My boy had a baseball game the other day. They lost to a really good team. The boys as young boys do, made mistakes. It isn’t uncommon for them to do this. They are learning and mistakes are great teachers. The pitcher, one of the boys that has been with the team since it started, was on the mound. He was doing so well. Then after one player gets on base, his head starts to lower. His normally healthy confidence starts to diminish a bit. My thoughts… “So what, he walked a player.” The game continues. Yells from the crowd, “You got this! Keep your head up!” can be heard. He throws a strike. The crowd rewards his immediate resiliency. He continues to pitch. The team played hard and still came up short. My son cried, other team mates cried. Not from losing the game, but because of mistakes and shortcomings. This is not a time for tears boys. Learning is happening.
I always ask my son to rate his performance after a game. I ask him, “did you feel you gave it a 100%.” He is always so honest. He will say “maybe 85% or 90%.” I then ask, “What is stopping you from giving 100%. He sometimes tells me the mistakes he made that he could have reacted quicker to avoid the mistake. Umm, yeah… Maybe! Or just realize that these type of things happen and that we aren’t perfect. We aren’t always going to hit a homer or get amazing plays. Sometimes the ball just bounces out of our gloves or we trip in an attempt to snatch the ball and make an out.
If you showed a highlight reel of my life it might appear that I have everything going great. Add in the real elements… The blooper reel, and now you see that I am just a person trying to figure out the game. I may be going at it giving anywhere from 85-100%, but there are some things out of our control. I have to remind myself of this when watching my little guy play ball. He isn’t always going to perform the way that I know he can. The important thing is that he realizes that even after a mistake, life goes on. It is what we take from the mistake that forces change in our lives.
Even though not everyday will be a grand slam, I know that I can do my part to contribute to my team (my family) If all I can do that day is cheer. I will do my best to cheer them on. If I can make a play that helps us win, I make the play. If I mess up and start thinking that the team would be better off without me… I will listen to the words from the crowd that day… “You got this! Keep your head up!”
I love watching my son play baseball and I am excited and encouraged by his growth in this sport. If he doesn’t play professional baseball someday, it will not hurt my feelings. I know that this sport has already taught us both so much.
THUNDER UP BABY! I love our team!
PHOTO CREDIT – All photos besides the selfie were taken by the coach’s wife! She did an amazing job and I love all the images she captured. Thank you Esther!
Cold is uncomfortable it causes people to tremble and shake when it is felt at extreme low temperatures. There is a need for the body to find a source of heat, our bodies create heat to sustain a normal temperature of 98.6 degrees. It does this by shivering, this occurs when your body falls as little as one degree below its usual core temperature, which is normally around 98 degrees. When this happens, a part of your brain called the hypothalamus lets your muscles know that they need to start moving in order to generate heat. Have you taken your spiritual temperature. Are you freezing, are you warm or comfortable, or are you on fire and creating warmth for others to feel?
FEED THE FIRE
My heart was hot within me, While I was musing the fire burned; Then I spoke with my tongue:
musing- in one definition it is called meditation, and in another it is described as complaint.
So I think this scripture could use a bit of interpretation and can mean one of two things. We begin to burn either through meditation and quiet time with ourselves and God, seeking a place of transcendence beyond the earthly realm in our spiritual environment. Then we should speak of the outcomes. Or it could be interpreted as burning inside by reason of injustice and feeling the need to complain. I feel that this is something most people are better at, and the other interpretation takes more time to learn and practice.
I find myself complaining about a lot of things throughout the day. “Ugh, I have to do dishes, I have to do laundry, I have to get dressed to leave the house, I have to pick up my child’s toys. I know, I know… I shouldn’t complain so much. I should seek more time in meditation instead of complaint. It is easy to become complacent in our lives to get comfortable in the warmth of just surviving. How is it that most still feel as though they are lacking something more. What do we need to fuel the flame inside each of us? I think of that song from Sunday School, “This Little Light of Mine” How many times have you let Satan put it out? Does it still burn as a small flame? If you had to provide someone else warmth from your flame, could you?
