I forgot to update you guys! Sorry about that. I asked you all to pray, and then forgot to update you. My new gynecologist does in fact suspect endometriosis. In fact, he brought it up before I did. While we aren’t 100% sure that’s what it is, he says it’s the most likely thing right now. He switched my birth control pills to a different type that should keep it in check, and I won’t have a period for three months, so yay! There’s that. Now I just hope that the pills fix the problem…otherwise, surgery (two surgeries) may be in my future. So again, please pray. Just continue to pray that this is solved. I’m still in pain, but at least we have a potential answer now, so I’m satisfied just with that.
You know, when you stop and think about it, silence is really a funny thing. It’s the thing that we all crave at the end of a long day. When we have had a long day, filled with hustle and bustle, we would crave even just a moment of total silence–a time to clear our heads from the world around us. We are constantly saturated with noise and need a break, and yet it is this very saturation, this constant state of motion of the world around us…this connectedness to our technology that makes us terrified of silence. We feel like if we spent even one moment alone in total silence, we would hear our innermost thoughts…would see our real selves…and that’s a side of ourselves that we are afraid of. Whatever the case may be, it’s pretty sad that we don’t want to face ourselves…that we have to drown out everything around us because the silence is too deafening.
There is beauty to be found in silence, if you know how to find it. My favorite way to enjoy the silence is to just sit in nature…with only the sound of the wind moving through the trees, or the waves on the sand crashing. If you’re looking for pure silence, perhaps try going out to see the starts in an area that’s good for camping late one night. Then, look up at the sky, watch the shooting stars, and just forget about everything else around you. Enjoy the peace the silence brings. It’s not so scary, we just have to learn how to embrace it.
There are a few things that you don’t know about me. They’re small, mundane, insignificant things, really, but given that I want my readers to know a little more about me, and considering that today’s prompt was “prefer,” I figured this was the perfect thing to talk about.
- I prefer bananas over apples. I have a jaw problem, so apples are a little too crunchy for me. They make my jaw pop and hurt, and I’m not really a fan of that.
- I prefer horses over any other type of animal, but right now, I’ve only got a cat as a pet. Though I hope to own at least a dog or two in the next few years, and to eventually get another cat to keep our current one company.
- I prefer Monopoly over almost any other board game, and I’m trying to collect as many interesting or unique versions of the game as I can. Unfortunately, not a lot of people want to play it with me, simply because of how long it takes, or because there’s always a lot of fighting when we play it.
- I prefer Drama or Dramatic Comedy as TV show genres, though I can also occasionally watch Romantic Comedy, but typically only in anime.
- I prefer purple or blue over many other colors, just because they’re cool looking,.
- I prefer amethyst over all the other gemstones, because even though it’s not my birthstone, it’s the prettiest of all of them.
Hey, it’s not much, but I figured this was just something fun I could give you in the moment. 🙂
As I continue to read the posts on many social media sites, I see an alarming trend of things that are…annoying, to say the least. Now, normally, I am by no means the type of person to tell others what they can and can’t post online. However, there are at least five things that don’t belong there, and here’s the list:
1. Vague, Drama Posts
Posts that are vague and are meant specifically to seek attention should be avoided at all costs. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen someone post something along the lines of, “That’s it, I’m so done helping people!” And then someone comments, “what happened?” and the OP replies: “message me.” If you’re not publicly willing to share the events surrounding your frustration, then why are you posting the drama behind it. I get the need to vent, but maybe in that situation, private message a couple of people, rather than airing your dirty laundry all over the internet.
2. Chain Letters
Chain letters are just annoying, and there isn’t exactly a point to them. No one is going to die if they don’t share a message with 64 of their closest friends, or miraculously find true love or come into extra money for doing so. I also really despise those chain posts that say, “like and share if you aren’t ashamed of Jesus,” or “if you don’t like and share this, you are heartless.” I’m sorry, but my relationship with God does not depend on whether or not I reblog/repost a social media status. God isn’t going to reject me because I didn’t share a status about him. And just because I don’t share a status about a tragic event doesn’t mean I’m heartless…it just means that it’s a post that has been circulating for a while, and sharing it isn’t really going to do anything other than just show solidarity with the person mentioned in the post.
