Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Emotional Housekeeping

My brain has been jello and can't seem to hold a solid thought. Which I do find a bit odd since I can't stand jello, or pudding, or anything slimy...have I mentioned that before? I think I have but again, my brain is like jello.

I have been meaning to mention for quite a long time now that I still have every intention of starting my other blog. Some of you may have noticed that I got the basics down but I haven't gone any further. Something isn't quite right with it yet. I am not sure how it's going to change but I feel like it's not ready for me to get into or maybe I'm not ready. I started a big intro post, which I like, but I think I don't see the whole of it, the full purpose, and how this will be a massive change from my typical blog life.

Currently, I am not happy with the title. I did a brain storm based on what I thought it was going to be about, and came up with a list of name possibilities. Branden and I both really like "Golden Rule Nights" and checked to make sure it was available, saw it was free, so I nabbed it that night. I'm just feeling like that's just not it. It's not just my night volunteering, especially since I've had lots to keep me from it lately, but I think it's more of just...me. This is weird though because that leaves things very open and vulnerable to just have a blog on my heart and my thoughts. Laughter is always my way of dealing with things and practically my way of life, so being serious is so uncomfortable. I do have serious conversations with people, but I always have to make them laugh at some point, as if to make sure that they have a pulse of joy in them.

I think I get this from my Granny, who is also the one I'm named after. Nothing ever gets that woman down. She's been widowed since I was about 6, has had cancer 5 different times, and made the most of her widowed years travelling the world with her other widow friends. She didn't have an easy life, and I've found out more and more as I have grown older how tough she has had it, but you wouldn't have a clue of it. This can drive some of the family nuts as they just wish she'd take things seriously and not make jokes about going in for chemo and radiation again, but I think she wouldn't be able to handle it if she didn't take it the light hearted way she does. I'm that way too. If I have a serious issue and become completely sombre and serious about it, I will go absolutely nuts and put myself into depression in a snap. I have to find the light side of things and I have to make people laugh about it. Laughing is better than crying.

So anyway, this new blog is a stretch and I don't know when I'll be ready for it but I know it's coming and I'll get it sorted as I know more. I'm such a people pleaser, and I know not everyone would be pleased by my heart, my thoughts, and ultimately my relationship with God. I don't understand why it has to be so controversial because it's my personal relationship and not something I would try to put on someone, but there's just something about the word "God" now days that gets everyone's hackles up. That's another reason why I'm keeping the two blogs separate, so if you don't want to read my heart and just want my humor then you can keep to the one site and don't have to have your hackles in a twitch if I happen to mention the biggest part of my life, which just so happens to be God.

This gets me to another thing. I finally read Elisa's book The Golden Sky. (For those of you who know nothing about her book, click on the title and read a bit about it before continuing here. It will make a lot more sense if you do.) When it first came out, I was sad that we couldn't afford to buy it at the time since money was so tight that food was even a concern. But last month, Branden had extra hours and we got Christmas money so when I saw that I could get it on the Kindle for $2.99, I jumped on it! Oddly though, I couldn't bring myself to read it for a while. I knew what it was about, I knew that Elisa had healed so much since then, but it was like I couldn't bear to read it and feel her pain, as if it would make her actually go through it all again. I know this is silly, but it was a struggle since I have really enjoyed getting to know Elisa over these past months and seeing her wonderful, optimistic spirit. I didn't want to see her hurt.

Finally, a few days ago, I started it. It took me in right away, and I found myself completely engrossed in it. I knew Zeke didn't make it, but I still kept finding myself rooting for him to survive, like maybe this time the story would change. Maybe it would be different and she wouldn't have to go through all the pain I knew she has gone through. Again, I know it's crazy but I've never read a book written by someone I know. There were times where I would be interrupted from my reading and realize that I had a constant stream of tears just pouring off of my cheeks. Then there was last night, when I couldn't sleep so I was up till almost 3am, trying not to laugh and wake Branden up because of her skunk story. It was an eye opener and a heart wrenching look at myself.

Sure, our situation over here in Ireland has not been easy and we've had lots of people tell us that there's no way they could do it and they have no idea how we have managed, but it all seems so petty in relation to losing a child, and then even losing a spouse for a while. I always think how lucky Branden and I are to love each other so much and think 'how well' we've handled struggles so far, so we must be able to take on anything. But it can change in such an instant. Yes, there can be restoration in some cases, but sometimes there's not.

I had a dream last night that was like watching a show of my life. Happily married to my dark, curly haired dream man, and then all of a sudden, I leave the room, come back, and find that he is gone and there is a blonde haired oaf there instead, acting as if he's always been there. It was like Branden was never there, even though I knew he had been there and I knew that I wanted him back, but for some reason I had to play wife to the blonde oaf as if Branden had never been there. It crushed me and I hated pretending to be happy, and I woke up in desperate hopes to see my brown, curly haired dream man, but remembered that he was already gone to class.

