Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Ugly Me...

The depths of life are not lost on me. I dwell in the depths. The ugly... the lost... the dark. You don't know me, and no one on this earth knows quite the depths of where I dwell and who I am in those depths.

Today I'm looking at the ugly, as usual. I often spend time looking into the deep current of sorrow. My comfort zone isn't the euphoric and joyous life that the Lord promises. He sees me, and He sees what I see. He sees so much more... I often find myself staggering at the thought of all that the Lord sees that is wrong with this earth and this people He's made. One of my friends who is very heady and bright told me that, if I knew and felt all the depressed and depravation of this earth, it would kill me. I have no doubt.

Precious fathers... dying. Blessed pets... put down and passing away. People struggling with the deaths of parents who have passed months if not years before. There's no end to the sorrow, and I wonder when the Lord will elevate our struggling and come home for us. I wonder every damn day. This world is so corrupt, so broken, so ugly. People don't see the deepest realms of the ugliness... only the things that suit them to see. They're a part of the ugly, perhaps unknowing the depths of what they've done. What they support... what they hold dear. I see so much that isn't what the Lord wanted for us. My mind divides the things I see into what man has created, and what the Lord wanted for us. The divide is as deep and wide as anything imaginable. There are no correlations between what we know and what the Lord wanted for us. None.

I have no expectation of what this blog will bring to you, or to whoever sees it. It, as always, is just me putting down what my mind and heart is struggling with. I struggle so much every day. It keeps me from enjoying any possible joy I find in this awful world. I pray and ask for prayer for people and animals who I know have been lost, put down, faded, escaped this world. I can't help but envy those souls. I pray for the souls, not for the being. All beings have a soul, and I pray for those... including trees. I may very well be more inclined to be part of the Native American standards of belief, instead of Christianity. The things that I find that have altered God's word throughout history makes me think that the Bible I know may very well be only subject to Humanity. Subjected to King James' efforts to change the texts into what he thought was right. I struggle with what people have done to my faith. I'm frustrated with what I see, and what I read, and what I'm unsure the Lord wants me to see. It only adds to my insecurity of what we read, and what He has promised.

I shared something with my friend today that I thought was inspired, but could be turned into something completely different by a mind not softened to Christ's word. I struggle with even sharing what I see in the Word.

I missed an opportunity at my church to help them with graphic design when what I had posted on my Facebook cover photo said "I Hate People". Well, it's not false. I do hate people. A lot. Every day. But I know that's not what the Lord wants of me. This man, a pastor at my church, turned me down because of that. I could have been something more to my church, which I've been a part of for over 25 years. I feel badly about that, but honestly, if that pastor doesn't know the reality of this life on the "common folk" then there's no need for me to pursue it any further. My God realizes my flaws and my shortcomings... maybe I'm not who they need for the issues he reached out for. Maybe it would have just been a hassle for me. I don't know, but I know that how I truly feel was so far from what he thought was acceptable that he couldn't even write me back. Such is life. I'm okay with that.

What you get out of this is your own. I could pray for you, give to you my money and heart, or whatever I can... but reading it is far from accepting it. Be mindful of who you are to others, and to what you may or may not be able to give to others who need you. Love. Just Love.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Irrelevancy

I sometimes reflect back on when I was relevant. Honestly I probably do it daily... To become someone who has no purpose in life on a daily basis outside of the home is staggeringly brutal. I've struggled with it for 6 years now, come July 13. It takes its toll on you. Being a mom might have saved me from the many hours of uncertainty, insignificance, and self loathing. But... that was never a ship I wanted to sail on. So, instead I'm facing daily issues of irrelevance.

When I look back at the things I used to do every work day - handling most of the concerns of my office, my crew, my leadership... and looking at what I handle today, I wonder why I can't do more in a day than I do. I've become a poster child for ADHD... of depression and anxiety... of failure. I haven't looked for a job in a year. I honestly don't think I could be a full time employee at this point. I'm damaged goods, to say the least. And my self worth and self confidence has gotten to an all time low. My pitiful life contains finding "wins" in cleaning the cat boxes and sweeping the floors. Mopping? No. Watching aimless television... yes.

