Monday, November 29, 2010

Booger Pickers

The more (or less) I am faced with controversy- the more (and more) I realize that facing said controversy has no longer provoked the "pick your battle" mindset {that seemed to only come as an after effect.} 
("Crap!!! I shoulda kept my mouth shut!".)

Rather- it provokes the "pick your booger" mindset. 

Lets face it. When we have boogers in our nose- the suckers have GOT TO COME out.

It's. Not. An. Option. 
Am I right?!

And in private we may do a quick boogie grab as a quick fix. Or- some of *us* may do an extended version of the boogie grab- naked finger and all. 

Some of us may realize that's it's too snotty and gushy to pick out- so we grab our TP and blow the especially globby ones real-quick-like into a tissue.... open it up to see what we got out of the deal... and toss it in the waste basket to be forever forgotten. It's done. 

Or what about the runny nose boogie snot? Snif-snif-snif to suck it all cause we don't wanna have to go searching for a kleenex. Though, eventually- the nose wiping is gonna happen one way or the other?! 

If you've not gotten beside yourself in gross, and you're still able to read along- let me get to my point. 

Battle Picking vs. Booger Picking

In our day to day we do come in contact with various little-battles, somewhat-big battles, and at times, massive-huge battles.

We were instructed to "pick one". 
(Cause you know, we can't fight 'em all.) Some folk have accomplished this strategic method of battle picking; but not I. 

Not me. At all.
Epic fail with the battle picking thing. Almost always. 

I don't know how to pick a battle. I just can't do it. My battle picker is broken. Maybe I never got one? I bet it was lost alongside my filter. They maybe were in the same box? I dunno. 

In recent days I've concluded that the big small huge massive or a variation of them all "battles" are in need of a new name.

My personality type says: "if it's in front of me, i'm gonna go with it. Head on. Sans helmet."

Like a booger. If it's in my nose, I'm getting it out. The end. 

Simple enough. Not that I chose this for my life. Who'd choose that?!? On purpose?!? It's a challenging personality to have!! (Just ask my mama!).

So I know I'm going to pick my boogers. 
Not ignore. Or leave 'hanging'. 

The question now is: 
"Do I quickly pick it? Dig into it? Blow it out fast and look at the snot that results later? Should I grab the kleenex box immediately or sniff it out a while?"

And like all boogie picking seems to go, more often than not, we don't actually dwell on the method as to which way we are going to procede with 'operation boogie removal'. We just do what seems right at the time. 

Sometimes we FAIL to think carefully before hand. 

Sometimes we reach it to do a quick boogie grab and had NO idea the big glob of snot we were going to get out.
("Wish I had a tissue close by.") 

Sometimes we sniff and sniff and sniff and before we know it- we are in mid conversation with dribbled snot pouring out our nostril as our cheeks flush purples and reds from extreme humility.

("Shoot!! I shouldn't have waited too long.")

Other times we get the jagged painful boogies and literally have to endure the discomfort until we are at a 'place' of ability to remove it.
(There are times we get lucky and the jagged dirt booger can be dealt with in private. Others... ... the booger has to get out, and get out NOW. 

It's almost ALWAYS an instinct of sorts as to which way we pick our boogers, isn't it? 
And when it was "the wrong" method, it's almost always too late to recover from the discomfort of it. 
So we just have to move on. No regrets. 
Atleast we got all the boogers out, right? 

It's hard to pick your nose in public.
I know.

But 'Mama said there'd be days like this... there'd be days like this mama said. (Mama said, Mama said).' 
And just sticking a wad of tp up our nostils is a temp fix. So.... 

We have to get our boogies out.

Rejection or not. Disagreement or not. Frustration and defensiveness or not.... 

Otherwise, we'd all be snot nosed BRATS blowing our jagged snotty yucky boogies out randomly and with out good cause. 

Troubles... er... boogers are inevitable.
It's how we "choose to handle" them and that we DO handle them, that matters.

More later......

Sunday, November 28, 2010

High-Low Up-Down Happy-Sad

It's been a long, hard weekend.  
An emotionally strained several months.  
And one of the worst, most formidable, and trying years of my life. 

And it's been a fun weekend filled with family and friends, and muddy pants legs, squishy chubby cheeks to smooch, happy squeals from happy kids, and pumpkin pie.  

And it's been a glorious several months filled with fun-time with my amazing girls,  school field trips, and one on one time with my speed-growing toddler.

