Thursday, February 25, 2010

old musing with G


found the following thoughts in an old blog when we moved from Clatskanie to Montana... odd how somes things are exactly the same and some things just didn't matter. The friendship thing ended up being the least of the worries that the "new place" brought to me. The Montana factor ended up being a place of heart break and stress. ...and i'm still wondering about my career options after yet another move. How do i break this damn cycle??

sometime in early August, 2007

So, is it true that there is a purpose for every life? does it have to come in the form of a "career?"

I am here in this new place and wondering how my friends are... wondering who my new friends will be and thinking about how all this will unfold over the next several weeks/months/years...
There is something refreshing about starting over in a new place. i may have to find out what that is and sort out all of the bittersweetness in my heart. i miss where i was, and yet i am excited to be here. i think those who are in my old hometown will miss me - but for how long? their lives are the same - the same faces, places and routines will keep them busy and in time my face won't belong there any more. my life is completely different - no familiar faces, places or routines... i keep busy just trying to maintain. unpacking things that need to find a new place in this house i'm trying to make feel like "home."

Time goes on... as does life... just what will become of mine?

what's strange about the profession of "pastor's wife" is that it's not really up to us when or if we move... it just seems to be where the Spirit leads. part of me thinks that is absolutely messed up. what if i don't WANT to leave?! i suppose Jonah asked the same thing.

Friday, April 3, 2009

They Just Can't Stop

Today is the first day of Spring Break for the girls. They are exhausted and somewhat cranky and Sofie's tummy has been hurting for several days now, and Olivija didn't wash the shampoo out of her hair because the water got cold. They are just a little out of sorts. And there are several things on my mind about children. Not necessarily mine, just in general.

A few weeks ago I subbed in a 7th/8th grade English class on a Friday. There are 6 separate periods of either 7th graders or 8th graders. All day. Subbing isn't exactly my favorite thing to do with my life right now, but necessity sometimes takes over . Things were going fine until about 5th period. 7th graders. Filled with hormones and teenage angst they were antsy and jittery and just couldn't stop talking. I asked politely. talking. i asked not so politely. talking. I asked rather rudely. talking. Then it just didn't matter what i thought, said, or did. There were too many to send to "the principals office" and i couldn't leave so i just stared at them in disbelief and anger. They KNEW i was angry and they just couldn't stop.

I remember when i was in school and even then subs were treated like crap. Try to get away with as much as you could, that was the game. But, when the sub got mad, it was time to straighten up. That doesn't seem the case anymore. I don't really want to be that old person who says shit like "when i was a kid, we respected our elders..." blah blah blah... BUT... oh crap. i'm that old person. I got through that 5th period and had lunch and when the 6th period wandered in they were telling me how awful 5th period was and how they were saying i got really mad and they all felt bad. And then they were all kind and quiet and studious. And the 7th period came in and they evidently didn't hear about 5th period and were awful. I went home and curled up in a fetal position and cried for a while. seriously. Children brought me to that.

Today, my daughter came and sat next to me on the couch and we talked about her day was and she said it was fine and then somehow or another we got to this subject of people making fun of her. Red flag. I asked a few more questions about what these kids said and she told me that they called her names like "jerk" like "creepy" like "dumb, ugly and stupid." My heart just broke. I asked what she did when this happens and she said she just walks away, or watches them walk away. She doesn't know why they call her names because (she says) "i'm NOT those things."

So, here i am. heartbroken for her and for me and for these kids who have brought me to this point. There are these children that brought me to tears, and even younger children that brought my daughter to tears and i wonder how it happens to be that way. There are programs at the school about bullying and respect and that just doesn't seem to be sinking in. Have humans always been this way? Are we capable of learning anything about how to treat other humans in our lives? How do i explain right and wrong to my daughter when she is treated so unjustly by her peers?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Finding Jesus Without Actually Being An Addict: God Has Some Mad Skills

I used to be an addict. I smoked. Marlboro Lights 100 in a box. I never did buy an actual carton because that would have meant i was a serious smoker... denial, of course. It would have been a lot cheaper to admit my addiction and save a few bucks. Forget about saving my lungs. I could say that it was this addiction that brought me to the Lord, that had me believing that my soul needed saving. But, that would be a lie. I knew the Lord before i smoked. I found him about the same time He found me. I think. Maybe that would be a lie too if the Bible tells me that he knew me while i was being knit together in my mother's womb.... well... at any rate, i got to know Jesus way before i was a smoker.

I found him by running away from my home. I ran to people that were kind and took me in, sheltered me under their collective wings. I believed that i could be loved at home if i did all the right things, if my works were good enough. I believed that would save me from the evil that prevailed. If i did all the right things and was a good daughter then i would be loved and adored and all would be really good. What i found out was that it didn't matter what i did. It was still awful and brutal and mean and unfair. I should have been treated like the good kid i was. Really. What i also found out was that it didn't matter what i did outside the home, under the wings of the people that i ran to. I was the same person, the same kid, but they saw all the anger and the tears and they showed me grace. How does THAT work? If i was a biblical editor i would throw out the book of James. It isn't about WORKS. At least it didn't work for me.

God has these mad skills of loving us despite ourselves and what we do. While i was being shown this Love by people outside of my home, it hit me that this is how God works. It didn't matter what i did. It didn't matter what i didn't do. I couldn't do anything to earn this Love, and i couldn't do anything to make this Love go away... my friends taught me the meaning of Grace.

