I enjoy writing, sharing, inspiring others. I really do. Maybe that’s why I started this blog back in 2014. I have not been consistent, but I was doing pretty good at writing and posting like a good blogger writer person in 2016. Then 2017 came along and literally sucked the creative life out of me, or maybe I just allowed it to and didn’t have the proper resources to fight back. Regardless, I became so paralyzed with fear, doubt, anxiety, and whatever other feeling you want to throw in there, that everything I was doing in a creative sense came to a screeching halt. There were days I even questioned my professional role as a nurse. I continued on in my daily duties as a wife / mom / daughter / saint of God / employee, but even somedays I couldn’t perform those well.
Granted we did have a lot happen last year. A recap of some of the main events we went through, aside from day to day living:
We bought our first home and moved across DFW. We went from living by DFW airport in the hustle and bustle of the metroplex, to the east side of DFW to what somedays feels like East Texas. You can hear the coyotes howl at night, the roosters crow in the morning and about half a mile down the road from our house are goats roaming the front yards of peoples houses. These people out here country y’all. My daughter started high school in a new school district away from the friends she had made since elementary. I went through 2 jobs. I had a health scare with a lump on my right breast. I found a dog on the side of the road and we kept him, bringing our total of dogs up to 3. My husband had surgery. Four days after my husband’s surgery, I sliced my left foot open when a glass jar of milk fell out of the fridge, requiring a trip to the ER (which I had to drive myself) and 5 stitches. Oh and I also applied and got my nurse licensure in all 50 states, which if you have ever had to apply for just one nursing license, you know is quite a task. In reality though, these are all just excuses, because this is life. It never stops. I allowed life to halt me. On the flip side, we didn’t have to go through a hurricane like many of our fellow Texans south of us. Our home was not destroyed. We did not lose anyone in our family. Ultimatley we had an incredibly blessed year.
You maybe thinking right now we are already in the middle of March of 2018, why are you still talking about 2017? Because 2017 changed me. I feel like I am just now getting up, dusting myself off, figuring out who I am now.
I recently joined a connect group at our church called a Journey of Growth based upon John Maxwell’s 15 invaluable laws of growth. Just one chapter in and I feel like the guy has pinpointed out every flaw and excuse I have ever made. Not only has it inspired me to start writing again but I know (because it already has) will provide invaluabe perspective on growth and discovering who I really am. I mean I know I am a child of God and a wife, daughter, mother, friend, dog lover, employee, coffee drinker, lover of music, etc. etc. etc. But all labels aside, who am I at my core? I am not trying to sound all “get in touch with your feelings” type, I’m really not. Maybe I am just asking myself questions I have never allowed myself to ask because I was too busy to ever stop and reflect. Being a single mom for 13 years, then getting married, moving, going through jobs, getting caught up in the busyness of life and constantly doing, going, moving, did I ever take time to just stop, ask myself some hard questions and reflect? Prior to last year I felt a sense that I had to hurry up and do all these things that I wanted to do, but I never took the time to look at my core and develop that.
I am thankful for the encouraging friendships I made last year and for people who are sensitive to God and His spirit. One day last summer at church after a Sunday morning service, during a time when I was facing the peak of issues on my job, church was over but I was still battling a slew of emotions inside. As I was walking around trying to chase down my daughter (as I do every Sunday) a sweet lady and her mother began to talk to me. I think the conversation started out casually… ya know… How are you doing? How is work? etc. Well I probably gave them more answers to some of their questions then what they had anticipated. But it was a God moment. As it turned out my sweet sister had gone through almost the exact same thing on her job a few years before. She began to minister to me, then her and her mother prayed over me. I walked away from that conversation feeling like a new person, like I could breathe again. I had hope once more. I can’t say things changed over night in the situation, but within a few months of that prayer my situation on my job turned around 100% and God opened up doors that only He could to remove me from it. But she said something to me which I will never forget… the enemy knows we won’t go out and commit murder or do something that is an obvious sin. So he will try to come into any aspect of our lives to taunt us with fear, anxiety, doubt, frustrations to where we become so crippled and afraid that we are paralyzed and never progress forward. I slowly started realizing my worth after that and stopped being so afraid anymore.
What 2017 did for me was make me to realize that I had weak spots in different areas of my life. I had areas of vulnerability in my mind and spirit where the enemy could come in, take root and attack me mentaly to ultimately paralyze me from ever wanting to pursue dreams or do anything creative again. It can happen so subtly too. I didn’t realize it until months after I was into it. Some people would ask me, why haven’t you posted on your blog in a while? I would fumble with some excuse. But the reality was I had talked myself out of it due to an overwhelming sense of lack of self worth and fear due to situations I had allowed to consume me.
I decided 2018 is going to be different. Not that there still aren’t fears I face or battles to fight, but I was determined that I will have a different position and mentality in fighting them. My war stratedgy has changed. I decided I would never allow one person to steal so much from me. I was not going to be beat down and defeated anymore. I may lack self-confidence but with the help of God, He is helping me to gain it.
I invite you to join me on this journey. Get up, dust yourself off, and move forward. I don’t know where it will take us, but I have great dreams and aspirations for the future and I know God is already in them.
I realize this is a wordy post without a lot of pretty pictures, but it comes from the heart. If you are still with me at this point, thank you for taking time out to read what I have to share.
I leave you with a few things I learned from 2017 –
- The blessings of God are not dependent on any person, place or thing. They are dependent on God and God alone and what you give to Him.
- Stop giving people the authority to wreck your mind, which will wreck your spirit and your home. Greater is He that is in us then he that is in the world!
- Take time to invest time in yourself to grow. In turn you will be able to invest in others.
- Stop apologizing for yourself.
- Don’t allow negativity around you to talk you out of your self worth. We are more than conquerers!
- Slow down (still trying to master this one).
- Don’t be afraid to dream again.