And it's been a beautifully composed year basking in new and old and amazing friendships, experiencing a spiritual growth spurt like no other, and a new outlook on who I am, and who I'm meant to be, and how important the gifts God gave me really are- despite having no idea as to what I'm going to do with them.

I've fallen apart over and over; fearful that I'd stay like Humpty Dumpty and none of the King's horses and none of the King's men could put me back together again.  

And I've grown and grown;  feeling  like Alice in Wonderland, who went from a miniature version of herself to a giant towering over those things that once looked mountainous and terrifying.

I've wandered through valley's so dark and so low; uncertain of where my help was in the time of my trouble;  and soon after I've landed atop the peak of the mountain, overlooking the glory and majesty of God's awesomeness....... 

There are always GREAT things to be found in the midst of the awfullest situations. 

My prayer and my hope and my plea is that I will keep my mind and my heart toward the Lord so that I can stay in full view of His goodness, despite adversity.  Afflictions that, in truth, are less than tragic, but more than difficult.

In realizing how conditional the terms are to which I am willing to give love and show love;  I've also realized that God hasn't been excluded from this "condition".  (Cringe!)  

When life is grand, my hands are lifted high, my feet are dancing for joy, and I'm shouting praise and hallelujah to the Lord.  
And when it all turns to hell and the world is against me, my hands raise in question, my feet are stomping in tantrum, and I'm shouting "Why Me!?!?"

Conditional Love for Unconditional Love
"I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today....?"
Give me what I want, right now- and I'll give you what you want later.

I want to stay in check; among the highs and lows, and the ups and downs, and the happy's and the sad's.  I want to see the good inside the bad forever and always.  

And I want to remove the conditional from my love; giving myself freely and completely.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Solo. Tasting the Fruit of Stillness.

Usually- it's beyond rare for me to have the house to myself.  Typically- to get my "solo" time, I do a weirdo maneuver and rent myself a sweet hotel (via Priceline's crazy cheap-ness) for a weekend.  Rare occurance in an of it's self for that to happen.  And then when I do, I totally veg out watching lame-o TV shows, and exploring whichever town Priceline had available to me for $35 and a 3 1/2 star hotel room.


I was s'pose to take today and make it a "clean it all up" day.  The house should be sparkling by now.
 I did as much as I could do, and then I bailed.  I've been sick for a few days, so I just chilled.
 'Cause it was an option.

In the 5 hours of solo time I had here at home, the fact that I didn't have to  listen out for anybody calling my name meant that my earbuds stayed in my ears, plugged into my iPhone, for the whole entire time.  I can't listen to music on 'low'.  So the volume was turned up.  Just the way  I like it.
Huh?  What'd you say?  Ya.  That's what I'm gonna be saying for a few days.
Hoping I didn't do any permanent damage.  I need "special" noise canceling ear phone thingy's so that I'm not deaf in a few years.

I've said it and said it, and I can't say it enough-

"Blogging is my therapy!"  

There are times that I emotionally write 'cause I don't know how to get 'out' what I'm feeling.  I don't know how to express what's going on when I get all jumbled up.  So- I write it out, and in the coolest way, God just speaks to me, and ministers to me as I type.  Like? I'm typing it, but He's telling it to me.  It's "for me" but it's "by me".

 And I get all weepy and moved, and it's absolutely incredible.  There are times I write- and it's pure and unfiltered emotion, and nobody needs to be reading all that, so I draft it- or delete it, or whatever

There are times I write, and it flows so quickly out of me, and then I "reread" it, and I'm like
"Whoa!  I just wrote that?!?!"  

Ok.  So that's what happened in the previous blog.  I had these "thoughts" and I couldn't process what was going on in my head.  I had the opportunity, so I grabbed it up, and I began writing.  20 minutes later, I'm rereading what I had just written, and I'm blown away.

I just said to myself
 "Um? Did you just get ministered to... by your own blog??"

Yup.  I did.

And that's how I know it's not me that does this writing thing.  It's the Lord.
Ok.  Sometimes, it's me babbling.  Sometimes I'm talking about stuff that really affects me, or interest me, or whatever.   But if you read any of these and you're like "HOLY MOLY that was so awesome" that's when you know (and I know) it was totally the Lord using my fingers to do the typing as He was speaking straight to my heart.

