I Will Not Look Away This Time

On my way ‘home’ for a funeral. Another one of the dear ladies who shaped me has passed Away. I used to go help her at her house over an incredibly difficult time in my life. I spent most of a day with her. Do stuff for her around her house. Help her walk laps on her porch which surrounded her house. Then she would take me out to eat at the cutest little restaurants. Her smile of delight when I liked the place as much as she did… I won’t soon forget. We would talk. And just have fun. I loved her dearly. She was hope and encouragement when I needed it the most. I will never be able to smell Japanese Cherry Blossom without thinking of her. I am sad I never actually got to introduce my little girl to her. That I didn’t make an effort to go see her on my trips back to the South. I can’t believe she’s gone. It feels like the end of so much… I knew she wouldn’t live forever but I wanted her to. It makes me extremely sad. I know with all my heart that she is with her precious Jesus, exactly where she has wanted to be for so long. I know she is happier than she has ever been before. But I am still sad that she’s gone. 
Grief as a Christian is such a mixture of bitter and sweet. You’re sad that they’re gone, happy they’re with Jesus, delighted that you WILL see them again, but you’re sad again that they’re gone. It feels like a part of your heart has been ripped out
A couple years ago, one of my dearest lady friends died. I did a really bad job of grieving that loss. I avoided it. Decided that my grief didn’t matter and that I didn’t think I had a right to grieve. I felt like I wasn’t close enough to her towards the end of her life. My heart hurt like no body’s business to watch her husband and her children place her in the ground. But it took me such a long time to finally grieve her death. I avoided my grief. And when it finally hit, it was that deep in the middle of the night wake up sobbing sort of devastation and loss. When I was finally able to grieve, I realized something. Grief is terrible and it hurts like nothing else… but it is such a gift. When you avoid it you can never truly come to grips with it. There’s a part of you that’s always exposed and raw. While the pain of her loss will always be there, I still cry cause I miss her and wish I could go to her house and chat like we used to… it’s different. I am realizing that until you let yourself hurt you will never be be at peace. Until you grieve your loss, you will never heal. 
And so… though most people will not understand my deep grief at the loss of this other dear, sweet friend of mine… I am still going to grieve her being gone. I am going to be sad. I loved her. She mattered to me. That’s my right to grieve. And I don’t want to hide from the healing that comes when I allow myself to feel what I am feeling. I won’t hide this time. 

an open letter to my friend

dear friend,

I see it. I see it in your eyes. The darkness that your smiles and words can’t hide. The terror that someone will find out mixed with the terror that no one will ever care. I see it. Oh, I see it. Not with the eyes of judgement but with eyes of one who has been there. One whose heart is breaking with yours. I know that darkness, I know that fear. I wish I could wrap you up tightly in my arms, I wish I could take you to safety. It hurts knowing I can’t take it away. It hurts ’cause that darkness. . . consumes everything. Not just you and your emotions. It seeps into everything else too, it affects everyone that is near you. The last people in the world you want to hurt, you’re pushing away. It’s hurting them. The darkness is consuming them too. So much hurt. So much pain. Those people you love end up pointing fingers in your face cause they don’t understand. They can’t even begin to comprehend it. But that doesn’t make it hurt any less. And the cycle continues. Hurt upon hurt upon hurt. It feels like you’re drowning in it. You want it to end. You have lost hope that it ever will end.

It’s such a hard, hard, dark, dark, terrifying place. I can hardly stand it that you’re there. I feel so helpless. I don’t know how to help.

I want to tell you there is hope, that my God is there in the dark, dark scary places, even if you can’t feel Him. I want to tell you that the people hurting you right now LOVE you more than you can imagine, even though it feels like they hate you. They’re just hurting, trying to fix you, and they don’t get it. I want to tell you that God is a God of hope. There is hope. It’s HIM. Push into Him. Dig deep into HIM. Believe what the Bible says even when you can’t feel it. I also want to tell you that your feelings are your own worst enemy right now. You can’t trust them, you can’t let them define what is truth. You have to make decisions right now. You can feel your sadness, but please don’t believe the lies the darkness is screaming at you. I want to tell you so many things. . . but I am guessing you won’t hear me. Because I have been there. I know what it’s like. Until you believe that I love you and want what’s best for you, you won’t hear a word I say.