3. Posts that Publicly Call Out/Shame those on Your Friends List by Name
Another post that I have seen a lot of recently are those that say: “John Smith, you are going to be in a world of trouble when my crew catches up with you,” or something along these lines. Perhaps the people posting them are just trying to be “cool” or “ghetto,” or whatever. However, there’s really no point to doing this, and it’s still a form of airing drama. What purpose does it serve?
4. Things You Don’t Want People to Comment On
I get that we all post things that we like/agree with/support, but we shouldn’t be surprised if someone who disagrees with our viewpoint chooses to comment on what we post. If we don’t want to engage in discussion with someone about it, then we shouldn’t be posting it at all, or if we’re going to post it, we should disable comments for that post (if we’re able to). I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen someone post, “What does everyone think about…(insert random subject/topic here)” and then I give my viewpoint, which is in contrast to what the OP believes, and then they get angry at me or tell me to stop commenting. Again, if you’re not open to opposition or comments, you probably shouldn’t be posting.
5. Gullible “Just In Case” Type Posts
Another form of chain letter, I refer to these as “gullible posts” or “just in case” posts, due to the comments that I’ve seen being made from the people who post them. First of all, there’s the post that says something to the effect of “according the Rome council….I do not give my permission for Facebook to use my information.” Great, but there’s two problems. First of all, Facebook is based out of the United States. Roman laws have no effect or jurisdiction on the company. Secondly, you automatically consent to Facebook using your information the minute you make an account and click “I have read and agree to the terms of service.” So if you truly didn’t want them using your information, or weren’t aware of it/ok with it in some capacity, you either wouldn’t have a Facebook account to begin with, or you should be considering deleting it. Then of course, there’s the “IT’S TRUE, FACEBOOK WILL BEGIN CHARGING NEXT YEAR, UNLESS YOU SHARE THIS!” Again, NO! What amount of common sense escapes the people who share these posts? Facebook staff themselves have said that Facebook is free and always will be, and not to believe these chain messages. Furthermore, if Facebook were going to start charging, it certainly wouldn’t exempt people just because they shared a post. Seriously! Where’s the logic in that?
So in short, if we all can stop creating/sharing these types of posts, we will help solve the problem that we see on social media on a regular basis, and we can make social media just a little more enjoyable…especially for daily users.
As you probably know by now from reading my various other posts, I’m interesting, but in a very peculiar sort of way. I have been perfectly aware of this for years, and I am ok with it. It’s part of what makes me, me. 🙂 So here’s a few ways that you can enjoy my peculiarity:
1. I Like Things Done A Certain Way:
If I’m going to explain a process to you, it’s easier for me to show you or to even just sit down and do it myself. This isn’t because of my lack of patience, but rather, it’s usually because the way that I understand the process is too complicated to explain. I am a visual and auditory learner, so I have to see it and hear it, so it’s easier if I can just do it. If you deviate from that way, it confuses me, even if your way is simpler than mine.
2. I Have to Read Out Loud to Comprehend:
Although I am a very good reader and writer, I need to read out loud in order to fully comprehend exactly what it is I am reading. If I can’t, I may end up having to read the same thing over and over again a few times until I understand what I am reading. Things tend to go more slowly if I read silently, whereas if I read out loud, my comprehension is a lot better, and as a result, I can read far more quickly. This is also why if I need to memorize something, I need to read it out loud and then try repeating it over and over again to myself before I can be “off-book,” “off-text” or whatever else I may need to stop relying on to learn the information.
3. I Am A Walking Encyclopedia of Random Information:
Ever have one of those friends who’s good at trivia nights? That’s me, at least, for the most part. I am a walking encyclopedia of random information that no one really cares about, but it may very well come in handy one day. I love knowledge, I love absorbing information and learning new things, even if they’re not necessarily things that I would want to know. I read the bottom of Snapple lids, I retain certain information from commercials, TV shows, etc.
4. I Have Weird Habits
I just have weird habits, like checking to make sure I’ve turned off (or on) everything, even if I already checked it. For example, I may have checked to see if my alarm is on for the next day when I need to get up for work, but then I’ll check again to make sure that I didn’t accidentally turn it off while I was double-checking. Lol. I’m so weird.
