It Was Worth It

It’s strange how different life is when you’re looking back down the road of your life. All the twists and turns that have taken place and the ones yet to come. Even now, the past few months have had so many. This past year, on March 6th, my fiance and I got married. And this is what we learned: marriage is definitely not as easy as people make it out to be!

You know how people say there’s a “honeymoon phase” in marriage? Well I can tell you, that that is far, far from the truth. I mean, c’mon, you’re learning to live with someone in person, learning their weird habits, and it’s like two words colliding and for us, well we got thrown into the fighting right away. Between the things he hid, didn’t tell me, and lied to my face about, and my lack of communication after learning all these things, it turned into a love-hate battle between us. 

It’s hard when dark things come to light…most of us don’t want to be open or trust or feel vulnerable again with someone who’s hurt you so bad repeatedly in the past and still is in the present too. You get to the point of feeling so small and insignificant and alone..even in your own home, and even with someone you thought you loved.

Like anything though, time goes on, and you have to choose to work through it or keep holding it inside or against each other and not ever moving forward. It’s not an easy task, but one I felt God leading me to do. To try and forgive, trust, and open back up to my husband after I built so many walls against him from the pain I felt. It took a lot of time and patience, but together, our marriage slowly started to heal.

We are far from the perfect couple, and have things to work on, but looking back I see just how far we’ve come and if I’m honest, it’s a long long way from where we started this marriage at, and the battle, I found, was worth it.


Simple Truths

In life, I find that when you need to learn something the most, it has a habit of popping up right in front of you. Yet you ultimately have the choose as to wether or not to actually see and acknowledge it. Over time, I have noticed that I have trouble taking what knowledge is right in front of me and applying it to my life. Instead I push it to the side and say to myself that I’ll live it out at another time, or even bypass relating to it all together. Yet that’s not really teaching me anything now is it?

I was sitting at the table drinking my usual cup of tea and reading the Bible this morning when I came upon a verse that made me reflect on myself and on my life at the moment, as well as made me meditate on who I want to become. Proverbs is one book that has always spoken to me. I find that I love the wisdom literature in the Bible and each time I read it, I take away something new. Yet remembering to live it is a different story altogether because I fight myself on both who I want to be as well as the traits or characteristics I accept or refuse to accept from both myself and others.

Love and faith is something I have always struggled with. It’s a never ending battle of wanting to have that represented in my life and my fear in allowing myself to do so. An unending shift between letting myself live it out and accept it and moments when I reject receiving love or faith from anyone and refuse to give it to anyone. I’m more then willing to admit I always fall back and forth between the two. 

Proverbs 3:3 helped put things into perspective I’m a way that I could understand and interpret, “Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.” That passage reminded me that my fear of getting hurt or rejected or abandoned needed to be worked on in order to love and have that faith in others more freely and openly, without my ability to harden my heart and refuse to let people in…which I admit, has always been one of my character flaws. 

Proverbs so often states that love, faith, and trust is critical in community with others and most importantly in a relationship with God. As a Christian, my lifestyle should mirror what is in my heart, and my heart needs to change in order to mirror the love and faith God is calling me to have. Loving unconditionally and living in faith will ultimately lead to trust, not only with people but with Him as well. Only then will my inner and outer spirit reflect the same walk. 

While I know I have a long list of things to work on and always will in this crazy but amazing journey of life; I’m glad there are moments like these, where a simple truth lets you see yourself and the world with new eyes. Moments where you gain a whole different perspective into what’s going on around you, when you didn’t notice anything was changing in the first place. 

“If it’s my time, it’s my time.” 

I’ve never been one to fear death; maybe it’s because I’m a Christian or maybe it’s that death is just a normal part of life. After all, who wants to live forever? That’s an intense thought and a whole other story. Yet, I’ve always been content to say “If it’s my time, it’s my time.” You can’t do anything about the length of your life, but you can do something about its width and its depth.

We can’t control when we die. Between accidents and sickness and so many other things it’s impossible to prevent it no matter how hard we may try. It could be today or tomorrow or even years from now. 

It could be before I get married or before I have kids or I could be one of those people who lives until they’re 100. We’ll never know when it will come, or in what form, but for me, I do know I’ll be at peace with it no matter when it comes. 

One thing that helped change my perspective along time ago was that quote “Live every day as if it were your last.” It always reminds me that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Live today loving everyone you can, help those in need, and leave your mark on the world. I think that’s why I go after adventure as much as I can and it’s why I take chances and take risks without letting fear hold me back.

