Friday, June 7, 2013


Have you ever noticed that your inadequacies tend to be glaring to everyone, including yourself, but that the solutions to them are only obvious to others?  This fact is infuriating.

I don't have a ton of friends.  I have very few, actually.  Sure, there are lots of people in my life peripherally that I could casually call a friend, but the number of people who know me at my core, who love me despite the weaknesses they are well acquainted with - it's small.  Like count on one hand and have room to spare small.  And I hold them tightly because vulnerability is the hardest thing for me and when it's given, it isn't lightly. 

Today, though, I envy those who can have many friends, lightly held.  I think it lends itself well to accepting change and moving onward. 

Today, I want to learn to be gracious rather than true to myself.  I'm a polarizing force, as people in my life keep reminding me, and I want to be gracious when the magnets don't attract.  Truth has become easy for me, and instead of being true, I want to extend kindness and mercy and welcome when I don't feel any of those things.  I want to emulate Christ in this way, but I don't know how. 

Today, I need the grace for graciousness.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Proper Noun People

I like words, especially new ones or ones that are familiar and old, but recently unused.  There is a tangible feel to words in my mouth.  Several years ago, I wrote a piece on the feel of someone's name on my lips, how foreign it felt after so long, scraping and awkward to form and project.  That imagery is somewhat literal to me, at least in the way I experience it.  The best words, though, are the ones that roll off my tongue, cascade to their new home - on paper, on someone's ears, on dead air - and feel like they were meant to be there, natural, willing.  These words - usually proper nouns in my case - are a comfort to me, something that doesn't require work or effort, something to be enjoyed. 

In my life, I have people who are like these words - familiar, comfortable, unassuming.  Though they are few, they are as important to me as anything I can imagine.  I am not naturally inclined toward social acuity.  I miss cues.  I am, and always have been, too honest; my cynicism exacerbates this problem but covers it with humor.  I can get along as well as the next person, but I am not fluid in my relationships - they take work and effort that I'm not always ready to offer.  It is with these people, my Proper Noun People, that I can be myself - unfiltered, unapologetic, unafraid, and unedited

For the last few days, and weeks really, I have been in serious desire for this luxury.  The great part about a big life change is that everything is new.  The awful part about a big life change is that everything is new.  For me, especially considering my penchant to avoid vulnerability like the bubonic plague, this means that literally EVERYONE that I interact with on a regular basis knows virtually nothing about me - they have no measure to understand what I'm trying to say rather than what I actually say, no basis to interpret my intentions from my actions, no way to know what actually matters to me or how to reach me at my core.  Maybe they have no desire to - that's always a point to contend with.  I'm craving the repose that comes with being known and being loved because - or perhaps, in spite - of that.

There's grace for this.  I know this as well as I know my favorite words.  There's grace for the growing vulnerability that I'm positive God is calling me to (though I fight it mercilessly, still).  There's grace for those people who truly don't have any interest in knowing me.  There's grace for the awkward moments, the scraping words, the defense mechanisms.  I'm working on finding all of those graces.  Maybe that grace will become a Proper Noun "Person" to me too.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Oh, mirror in the sky
What is love?
Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail thru the changing ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?

Change is hard.  Especially when whatever you're changing from is pretty good.  The control freak in me sees a change coming and does whatever it can to micromanage before it comes, but too many times in my life, I haven't been able to stop it.  I guess because of that, I'm learning to accept it.  Things change.  People change.  Relationships change.  And that is really, truly, honestly okay.

My recent change in workplace has been a great change.  On the surface, yes, it's great to not be on call all the time.  The ridiculous amount of vacation is nice.   Really though, I like most of what I do, or at least that I'm turning out to be okay/good at it, and I really like the people I work with.  They're intelligent and hard working, at least for the most part, helpful and approachable.  It's a great environment.  Even though my brain rebelled against the change, it's been a good one.

Other changes are harder - relocating, losing friends, evolving faith, illnesses.  These things require flexibility that most people have a hard time with and, for me, faith that I sometimes lack.