And the fact that the Lord just used me to minister to me.  So weird.  And Delicious!
I got still for a little bit- and He was like "OPPORTUNITY!"  And He totally used that time to speak to me.

I'm Not Who You Think I Am....

Sweeping my floor, I think to myself:

"What's the point? Why do I even bother trying to clean up this mess?   It's just gonna be here again after dinner."

And the Lord said:
 "I know.  But ya gotta clean it up anyway, Amber."

Not the floor.  My life.  The mess inside myself.  The mess that I am.

I'm humbled..... Something so little, and mundane, and the Lord uses it to speak to me.

But the clean up that He's telling me to deal with isn't so little.  Nope.  It's huge.  And like a toddler, I want to throw myself on the floor, kicking and screaming "BUT I don't want to!!!!"
Me and my stubborn-ness keeps trying to convince myself that I need to just leave the pile of CRAP laying on the floor- walk away from it and search for a big-fat-rug to cover it up so I can just move on with my life.

And this thought-process, and 'action' in my life makes me feel like I'm "all talk".  Nobody knows who I really am!  I say it, I believe it, but it's so stinkin' hard to live it.

I feel like I'm not who anybody thinks I am.

I'm nothing!  There are times that I take a hard look at myself in the mirror and believe every-single-lie that the enemy punches and kicks inside my gut.
"You're worthless.  You're absolutely worthless.  What have you accomplished?  Nothing!  You're a terrible friend.  A disgusting Christian.  You're daughters are going to hate you when they grow up.  You're marriage is fruitless.  Give up, Amber.  Give up.  Walk away from all of it."

So I begin to convince myself that I suck, and that everybody that knows me has had the wool completely pulled over their eyes.    "They don't know me like I do.  They don't see how I really am."

Part of me wants to alienate myself from the world so as not to fool them of my wickedness.  The thoughts that take over, and that I try to shove out of my head---  sometimes I fear that one day- someone is going to be able to read my mind, and then they'll know... they'll know every-single-one of my struggles.

They'll know, and I'll be put up in front of my peers, and everyone that loved me, and used to care about me will look me up and down with distaste on their lips, and they'll all suddenly have on black robes, and judges wigs, and each one of their gavels will pound down in one harsh crash, and they'll shout "GUILTY!!!"
"She's GUILTY.  She is worthless.  She's a terrible mother. (POUND)  She disregards the truth (POUND!)  She wants to give in to temptation. (POUND)  Pound.  Pound.  Pound.


I'm guilty.  And I know I am.  But nobody else can see it.
And I want them to- and I don't want them to.  I want to be 'found out', but I don't want to be.   I want to be who I am, but absolutely nothing like myself.

And I'm guilty. And I know I am. But my Savior says otherwise.

He walks in with a blood stained robe.
And a crown of thorns atop his matted head.
He walks in with a sword in His side, and bruises all over His body.  His foot prints soak the floor, and His cross lands on the floor with a thunderous roar and authoritively He says "She's innocent."

 Innocent!??!?!  I'm NOT.  I'm not.  I'm NOT innocent.  I'm guilty.  I'm not who You think I am.....

But He knows exactly  who I am.  God sees my wicked heart, for sure- but JESUS jumps inside it, and He pleas on my behalf   "Daddy, she's innocent.  See this blood (as He holds out His hands).  I bled for her.  She's innocent, Daddy.  Pure, and beautiful, and perfect, and WORTHY.  She's innocent.  I have her heart- she gave it to me freely."

And I'm back to the mess, and the kicking and screaming I'm doing on the floor.  I don't wanna clean it up!  I want to walk away.  I have to fight against my flesh to pursue the clean up.

I don't have to clean it up alone.  I don't have to clean it up with judges looming over me.  I don't have to clean it up with gavels pounding in my ear.

 I get to clean it up with a mighty Purifier at my side.  

I'm not anything like who anybody thinks I am.
And I'm nothing like who He says that I am.  I wanna be everything like who He made me to be.
Off I go in search of a middle ground.

UPDATED: Echoing Angels.


It's no secret that I'm a huge Christian-Music fan.
Can't go a day without it.
For realz.

Casting Crowns- lyrically and musically- the band totally hits the spot.
(One of my all time favorites. EVER!)  
Need to Breath.  Musically- absolutely incredible!
Jason Upton.  Lyrically- anointed.  Powerfully anointed.
Cory Asbury.  
Matt Gilman.  
Nichole Nordeman.  
Forever Jones.  
Sara Groves.  
Rita Springer.  
Aaron Keys.  
Chris Tomlin.  
Steven Curtis Chapman.  
David Crowder Band.  
Feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee, ahem....I mean Fee.  
Kari Jobe.