So I guess you could say that I’m essentially the perfect combination of two memes: Socially-Awkward Penguin and Anxiety Cat. But yet, I’m ok with that. I love my strange, peculiar nature, and frankly, I wouldn’t have my personality any other way.
Thanks to my INFJ personality type, I am constantly wanting to learn, grow, and change–to better myself in some capacity. I also believe that you should never stop learning until the end of your life. With that said, here’s a list of a few things that I would like to learn within the next ten years:
1. American Sign Language
I love learning languages, and American Sign Language (ASL) has always been one of the most intriguing languages that I would want to learn. Besides that, there’s a real need for it all across the country, and if I can help someone else by utilizing skills in this area, then I think that would be a really great thing. I imagine it would take a year or so to learn, but I think getting the practice would be hard, as I don’t really know anyone who is deaf that I could practice signing with. Maybe a Skype session would work.
I’ve always had a real interest in learning how to play the guitar. I’ve tried throughout the years with moderate success, but I’ve almost always lost the ability in some capacity. However, I think it would be kind of cool to start up a Christian band or something of the like, and I would like to sing and play guitar. I really want to learn on the electric guitar, but I think that the acoustic electric would be a better place to start. And since I have a Macbook, I have GarageBand, so I can start recording demos. You know, I just have to get a USB microphone and pop filter first.
3. A Wide Array of Recipes
I love cooking, and while I consider myself a pretty good cook, I’d say that I definitely need to learn a few more recipes. If I could memorize at least 20 to 30 recipes, I would say that would be sufficient. Ideally, I’d like to have a few different recipes committed to memory that I could easily pop out and cook for a large group of people. Something that I could do for each season, especially around Christmastime (my favorite time of year).
These are just a few of the things that I would like to learn within the next few years, but I don’t think they’ll take all that long. Just some practice, determination, and some good people to help me.
Remember when we were children and there were things that we absolutely loved doing, songs that we loved singing, or games that we enjoyed participating in? Perhaps there was a certain candy or TV show that you really enjoyed from “back in the day.” Whatever the case may be, I think that many of us would say that those were the “good old days.” The days when we could just do those things with reckless abandon and not have to worry about spending too much time on the TV while shirking other responsibilities, etc. We could just be kids.
Here are a few of my favorite “good old days” things that I miss, and that I wish would make a comeback. See if you agree with me.
Kim Possible was easily one of my favorite Disney Shows, as it was so much fun to get lost in the adventures with her. It was a popular show for a few years, but then it sort of went by the wayside after a while. Shame, it was fun to watch. I’d definitely watch it again if they released it on Netflix or something.
Sitting at Home, Listening to My Parents’ Favorite Music
I grew up listening to a pretty interesting mix of music. My dad always liked to put on Kenny Rogers’ song: The Gambler, while my mom liked to listen to some of the more classic Christian songs of her time, like Mary Did You Know, and Household of Faith. Of course, there was also whatever was on the radio at the time as a 90s kid. Usually that consisted of something along the lines of Truly, Madly, Deeply by Savage Garden, From This Moment On, or something to that effect. I truly believe that the 90s had some of the best love songs out there.
Drake & Josh
Of course, who could forget the dynamic duo that was Drake & Josh? Starring Drake Bell and Josh Peck as two boys who become stepbrothers, this show follows their lives and crazy interactions with each other on a daily basis. I really enjoyed watching that show, and wish that they would put the entire series on Netflix.
In general, I really just miss how simple life was back then. As Andy Bernard said in The Office, “I wish there was a way to know you were in the good old days before you left them” But life is still good, and God is still great, and I know that he has amazing, wonderful things planned for me. So, I’ll stay tuned and see exactly who he created me to be, and what he has in store for me.
I have decided that I want to be a beacon of hope to all that I encounter. For me, personally, this means doing quite a number of things. The first is getting my tattoo next year, which is both a combination of my personal story and also my testimony that I want to share with the world.
I’ve also started a small way of being a beacon of hope at work. I bought a small, dry-erase white board, and various colored dry-erase markers to go along with it. Then, each day, I write a funny or inspirational quote on it. Some of my coworkers see it and love it. Others don’t see it, but they will in time.
