Monday, April 25, 2011

letting it go

So Let Go is one of my guidelines for my 2011 Best Year Yet.

I don't know why I have such a hard time with it.

This morning as I clocked in (yes, I'm still a slave to the time clock), I was determined to inspire and be positive and work hard and do and be the right thing.

Then, I turned on my computer and saw that another entity had logged on. That group has its own office on campus. But, someone from that group signed on to my computer. AND scribbled something unintelligible on my work calendar.

And then, I went to go get my favorite mug to pour some coffee and it wasn't there. Not in any of the cabinets. Not at my desk. Nowhere in sight. It's my personal mug. One which was bought for me by one of my bosses. He brought it back from Russia for me. And it's gone. Hopefully temporarily.

But it stirs up in me the lack of love I have for working in a hallway. And using a public space that people don't respect.

And then I feel like crap because I'm supposed to be letting go. And not letting this kind of stuff get to me. And not letting this kind of stuff spoil my productivity or desire to be the best me and be positive and inspirational to those around me.

And here I sit. Looking at the flowers Shawn brought me last week (yay for a surprise of flowers just because). And I smile. And think about Jack and how he's 9 months today. And how I'm thankful that I even have a job that helps provide for my family. And family...what a great family I have. Not just blood, but by marriage, and by adoption into Christ.

And a take a deep breath and I let go and move on to finishing responding to e-mails.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

the last of april

The Saturday before Easter is always a tricky day for me. I'm in such spiritual turmoil thinking about how the disciples must have felt...hopeless, confused, mad, sad, shocked, lost. I'm so thankful that Saturday isn't the end of the story. And, as well, I'm so glad that this time on earth isn't the end of the story, either. It's hard for me to imagine what eternity is going to be/look like. I know there are some hints in scripture, but still, there's so much we don't know. And, I imagine that's how the disciples felt. What's next? I would've thought. But, I don't have to live in the Good Friday world. I can live in the Easter world. Choose to see the living God at work now, as eternity begins now. But it gets hard when life isn't easy. But God is good and has good for me. I need to remember that.
My life is not at all what I thought it would be at 32. But it's rich and full and good. I just need to keep that perspective. I'm trying to live fully where I am and with whom I've been entrusted to live this life with, for such a time as this.

Update on Jack: he's getting so big. He had his 9 month check-up on Tuesday, April 19. And he's in the 90th percentile in height (29 1/2 inches...48% of my height already!) and 94th percentile in weight (24.3 pounds). He's gotten the green light to transition to our foods (sans fish, peanut-based anything, citrus, strawberries and one another thing...I have it written down). That's going to be interesting...and by interesting, I mean messy. Not looking forward to that part, but I am looking forward to him being able to eat what we eat and not having to buy special separate stuff. I'm anxious to see how he'll handle textures. He also crawled for the first time (for real, not anything pseudo) on Tuesday, April 19, as well. That was so exciting! He's been pulling up and walking with our assistance, but until this week, wasn't showing much interest in crawling. So thus began phase 1 of baby-proofing. We've covered all the sockets, bought cabinet locks, and removed things from the lower shelves. Phase two will include getting cords off the floor and buying gates for the stairs. Fun fun!

Nothing's really new with work.

Church is still in transition. The month of May will be just us and two others. The guy who's been with us for two years is moving to Thailand at the end of May. We're going through Waking the Dead together for this last few weeks. After May, the one girl left besides us will be here for two weeks and then she's out of the country until the end of July. So we're not quite sure what church for us will look like this summer.

This past year I've been mentoring two seminary women. One as her Field Mentor and the other as her Spiritual Mentor. I'm just realizing it's going to come to an end by May 13. Don't know what I'll do without those relationships. Will need to try and be intentional and ask God to bring other women into my life who need a mentor. I really thrive on mentoring other women. I realize that's definitely a role God has created me for and I want to be obedient to live that out and to make myself available for women who may not have someone safe to talk with, process with and seek wisdom together.

Well, guess I just wanted to post the daily goings on so I can look back and remember with more clarity what the end of April 2011 looked like for me.

Happy Easter. He is Risen! He is Risen, indeed!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


With reading, I go in spurts. Sometimes, all I read is my e-mail. Other times (like now), I read 4 books at once. I'm currently reading Waking the Dead, The Elegance of the Hedgehog, At Home, and Choosing to See.

Two of them have my mind reeling (At Home has some fascinating facts about salt and pepper, glass, and a myriad other details of what we take for granted at home; The Elegance of the Hedgehog is about class distinctions and community and connections). Two of them have my heart reeling (Waking the Dead is about living from a whole heart and from the idea quoted by Iraneaus that 'the glory of God is man fully alive;' Choosing to See is the autobiography of Mary Beth Chapman, wife of Steven Curtis Chapman, which includes the death of their 5 year old daughter). I'm searching my heart for places where I need Jesus' healing. And I'm searching my heart for room for adoption.