I feel that God is an enormous amount of energy. He created us, he made us for a purpose. We are all offspring of that energy. Could our fire get as big as GOD? That coal is placed inside of each of us. It is our portion of His Holy Spirit. I believe every person begins life with the same ration of Holy Spirit. He gives us the opportunity to listen to the world/ satan and have it snuffed out by negativity and evil actions/responses to the world or we can choose to let it grow.
How does a fire grow? You feed it. The science behind fire is simple. What does a fire need? Typically, fire comes from a chemical reaction between oxygen in the atmosphere and some sort of fuel (wood or gasoline, or coal for our analogy). Of course, wood and gasoline don’t spontaneously catch on fire just because they’re surrounded by oxygen. For the combustion reaction to happen, you have to heat the fuel to its ignition temperature. This simple understanding of fire and how it works can be used to help us understand ourselves better and also our role in walking in the spirit.
Giving off warmth and light to those around us. My ignition temperature may be different than even that of my brother. He is genetically similar to me because we are the offspring of the same two individuals, but he has sought after God for the majority of his life. A faithful servant. I have been wayward and in my attempts to find God, I complained that my life was too difficult to bear. My ignition temperature must be a higher temperature. The problem wasn’t the coal we were created with, it was the temperature variance we were also created with, in order for our fuel to ignite. If you are a person with a similar ignition temperature these words may be hitting you with complete clarity and understanding at this point.
So I just looked it up and all types of wood have varying ignition temperatures. We are even similar to the trees aren’t we? How can we all expect to be designed the same way, we are all here fulfilling a different purpose and walking a different path. Obviously there are people in our lives that seem to burn daily with maybe just a tiny spark happening some place close by and it sets their coal to burn an amazing flame. Then there are people like myself, that almost need the whole area around them to be scorched to ashes before recognizing that ignition temperatures have been reached and it is time to burn.
This came from praying this morning and looking at our fire pit this morning. Let your coal find oxygen and let it set a blaze to not only keep you warm but others warm as well. Your spirit can burn just find your ignition temperature and surround yourself with things that cause a spark.
May God bless you today!
**Disclaimer** I am not a religious expert or claim to be. This is just some insight I am sharing today. I have received some feedback on this particular entry -“that we aren’t born with the Holy Spirit. That it is a gift.” Whenever it does actually reside inside of us whether at birth or later, after accepting Christ is not poignant to the fact that we need to find the things that cause it to set ablaze. It is there if you believe it to be there. God’s love is there. Show it to others!***
I had a doctor’s appointment today, so I decided to put into practice a few things that I have been reading in the book I just started. I will be writing my review on the book soon. The book was suggested to me by my kid’s counselor, “One Minute Mindfulness.” Did you know you could change your life in 60 seconds? Yeah… Me either. I have been trying to get a lot of things accomplished at home and Summer baseball is in full swing (pun intended.) Organizing and such before school starts back for the kids & I in August. That is correct, you heard me right. I will still be working as a teacher. Assignment pending, but most likely not with elementary students. Praise the good and gracious LORD! He has been with me through some of the darkest times.
The wind & small leaves work together, creating a small symphony.
Starting at the tip top of the surrounding trees, feel that breeze.
They create a sound similar to that of great applause.
They show their joy for this moment I took to pause.
I am present in this moment, I am aware
I hear the birds all around me, their beautiful song
And a greater presence joins, or maybe it’s been here all along.
I feel the birds know that I envy their existence.
boasting their worry-free life, allowing me but a glimpse.
They swoop down for a quick breakfast on my lawn
As the glistening dew reflects the dawn.
