December 2: Smiling with Pride <3
“Always believe in yourself and always stretch yourself beyond your limits. Your life is worth a lot more than you think because you are capable of accomplishing more than you know. You have more potential than you think, but you will never know your full potential unless you keep challenging yourself and pushing beyond your own self-imposed limits.” -Roy T. Bennett
“Great things are done when men and mountains meet.” -William Blake
“Failure is constructive feedback that tells you to try a different approach to accomplish what you want.” -Idowu Koyenikan
Here we are, getting closer to the end of another year. The closer we get to New Years each year, especially as I get older, I find myself looking back and wondering “what did I accomplish this year?” I hate to admit it, but when I first started reminiscing over 2018, a part of me was like, “nope. Nada. Nothing.” It is no secret to this blog that the past year for me has been tough, to say the least. But one thing I have been trying (REALLY hard) to do the last few months, is find the beauty in everything. I mean, hence, the title of my blog…in case you are new here, FINDING INSPIRATION IN THE CHAOS. <3 😉 Look for the positive. Around July, when I started having my severe anxiety and panic attacks, I decided I didn’t want to be that person anymore. I didn’t want to be “Negative Nancy,” or “Stressful Suzy.” And, as a parent, something that always rings in my head is that I don’t want my problems to harm my children’s childhoods. So since getting put on anti-anxiety medicine in July, I have been doing A LOT of searching. I started eating better, doing yoga, really have some long heart to heart discussions with my boy Jesus, and as a last-ditch effort of my sanity, this blog was born. <3
So let’s consider this again…what have I accomplished? Yes, so much has gone wrong this year, but if I really stop to think about it, all of it was out of my control! I couldn’t control any of it or change any of it, even if I wanted to! The only thing I can control is ME! <3 So I guess, the big thing I did this year was to make the decision that I could be better and that I deserved to be better. How did I start that process? Ooo…tears, screaming, lots of times just saying, “LEAD ME. GUIDE ME.” When no other words would come, I found myself saying one word, “JESUS.” And as I have learned, that one word was all I needed. I just wasn’t listening, yet.
My birthday was in June and I had bought me (with the blessing of my husband) a shiny new laptop with the promises of using it to “write.” Then here comes July, when my world spun on its axis. August came along, and that shiny new laptop was still sitting on my desk, mocking me. Or was it really mocking me? Maybe it was really calling and inviting me back. Back to a safe place, back to an old friend. So I started small. I just dipped my toe in the writing/blogging pool again. I started by sharing some of my old posts from my old blog to my new blog so I could have some content. And to be honest, those old posts are still such a huge part of who I am that I felt like they needed to be shared. Slowly as I shared each old post, I felt my confidence start to reemerge. As I said in one of my first posts back into this world, “Writing is like a string that binds us. Writing anchors me and pulls me close to others that might be floating recklessly alone, just like myself. It is a way to say, “hi. Take my extra life vest. Hold on tight. You are not alone. The calm water will come.”
Slowly, I started getting my momentum up again and carving out time each day to write became a time I looked forward to with a great sense of urgency. Then I started getting such positive feedback from writers and/or readers, saying that my words made a difference. My words had an impact. My heart began to smile again. All my life, I have had a dream to write. Somehow. Some way. I just wanted to get my words down. I still pray to find an even bigger platform, maybe write a book or write for a magazine? Something…I would love to be able to make a living doing something that drives me and gives me a fire that I had thought was long gone. I started mixing in yoga and eating right. I soon found out that I had lost 18 pounds, all because I decided to make a shift.
This past year has taught me that at the end of your rope, when you feel like you have nothing left to give, no more strength to muster, that is where you will find Jesus. That is where you will find His grace, His love, and His strength. I learned that no, I didn’t have what it took to keep going, but Jesus did and he picked me up, dusted me off, and said: “let’s get it.” Friends, the world may be whispering to you, “you aren’t enough. You can’t do this. Give up.” Find something that screams “YES! YES, YOU CAN!” For me, it is my belief in God and Jesus Christ. Maybe this year was meant to lead me back to my passion, remind me why I loved writing all those years ago. Maybe this year was meant to force me to re-evaluate my relationships. Maybe God was saying, “girl. You better readjust.”
My blog and social media platforms are slowly taking off, a lot faster than I expected when I started just 4 months ago. I can’t wait to see what doors await me. I have many plans for this blog and can’t wait for the New Year.
This year, I accomplished finding me again, or at least, let me say I accomplished the first phase of finding me again. I am still a work in progress.
“For unto us a child is born, unto us, a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” –Isaiah 9:6