Saturday, April 09, 2011


my heart is full. Shawn's parents have been with us for the past week and a half. and we've had such a good time. it feels like they just got here. and Jack has just eaten up their attention and love. it's been so fun to see Jack blossom while they've been here. grandpa don has taken him to the park and put him in the swing for the first time and let him slide down the slide. grandma pat has helped him walk, oohed and ahhed, held him in her lap and read to him.

it's times like these i wish we were closer to shawn's family. i know we're supposed to be here. and i know they're supposed to be there. but it's hard to be far away. we're planning on going to MN in September and again in December, but that seems so far away. and Jack changes so much from week to week that it's hard to be away from them and them not be a part of the day to day.

i am so thankful for their love. i'm thankful for the way they raised Shawn. for their example of steadfastness, loyalty, compassion, encouragement and devotion.

i'm so glad for Jack to have them as grandparents and i can't wait for him to get to know them even more and love them even a portion of the love they have for him.

i sit back and watch him interact with them and my heart is full to overflowing.

it's also still surreal sometimes that Jack is ours. that Shawn and I became family and have created a family by having Jack. and that i was blessed by marrying into Shawn's family. sure they're not perfect, but certainly no family is. but i am welcomed and loved and know that Jack is, too.

already looking forward to September...

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

20. Really truly: Is this what I want to be doing?

It's been several seconds since you asked this. Ask it again. Not to make yourself petulant or frustrated -- just to see if it's possible to choose anything, and I mean any little thing, that would make your present experience more delightful. Thus continues the revolution

So it's actually been a little over two months, not seconds, since I asked this question (and answered it here on the blog).

I'm eating as I was the first time I answered this.

But, I'm still at the job I DON'T want to be doing. But I'm still planning and trying to prepare to make changes that will get me to doing more of what I want to be doing, to becoming more who I was meant to be. Glad I did this and will have it to look back on when I actually AM doing more of what I want to be doing.

19. Are my thoughts hurting or healing?

Your situation may endanger your life and limbs, but only your thoughts can endanger your happiness. Telling yourself a miserable mental story about your circumstances creates suffering. Telling yourself a more positive and grateful story, studies show, increases happiness. Wherever you are, whatever you're doing, choose thoughts that knit your heart together, rather than tear it apart.

I think that I'm getting better at this. My new paradigm for this year is helping: "I'm valuable and valued. Hope does not disappoint."

Also trying to rid, 'I can't' and 'I don't want to' from my thought vocabulary.

Monday, April 04, 2011

18. So say I lived in that fabulous house in Tuscany, with untold wealth, a gorgeous, adoring mate, and a full staff of servants...then what?

We can get so obsessed with acquiring fabulous lives that we forget to live. When my clients ask themselves this question, they almost always discover that their "perfect life" pastimes are already available. Sharing joy with loved ones, spending time in nature, finding inner peace, writing your novel, plotting revenge -- you can do all these things right now. Begin!

Realizing that this weekend. Love the life I have (sans the day job mostly). But I have a wonderful husband, an adorable baby (ack! I have a 8-month'd that happen? I know, I know.), a supportive and all-around-great mom (who lives with us!), in-laws who reared an amazing man and who love Jack so, so much. I live in a beautiful place that has so much to offer (we went to Sonoma...a 57-mile-round-trip drive this weekend). I am fearfully and wonderfully made and loved by the Creator of the Universe. I have a purpose and a plan.

17. Where should I break the rules?

If everyone kept all the rules, we'd still be practicing cherished traditions like child marriage, slavery, and public hangings. The way humans become humane is by assessing from the heart, rather than the rule book, where the justice of a situation lies. Sometimes you have to break the rules around you to keep the rules within you.

I have a hard time with this one. I'm, admittedly, a rule follower. I'm also a huge justice. A lot of rules are in place to keep justice, to keep peace, to keep people safe. But touche, I suppose, as mentioned above those things that were NOT just but were part of the 'rules.'

Assessing from the heart...exactly what I'm trying to meditate on these days. How appropriate. Really trying to meditate, also, on Scripture about my heart, about God's heart.

Trying to figure out what rules to let go of and which ones to hang on to. And not to freak out when others break the rules. Let. It. Go.

16. How can I keep myself absolutely safe?

Ask this question just to remind yourself of the answer: You can't. Life is inherently uncertain. The way to cope with that reality is not to control and avoid your way into a rigid little demi-life, but to develop courage. Doing what you long to do, despite fear, will accomplish this.

I am kind of freaked out about this, not as much for myself now, but for Jack. Ack!

But remembering not to control or avoid things in order to not risk is good for me.

Courage...I'm trying to realize that I can be more courageous than I think. And I am reading Waking the Dead by Eldredge, which is having me think more about my heart and living from my heart without fear. Trying to get to the heart of things as to what I long to do, what God's created me specifically to be and to do.

15. Where could I work less and achieve more?

To maximize time spent practicing your passions, minimize everything else. These days you can find machines or human helpers to assist with almost anything. Author Timothy Ferriss "batches" job tasks into his famous "four-hour workweek." My client Cindy has an e-mail ghostwriter. Another client, Angela, hired an assistant in the Philippines who flawlessly tracks her schedule and her investments. Get creative with available resources to find more time in your life and life in your time.

I don't know how to answer this. All of these 'helps' require more money. And it's kind of funny that all of these examples are people doing what I do for a living. So I don't think getting an assistant for my assisting is going to cut it. More time in my life...really trying to make it work to only work part time so that I can spend more time with Jack.

I'll try and think of other ways to find more life in my time, I guess.