Tuesday, October 29, 2019

hats and a scarf

I made Reuben and Rebekah some fall hats. Reuben picked out the colors. It was originally a hat just for him, but as soon as I cast off Becky would not let anyone wear it but her. So another hat was made, and a scarf out of the rest of the yarn. Happy fall!





Monday, October 21, 2019

I have a problem

I have noticed something.

Something I don't have a name for.

Something I am utterly baffled by.

Something that needs to change.

In short, I need help.

I have Adult Proximity Disorder.


Or perhaps I should call it Imposer Friend Syndrome? Instant Friend Attachment?

The problem is this. Every time I go to the gym, or to the grocery store...or even to the library or the park with my kids, I am apparently starving for adult interaction. I crave it.

And, my emotional vulnerability and lack of time for friendships...unhinges my mouth.

I talk.
I gush.
I word vomit everywhere.

It just all comes out. My frustrations over my kids. My changing body. The dishes. The laundry. The way I feel discontent and inadequate all the time. How tired I am. Because no one is sleeping. And I'm always tired. Why does no one sleep.

I usually say to much. To a stranger. At the park.

Yes, I'm THAT mom. 

Sometimes as I am unburdening my shriveled, starved little mom-heart out I see the person I am talking to just...disconnect. So I try to hold it in. I try to stop.

Once again, I am too much. Once again, I am not enough.

You know how the younger generation is all concerned about being ghosted? Like the boy or girl they are dating just never talks to them again, changes their number or just ignores their texts?

I am tired of being ghosted, but its not by teen boys. It's by other moms. Oh, I know we are all tired. I know we all have a million things to do. But when I can't tell if you are just being polite or if you actually want to be my friend, we have a problem. So many times I have tried to become friends with another mom and been, for lack of a better word, ghosted.

And I understand, I do. Because I have ghosted other women myself. I didn't mean too, but in between pregnancy and childbirth and one to two babies, I lost touch with a lot of people and I know it hurt them. I know they still hurt, because I also hurt.

We moms battle tantrums and angsty tweens while juggling our own mental problems, not to mention the rotation wheel that is housework, cooking, and husbands. But here is the thing. If you don't want to be my friend, its okay to just tell me. If you want to be my friend, but don't have time, that is okay too. Lets communicate. We can text. E-mail once a week. I don't want my friendship to be burden. I'm trying to do the same. To reach out when I'm feeling overwhelmed and anxious, not to fall inward into isolation

But we don't always communicate, do we. Sometimes I just shut down and instigate radio silence. Followed by a text a few weeks, sometimes months later that goes something like.......I'm so sorry, things have been crazy, how are you doing?

And things are crazy. Mom life is crazy.

And yes, sometimes that break of talking between friends extends so long that I don't know how to open communication again. And I ghost other moms. 

But what I am saying is, just like you need to learn how to break up with your boyfriend, we need to learn to "break up" as mom friends. Maybe that is the wrong term, because instead of breaking up and ghosting each other we should accept the spaces that children and illness and overwhelmed mom life brings to friendship and give each other grace. We need to stop the peer pressure. So many moms are introverts (spoiler, I am not) yet often feel the need to be "polite" and have "friends" and go "out" when what they really need is to stay home and be alone. And saying that should be okay. We push and push ourselves to have a active home life and have friends and make crafts with our kids and sex with our husbands on at least a semi-regular basis. But I find it hard to have my cake and eat it too, and not just because it contains gluten.


I think that is the thing behind the mom-ghosting. The "and". We try to have a home life "and" __________. Sometimes I can't even have a ordered existence within our four walls, much less without. And so I shut down, stop communicating, when I need to talk the most. The last four years since I became a mother have been the hardest and the most transformational for me as a person. And I'm not a butterfly, I'm some type of wet puddle.

I do need friends. I also need to stop venting to strangers. I find that last sentence highly amusing since here I am...blogging...but you are not a stranger, right? You love me and want to hear all about how I got rug burn in yoga class, and how I ate pizza for the first time in six years last week. It was delicious.

I miss just being alone in my own head and not having tiny humans to manage.  But I love them, even if they make me a bit crazy.