When I really get into a song- for the most part- I need to relate to the lyrics.
The music does play a huge role, but lyrics are primary.  

So when my bud JP announced that the new Echoing Angels single "Say What You Believe" was posted on the EA Facebook page, I was out-of-my-seat excited!

I heard some raw stuff, and couldn't wait to hear the finished product.  I felt confused as to why I wasn't in LOVE with their new single ; I mean? Music, Beat, Rhythm, Sound, Vocals......  =  UH_mazing.

It took me a few tries to get into the song.  I didn't connect at first.  It made me sad that I didn't, too- cause I was positive that the new album was gonna blow me away.

Lyrically- it says 

"SAY what you believe- come on and shout it out loud.... 
SAY what you believe- come on and live it out loud.. 

This song is a Battle Cry to SAY what YOU believe!!  Shout it loud.  LIVE it loud!!
So? I guess in that moment of listening to the song- I simply wasn't moved.  I mean?
I do say what I believe....
(I didn't need any "inspiration")

It wasn't long after this, however,  that I was proven WRONG about 'not needing a Battle Cry' song to inspire me.

     I was under pressure, trying to figure out how to talk to our teacher about THIS specific issue.
It stressed me out because I really needed to be "careful " with  my wordage; me being the vomit mouth that I am- especially if I'm passionate about something- I was pretty nervous that my words were going to be taken wrong.  I was wringing my hands thinking of a sugar-coated-method in how I was going to handle the situation.

As I'm climbing the stairs, I have the lyrics to THIS song in my head, and I didn't realize it.  I was singing the chorus "Say what you believe, come on and shout it out loud..... "

I stopped where I was standing, and this light bulb exploded in my head!!  I totally didn't need to sugar coat my convictions to make somebody else comfortable.....   

This is one of those songs that you CAN NOT help but groove to.
It's happy music.
It's CHURCH youth group, do a wild-dance-and-up-and-down like you be CUH_RAZY rockin' awesome music.

Love it.  Love it.  LOVE IT!

But that's not all folks....  

Last week I got to hear the FINISHED product, the whole album, on JP's iPod.  (Thanks, man!)
The album releases MARCH 22 and though it took me a few tries to really get into their single- THE REST of the album BLEW ME AWAY.  It didn't take a second try to fall completely in love with the entire album.

The. Entire. Album.

My eyes watered at the first song- it was so good.  And the next song was just as good.  And the NEXT song was stinkin' awesome.  And the next..... and THE NEXT......  

Rarity for so many songs to seriously capture me on a single album.  Again- going back to Crowns- that's why I love them so much.  I can't think of one song that I don't seriously love for one reason or another.

I didn't get enough time with this album.  I wanted MORE.

I wanted it in-my-car for the drive home so I could hit "repeat all". 

 I don't recall a time that I actually felt anxiously-excited for an album to release.
In comparison to Echoing Angel's first album... there isn't any.  There's no way to compare it.
In comparison to what's out there now..... I can't.  I don't know how to.

Trey Heffinger has a vocal talent---- unbelievable.   Soulful and Rocky and Bluesie and Jazzy,   man--- it's hard to actually say that there is a relative genre comparison, 'cause it's so unique.

When he sings- he kinda makes ya wanna cry a little bit.  

Below is one of the songs on the new album.
It's relational, lyrically.
Musically- it's moving, and beautifully composed.   

And this isn't even the STUDIO version of the song.  This is raw (ya'll).  It's recorded in a
RADIO station, acoustic style.  Acoustic!!!

Can you imagine what it's going to sound like 'in stereo'?!?


Update: January 25, 2010.
I heard some news that Echoing Angels will be releasing acoustic videos of their new songs!!!

These dudes are the real deal-i-o.  You don't wanna miss this!!!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

"What Love Really Means"

Below is one of the most beautiful songs on the radio today.  JJ Heller has a simplistic sound- but oh so powerful lyrics.
She sings:

"Who will love me for me?   Not for what I have done, or what I will become.
Who will love me for me?  Cause nobody has shown me what love, what love really  means....."

I believe this is the heart cry that so many of us have buried deep inside our wreckless hearts.
"LOVE ME.......... for me."

