Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Bible has a lot of really good answers

     Lisa and I tried a new church today. I'd walked by it several times during my jaunts with Tino, and since it started at 10am rather than 9 or 930 (a reason for "hallelujah!" in itself) we thought we'd try it out. I've been wanting to find a smaller church to go to, something that's reminiscent of BPCC back home, but haven't had much luck. Maybe I'm being too picky, but I don't really care. Anyway, I counted, and there were fewer than 35 people in attendance. That's the second smallest service I've been too post college (the smallest amount in attendance was 16!). It was a nice church, but I don't know if we'll be going back because Lisa had to go to work right after the service ended so we didn't have time to discuss how we felt about it. 


     Anyway, the message ended up being just what I needed to hear


     Trust. That's what the pastor talked about. It began with him talking about Gideon, then he moved toward Peter in Acts, then a couple of Psalms of David.. The section that resonated the most with me was this:


But I trust in Your unfailing love; my heart rejoices with Your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, for He has been good to me.
-Psalm 13


     Trust. That's what I have, and that's what I choose to do. No matter how discouraged/defeated I feel, or how long this process takes, I have to have faith that it will all work out for the best. Although, it would be really nice if it would start working out a lot sooner rather than later ... I don't know how much longer I can take it. Would it help if I told God, "Ok, thanks for that trial! It really helped! I think I'm good now ... I'm ready for a job, You can drop one in my lap now, and thank You!"
Probably not. Remembering that God has His own timing is a struggle for me ... I want everything to happen in my timing, and that just isn't going to happen. 


     This is hard, much harder than I thought it was going to be.  


     Also, I have a lot of trouble falling asleep at night. A LOT. And it's REALLY starting to make me mad!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Too many uses of the word "And"

     I'm by myself at the kitchen table, and I just finished my second cup of coffee, and I've been awake since 8:30 even though it's Saturday and I don't have to work, but I never have to work anymore because I don't have a job, which you wouldn't think would be all that bad unless you have any sense of reality, and somewhere out there a dog is barking, and a baby is crying, and Valentino is sleeping on the porch, and really, really, this day isn't bad. It's actually kind of nice. 


     And while I am by myself, I think. And I wonder. And I think about how quickly life goes by, and by the time I've finally realized life goes by so quickly it's too late for a lot of things, but not too late for a lot of other things. And the trick is learning how to balance what you did or didn't do in the past against what you want to do in the future, and also figuring out how to live in the moment and take it all in. Easy, right? Ha.


     And what was done in the past can never be changed. It can be remembered, retold, reinvented, but the facts are still there, and no matter how much you lie, you can't change them. Like the time I was at Rite Aid with Jacey and I walked right into glass display shelves and knocked them all down and it was mortifying and there was glass everywhere and I asked the man if I could help him clean it up and he heaved a huge sigh and said no, just go. I could lie and tell you that some 35-year old redhead with a vendetta out against me for being friends with her 21-year old boyfriend violently shoved me into the shelves and was somehow able to dart away before anyone saw her, but in reality, it was my clumsiness that shattered the display. And Jacey DID laugh. And that's what happened, and that's life.


     And in life, there is regret. And I live life with regret, and I think that's ok. I hear so many people say that they live life without regret, that regret is stupid, NO REGRET! Blah, blah, blah. I disagree. But it's probably just in the definition. [Whoever controls the definition controls the debate.] To me, regret is wishing you had or hadn't done something. Like, I regret that I stopped taking piano lessons after hurting my hand and then I never performed Mozart's Konzert in that competition when I was 16. I regret not going ice blocking in college. I regret shaving my eyebrows that one time long, long ago. And I don't think any of these things are bad. But I do think dwelling on regret is bad. I could sit on the couch all day every day thinking about things I have or haven't done and sulking and pouting and wishing, but most of the time I don't. But for now, I refuse to say I have no regrets. For me that would seem like a cop-out. It seems like it's somehow making those things ok. And I don't agree with that. People always say that every little thing you've done has gotten you to where you are today, and I think duh. I mean, I don't mind where I am right now. I'm pretty happy in life. Some areas could sure use some improvement, but that's true for everyone. But if I had done things differently and I was in a different place in life, I would be ok with that. I would have to be. If I didn't have some of my regrets, I would have others. And maybe some smaller regrets have kept me from creating larger regrets. PERSPECTIVE. Obviously there is only one path your life will take. God already knows what's going to happen, everything has been decided, but I still believe we have free will. We still have choices. And if I could go back, I would choose to do things differently. Many things. And we all make choices every single day. Big choices, little choices. Right ones, wrong ones.