If I reach out and try to find a job, the work that I've done in the past is now irrelevant. I look at Ben's work and how its evolved, and wonder if I would have been able to hack the industry I put myself in 20 years ago. Honestly I don't think I could even walk in the rat race. It's a brutal reality. I hate the choices I've made. I wish I could go back some days, but honestly to go back would be too taxing to my fragile mind at this point. Why am I so broken?! Why did God make me this way? I blame Him. He holds me in His hands. He created me in my mother's womb. He knows the plans He has for me... all that. Some days it doesn't hold true in my mind.

I wonder why people who make due on social services get so much more gratification out of life than I do. Maybe they like the reality of having to do nothing to get paid. Maybe they feel justified when they COULD work, and they COULD make a lot of money, but because they've found this loop hole, they don't have to put out that effort. That's so weak and wrong.

I base my success on my income - always have. I guess that's bad. It doesn't matter to me if I get all the accolades in the world. If the money doesn't come in from all of that, it's all worthless. Honestly it is. It's like, what do words get me? What does someone's appreciation of my work or what I've done really mean? Nothing. Words are so fleeting and worthless. Good words and bad. They have the same weight - none.

So don't take your work for granted. Don't take your life for granted. You earn your way through life and that's valid. To float through life on someone else's dime - that's weak and wrong. Do your best. You'll have so much more self respect.


Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The World Today...

Our world has become much more individualized as the years have progressed. We are focusing energies on things that were not looked upon as necessary in years past. Things like the autism spectrum, transgender needs and requirements, depression and anxiety, to name a few.

I find myself focusing energy on praying for the small. All species matter to me, and I often pray for each and every carcass I see on the road; each song bird I hear that seems to cry out without relenting; each issue that plagues our society. I find myself in prayer almost constantly. I know that this is a good thing in my faith, but it can be exhausting. What moves you? What brings you into the realm of causing change? Who are you to the passions your heart holds? Who are you to the things that move you? What will you be willing to do for the causes you find worthy? Will you move? Spend money to support? Take up a chalice in order to fight for what's right in your eyes?

We have built our intelligence to the point of no return. People can be found, thoughts and issues that are posted online can be looked at and scrutinized. Freedoms can and are being thwarted because of the things we hold dear. People often exacerbate the issues that we've recently come to see as valid and unnerving. People. We are our own worst enemy. Our words... thoughts... perspectives. Each of us have a voice, and our sacred nation allows for each of us the ability to speak to those things. Our passions, preferences, beliefs... This is a nation unlike any other, and I'm grateful to be an American.

However. What we have on our hands is a new and deadly reality. The things we say and believe in, though valid and valuable, have merit in each and every word we say. Nothing can be taken back. Nothing goes without someone's notice. We say it, and therefore, we are that statement. We hold it, and we own it. Be prepared to stand for the things you say and believe, because without a backbone, your words have only a potentially ugly outcome in other's eyes.

Our world of people who sit in front of a computer screen and spout hate and evil have as much of a presence in our world as the people who post beauty and love. There's very little segregation between love and hate in our societies. One can protest the killing of a gorilla in his cage for the sake of a human child, and one can spew hate and anger over that precious gorilla's life that was snuffed out because of the neglect of a human parent. The endless killing of elephants and rhinoceroses who happen to have horns that other countries believe to be healing has no effect on the society who only believes that we are in the hear and now, and our lives only derive a human's needs and wants, no matter what the cost.

Be mindful of who you are in your community and in our world. We only have one planet. We only have one chance. People may think that this planet will be self sustaining for thousands of years to come are only fooling themselves into believing what the governments want us to believe. We are a dying breed. We are a dying universe. No matter what you think you know, you're probably wrong. Look it up. Google is a powerful resource for information. Truth will trump lies every time.