I could have easily run from home into the arms of angry people who didn't know about Grace. i could easily have chosen to be angry and cry with these people and they would have tried to make me feel better with alcohol, or drugs, or whatever took them to a place where they didn't have to feel anything. I could have easily been an addict to something way worse than Marlboro Lights 100... but i didn't go down that road. I still wonder what makes some people choose that road, and others go a different way... I think it may be something to do with who we hang with. I ended up hanging out with a bunch of Christians...I ended up finding out about God's mad skills to save someone like me. It is amazing for those who find Jesus while being addicted to some other saviour. Somehow or another it is another person who reaches into the heart of that addict and pulls them out of themselves into a place of light and love and grace. Once that happens it's so hard to forget it -- it's hard to go back into the darkness.

As Christians, isn't that our jobs? To show the light to people? To accept their faults, their addictions, their anger and fear and lead them away from all that? I wonder about those certain Christians in the media who are close-minded to those who really need to see an open mind and an open heart. It isn't about what we say, or what we think is the Truth... it's about seeing people though the eyes of Grace and knowing that we all need it... we all need to be taken in under somebody's wings. Isn't it time to show the world the mad skills of God?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Watching Others Sled

So, i just got done reading some of Marie's blogs... going to the theatre and watching plays with her family, cleaning (organizing) her kitchen and currently going through the numerous number of books in her office space at home. She is quite inspiring, and irritating all at once. dang her ambition, and her energy. Dang her active family life -- hobnobbing at the theatre and all her writing about her feelings and thoughts, about her anger at the catholics and their myopic (although I'm not so sure that even their short-sightedness is all that clear) vision about sexual abuse -v- abortion and her weeping easily... all this life going on.

I admire that and it makes me wonder about this life of mine. Today, outside it is a blizzard... it's beautiful and fierce. i love it. Later today we'll have to go out in it, walk a ways to the church for an event. It's been a snowy winter and i truly have enjoyed every flake. It is our second winter here and last year was an eye-opener for all us and especially Sofie. That girl is a snow-bunny -- her and Joe went out every day that was sled-able and were out for hours, climbing up hills, sledding down, laughing, snowy, red-cheeked, completely able. An entire new world for her. Olivija would be out for a few minutes and would be freezing and have to come in. I, of course, didn't even bother to go out. i would stand in the window and watch - waiting for Olivija to come in and needing help getting her boots off, and me warming her up with hot chocolate and snuggles. I would stand and watch the sledding. thinking to myself - oh man, i'm so glad i'm not out there. i am so NOT able. i can't climb those hills.

Part of the watching was the inability to climb up the hill - i blame my bad knees, but when i'm completely honest with myself the bad knees are a product of the comfort food and lack of exercise. it's a very simple and hard learned equation: comfort food + lack of exercise = big thighs and way too much weight to carry up little tiny sledding hills.

Back to Marie... there is a part of me that is standing at a window watching her climb the hills. I'm trying to figure out the equation of this. I really have nothing to blame - there are no "bad knees" in my abilities to be active. my equation theory really doesn't hold up. The variables are the unknown x's and y's of my life. x + y = lack of climbing up my hills. hmmmmm. i truly wish i was a mathematician at this point.

I will say this though - the comfort food + lack of exercise equation made much more sense last year. This year the equation has changed a little: healthy food + lack of exercise = smaller thighs and a little less weight to carry up little tiny sledding hills. This year i put on the boots, the snow pants, the gloves and hat and i hauled myself up the Dalenberg Slope and i slid down the hill. I got up, climbed back up and went down again, and again.

Eventually, i had to go in with Olivija (who was freezing) to help her with her boots and the warming up of her body... later, as I stood there at the window, sipping my own hot chocolate, i thought - oh, man, i wish i was out there still sledding. I am able. I can climb up those hills.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

a few good ideas...

so my friend marie (hello there friend!) has "encouraged" me to write some more on my latent blog page. i think my page hates me for ignoring it for the past 7 months but some things just can't be helped. i've been busy. i've been thinking. ...i've been blocked. so i asked my friend marie to help with the blockage. she has henceforth shoved a few stints into the blockage with a few good ideas that read somewhat like this:

-the last few books you read
-what you miss most about Clatskanie
-what you do not miss most about Clatskanie
-if you had a million dollars
-describe most what you love about Olivija
-describe most what you love about Sofie
-what is it like to live in Montana
-if money was no object what would i do for a year
-??? is my favorite character in the Harry Potter series because ???
-this is why i like Facebook
-why is it so hard to find my passion

hmmmmm... all these good ideas... what do you think? the last book i read was Saving Fish From Drowning by Amy Tan. i'm still thinking on that. i miss some good friends and my pinochle club in Clatskanie. i don't miss living across the street from the bus garage. if i had a million dollars i'd be out of debt - for the most part. i love Olivija's sweetness. i love Sofie's curiosity. it's heaven to live in Montana, except for the lack of good shopping. if money was no object i'd have a really nice stereo, in a really nice house with a view, with a nice deck looking out at the view, with a really nice computer in which to blog to my hearts content for a year straight so that my blog page won't hate me anymore. Snape is my favorite character in the HP series because he's so mysterious and damaged - although he really needs to wash his hair. i love facebook because it allows me to reconnect with people that i haven't spoken to in years, and that now i can speak with them without all the pretense of teenage/college angst and that honesty and more truth can be found in those friendships. That leaves me with why is it so hard to find my passion...?

good question, marie.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

I don't know if this will work or not... but here are some glacier pictures...