Monday, June 22, 2009

Thinking Out Loud

Well June has been a fun-filled, busy-filled month. Our good friends came and visited, we've been camping and boating, we've gone to Wisconsin to visit Mike's brother's family, and celebrated Morgan's 8th birthday with a slumber party. Lots of good times and good memories! Here's a few pictures of Morgan's birthday.

Despite all that, last week I was really struggling with my depression...unmotivated, crying, down. When I look at my life, there really is no reason I should be struggling with depression. I have so much going for me; I'm smart (after all, I did graduate Summa Cum Laude from college); after 15 years of marriage, my husband still thinks I'm hot and enjoys spending time with me; I have 2 beautiful daughters that I was able to be at home with during their younger years and my job now allows me the summers with them; lately I've stopped finding my worth/value within church and found a deeper relationship with God in the process; being frugal and working hard has allowed us the opportunity to live in a nice house, take vacations and let our girls participate in activities like Horse Camp this week. So when I look at all that, I wonder...why do I struggle with depression? It makes me really angry and then even more depressed actually. I called my good friend and asked her if I'll have to spend my whole life struggling with this? Told her I wish I could be one of those people who go thru life without struggling with depression...and she reminded me, that everyone has their own struggle, it just looks different. It reminded me of Paul talking about God giving him a thorn in his flesh. Here's what The Message bible says about it: (2 Cor 12)

"I was given the gift of a handicap to keep me in constant touch with my limitations. Satan's angel did his best to get me down, what he in fact did was push me to my knees. No danger then of walking around high and mighty! At first I didn't think of it as a gift, and begged God to remove it. 3 times I did that, and then he told me, 'My grace is enough; it's all you need. My strength comes into it's own in your weakness.' Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ's strength moving in on my weakness."
I wish I could say that I am "appreciating this gift of depression", I'm not. I'm still begging God to remove it! And yet, is it true, can Christ's strength shine thru my depression somehow? I also considered this verse, "Satan's angel did his best to get me down" this a spiritual battle, one I must fight in prayer on my knees? Is it Satan's way of keeping me from experiencing all that God wants for me? And so the journey continues...

Monday, June 8, 2009

Nicholas Sparks Quote

"Though he didn't dwell on those events from long ago, he didn't avoid thinking about them, either. He could no more erase that chapter of his life than he could change his birthday. While there were times when he wished he could roll back the clock and erase all the sadness, he had a hunch that if he did so, the joy would be diminished as well. And that was something he couldn't contemplate."

I couldn't agree more! (taken from: At First Sight)

Monday, June 1, 2009

Summer days

This past week I've been thinking, what do I want my summer to look like? What do I want to have accomplished at the end of summer? And while I have many things on my "to do" list, I'm trying to look at the bigger picture. At the end of the summer I want to feel relaxed, replenished, energized. So how to I get to that? I'm not sure, but I'm certain it includes several days filled with "nothing". Those days when nothing is planned, I just go as the wind blows or wherever my kids take me with their imagination. Perhaps I read a book or take a nap or sip lemonade or sit quietly and listen to the sounds around me (like that of of my children laughing their way thru childhood) or watch what birds fly up to my feeder. Perhaps I bake cookies or call a friend or go for a walk or run thru the sprinkler with my girls. And while I looked forward to some very planned days and some wonderful vacations (to Wisconsin; to Boston area; to Lake Michigan) -- I'm also really looking forward to these "nothing" days too! The other great things about "nothing" days is that my kids have the opportunity to use their imaginations... their days aren't planned for them... they get make their own fun! Sadly, I feel that is a essential piece which is slowing slipping away from many kid's childhoods.

Also upon reflection, there are 2 things I'm planning to make a priority this summer. The first is to get caught up on my scrapbooking... I want to remember these years and it will be easier if my pictures aren't sitting on my hard drive, but rather in an album to flip thru as the years go by. Second, I'm writing a memoir. I received a phone call in 1996 that forever changed the course of my changed my dreams, refocused my priorities and made me reexamine who God really is. It's a phone call I have to tell my kids about one day. And the best way I know to capture the depth of that journey is thru the writing of my own memoir.

So as the summer stretches before me, I find myself thankful for the gift of time and for the hope of fun-filled, sun-filled days ahead of me. Speaking of which, the girls and I are heading for a water-filled day at Silver Dollar City today. I can't wait for them to wake up and surprise them with this news! :)