Ive always wanted to life my life to the fullest while I’m still living so when death comes knocking, I’ll look back on my life knowing I didn’t waste a single second. That  I was the best person I could be and that I made a difference whether I knew it or not. 

I want to keep going after experiences, making memories, meeting people from all walks of life, and letting those moments change me and make me into a better person each day. 

No, death doesn’t scare me, it’s not living while I’m alive that does.

Mind of Mistakes

“Have patience with all things but first with yourself. Never confuse your mistakes with your worth as a human being. You are perfectly valuable, creative, worthwhile person simply because you exist. And no amount of triumph and tribulations can ever change that. Unconditional self-acceptances is the core of a peaceful mind.” ~Saint Francis de Sales

Mistakes, man have I made some of those! Everyone makes them, and everyone has to deal with them. Some of us brush them off while some of us forget and are reminded of our mistakes later and some of us allow it to hinder our everyday lives. I’m one of the ‘forget and remember later’ people. I go through times where I’m happy with life and myself and  everyone around me. Yet the times mistakes happen again or I remember past ones I get really hard on myself. I put myself down and berate myself to no extent. 

Mistakes help you learn, that’s very true, but there are some mistakes that should have and could have never been made in the first place. 

Take this past weekend for instance, I made the biggest mistake of my life. I asked my boyfriend to give me a week to figure out things about myself and things about us. I didn’t realize at the time I’d hurt him so much. I guess part of me thought it wouldn’t really matter to him, which was wrong obviously, but that’s what my mind was thinking. When it comes down to it, I didn’t doubt us, I just doubted myself in the relationship. I have this near constant ‘you’re not good enough’ voice in my head that I start believing and when I do, I push everyone away, him included because I don’t think they could possibly love me as I am.

I have this mindset of ‘he’ll leave eventually, so why not save myself the heartache?’ Which I also know isn’t true and he’s told me this many times, and I believe him when he says it but I don’t believe I’m good enough to keep him in the long run. My mind’s fights back with a ‘you’re not a good enough girlfriend so what makes you think you’ll be a good enough wife? You’ll only be worse at that.’ 

It’s my negative thoughts, the ones I should be ignoring, that I seem to choose to listen to. I love this guy like crazy and want so badly to spend the rest of my life with him, but I feel like I don’t deserve him and I’m scared I’m wanting and needing something I can’t or shouldn’t have. So I’ve been pushing him away by choosing to accept all those untrue fears I can’t see around them at the moment instead of him and his honesty. I want to be honest with him but then I get scared he won’t want to be with this ‘hot mess of a person’. I’m scared because he is the best thing in my life and I may have just lost him because I acted on those fears.

These are the things I struggle with and I may always struggle with. I hope to change my mind set once again and focus on the positive about myself but I do fall back into this slump of repetitiveness more then I should.  Then I punish myself with all these thoughts about myself by taking away the things that make me the happiest and self-sabotaging once again, because I don’t ‘deserve’ any of it. This is how my mind works, from 0-10 in a second on attacking myself. Lucky for everyone else, I don’t usually get mad at others, I will somehow find a way to make it all my fault, even if I wasn’t even in the situation, and beat myself up on that too. It needs to stop and stop now so I won’t keep hurting people by pushing them away. 

We all make mistakes, that’s true, but we need to remember that they don’t define us and they don’t have the right to haunt us. We learn from them and move past them. I hope I can move past the biggest one yet in my life.

Surrendering to Yourself

“Grab your old skateboard or guitar, pick up on writing a novel you started in college, go back to something you once loved but left. You too will feel as if you’ve unlocked a precious piece of yourself that got buried with time and responsibility.” 
 I think we sometimes forget our goals, dreams, or childhood hopes because we believe that as adults we have to set those aside in order to be seen as mature, or responsible, or wise. Yet, once we forget or don’t make time to have those passions and joys, I see people struggling to be happy with their life and becoming lost in the midst of everything. I know, because I did this exact thing. 

Yes, I’m still young and have my ‘inner child’ but it took me a long time to allow that childlike playful self out. Ive been told so many times that I have this older mindset, always so responsible, always so mature…but I forgot to have fun along the way.  

I took my own views and others views on being an ‘adult’ and became so focused on those attributes that I set aside my goals and passions. I stopped doing art, writing poetry, playing music, and making clothes. I lost focus on what I loved.

I believe setting aside a little time to return to our former loves, dreams, and passions, we will ultimately find ourselves again.

