me peace. Friday is over and Monday hasn’t hit yet. But at least for this weekend… all is quiet and I feel peaceful and safe. Now if God would just help me feel that way every other day… life would take on a whole different flavor.