So I pray for you, dear, dear Friend. Often. Over and over. Sometimes I don’t even know how to pray. I pray wordless prayers. A lot. I keep reminding myself that my God loves you far more than I do. You’re in good hands.

so much love, Brittany

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p.s. if  you’re reading this open letter and you barely know me or know me extremely well and desperately need someone to talk to. please email me. I would count it a privilege and honor to hear your heart.

lowercase

here I sit again.

a very white blank page to fill.

not sure how.

this morning my friend came over to walk with me and hang out for a bit. she’s moving in a couple weeks. . . to ohio. and i am completely blue about it. i’ve tried to be pretty strong and not lose it cause hey if that’s where God wants them that’s where they need to be. but today i just want them to stay. i’m not exactly sure how i’m going to make it with her not around. i certainly will be very less ‘green’ without her influence. she keeps the hippie alive in me. and probably will take less walks. and be sad because she’s a comfortable friend. and she’s leaving.  so there, em. see, I really do love you.

it’s been an up and down sort of week. mostly because of that crazy deer taking an evening stroll down the middle of a very busy highway. quite possibly it’s also related to the post i was going to write but don’t have the heart to actually type it up anymore this week. maybe next week.

also, just checking out the sentence structure of my first full paragraph. wow. that is a thing of. . . well, not beauty that’s for sure.  but hey. that’s what happens when you have to write three times a week. well it doesn’t seem to happen to anyone else. their posts always look great. but they’re not me. this is what my posts look like at 3x’s a week.

i’m feeling lowercase today. can you tell?? tehee, can you imagine if i was feeling uppercase?? i mean, how overwhelming?????? it would look like i’m yelling everything. isn’t it silly how much letter size affects how we “hear” things. oops, i might be cheering myself up. can’t have that.

BUT, y’all, the sun is shining and the sky is blue. The tree’s and grass are a beautiful green. I have some tea brewing. The house is quiet. I got to spend the morning with my friend. I don’t have bad life. Just having a sad day.

because this post is so. . . blah, I don’t think I will post a link to it from my facebook page. I’ll just sort of sneak it on here. 😀

G’day.

Extremely Blessed

Last night on the way home from a birthday party, we hit a deer. Not exactly the way I had planned to spend my journey home. . . I was so sad. 1, I hate to see things die. 2, we just put a lot of money into our little mini van to get it running right.  We’re still not sure if it’s fixable or not. So it might actually be totaled. . . I was upset. Really upset. Not so much that we hit a deer but that God let it happen. I mean we just got the thing running again, we were dreaming dreams, and BLAM. There’s a deer. There go all your hopes and dreams. (Drama Queen, I know, but that’s what it felt like) We were both scared to invest money into the van because we were afraid as soon as we did something would happen. Well looky there, it did. I was not feeling very happy.  Money doesn’t grow on trees, ya know.

I was wandering around my house in a rather dazed and angry state. When all of a sudden it hit me that I was being absolutely ridiculous. If the van is totaled, we lost X amount of money. But that was extremely small when compared with our lives. People have hit deer and ended up in the hospital, and in some cases have died. We were alive. We didn’t hurt anyone else in the accident. Nobody got hurt at all in fact.  My daughter did not seem traumatized by the situation, she just thought we should ‘shoot’ the deer. She didn’t have a melt down or anything. Our van got damaged and may not even be anymore but my sweet little family is all ok. God’s hand was there in that accident. Keeping us safe.  It could have been so much worse.

I am extremely blessed and ridiculously loved.

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^Left overs of Mr or Mrs Deer, there was quite a bit more there last night but it was removed by this morning. OUCH is all I can think.

introverted me

This week I read an article about introverts, written by an introvert. (if you are friends with me on Facebook, you can find it on my page) It was extremely good for me to read. I’ve been trying to come to grips with my introvert nature since I was old enough to realize I’m not like some other people. The kind of people who have 100’s of friends and love to be a parties. The kind of people that look at me like I am nuts when I admit that I would rather be at home than at a social event or when sometimes I just don’t go to social events. I tried to change that about me for a long time. Tried to like being at social events and tried to be more of a social butterfly. Then I realized it wasn’t me at all. I was exhausted and frustrated and had no emotional energy for the people who mattered the most to me. So I went through a spell where I just didn’t do anything. Sort of became a recluse.  That didn’t really fix it either. Cause. While I don’t like big social events very much and need a break after being with people a lot, I really do love people. I still need friends. To come to the place where I feel like I have no friends isn’t real fun either. See there’s kind of this idea that introverts don’t like people and can just live all alone. We can’t really. We still need people and we crave deep friendships.

But there is this problem. Social events are full of small talk, which is extremely ‘shallow’ for people like me. The weather gets old really fast. In fact it’s stale before we even start talking about it. And it feels really lame. I know, I know, I’m weird but still.

I crave the kind of friendships that feel like coming home. Where I can completely let go of all the ideals and just be me. I love knowing what makes you tick, and knowing that you know what makes me tick. I don’t really care about the weather unless it’s making you sad or very glad. I want to know you and I want you to know me.

So it seems like a conundrum of sorts.