All Consuming Love

“I would rather stand with God and be judged by the world, than stand with the world and be judged by God.” This is a quote from God’s Not Dead 2, and it happened to strike something deep within me. Reading through the book “Radical: Taking Back Your Faith From the American Dream” by David Platt, I’ve come to realize that I too have fallen into treating Jesus as though he is like me, rather then seeing him as the Jesus we read of in the Bible. In this sense, I have been little by little changing my perspective of the Bible in order to benefit my views on life too. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, until I make it more about me and less about El Shaddai. 

“You’re here because that still small voice inside you isn’t happy with the choices everyone wants you to make. All you have to do is decide whether or not you’re willing to listen…it is not easy, but it is simple.” I remember the exact night I prayed to El Shaddai, “This life is not my own but Yours, I give my life back to you.” Jesus gave up His life for me, and I must be willing to do the same for him. That was the night I made a vow to El Shaddai, knowing that this may be the hardest journey I’ll be on, but that it would also be one of the most life changing experiences. 

“I feel that God wants someone to defend Him.” There are so many different perspectives on the Bible, what the verses mean, or how a book in the Bible is viewed. Not that any are wrong, but many are not right either. I believe we are slowly becoming a world that can fall into deceiving themselves with the Bible, taking what they want from the Word and leaving out what they don’t want or even changing it to better fit their own lives and I could see that coming into my own life as well. 

I find myself wanting to have ‘radical’ faith, where I follow without question, where I read the Bible as it is rather then as I wish it was. I get that I am far from perfect, I am flawed and scarred, and I will continue to be that way. My hope for myself though, is to love El Shaddai completely and whole heartedly, in a love that is all consuming. 

Growing Wildflowers

It’s funny how day to day nothing changes, but when so much time has gone by and you look back on yourself a few years ago, you can safely say so much has changed. A lot of people still view me as the unconfident, introverted, self-doubtful, trying to please everyone, “goody two shoes” girl I used to be at 15. But I’ve changed quite a bit since then. It’s hard though, to stay changed, when so many people, maybe without realizing, won’t allow it or try to change you, to keep you that same girl that they picture in their head.

I’m not that girl, I won’t go back. I love being confident in myself, knowing I can do what people think I can’t. I’ve learned that I can say no, and that’s okay. I love getting to know others and hearing their stories. I love myself, flaws and all. I know I’ve made mistakes, are making mistakes, and will make mistakes in the future. But life’s about learning and growing and yes, changing. 

I’m sorry to those that can’t or won’t accept change, I get it, it can be scary, but I’m not scared of change. I love seeing new perspectives and constantly learning. I love that I’m not who I was at 15. To those of you who don’t accept me as I am, I’m okay with that. I won’t keep myself in the past or change in any shape or form for you, and I would never ask you to change for me. I love you all, as you are, no matter your past, your present, or your future. 

All I ask, is that you try to get to know the me I’ve become, and if you don’t like what you see, that’s alright. I can’t and I won’t please everyone, and I understand that now. I won’t hold myself back for you, and I don’t mean that at all harshly, just honestly. 

I’ve learned to love me, and just maybe you can too.

We Are Strong. We Are Beautiful.

Mirriors: “a reflective surface, now typically of glass coated with a metal amalgam, that reflects a clear image.” Yet how often is that image so unclear? We can see ourselves in one reflection, only to see a completely different one later. Usually, it’s one of two ways. We see ourselves as beautiful or happy or interesting. Sometimes we just see our “flaws” or sadness or maybe even loneliness. Yet why should we allow that image of ourselves to become our only image? 

Since being back, even I have slipped into that image of myself at times. Before I left, I had a healthy diet, the right face treatments, I ran regularly. I was happy with my image. When I got back from Indiana however, I still ate the same way, I still exercise, but I started getting acne. People would comment things like “Wow, you had such clear skin before, what happened?” Now each time I’m not wearing make up, I look in the mirror and think those negative thoughts. I find myself tearing down my own image  without a second thought, and it’s not just my skin. Ever since I can remember I felt this constant need to lose weight and be skinnier, even when I was already underweight. I’ve been allowing others opinions of my body become my own once again. 

I need to remember that I am created just the way I was supposed to be. We all were. Each one of us is unique and intriguing and so precious. 

We should not let anyone change how we view ourselves into something negative and dishonest. Let us be the ones willing to remind others that they are worth so much more than they could ever know. Let our generation be the ones to bring back self-worth and acceptance of ourselves how we are. We are strong. We are beautiful. We don’t need a scale or chemicals or fake nails and hair to be worth something. Rather we should learn to fall back in love with ourselves as we are. 


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