I don't even know what the point of this post is, it got lost somewhere between cake and friendship. Have a good night, friends.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

goal


This is a video rendition of this blog post. It is about my goals in motherhood, my priorities and perspectives. I hope you enjoy!


Monday, October 14, 2019

What I learned in 8 years of marriage

I can't believe I have been married eight years! It feels like yesterday.

I have grown to love my husband more every day and appreciate him more and more. We now have two beautiful children and will begin homeschooling officially next year.

Marriage has been all I ever dreamed of and more. Every day I learn something about my husband—small things, like how the winkles around his eyes crinkle when he looks at me, or how cared and loved I feel when he does the dishes without asking. I love to watch him play with our wild kids in the evening when I am worn out. I look over the top of my book usually, as I rest on the couch as he romps around with Reuben and Rebekah on the floor.


I was thinking this past week that there is one big thing I have learned thus far in marriage. I didn't go into marriage with this, it came slowly. In fact, my expectations lay the opposite direction.

I went into marriage thinking that my spouse would be the best version of himself. In the past when he did something I perceived as wrong or if I saw sin in his life, I would be angry at him. His sins used to make me feel unloved, or not cared for. I would say things like “why did you do _______ don't you love me?” As if his love for me would keep him on the right track.

I don't think this way at all anymore.

I married a sinful man. I am a struggling, sinful woman (saved by grace) who married another struggling sinful man. We will struggle with sin the rest of our lives, and I—as my husband's wife—get an intimate view of not only my own sins now, but my spouse's as well.

I went into marriage expecting not to see his sins. I thought he would be on his best behavior all the time for me because that is what he was when we were dating. Now, after eight years of marriage I am not surprised when I find out my husband is struggling. I am no longer angry when he disobeys one of God's commandments. I expect it, actually. Yes. I expect my husband to sin.


We are fallen humans who will struggle with sin all our lives while we are here on this earth. My role, now, as Brian's wife isn't to get angry or point fingers at him when he does something wrong. My job is to come alongside him, uplift him spiritually, pray for him, counsel him—but most of all love him. Love him because that is what he needs as he personally struggles with his own sin against God.

Please note I am not talking about out of control, non-confessed sin in his life, or ongoing abuse situations. My husband is not systematically abusive. I am so thankful to have a safe marriage. If you are in an unsafe or abusive marriage, by all means I am not telling you to love your husband as he beats you. I would tell that woman to love her husband by not allowing him to hurt her or others.

Now when my husband sins or I see what I would deem a “personal failing” in his life, I support him instead of getting angry. I realize he is human and he is struggling. I recognize my own struggles as I see him struggle, and I become his biggest cheerleader. I no longer feel like he doesn't love me or care about me when he is disobeying God. I know he does love me, fiercely so. But his inward battle in his heart will never be over until he joins the kingdom of God. He is broken. I am broken.


My husband already has God telling him what he should and should not do. He doesn't need another person like me, his wife, to reiterate what God has already said. He needs another person there holding his hand, praying for him, and not leaving his side so that we can traverse together.

Thus we cling to God and try to make it through. I am here as another oarsman rowing in my husband's boat—our boat now, our marriage boat—trying to make it intact as we sail the storms and skirt the mirages that the open sea throws at us. I see us in a tiny vessel, barely big enough to hold our family, sailing the wide ocean with our lantern of God's light gleaming on the masts. One day we will make it home to heaven, but until then—expect dangerous waters. Expect sharks and leaky afts and thunderstorms.

Try to row with the man you married, not against him.

The war with own own flesh as we battle God's commands is a deeply personal one. I have had my husband try and help me with addictions in my own life and he was not able to. I had to meet those sins head on and only I, with God, can change myself. But my husband was there. He was cheering me on, letting me know he loved me even when I failed.

If my husband is a God-given lifeboat in this world, I want to be the same for him.

If we are going to struggle, lets struggle together.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Internet Addiction, Part Two

I had to tell my husband today that my internet addiction is stealing all my joy again. It isn't a pleasant thing to talk about. It isn't easy to look the man I married in the eyes and tell him I am struggling with staying off YouTube and Facebook, or that I feel crushing pressure to “keep up” with social media.