I've talked so much about how challenging it is for "us" (people) to strip off our layers of protection- and stand before our peers "naked"- just as we are, flaws and imperfections shining bright.
JJ captures the core of why it is so hard (almost impossible) for us to do this.  It's a big question.
"Who will (could possibly!!!!!) love me..... for me."

I've known it for a while- and it was confirmed early this week- that I have a protective barrier built inside my heart.  Sure- I can be real, and open, and honest, and raw, and unfiltered..... that's not the barrier I'm talking about.  My barrier is, I think, probably worse.
I protect myself in an unconventional way.  I'll bare it all, no problem- but I "conditionally love" in return.

"If you're nice, I'll be nice.  If you hurt me, I'll hurt you back.  If you break my heart, I'll break yours.
I'll love you, but ONLY if you love me first....."

Big problem for a wife and a mom to have to, not only face- but figure out a way to over come.
Unconditional love shouldn't be an option!!!  I should love- no matter what- whether I like it or not, whether it hurts or not, whether I think it's deserved... or NOT!

This song convicts me!  I know that I'm "loved" for me..... um?.... for the most part.  I can accept WHO I am, and who God made me (sweetly, God  disclosed that I am- who HE made me, and I need to quit my belly aching about being so "different".)  So I've recently come to much better terms with who  I am.  
When I hear the chorus, I feel like poo.  Do I love 'them' for 'them'?
Do I love my husband when he's in the midst of a struggle that affects our relationship and the core of our marriage?  No.  I "hate" him for hurting me.  I am angry and bitter, and totally ready to kick him to the curb.

Seriously.  No bueno.
When he has hurt me, there has typically been a huge part of me that wanted to hurt him back.
Like- hurt his feelings on purpose, or ignore his needs (ahem....) or whatever.

Dude.  God is sooooo GOOD!  That 'hurt you back' thing has been washed away. Gone. Vanished.
No Siento retaliation.   Big deal.  Huge stuff.  Amazing.  I'm so thankful to get to write this truth and know that it's nothing to do with me, but totally to do with the work God has done in me.

I'm selfish.  I want MORE.  I don't want to just settle.  I want to have a Jesus-Christ-Super-Hero love for my husband, despite the junk that gets mixed into our holy matrimony.
(Let's be honest... most of us who are married have junk.... right?  Right?  RIGHT!?!??!!?)

Furthermore, I wanna love THEM... for THEM.  I want to have a genuine for real heart for people.  Not a "conditional" one.  It's easy to love the loveable.  I want to love the unloveable.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fuel. Spark. K@P0W. I'm fired up!

Alright.  I'm sitting on the couch- minding my own dang business, and my baby sis sends me a text message.

"Have you heard of the band "The Band Perry"?"

That's innocent, right? Ya.  It's cool.  I'm cool.  We're good.  'Cept I didn't know that this simple lil' text was gonna be the first gallon of fuel that sparked up this here blog.

My ever-loving musical referencer- Youtube- gets some action via my iPhone and finger swiping skillz. (Shut up Google red-liner spell checker thingy... I put that z there on purpose.)

So I click on the first video that popped up.  And some weird looking dude is singing slightly Clay Aiken-ish, but I'm digging his vocal talent.   The video was high quality.  Like? High tech vidography HD mac-daddy quality.  I assume it's the 'Official Video' from "The Band Perry".  Eh?  I like it. It kinda didn't make a whole lotta sense to me- the song- but dude-boy had some lungs, and the music was sweet.

But then my Youtube addiction served it's purpose.  I couldn't NOT click on the 'suggested/related videos'.  Youtube (like Facebook) sucks you in.  It's like a black hole.... once you go in...there's no telling WHEN you'll get out.

I got confused.  Who is this band? Why is this dude singing all these cover songs.  What is going on?!

I go back to my original search.  "The Band Perry".  Wait. A. MINUTE!?!?!  This guy isn't "The Band Perry".  He's somebody ELSE.  Nancy Drew overtakes my body.  WHY the crud-monkey does this random POSER have more flippin' freakin' fraggin' views than the original artist??!?!!!

You know why!?!?  Cause he's a POSER.  POSER. POSER!!!!!!!  


 He botched up the song.  He flailed up the lyrics.
 My heart is beating super fast right now.  Hold up.  I need to chill my temper.

Deep breath.