No matter what you believe is the answer, it's probably only a band aid. What you do each day in this world effects this world for ever more. Be present. Be responsible... it's our duty. God didn't intend this world to last forever... but we as people of Christ WILL last, and will see the end and a new beginning. You may not believe, but if you don't, your choice is your own. There's no bad reason to believe in Christ... what have you got to lose?!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Always The Same Story...

I can't face the world without preparing myself for days in advance. It's become a heavy burden to deal with the world outside my home. When I'm met within my own space, my anxiety heightens dramatically. I've faced house guests in the last few weeks that has put my emotional stability into a whirlwind state. Two weeks housing Ben's parents was such a toll on me. Then, we hired a contractor to refinish our two decks. Having people here at 7:30 am was a challenge. It doesn't matter that they didn't care about what our home looked like. I didn't vacuum... I didn't clean. It wasn't a priority. My priority was facing the day with people in it, and getting through that day. What's wrong with me?!

What's wrong with me is that I'm dependent on anti depressants and anti anxiety medications to help me cope with daily life. Leaving the house... going to the store... facing people. It takes everything I have sometimes. It was worse when they thought I was ADHD. Those meds crushed me. My anxiety was at 200%. Facing friends and family took two days in order for me to ready myself for those encounters. Now, I'm back to where I was. Sad... depressed... anxious. My mind races... telling me all that I need to overthink. Screaming at me all of the doubts and shortcomings I have to face every day. It's exhausting. No meds so far have touched a place in me where I feel relief. Monday I see my therapist once again... what will this meeting bring forward? It's a never ending battle.

I've tried so many different drugs and therapies... my therapist shakes her head wondering what she could possibly try next. How would you feel when your only hope in this world shakes her head at you? It's disheartening... degrading... dehumanizing. It's not worth the fight some days, honestly.

I'm a faith based person, but I know that, if I was MORE of a faith based person, the Lord may help me further my healing. That being said, I sit in wonder... what is not in me that the Lord needs in order to heal me? Why do I continually struggle, only to face more struggle again? I know the Lord is all powerful, and could heal me with the blink of His eyes. He doesn't. He hasn't. My prayers fall on deaf ears. It must be within me to find the answers... but what are the answers? I pray about all sorts of things that the Lord doesn't answer prayer to. Every. Single. Day. Prayer...nothing. Pleading... nothing. Begging... NOTHING. I'm alone in my despair, yet... I'm not alone.

Life is an endless burden of all kinds of awful things. I tire of waking up every day. To what end? Why? What can I offer? And friends? Family? Where are you? What can you offer in regard to healing words? Comfort? Understanding? I'm alone, and it's so very apparent. Thanks. Thanks to all people, God, humankind, and supernatural kind... Thanks for being so very relevant. I appreciate the absence of any and all answers, thoughts, kindness, understanding, love, and change.

Don't read that to be any more than you yourself can offer... it wasn't meant to be all encompassing... only all. Fuck this. I hate you.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

The Daily Struggle...

I often write about my struggle with mental health shortcomings. It's a big part of what I deal with on a daily basis. Some days it's the only thing I deal with - like today.

I spent an hour talking to a friend today who knows the realities of depression and anxiety. She's found an answer for her issues, but as we shared, it was clear, I hadn't found the answer to my own. She spoke to me in care and concern... and we shared. It's not often that I open myself to talking about where I am in my own mind, but she's a safe place I can rely on. She knows where I am, because she's been there too. I don't know fully if my own mom has been as low as I've been, but I rarely scratch at the surface of where my mother is, because I know she deals with enough on her own. She has other health issues that have taken the front seat of her worry. I can't press her with my own troubles anymore. She's older, and dealing with what I hear (in the midst of her words) are her "end of life" issues that she's facing. This reality in and of itself is something I can't face in the place I'm at right now. Losing my mother would be the death of me. Know that.