The way they can see into each tiny hiding place
Makes me give a moment to this creature’s natural grace
To fly above the world, a glorious view
warm rays of sunshine, brilliant skies of blue
The working bird, yields a nest
picking up remnants of a forgotten mess
A small bundle of twigs, a few pieces of string
patiently waiting for the new life it will bring
The moment of listening to the leaves today
takes me to a place of gratitude, and I pray
I pray for my family and for my friends
I hope they know the love I have for each of them.
Life is full of beautiful moments such as this,
Don’t let them pass you by, an always fleeting bliss.
Hold dear to those you love and tell them everyday
Sweet friends, in this moment I learned to never forget the importance of play.
Play relieves the pain and sadness of this world
maybe tomorrow I will take a moment to pretend I’m a bird.
Written by: Michelle C
I skipped the podcast this week, as I have had a bit of a stressful week. Dealing with things that I have been anxious over for several months. If you read my bio, you are aware of all the things that have happened in my life since the end of 2017 and the start of 2018. I have dealt with almost losing my family, my job, my sanity. I have done my very best to prevent all of those things from happening, and I am happy to report that I have my family and although it requires a great deal of work, it is work I am happy and willing to do. I had a meeting with my school and they are going to keep me. It will be a slight change of assignment, but just the fact that they didn’t want to lose me made me so excited for the new assignment. I welcome the change whole heartedly. I will describe more when I have been given the green light to announce it to the world. I am ecstatic about the progress I have been making and while my sanity is still in question, I am taking back control of my life.
I have been awake since 3:00 am and woke just to use the restroom. I feel I wake at this time almost every night. If it isn’t 3:00 am, it is 4:00 am. I guess that is a sign that I am getting older. I remember the days when I could sleep through the night. This also never happened before being prescribed anti-depressants, and anti-anxiety meds. Does anyone else see these changes?
I just spoke with my best friend on the phone yesterday and she is such an amazing friend. She was heading down my way and wanted to stop by after she was finished attending a wedding. I loved that she called me to tell me. I was not feeling too hot yesterday after the meeting and after my son’s ballgame. A headache continued to keep me off my feet most of the day and night. I think it was brought on by stress, but could have been anything really. My friend and I have known each other for over 20 years. That doesn’t seem possible, but it is true. She has always been a ton of fun to have around. She has one of the most AMAZING laughs, and has a great sense of humor. I could always be myself around this girl. We have had so many adventures together. She is now a mommy too. She adopted a son, who is absolutely adorable and smart as a whip. She works hard and has plenty to show for it, I am very proud of her.
During our conversation, she said that she had listened to my podcast and thought that it sounded a bit like I was taking all the blame for the decline of my marriage. She asked, “does Brad take any responsibility?” I could feel my immediate defense starting to rise, and wanted to immediately agree with her and say “not really!” The truth is, he has taken responsibility, but more than just declaring how he could have done things differently. He is still taking responsibility with every sincere apology and by learning how to best deal with someone that has BPD. If I have learned anything throughout this whole process, the important thing isn’t that you point out who is to blame, it is to stay focused on the journey and your mutual destination. I am not here to blame him, what would that change? Nothing.
Brad and I had a discussion when he got home from work, he had a load of mixed emotions when hearing the news that I was still employed with the school. I could tell something was bothering him almost immediately, but I was trying to avoid any confrontation. For 1, I had a headache lingering, and 2, I wanted to feel good about myself for longer than an hour. I wanted to soak in it for the rest of the night. I understand that sometimes we don’t get what we want in a relationship. It is that give and take, right? He was overwhelmed by the costs of the divorce that we halted. I asked him to look at it in a different way. I said, “don’t look at it as money down the drain, look at it as money spent to get us to a higher level of understanding each other and on to a better relationship.” He replied, “easy for you to say!” He is right, it was easy for me to say. I didn’t want to bear the load of guilt and blame that comes with such a high price tag. He was also a bit bothered that I would still be an educator. Where we live educators aren’t paid very well. He was hoping for a better paying job so that I could help out more with finances. I do want to help out more with finances, but a school schedule allows me so many other things that a higher paying job may not offer and these are things that I need. I need to be off work when the kids are out of school. I need to be able to drop them off in the mornings and pick them up after school.