     Bottom line is this: Even though I wish (sometimes desperately) that I could go back and do things differently, I can't. And so I have to be ok with that. And most days I am. And then I remind myself that I am still young, and since I (theoretically) have so much life left, I'm going to make more mistakes and develop more regrets. But that's how you learn. Sometimes you learn from mistakes, sometimes you keep making the same mistake over and over again. That's life.   


     In college I did a project on forgiveness. In order to receive forgiveness, you have to repent. Repenting isn't just apologizing, it's being truly sorry for whatever was done and honestly trying to not make the same mistake again. It's a form of regretting what you did. That's why I don't think regret is bad. I think regret is consciously knowing that you did something wrong, wishing you could do it over again, but since you can't you just try not to do it again. 


    So, I have regrets. And just for me, saying I have no regrets would be a cop-out. It's not that I judge people who say they have no regrets, that just doesn't work for me. The perspective I take reminds me to be so thankful and in awe of forgiveness. I mean really, seriously, in awe.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Emotional Whiplash

     I'm getting emotional whiplash. It's no secret that I'm looking for a job and have been torn between staying in Southern California or going home to Los Osos. For a while I was dead set on moving back home. I thought I was going to get hired at an office up there and I was so looking forward to it! I was so excited to be home with my family and to have a stable job. But then, as you can probably guess, I didn't get the job. That was a bad week. So then I started thinking, ok, this means I'm supposed to stay down here, right? I don't know. I thought a few things down here were going to work out, and they didn't. But I still thought that I should stay down here, and I started seriously thinking about where to work and where to live after our lease is up. Then today I heard about another seemingly great opportunity up at home, so I started thinking about moving home again and what that would mean. About two hours after I heard about it and emailed my contact, I found out that it wasn't going to happen, so I started thinking about staying down here again. It's a lot of back and forth and back and forth, and I tend to get emotionally invested in whatever I'm thinking about, so for my emotions to be going back and forth this much just really sucks. And it's exhausting. And I'm so ready to just have a job, finally. But nothing is working out. So does that mean I'm just not looking in the right places? I need a sign. A neon sign.


     In other news, Oprah's show today was about happiness. I'm not a huge Oprah fan ... I don't agree with a lot of what she stands for and I think sometimes she's pretty fake and just annoying, but sometimes I enjoy her shows. Ok, a lot of the time. Anyway, the happiest city in America is ... ready? Drumroll!! SAN LUIS OBISPO. That's where I grew up. So that was pretty cool. They interviewed three "locals," who weren't even locals and who hadn't even lived there for 10 years! that bugged me. Seriously? 


     I'm not a pessimist, I a critical thinker. HA.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

100

Since it's post #100, I decided to make things fancy and turn my font purple. YOU'RE WELCOME. My plan is to keep this short and sweet, because if I go into anything long-winded it will just turn into a depressing saga of Why I am Unhappy in So Many Areas Right Now and let's face it, no one wants to read about that.  


First: I realized recently that I'm a listener, not a talker. I was surprised by that, because I've always thought of myself as a talker. But lately I've become aware that I'm much more content to just listen to what people have to say, silently taking it all in, making mental notes, and then psycho-therapeuting (yes, it's a word. I just added it to my dictionary, so there) them later on in my own head. The only times it really actually bothers me are times when I really do have things I need to talk about or advice I need, and somehow I end up listening instead of talking. How do you walk the fine line of being a good listener and becoming emotionally constipated?


Time. It's funny how often I've been thinking about time. Multiple times a day I've been reminded that we aren't guaranteed tomorrow, or even the rest of today. So why aren't I taking advantage of the time I have now? I don't know. What would you do if you knew tomorrow was your last day?


Rejection. It just plain sucks. That's the most honest way to put it. 


And last, I'm an introvert. I'm a pessimistic, sarcastic, introvert. And I'm perfectly ok with that....


...For now.


(Ok, now that that's over, go do something uplifting because this definitely was not.)