Mental issues are like feathers to me. A bird has several types and layers of feathers that cover their bodies. Some are fluffy and soft... some are corse and dense. They have layers of coverings that keep the weather from being an issue to their small bodies. It's the same with me. I have layers of mental health that cover me. I have soft fluffy parts, and course dense parts as well. I don't deal well with the dense parts, and often cry when the fluffy parts are laid bear. I don't show my fluffy parts to many people... but there are those, like today, who see them no matter how hard I try to hide them. Being with someone who knows your struggles makes it hard to hide your inner turmoil. I cried quite a bit today with my friend. My friend, by the way, who is facing a second bout with breast cancer, and a double mastectomy next week. It would seem to the normal mind that that person isn't who you need to bear your soul to, but she had other plans. She asked. I cried. She knew.

I sometimes believe that these blog posts will serve others after I'm gone... to show the world that mental illness is a bigger reality than is publicly realized, or commonly known. It's true, we hide it when we can. It's a sad thing to us who go each day, facing a new challenge of finding peace and trying to feel normal.

My reality includes drinking alcohol on a regular basis. It calms the mind and keeps the bad thoughts at bay at times. I know it's bad, and that it isn't helping me in the long term... but it helps me in the now. I know I have an addictive personality, and that drinking is a bad idea for me... but there are moments when I just want it all to end. I want to leave this ugly world, and move on to the blessings of my heavenly promise. I can imagine, with the people who read this, that it's a known reality that this world is too broken and depraved to bring joy in a lot of people. I try... you can't imagine how hard I try. It's exhausting. It's a daily battle. I'm so tired of the battle... it's beyond words for me right now.

There is so much inside my words, I can't expect people to know the real depth of my struggle. It helps for me to write it down... to get it off my chest and out into the unknown. Maybe these words will help someone I don't even know. Right now I don't care... I can't care. Life is too much.

I know friends who have lost people to suicide, and I feel so sorry for them. They don't fully understand where we are as mentally ill people. They can't. No one knows you except you. No matter how much help you get - and believe me, I've gotten a lot of help... you can't realize the pain and struggle if you're not inside my head. Yes suicide is very selfish, but there are points in our reality where we can't see a way out. We fight so hard... but it's as if life just squeezes the life out of us. Sadness. Confusion. Anxiety. Worry. Self loathing. It doesn't end... It. Never. Ends. Morning, noon and night... it's a constant struggle. You can't imagine how hard some days get. You should praise your God in keeping you from this terrible life.

I know my God wants the best for me. He wants to prosper me, and not to harm me. He wants to bless me. He would never put anything on me that I can't handle with His help. I realize this, but words are so easy to say. Feelings are so hard to overcome. You just don't know if you're not who we are. I don't want to short sight the deaf or blind, but it's like a broken part of us that we can't overcome. I can't find my way beyond it. There's no help that works for me. 25 years now... it's endless and so very exhausting.

Please keep us in prayer. Mental health is a struggle that's real, and often avoided by modern medical experts. It's a trial and error issue where medicines are tried, only to be realized as a detriment or not a help. We continue on, month after month... year after year. We hope to find the answers, but some of us never do. My friend today has found her answer in a medicine that wasn't right for me. It's a daily struggle.

Thank you for prayer.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Remembering Childhood...

Isn't it nice to sit and think on all the good parts of your childhood? I was just being quiet, thinking about some of my favorite childhood memories. My brother and me, playing together as young children... batman and robin! I was always Robin... we had a little red plastic phone that we would pretend to get important calls for help on, and go shooting through the house, saving the day. Or in the summertime when we would go out back to the little creek that ran through the neighborhood, wading in the water, picking up tadpoles and leeches! And being out in the warm air with our mom, helping her pick the wild blackberries that grew at the fence line... then having them for dessert that night with milk and sugar.

And when we came to Albion to live, and the friendships I had, and still have! One of my friends and my favorite memory was friday nights after school, when I would bring a friend home on the bus after school and they would play and stay for home made pizza and chocolate chip cookies that my mother always made for us. Every other Friday was mine. Matt had the other Fridays... It was something I always looked forward to. I can imagine as I'm older now, my mother probably didn't look forward to those Fridays as we did! She did all of the work!