Why does this TICK me off??
IT's none of my beeswax what this wanna-be-song-stealer-glory-mutt does with his time.  BUT- ugh!
Man it ticks me off.  Grandfather clock TICK-TOCKed OFF!

In defense to youtube- the VEVO video of The Band Perry has 9 million hits.  My iPhone didn't show that particular video in my search.  It showed this one (1.6 million hits!)  first:

I researched more videos trying to find the REAL artist (from my iPhone).
And my feathers got all ruffled when the only one my phone wanted to show me was this one:

Less views.  LESS!!!  From the original artist.  AND- less quality.  Thunder = Robbed!!!!!!!!

I march my bottie hiney upstairs to grab my laptop.
"I. Am. BLOGGING about THIS!!!!"
The whole nine steps to our room I'm mumbling in my head:

(I can't believe this guy is getting more glory for the song that the real artist put all their time into.  and he screwed up the lyrics? and he's making all these other poser videos.  and he's on iTunes, too?  what'd it take him? like 12 minutes to put the HD camera up to his ugly mug and sing the song? stupid junk.  this is just messed up.)

Upon opening up my laptop and speed-racer typing my frustrations out on my keyboard, I did discover that the PC version of Youtube actually did put the original artist at the top of the search.  BUT_ STILL!!!!!!!!

The artist poured HEART into their work.  HEART.
Not just vocal ability and a 4gillion dollar camera.  HEART!!!!
They had to have spent countless hours writing and composing the music.
Getting the lyrics just right.
Getting the sound perfect.
NOT TO MENTION the time and effort, and heartache that went into getting the original contract that would allow this band to be heard through the radio waves.

It just makes me stinkin' MAD that vocal ability seems to be what "Youtubers" get drawn into.
And that poser-wanna-be's can get so far, so fast, based on (what I think is) PURE ROBBERY.

Look-a-here.  It's one thing to make a lil' home video singing a song written by somebody else- so you can show your friends and your Grandma that you got a perty voice....
Ya. Ya. Ya.
BUT making a HD video singing somebody else's song?  - and THIS DUDE even has stuff on FREAKIN' iTunes.  HEY!  HEY!  Those artist BLED to get where they are.  BUY THEIR art- not the botched up copies of it!  Why is this guy allowed to put stuff for sale on Itunes?!  I'm probably wrong.  There might be an "important" piece of the puzzle I'm missing here.  Who knows?

I'm gonna stop here.  I'm just gonna throw my hands up... maybe write a letter to iTunes and Youtube.  I dunno.

OH!  OH!  AND!!  Some commenter said "I like YOUTUBE singers better than I like the originals...."


Vanity. vanity. VANITY.

Fuel.  SPARK.  SHLA_BAM!  K@P0W!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Treasures in a Classroom

I have been anti 'school' for like.... EVER!

It's an institution.  I  picture our children as little 'drones' being told where to go, what to do next, how to do what ever it is they do, and being told to meet a 'standard', thus internally being chiseled away and losing their individuality, and creativity.

Eh? I still kinda have that view point. Sadly.

But!??! there are little treasure keepers inside each class room, and they are called "Teacher".  If we're blessed enough to get an exceptional one- this teacher can be an incredible mentor and friend to both our child and ourselves.  They can play an all important role of molding and shaping the educational and emotional growth inside our children.

And I have been so thankful to know that I am sending my jewels into a classroom with the ultimate treasure keepers.

Our kindergarten teacher is astounding.  She has a heart and a passion for what she does.  Zoe thinks Miss Ciccarello is the most amazing person on the planet!  She loves her dearly, and knows that she is dearly loved by her teacher as well.    I'm sure- like all of us human beings- she's totally imperfect.  I'm sure she has students that scrape her nerves like sand paper to wood.  I'm sure there are mornings she wakes up and says "Ug!!  I have to go to work!?!"  Mom's?  We can totally relate, huh?

There was a time I was talking to this sweet teacher, and her eyes welled up with tears when she was talking about how proud of her class she is.  She loves the children she teaches.  She adores them!  She loves what she does, and it shows in her work, and in her attitude, and in her spirit.

I'm so thankful for her.

Our 2nd grade teacher is equally incredible.  She's a free spirit.  You'll walk into her class room and see more disorder on her desk than you'd envision a 'teacher' keeping.  What you won't see, however, is disorder in her classroom.  She commands attention from her students- not with an authoritative voice, but with a loving- 'I know what's best for you' tone.  Her students know they are loved by her.  They respect her- and beautifully- she respects them!!!   She calls her classroom a Kingdom.  "Everyone is royalty".  She makes it known that every one  is important.  She assigns each student a job.  Each job is very important.  Nobody is left out.  Not one.

