It has taken me nearly a year and a half to return to this blog. Hey, y’all, I’ve missed you, and I am ready to share so, so much, so here we go.
Greatness is not determined by the absence of challenge in my life, but my response to it.
“If you have run with footmen and they have tired you out, Then how can you compete with horses? If you fall down in a land of peace, How will you do in the thicket of the Jordan? — Jeremiah 12:5 NASB
I am in an age of discovery still about many things. I don’t think that’s something that will diminish with time, with accrual of wisdom and [hard-headed] experiences. I am approaching the tender age of 27—the age when my parents had me. I am about to enter my 26th year of life, single as a 2 dollar bill, and trying to weed out ambivalent participants in my circle.
I want to be intimately known and understood, desired and advocated for, cherished, appreciated and protected. I welcome love: romantic, platonic, don’t care as long as it is deep and abiding. So many suddenlies leaving earth in the past year or two, folks that left an indelible mark on us, their mourners, their family and friends. So many who opted out of friendship for their own reasons. I have been coping with the fluctuation of emotions when OTHER PEOPLE’s chapters close in my life and I have to make room for new ones. Forge new bonds and new memories while simultaneously help folks who have “always been” in my corner feel less taken for granted.
Balance, discipline, and minding my own business—three things I have fought hard to maintain consistently for the past 5 years. I could attribute to perfectionism, getting in my own way, overthinking, fretting anxiously; people pleasing to my own detriment and muting myself to let others take charge. The truth is, there’s strength in simplicity.
I completed my first round of Celebrate Recovery 12 steps early 2017, around January/February. I thought that undergoing that process made me ready to go in the field and be helpful. I thought I was going to be committed to the heavy lifting and compassion that needs to be done there. Yet I found myself overextended, serving at my church with the teens ministry, and being a part of the core team to build the young adults ministry. And finding myself burnt out and willfully out of the loop with most things. I want to give despite that I’m empty, but I’m learning that rest is godly. Amen
I’m learning so much about the corporate engine. About being detached from outcomes because ultimately my worth is not bound in machine-like production.
I want to serve my best. I get frustrated with not feeling or thinking at my most creative or highest potential because of exhaustion, anxiety/depression. But I have friends that pray and teammates that care, and I find my capacity is greater than I perceive. Amen.
Relationships. I could go for days. One: Friendship is relegated to the heart, the character of a person and how it aligns with yours, the interest and will of a person to engage you on whichever level is agreeable/beneficial. Two: Friendship is not bound by time (except for seasons which have expiration dates) nor by distance (sharing is caring is loving).
I have multiple types of friends and I am hoping to expand beyond even this in 2018:
- Artsy Friends: run in creatives’ circles; require attention and tangible support; love to critique & brainstorm but can be equally flighty or need as much high emotional maintenance as me.
- Project Managers: Know how to examine and demand logistics and rationale, keep my feet on the ground to execute a project; give great feedback for follow-through; often need help to fire away on creative tasks. I can advise on relational matters, give psyche insight.
- Accountants: Similar to project managers. They run the numbers. Critical insight: Does this choice make financial sense right now? I help see human perspective on other side of numbers.
- Visionaries: Dream up the big picture and then. go. get. it. Folks like Quentin who can get you to buy into their well-thought out concept, even if its risky (it’s always quite risky). Sound board ideas and goals with these folks all day long, and move when they tell you. or not 🙂
- Prophets: My spiritual gift(s) are mercy and healing; I often get paired for a season or more with a prophet. When a prophet’s spiritual compass points due north, they’re an invaluable asset. They READ me all day lol and see into my blind spots.
- Mentors: I put this one last because I really need to hone effective follow-up skills and not mute myself in an effort to appear as though I have it all together. I aim to develop lasting friendships and respectful alliances with folks who can mutually benefit from pouring into me. It takes time and effort to build a mentor-mentee relationship, and it would do me well to develop better ways of checking in.
Rules of Engagement — I will not entertain any ambivalent relationship in 2018, whether that’s a guy who is “kinda interested” in me, or a co-worker who is passive-aggressive, or a “new” person who claims to want to be friends but appears intent on sabotaging what I build, or an “old friend” who is anything but.
No more cleaving and clinging to people who have yet to show me that they are really for me. I don’t care if I met you at the liquor store, in college, at church, at work, through art and poetry, through mutual friends. I will not be overrun by your personal agenda.
No stuffing when I am upset. When I sense anger rising, I need to deal with it right then and in a tactful manner; otherwise I have unnecessary buildup, angst, stress, separation from God because of unforgiveness, and so on. If I have a pointed issue I am addressing it. I am not leaving room for ambivalence in my own communications; you will know where you stand with me. And we will keep it moving.
We will be strong, and we will keep it moving.
More to come on Thursday. 🙂 *sips honey lavender tea*