Summertime at the homestead was always fun too... mom would allow our "neighborhood kids" (our neighborhood was MILES WIDE, because we lived out in the country) to come over to play outside. We would go "down the laneway" where the farmers would drive their tractors in and out to plow, plant and harvest the corn fields that surrounded our house. We would ride bikes, play in the muck, find the tadpoles in the deep ruts that the tractors left. We would play with my brother and his friends, but they played rougher. There was a huge hill of untilled dirt where the Canadian geese nested, and where we would climb and get scratched up and filthy... good times!

I know I had a good childhood. I think back and remember that I always felt safe. I was always surrounded by love. We had a roof over our heads, food on the table, a stable family life. We had church and most of my parents' friends were from church. They didn't socialize much, but those were their friends - good friends. Quality friends. We didn't have everything. Looking back, I know that my parents struggled financially. The things I remember mom making for dinner proved that in years past. Hamburger bread: hamburger spread on white bread triangles, baked in the oven. Hot dogs and peppers in sauce: Green peppers, hot dogs, and Ragu. On pay days (Fridays) my dad would bring home a big loaf of Italian bread, a 1 pound block of real butter, and a jar of pepperochini. He loved those things! That was his splurge. If dinner wasn't enough for him, I remember him always having a piece of white bread with peanut butter to satisfy his lingering hunger. We didn't eat well, but we did... We were healthy and happy. That was enough.

We weren't scared of the world back then. We didn't have to jump through hoops to get our friends on our bus to come home with us. We didn't worry about predators lurking around waiting for us to be alone. There was none of that... we stayed outside until dark every night... no worries. It was a time to revel in... a time I wish we still had in this country.

Take time to sit and think about all the lovely memories you have of your childhood. It helps bring your spirits up. It did mine... :)

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

What Makes a Girl...

I don't care about fake nails, matching undergarments, perfect make up or hair... I'm a girl, but as I grow older, I fail to find satisfaction in perfection in any of those things. My mother has always been a woman who tries the very latest mascara, the best face lotions, or the latest nail polish colors. I find those things wearying. I get all of my mother's "cast offs" - those products that may have cost a fortune, but that didn't live up to the hype or my mother's expectations.

What makes a girl? I harken back to the day when, in the 50s or so - there were articles and books written about what it means or what it takes to be a good girl, or good wife. PFFFT! Those are hilarious and often are shared on social networks as fodder for laughter from today's woman. "Make your husband feel comfortable after his day at work" or "bring your man a drink and his slippers after he gets home." "Make sure you're your best when your man gets home - freshen your make up and hair to be sure you look your best." HA! I'm in sweatpants, slippers, and my hair knotted at the top of my head by the time he gets here. It's silly to think that these things make and break a marriage.

I don't, myself, trust in the bullshit that is spewed from the various women's magazines in today's world. Most of them at this point just highlight celebrities and what they're wearing, doing, saying, believing. It's ridiculous. I don't take part in these magazines or any other garbage spewed by the media. What I do take into consideration, is my own views, my friends, and the results I can actually see (sans photoshop!).

What makes a girl isn't the constant, ever present selfies on Facebook that I get SO VERY TIRED OF SEEING! I mean seriously... you're 45. Stop. You aren't going to wrangle a man based on the boob shots you post, no matter what you may believe. Good men don't get swayed by simple stupid selfies. Stop. It. Now. I'm one who sees true value in a person who believes in themselves, posts things that have substance, and show that substance in their daily lives. What do you show people that you can offer if all they see is stupid selfies, boob shots, drunken posts/photos, or the like? Be serious. You're an adult. Act like it.

Woman have needs that are more emotional than men. We need validation more... love more... feel more. We often express these needs via spoken word, or more subtle ways like being down in the mouth, not caring about our appearance, not reaching out to others. I speak from a different angle though, as a depressed person. I know the signs, but I also know the REAL ISSUES that come from being too down to accept any accolades. It's a line that men often don't see... they're simply not created that way most of the time. Don't turn your back on your man if he doesn't see your needs. It's up to you to articulate those needs, and demand them in order for you to be a healthy partner in life.

Just wanted to make those things clear. You're welcome.