Finally, I just try to act as Jesus would in any situation. It can be tricky sometimes, but he gives us grace each and every time. And that’s what I love. He continues to transform me from the inside out, and for that reason, I’m very grateful.
There comes a time in everyone’s life where they experience a brief, fleeting moment that is extremely impactful; it affects them in some way, and they never want it to end. When those moments come, it’s best to savor them, and to process everything that you’re thinking and feeling in the moment. Then, once that moment becomes a distant memory, you can still hold onto it and remember what it felt like a long time ago. Here’s one of the best moments that I’ve savored, and that I hope to remember forever:
The Moment When I Finally Met Jesus on a Personal Level, and the Moment when He Finally Showed Me My Identity
This is a two-fold memory that actually spans two different events, but I’m grouping it into one category because it’s perhaps the biggest thing that I don’t ever want to forget. I had grown up in a Christian home always hearing about Christ. I prayed to Jesus, I asked for forgiveness when I sinned or felt guilty about something, I prayed that people would be healed of their afflictions, and I had even asked him into my heart in fifth grade. I read my Bible as often as I could (though probably not as often as I should have) and was heavily involved in youth group all throughout my life. And yet, despite all that, I never really knew Jesus personally, the way that he desires to know us. I worshiped him blindly, without ever really discovering his truth for myself. I followed him because…it was all I had ever known. I’d never known anything different, having been born and raised into this way of life. So of course, it was only logical that I would follow him. However, I needed to truly experience his grace for myself before I could take it personally (in a good way).
In my freshman year of high school, I began being plagued by these terrible thoughts of: “Oh my goodness, what if God isn’t real?” Sometimes, they’d affect my waking consciousness, whereas other times, I would wake up in the middle of the night absolutely terrified that there was a possibility that I might be living a lie. The idea of not having anywhere to go when I died scared me more than anything else. But deep down, I was scared of God not existing, because what did that mean for me? Eventually, the thoughts subsided, and I convinced myself that of course God is real. There’s no reason for him not to be. Still, I never really experienced him on a personal level….that is, not until one night on a youth group trip in San Diego, which was the first time I ever heard him speaking to me.
I was now seventeen-years-old, having just completed my junior year of high school. At the time, I was struggling with feelings of self-doubt, and wondering what my purpose in life was (if I even had one). I felt guilty all the time about a sin that I kept hidden from others because I was afraid of being judged, even though it wasn’t really anything “major.” I went to this youth event, and we were singing “Revelation Song” by Kari Jobe. As we got to the part that goes: “holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.” I started thinking of how beautiful it will be when we get to be in heaven and sing that directly to God. And then, that was when I truly heard him for the first time. In my heart and in my mind, I could feel him saying, “You have no idea how much I love you.” He began working in me to give me peace and joy that day, and it lasted for a while, but this had just been me dipping my toes in the water. I was to have another experience later on.
In 2013, I was 20-years-old, and felt lost and hopeless. Over the course of the past two years, I had continued to struggle with my sense of self-worth. I had asked God to forgive me for the sin that I mentioned earlier. Several times, in fact, but Satan kept making me feel guilty. His classic lie was: “You’re not really forgiven,” or “did God really say…?” I got into this spiral of sadness, and entered a really dark period of my life. I never self-harmed or anything like that, but I just wasn’t in a good place spiritually or emotionally. I was a volunteer youth leader at my church at the time, and while I could preach about Christ’s unconditional love for everyone, secretly, I believed that it applied to everybody but me. In the depths of my soul, I believed that due to my past, God hated me. In fact, I was convinced that he hated me, and that despite my best efforts at serving him, I would come up short and go to hell. So I was constantly in a state of spiritual torment. I remember one day actually asking God, “what’s the point of serving you if I’m just going to end up in hell anyway?” Like I said, it was a very dark place that I was in, and one that I hope to never go back to. I went to a leadership summit with my church, in the hope to hone my leadership skills and reach the high school and junior high kids that I was ministering to. Little did I know, God had a message for me on that trip. I’ve often noticed that God speaks to me through music when he has something to tell me, and this time was no exception. We were singing Matt Redman’s: 10,000 Reasons, and during part of the song, God spoke to me clearly. He gave me my identity. His words to me were: “I don’t care about what you’ve done in your past. What’s important is the here and now, and who I’m creating you to be.” I felt so relieved, because in that moment, I knew that he didn’t hate me. He loved me, just as I was, no matter how much I felt like the prodigal daughter. However, there was also a part of me that was a little upset and angry, because I had struggled for two years with thinking God hated me, and I was frustrated that he had allowed me to believe that lie. So I asked him, “then why did you wait two years to tell me this? Why did you let me struggle with hating myself and wondering if you hated me, too?” And he gently replied, “the why is not important. It’s how I’m working in you and transforming you that’s important.” And suddenly, I knew that he was right. The reasoning behind my struggle didn’t matter. The point was that God was using my struggle to point me back to him. All along, even when I doubted him and wondered where he was, he was right there, pointing me back to him.