The article I read this week gave me a new perspective. In order to find friends you have to go to social events. You have to put up with small talk sometimes to get to your end goal, those comfortable friendships that feel like coming home. It might seem very elementary but it was sort of like a light bulb moment for me. It gave me a different way of looking at social things. It doesn’t mean that I have to squelch my desires for deep friendship or my love for home and quiet time. It doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with me. I can actually use those desires to motivate me at social events. Which is completely revolutionary to me, it makes me rather excited actually cause it feels like hope. I can be introverted me living in an extroverted environment, and still be a person of value. The frustration that comes from being in an environment of lots of noise, and not thriving on it, and feeling left out and like I just will never be friends with anyone cause I am not an extrovert. . . is a lie.

I CAN be introverted me and be worth something. I CAN have friends and be introverted. I CAN go to social events. I CAN stay home sometimes. It’s huge to me.

I am not totally sure this post is going to make sense to anyone else. It’s not particularly well written and rather jumbled. But to get my thoughts together sometimes I need to write a crummy post.

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NOTE: If you’re an extrovert and you’re reading this. I’m sure you are now fully convinced on me being a freak. Just remember,  I’m not anymore of a freak than you are. 😉  Also please don’t feel like you have to tiptoe and whisper around us introverts. We don’t want that either, in fact that’s the opposite of what we want.  Just understand that we sometimes need to just be at home, and that it will be a lot more often than you do.

Dreary Monday

Soooo, I need to write but I don’t know what to write. I decided last week that I would write on my blog 3 times a week for three months. I was going to say I had to write every day for 100 days but let’s be real. I am a wife, a mom, and I have a house to keep up, not to mention the fact that I can barely post once a month. It’s just not going to happen. So I decided 3 times would be enough of a challenge. Here it is the second week of this challenge and it’s already proving to be just that, a challenge and enough of one.

Trying to figure out what I am thinking about it cause that’s often where the inspiration comes, y’know. It’s all a muddle. And if I happen to happen upon a great thought in the midst of that great thought I am called to my daughters bedroom, “Mommy, I need it. Mommy, Mommy, MOOOOOOMMMMYYYYYYY.” To discover my child is on the rocking chair with Theo (her beloved teddy bear), and needs me to get her the book that is right beside her on the floor. With a little bit of effort she could have gotten it herself but it’s much easier to call for a while for Mommy, and have mommy stop typing, get up off her chair in the living room, come down the hall and pick up the book and hand it to her. By the time I get back to my chair in the living room to begin typing again, the thought is gone and I’m just tired and wishing this dreary day would be over or at the very least I could just go back to bed. I really dislike Mondays. Add dreariness to the Monday and we’ve got a very blue Brittany. Not to mention my child got up at a very early hour. They don’t make coffee strong enough for these days. Oh wait, I couldn’t even drink the coffee anyway cause it makes me sick (NO I AM NOT PREGNANT!!!!!!!!). Humph. What a morning.

I need another cup of tea.

Which reminds me, I am thankful for my Keurig, given to me by my mom, it means hot water is always a button away, which means tea is that much closer. Tea does not make me sick, I drink lots of it. I put in too much stevia, oops, but hey I can have tea as sweet as I want it without the guilt of calories. Thankful for that too.

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I am so thankful for that little girl on the rocking chair who loves books as much as her mommy. She is the reason for countless smiles and giggles throughout the day. I love her so. . . I mean just look at that sweet little thing. . .

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I look out my window and see the happy little dandelions that some people call weeds. They are beautiful and bright and smile all the time even when it’s dreary. They are sunshine on a cloudy day. As I step outside to take a picture of them I discover a perfect little puffer of a dandelion, my own little hug from God.

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Life isn’t so bad really. Sure, I might not get many profitable things done today. In fact I might just go roam around town, oh wait, that requires something other than pjs, so. . . I might actually just watch movies or read all day. But that’s ok. I am blessed and loved extravagantly. I think I will make it through this dreary Monday after all.

The little girl has joined me in the living and is “weeping” (which is fake crying mixed with whining) so that’s my cue, I bid you, adieu.

 

Abide with me

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I have a home, eternal home
But for now I walk this broken world
You walked it first, You know our pain
But You show hope can rise again up from the grave

Abide with me, abide with me
Don’t let me fall, and don’t let go
Walk with me and never leave
Ever close, God abide with me

There in the night, Gethsemane
Before the cross, before the nails
Overwhelmed, alone You prayed
You met us in our suffering and bore our shame

Abide with me, abide with me
Don’t let me fall, and don’t let go
Walk with me and never leave
Ever close, God abide with me

Oh love that will not ever let me go
Love that will not ever let me go
You never let me go
Love that will not ever let me go
Oh You never let us go

And up ahead, eternity
We’ll weep no more, we’ll sing for joy, abide with me

-Matt Maher

This song is precious to me. It is both a prayer and a comfort these days. A reminder that He never leaves, and a prayer asking Him to join me through out my day.

You can listen here —> Abide with me