(My babies pictured above… Circa 2014)
I need to be able to be a mom first and an employee second.
This job although still a difficult job works best for those priorities. Those priorities may change for me once the kids are older and taking care of most of these things on their own, but for now it seems more suited to my priorities. I just didn’t even battle this point, I only said ” I am just happy to have a job, and one that is so close to home.”
We can control ourselves and that is exactly what I will continue to work on. It is a bit more work to try to regulate my emotions when feeling criticized, or confronted… but I am gaining patience as well as a better understanding of human emotions.
Mondays are typically my non-writing day. A day of so called “research” or rather a day of scrounging up a few edible bits to chew on for later use. My Monday looks similar to what a day of being stranded on a deserted island might look like to most.
The cast away (me) is left starving after surviving off a diet of pure coconut and decides not to eat another flake of the milky white insides of this deceiving nut. The castaway desperately seeks an alternate food source.
searching high and low for a bit more insight on BPD.
I wanted to find something more noteworthy than just a fact feeding video (the coconut).
Ok, that was only what I did today, I normally just live life on Mondays without scrounging for topics, but I was in the mood to do a little research today. It was a long day of trying to understand myself better. Looking for something that might spark my interest or provoke some deep form of thinking that I could translate into a relatable topic. I was just browsing through loads of videos on YouTube.
The only connection of all videos were of course those three little letters in the title; BPD. Not true, there were blatant similarities. One common similarity is the definition of borderline. People usually spout that off in every intro. Which is fantastic, because if I had not been diagnosed with this disorder, I would not know of its existence.
Most people making these videos give great information and are armed with many facts that address BPD. I have learned the differences between a classic borderline and a quiet borderline. I have learned that psychiatrists are more inclined to deny treatment of borderline patients. I have learned that I have a lot of similar mannerisms to other exposed “virtual” borderlines. I also found myself sucked into the rabbit hole and also having a faint desire to meet with these people and help them and in turn learn more about myself.
A doctor and professor from Yale University speaking on one of the videos I managed to come across today explained a great example of what the difference is between someone living with BPD compared to someone that isn’t.
the solid black line represents the working mind of a non-bpd brain. _________________________________________________
the line below represents the working mind of an individual with BPD.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
I think this is a great example. It is actually a viable and simple way that may be helpful to others when they try to imagine the differences. I can still work normally most of the time, it just requires a little bit more work and mindfulness when I hit the moments that I am not a solid line.
I am letting a few other things that I found marinate until the podcast on Wednesday. I appreciate you taking the time to read the words I feel compelled to share. Have a wonderful day.
side note- Technically it is Tuesday, so I am not posting on Monday.
Motherhood-(My personal experience)
My days spent pregnant can best be described
as unpredictable and full of surprise.
Each pregnancy lasting approximately 40 weeks.
Why can’t this pregnancy stuff just be a breeze?
A rare condition is discovered that only 2% of women experience
Hyperemesis Gravidarum – nausea with a vengeance
Needing meds for 9 months, to keep all of my food down,
And to keep my feet firmly planted on the ground.
I couldn’t wait for the sick feelings to subside
And to meet the little being that had been hitching a ride.
“Breathe, breathe… Push, push, good, once more! Here he is, your little boy!”
The hard work done for now, the rush of overwhelming joy.
How little I knew about being a mommy
No time for excuses, let’s get to the O. J. T.
The second you hold them safely in your arms
knowing that one of your duties now is to keep them from harm
Six years of raising an amazing big bro
welcome your sister to the big show
The tears you shed during this emotional moment
adoring both of the angels that Heaven has sent
There is no one that will love you two the way that I do
Never worry my angels, mommy’s love is big enough for both of you
There is nothing I am more proud of than being your mommy.
Thankful for a chance to celebrate this beautiful day with both of you in 2018.