Since then, I have had a few moments of questioning, and of being slightly afraid that I’m not good enough. I know that I don’t measure up to God’s standards, and that I can’t ever truly measure up until I get to heaven. But then, when I start to doubt and question, I go back to this moment, and I think about what God told me. I am reminded of who I am and whose I am. I know where I’ve been, and where I’m going, and I can’t wait to see who I turn out to be when God is finished with me. I believe that I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep. I can’t give up or give in, I’ve got to stay strong and fight against everything that tries to bring me down. But I’m not alone. God is always by my side. And even on the darkest of days sometimes, when it’s hard to find God in all the chaos, or when I’m not feeling very valuable, I think of these two songs, and they make me happy, and draw me closer to Christ:
I hope this post has inspired you. Don’t forget, don’t ever give up. God loves you more than you can ever know or fathom. And he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:6).
Well, it finally happened. The one thing that I fear the most about doing my business in a public bathroom or the bathroom at work…clogging the toilet. I’ve been known to clog a few toilets in my day. Ironically, the day that my husband and I first moved into our old apartment was also the first (and only) day that I clogged the toilet there and flooded the bathroom, much to the dismay of our downstairs neighbors, as there was an unknown hole in our floor and their ceiling. And well, things got..wet…fast. Fortunately, no damage was done, the hole was eventually caulked, and we moved out of that place and somehow got our deposit back. We’re in a much nicer, newer apartment now and, thankfully, I haven’t clogged the toilet here yet, though I’m sure that “yet” is the key word.
Anyway, it finally happened at work yesterday, and I was so embarrassed. Our bathroom isn’t public, thank goodness, and it has a cipher lock on the door so that only employees can go in, so that saved me some embarrassment, at least. Imagine my horror when I discovered the toilet was clogged at work. I’m not the best at plunging toilets, and I certainly didn’t want to go have someone help me because well, then they would have known that I was the one who clogged it, and then everyone would have heard about it. Office gossip travels fast, no matter what sort of office you work in.
Not wanting to embarrass myself any further than I already had (at least mentally, since no one knows about it except for just now), I grabbed the toilet plunger and said to myself, “ok, we’re going to do this! I don’t need help, we’re just going to try our best and do this!” I was so grateful that the plunger was inside the stall next to the toilet and not in a supply closet somewhere. That’s the last thing I want to be seen toting into the bathroom…especially since I’m still “the new girl,” as I’ve really only been with this company for a little over a month.
So I faced the toilet and somewhat confidently (but with mounting doubts) attempted to plunge the toilet. Thankfully, the clog came loose on my first try, I didn’t make a mess on the floor, I didn’t overflow the toilet, and it flush on my first attempt. That never happens. I was so happy. I immediately put the plunger back in its spot next to the toilet, washed my hands, and scurried out of the bathroom. I didn’t want anyone to know what had happened. Ironic, right? Especially given that I’m telling you, now. Oh well, all’s well that ends well. In reality, I guess it wasn’t as embarrassing as I’m making it out to be, mostly because I was by myself when it all happened, but it could have been so much worse. Thankfully, it wasn’t. Hopefully, I don’t ever have to worry about that again. But now you know why I really don’t like doing number two in bathrooms that aren’t at my home.
Whatever. C’est la vie, que sera sera. Moving on, and hoping that I never experience that again, at least not until I have my own house. 🙂