The hardest part of my life, though, is when it doesn't change and I want it to.  Sometimes I feel like I'm standing still in the middle of a drag strip, watching the people around me speed toward the next goal, next prize at the drop of handkerchief.  And there's nothing I can do but wave to them in the distance and rejoice with them from afar.  I'm glad to say that I can actually do that - there was a time in my life that jealousy kept me from enjoying the seasons of other people's lives and I'm grateful to be past that.

It's hard though.  Being okay with standing still is hard when you get caught up in the thrill, the excitement, the cheer, the acceleration all around you.  I haven't mastered it yet.  Today, I'm seeking grace for the dichotomy - the balance between happiness and a little bit of emptiness and disappointment. 

Today, I need to find the grace to move beyond my own insecurities and be selfless, to be Christlike.  I wonder if Jesus ever thought he was missing out on anything. 

You have a Father's heart
And a love that's wild
And You know what it's like to lose...

Sometimes I don't know
I don't know what You're doing
But I know who You are 

Friday, March 29, 2013


The truth of the matter is this: I have been through worse.  I'm not saying that it, in any way, makes me feel better.  Or that I am somehow comforted by my previous sorrow, but I have survived very hard times and I am resilient.  Also, the older I get, the better an actress I am. 

The truth is, though, that I wish I didn't have to act.  I wish I could just be - with no crutch, no brace, no facade.  I, perhaps foolishly, hope that someday, I will be enough.

Today, I am praying for grace for the days of hopelessness.

Cause I'm broken when I'm open
I don't feel like I am strong enough

Monday, March 25, 2013

Happiness and Hyperventilating

I often come here as a sort of self-medication, to process bad news or feelings, or to pick apart some troublesome thought or fear.  Today isn't one of those days.  Today, in a series of meaningless minutia, has been a truly happy, joyous day, for very little reason at all.

Warning: Overshare on things that no one really cares about coming.

Generally speaking, my life is good.  I have few complaints, though I struggle through ideas and hopes that I really have no business questioning.  Sometimes I distrust God, particularly as it pertains to my future.  But the day to day living is easy and I'm glad to say that my days are filled with humor and accomplishment and loved ones, if a little freckled with insecurity and doubt.  Today, though, was an especially happy day - I accomplished things I hadn't tried before at work.  I feel like new friendships are budding.  I'm able to be honest - AND TACTFUL (All you who know me well can stop laughing now).  It's Free Iced Coffee Monday at Dunkin' Donuts.  What can I say?  I'm easily pleased.

The last thing that pleased me today, though, was to realize that I have a crush - a straight up, schoolgirl, absurd crush.  I called a friend after work today and told her, and laughed as much as I did when I was in middle school, probably blushing like I did then too, though I didn't stop to check.  It's a silly thing to make me happy but this is the root of it - I haven't felt truly hopeful in a long time.  Ever since my world was rocked almost 3 years ago now, I haven't met many new people and certainly none that would cause me to retreat to the simpler days of Trapper Keepers and J'nco Jeans.  But today, I felt hopeful.  I felt silly and giddy and anything but cynical.  Sure, doubt scratches at the door and tells me that nothing will happen of it, that I'm being immature, that I should really just stick in my everyday complacency, but I'm ignoring it.  I decided to ignore it.  I like feeling this way; I've missed the way it feels, something like a cool breeze on a hot day or a fireplace in the fall. 

After I made this decision, I made another decision to do the most logical thing I could do with a crush - investigate.  Imagine my surprise when I found that not only does said crush share my faith, but also my love for writing, and moreover, a similar style to writing.  When I called my friend to read her what I'd found, she spoke what I had been thinking: "It sounds like something you'd write."  Shenanigans, and perhaps some hyperventilating, ensued.  Just a happy coincidence, likely, but I enjoy the idea that they can happen, sort of like I enjoy the idea that an old friend of mine who I'd lost contact with turned out to be the kind of man I would want to marry.  He was engaged, and I was happy for him and continue to be so in his married life, but it was encouraging to see not only that he had grown into a great man of God but also that men like him did exist!  Apparently another one does too.  Color me elated.

So today's grace is for several things: for happiness, for hyperventilating, for occasional immaturity, for hope, for writing, for investigation, for inklings of doubt, and for putting off the starker reality of things until the morning.  Or maybe longer.  Maybe for as long as I can.