“See me. Feel me. Touch me. Heal me.” -R. Daltrey

Hello, family! 

I’ve missed you so much!

I began a job several months ago, doing what I do 😉, and haven’t been here (primarily) because I have to be very careful about what I talk about. 

I’ve been able to get to at least 2 meetings a week, and it’s been an unbelievable blessing.  Left to my own devices, I don’t spend time with other people. After my current employment began, I was reminded of the things I had been missing by isolating.

I missed seeing other miracles and being seen as one, myself. I missed the feelings of being “a part of” and acceptance. In isolating, I was not where I was supposed to be.

Now, I get to use every gift God’s given me, each time I clock in. I expose my scars and bandage up client’s, every day.  The Big Book says we “will not regret the past”, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever be completely THERE, but there’s no question that it’s the painful experiences of my past which allow me to come alongside those “still suffering”. 

They say that the Human Services field has among the top burn-out rates of any occupation. I can see that. With that in mind, I daily pour myself out in the name of (love) lifting up individuals that, to be honest, most people wouldn’t even want to talk to. I know that God has placed me where I am, and I am full of gratitude for being used by Him. I actually get paid to share my experience, strength and hope with men & women who have none of their own! 

Is it always a cake walk? Oh, heck no. Sometimes I feel like I’ve been beat up, by the end of the day. I reckon that’s why they call it “work”.

I truly don’t have words to adequately describe how it feels to see the flicker of hope in their eyes, when they realise that they’re not alone, and that someone understands and cares. 

So, that’s a synopsis of my last 6 months. How have you been?  

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Just Another Day in Paradise

​Perusing one of my blogs from many years ago, I came upon this & thought I’d share it with you. I hope it blesses you.

This morning I woke up with a heavy heart. After talking recently with a friend about how I’ve been doing pretty well for the last few months taking only half of the most recently prescribed dosage of antidepressants, some recent events would have had me wondering, not so long ago. 
Today I know that it’s normal to feel deeply, and my determination to rely more on God, (and as little as possible on chemicals) allows me to feel, and DEAL with it. 
Now I’m sitting in a crowded food pantry, looking for a mental escape. …it was as crowded today as I’ve ever seen it, and the place was full of overly warm bodies, and talking, yelling & the occasional baby crying – the sights & sounds of low-income and the discomforts of life, when you’re broke and hungry. 
At one point an overweight (most of the folks were, and probably under-nurished, statistically speaking)  woman burst in, yelling and cursing at a thin, dirty young man sitting behind me to give back her ipad. The volunteers were pretty quick to get the situation taken outside, but not before she’d hit him. I heard the impact, but couldn’t tell where she’d struck him. From his (non) reaction, it seemed like it wasn’t anything out of the ordinary for their relationship.  
One more part of “the norm” for under-educated, unemployed, oppressed,  depressed populations. After the couple left, it occurred to me that some music would be nice, and w/ earbuds I would be able to block out the noise. Todd Agnew sang about Hope, and my spirit was soothed for a moment.  
After the song was over, I unplugged the earbuds & put on some old-time hymns. I felt like it was something that I could contribute, to improve the place for all of us waiting.  
A small thing, but the Spirit came through. For a few brief minutes, the chaos lifted. I felt better for having been able to help. 

Time and Money *OR* Adulting in Recovery

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Someone said that the way you spell love to a child is T-I-M-E. Isn’t that really the way we spell love for anything that matters in our lives? The reality is, that if you take my money, I can make it back. If you take my time, it’s gone forever.
I got up this morning thinking about priorities. The best way to tell what really matters to a person is by looking 2 places. Can you guess where they are? Their checkbook/bank statement and their calendar. As I apply that to myself, I am sorry to say that “Leisure” appears to be my biggest priority. The other night at Celebrate recovery we were asked the question “What prevents you from doing God’s will?” and there was a list of things like work, family, pleasure, and church…

What is God’s will?

Someone said that she wasn’t really even sure what God’s will was, and I remember thinking that same thing. Eventually I figured out that God’s will for me was usually going to be something that didn’t immediately benefit me, but benefited someone else. (Selflessness is a big thing to my Higher Power) I learned over time that God’s will was without a doubt going to be the best thing for me, when it was all said and done. I’m great with that. Maybe it’s because of my age, at this point, and/or experience, but my next thought is “what am I going to have to go through BEFORE it’s “all said and done”? It’s true that if it’s not the best, them it’s not all said and done.

Checkbook?

Well, the majority of my funds at the moment (outside of the bare necessities)are going to things that make ME happy. I can’t remember the last time I tithed, in an actual church. Shoot, other than the trip to Indiana a couple of months ago, it’s been a rarity to find me in a church, period. And I don’t like that. I miss the days of being at The Revival, when we would be in God’s presence -I mean, like, tangible Presence- for hours, 5 days a week. I know, you’re probably thinking “What do you do at church for hours?!” I’ll tell you. We sang to the Lord, and we prayed, and mostly, we sang. The sound of a couple thousand people singing “hallelujah” together will give anyone goosebumps. It was literally like you could hear the unseen angels singing along. But I digress.
I’m a fairly down-to-earth kinda woman, or so I’ve been told. I’m willing to accept that, if it means relatively low maintenance, and practical. I guess it tells my age that I think those two things are pretty complimentary. So, what I do spend my “mad money” on…mostly things that make me feel better about how I look. As a married person, I think a certain amount of vanity isn’t a terrible thing, but I’ve been known to rationalize, before. But, yeah. I want to look nice for my husband, and I suppose, for myself too. It’s pretty minimal stuff, though. I’m grateful to have discovered that if I stay out of places like Hobby Lobby and Michael’s I don’t spend money on craft supplies, and the less I go to the Goodwill, the less I spend on clothes.

Calendar?

I think this is the biggest culprit of my wastefulness. Anyone who knows me, if they were being blatantly honest, would have to say that it’s true. I waste a lot of time in front of the “Idiot Box” (My Dad’s loving description. Still true today, though, isn’t it?). This morning, I actually got out my Bible and read. Not enough to feel too “holy” about, mind you, but some. And then I realised that this was what I was going to share with you today.
I have, in the past, gone out of the room when my family is watching tv, and I have gotten out of that habit. After work, I want to decompress, doesn’t everyone? But a half hour turns into an hour turns into the rest of the night and then it’s bedtime. I want to find other things to fill my time, things that will enrich my mind and my life. As the weather gets back to a tolerable temperature, I’d like to think I will get outside and walk. I know it could only do me good. But…I’m lazy. I can rationalize it a dozen ways (just ask), but the truth is “I don’t want to!”
However, I DO want to lose weight, and I DO want to be able to breathe more easily after walking upstairs to our apartment. I DO want to feel the sun on my face…Therein lies my dilemma. I am torn between what my SELF wants to do, and what my Spirit wants to do.
Never thought of it like that. That makes sense. My Self wants to lay around and eat. My Spirit wants to make the most of this life. THIS TIME WILL NEVER COME AGAIN.
So. I feel certain that I can do a little housework each day, do a little writing, and then find something to do that involves me NOT sitting on my butt.
I’ll let ya know how this works out for me.