I know this isn't the point of the book at all but I did get scared of losing Branden. We have an entire lifetime of big scary things happening to us and one of those times may take one of us. It's a hard thought and I can't think about it without crying, but life is fragile and does as it needs to do, whether we understand why or not. I know hardships make us better and make us learn important things, but I like being a simple, ignorant girl, who's madly in love with her husband and nothing can make her see otherwise. Elisa came out of her hardships, and look at her life now. She is one of the most beautiful people you will ever come to know and she has such a beautiful family. I'm so glad to have read her book, even if it was hard, but I got to see how important it is to not waste a moment with the ones you love. You just don't know when God will need them back.

Tomorrow, things will be back to the typical Padded Cell style, and you will even get to read the writing left on the wall from a crazy regular...Fishducky! She won the competition last week as to what to change my Merry Christmas garland to so I will post her hilarious story tomorrow!


  1. You are sooooo sweet! I wish I would have known you wanted the book, I would have sent you a copy.

    Thank you for reading it. This is such a blessing to me to know you read Zeke's story. It means so much.

    After Zeke died, I was so scared to lose my other kids or Cade again. But somehow peace has come. It's nice knowing that I'll never lose God.

  2. You posted my thoughts and feelings EXACTLY, concerning The Golden Sky. I think that's why I'm having a hard time writing a review for it, because it's so deeply emotional, and I know the person who went through all that pain, and just the reading of it is transformative!
    Thanks for a thought-provoking post.

  3. You know, i was thinking (I think just yesterday) that maybe the point of going through hard times is to bring us closer to God.

    Maybe, that's an obvious one to some people, but it was news to me.

    It's comforting to know there might be a reason behind every heartache.

  4. Dear Maggie--Someone (much wiser than I) once said, "Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans." Elisa rolled with the punches & so must we all. You'll do fine as long as you keep believing that "laughing is better than crying"!!!

  5. What a great post! Your Gram sounds amazing. :) I can barely get through some of Elisabeth's posts much less her book about her sweet little man. Not quite ready for that.

  6. I think I'm going to read that book... Sometimes I start to think how close we can be to losing loved ones and I start to freak out. I have to remind myself constantly that God is in control of Everything, we are all in His hands whether we believe it or not.

    Do you know Christina Ahman? She is about your age, an IBC kid. She just married Doug Neville a few months ago... Anyway, she's had really agressive brain tumors the last few years, and she just wrote a book. Actually I think one of her friends wrote a book about her. I've really been wanting to read it.

  7. Elisa, I knew you would have given me a copy in a heartbeat but I wanted to make sure that I bought a book so that I could support you and those who's families have been affected by losing a child.

    Thank you for publishing the book. It's reached into so many places of my heart and it's going to take a while to sift through it all. If I didn't have God, I don't know how I'd manage anything and if I didn't truly believe in his plan, than I don't know where I'd be right now. The fact that he is the ever constant in life is such a comfort and I think I needed the reminder of that.

    Rachel, I'm glad I'm not the only one with this tangle of emotions after reading the book. It's such a fantastic book and I think that is displayed in the fact that I do have such an emotional response to it.

    Dreamer, I truly believe that with everything in me. Sadly there are times though where I let the fear cover it which I think is the purpose of fear. It tries everything to create doubt and hopelessness and we all succumb to sometimes. If everything worked out perfectly all the time and nothing bad happened, then we wouldn't learn as deeply and I don't think there would be much of a purpose for God. I'm glad you are learning thing so quickly. I find your journey so inspiring...and I must admit that I went back and read every single post of your a couple of months ago :)

    Fishducky, I always liked, "If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans!". That is practically the story of my life! Branden and my plans have changed so many times and sometimes it was scary but it was always better than we imagined (imagine that! God knew better! lol)

    Vixen, Granny is wonderful and I've never met anyone like her. I'm so lucky to have her in my gene pool! You definitely need to ready yourself for Elisa's book although it is so so so worth it!

    Anneka, It's a wonderful book and I think you'd love it! I think I struggle the most with thinking that by giving our loved ones over to God means that he'll just take them away. I know it's silly but it can be a struggle...human nature is such frustrating thing!
    Yes I know Christina and I didn't know there was a book out about her! I would love to read her story because I know some of it and it's absolutely incredible! I'm so glad she got married and Doug is a great man of God. Let me know if you find it and I'll get my mom to send me a copy! Thanks for telling me about it!

  8. Elisa is one of the best all around people I have ever met! I don't know what I'd do without her.

  9. I started Elisa's book. I read 50 straight pages before I had to put it down. I am taking her book a few pages at a time. I get too emotionally invested in other people's lives that I have to watch what I do. So, with every page I pass, I count it a blessing that I am able to know Elisa and share with her in her journey.

  10. These things take time. I know you're not a patient person (you said it in that other post, I'm just repeating it, please don't hit me) sometimes, but it'll come to you. As far as Elisa's book, I almost threw a copy in when I sent the laptop, but I only had the one personalized one. The one I bought on release date hadn't arrived yet. DARN!


Does this straitjacket make my butt look big?