Kyla is emotionally charged, and super independent.  She needs somebody that won't allow her to disrespect them, but at the same time, somebody that will love on her in the very moment that she is being disciplined.  THIS is Mrs. Gough.  Her persona says  "I know what you  can do, and I expect you to do it." And she means it, and she's tender when enforces it.  She seems to look over each student, and miraculously understand where they are coming from, and what they are capable of, and she tells each student how wonderful they are- and how capable they are.  Some of these students may have never heard the words "You're awesome!  You can accomplish SO much!"  She builds these kids up, and refuses to allow them to tear themselves down!

I love knowing that God put us back in the school system, knowing we'd get these particular teachers.  I'm already praying for next years teachers.   I may not be a fan of the public school system- but I'm a huge fan of the Treasure Keepers that are taking beautiful care of my jewels!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Light Hearted(ness) Can't Be Found in a Heavy Heart

I've wrapped myself up deep inside my self for such a long time.  Even as I write this- I'm reminded of the short hour ago when my focus was on me.  My comfort levels, my desires, my plans, my fears, my frustrations, my..... me.

It's in the quiet that I find my regret.

In the moment- in the here and now, and hustle and bustle, and the everything self centered, I think of myself.  Unintentionally I put me in the forward.  Certain actions, certain aspirations, certain methods- they seem so selfless. But when a reality check is called into play, I'm forced to realize that most of my everything is pure selfishness.

And I want to get away from myself.
I want to put me on the back burner.
Me last.  Me never.  Me no more.

Despite how sick of myself I am.  I'm still first.  Even now- I'm writing for my own pleasure- using it as an outlet, a way to relieve the emotional build up inside my heavy, heavy heart.
Before I go to bed tonight- I'll soak my achy muscles in a hot, hot bath, listening to the music I wanna listen to, I'll pour essential oils into the water that please my aromatic desires, I'll read whatever book, or magazine that I feel like reading......  It'll be about me. 
I'll be serving myself.  Nobody else.

And that'll be ok.  Right?

Cause I gotta take care of me.
To a degree.
It's a duty.
I gotta take care of me,
one way or the other.
Which makes dying to me-
all the more harder.

Tragedy puts perspective in my face like nothing else has ever been able to.  Tragedy slaps a hard blow of sense into me, but as quickly as tragedy arises- is as quickly as her effects seem to disappear.

* A husband has an affair, and leaves his family in total confusion.  I snuggle a bit closer to my faithful man in that moment- yet in the next moment- I'm angry and bitter about the (not so) little things that we deal with in our day to day, wondering what stupidity could have overcome me to convince me that I should've gotten married in the first place.

*A young mother loses her very young child, and I hug my daughters tighter, tell them I love them over and over, and drink in every ounce of goodness that is with in them- yet in the next moment- I find myself overwhelmed with the tasks of breakfast complaints when we're running late for school, spilled milk in the middle of dinner after my hands and knees had spent so long on the  grungy floor earlier that afternoon, mid-day melt downs from my tired 3 year old, squealing shrieking coming from my 5 year old, and drama queen explosions from my overly sensitive 7 year old.

*An unborn child and a young wife loses their father/husband, and I thank God for my husband and the father of my children, who is here on the Earth- yet in the next moment- I pound my fist into the air and ask God what I did to deserve the challenges that go along with this marriage, and our hectic family life.

It makes no sense!  I feel ignorant.  Stupid!  Absolutely vain, and ungrateful.

What life do I have?  A. Good. One.  Write it all down- sure- it has seriously sucked here and there... but keep writing it down- dig a lil deeper, put the core to the front, and oh-my-goodness-gracious I've been supremely blessed.

I want to be light-hearted.  I want to write sillyness and fun-ness, and tell about all the grande amazing life thingy's.  And I do, somewhere deep down, have a thankful heart- but right now it's super-sized heavy.  For those around me that have been drenched in tragedy- and loss- and heart broken-ness, and for myself (cause I'm absolutely selfish) because I realize what an idiot I am for not cherishing the ever-wondrous life that I have been so richly blessed with in the there, and the here, and the right-this-very-moment NOW.