I had to tell him that lately, I had been using the internet like a drug. Did I have a bad day? I must need to binge watch YouTube. Are my kids driving me crazy? I can send them to their room and zone out on my phone for half an hour. Since we got the internet back after a five month hiatus I have more and more turned to it to give me a “fix” when I am stressed, tired, or anxious.


The internet has it all. Everything I need. Social interactions that are shallow and take time away from me that I should be spending with my family. My stress level skyrockets on facebook as I read the bickering and fighting over vaccines, and see the negativity that many people post about Trump, feminism and abortion.

Lets not forget the advertisements. Ads punch me in my gut. After seeing a few, I just know my house and closet are inferior and laughingly inadequate. I need that shirt. If I had it, I would be happy. But either I have to charge it to our credit card, or not buy it because $30 shirts are not in our budget.

Pictures let me know I am failing creating happy memories in my own home. Did someone I follow post a video on YouTube? It's a reminder that I am not posting as much as I should—I need to make some videos for my channel.

Now, this is not how I always feel about Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and blogging. This is just how I feel when I am using the internet as a crutch or when I am in a negative place mentally or emotionally. Instead of dealing with whatever I am going through, I internalize it and use the internet to distract me. That is not healthy for me and it has been slowly killing my joy again.

In short, I need life without the internet again. Desperately. My husband agrees. Whatever life stage I am in now, I am not able to use the internet healthily. But my husband still wants internet in our home so that he can work from home occasionally and use it to play some online games.

The plan we came up with and the thing I asked for is for him to change the internet password and just not tell me. I also removed the internet from my phone.

After three days I convinced him to give me the password. I thought—oh, I'll just log out after and not have my computer remember it. I'll just use the internet for the evening. Well, that worked for two nights and the third night I just left it connected. And that was when I realized my addiction goes deeper then even I can understand. I can't tackle this alone.

We reconfigured our idea. I will be taking at least three months off of home internet and will have to go to a coffee shop or other internet-friendly place if I would like access. This is good. This is what I need. Boundaries are good here. Oh, it's going to be rough—but I have done it before and I can do it again and I know it is good for me. I know I will grow and I know my anxiety and depression will lesson considerably after the adjustment period.

So, that is how I am doing. How are you?

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

The Dragon Reborn

I finished the third book! Spoilers for the first three books from Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time series will be below.


This book follows Rand's journey to the Sword Callandor. Well, more specifically it follows everyone but Rand as he is not a main point of view in this book! I missed him. I think I get why the author is distancing us from Rand—he's supposed to be the Dragon Reborn and that holds a bit of awe and it's interesting to see this persona build though the eyes of others.

Perrin is one of the main male voices we hear throughout the third book. And yes, just like books one and two he is still whining about being able to hear wolves and nattering on about how little he understands women. Mat is also a main male voice. And bonus, he's finally cured of that cursed dagger! I got to know (and grow to like) him a lot better. He has a tricksters heart but a kind soul. I love how he helps people and how he jumps to go after Elayne when he overhears she is in trouble. I like his luck, and I like that he gets to travel with Thom.

Nynaeve, Elayne and Egwene are still together. I can't tell you whose arc I like more—each one is woven intricately and perfectly and kept me on the edge of my seat from first page to last.

Basically, all the characters end up in Tear, a city-- helping Rand to Callandor (or assisting other secondary characters, like how Perrin goes after “his falcon” in the dream world).

I love seeing more of the Aiel in this third book. The characters meet various Aiel and as they were such mysteries in book one and two, I found myself curious as the ladies (N, E and E) and even Mat meet some.

I don't have many thoughts on this book because I read it a week ago and didn't take notes. I enjoyed it and thought it very fast paced. I missed Rand's voice, and I wish Min was in the novel (well she is talked of and is there a few times but not substantially). What is she off doing? How is she important? Does she really end up marrying Rand? I think so.

I thought the glimpses we get of the Forsaken very interesting. Especially how they are setting themselves up as high lords and dipping their toes into world politics. The Neverborn are also intriguing. I find myself wondering once again how one man built this much world. I can find no flaws in his books.

No wonder he needs so many books to flesh out his story. The depths of this tale are so realistic and amazing that it would need no less to do it service.

On to the forth book!
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