Sunday, January 15, 2012

Yeah, well, guess what!

My "dating" strategies are not God's strategies for me right now.


When am I going to learn to listen first and act second? Knowing myself the way I do, probably never!

I mentioned ( I think) in my last post about how God is working on me in several ways. He is calling me to live with a spirit of hope and peace, live without a spirit of fear, and to wait on Him.

The hope and peace I think I am doing okay long as I stay in the Word and in prayer.

The fear part is a little more difficult. I am realizing that fear has had a strong hold on me in many ways that I never thought of or understood. This fear that I have is hard for me to describe. It's not fear of death, because I've seen death. Death for a child of God is not to be feared. Death for a child of God is going home.

My fears are of success and failure. I know. That doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but it is what it is. I'm afraid of taking chances. What if I succeed? What if I fail? So, I tend to walk along, not taking chances, only going along with what I KNOW is a sure thing. I don't let myself dream big dreams, because they probably won't come true.

Oh yeah! Did I mention that I can be pessimistic? Being an optimist is something I have had to work at. It's not a new thing. It's been a part of my personality for as long as I can remember. As I've gotten older, I've become more of an optimist. It doesn't take as much work to look at the silver lining as it did when I was much younger. There are times though when Ms. Pessimistic shows herself and I have to shove her back in the closet with the other Ms's that don't need to be let out too often.

God is also teaching me more and more every day about waiting on Him. Y'all know I don't like waiting. I don't mean the kind of waiting in doctor's offices that I'm good at. I'm talking about the kind of waiting that involves patience. The kind of waiting that doesn't necessarily mean that you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The kind of waiting that means you have totally and completely submitted yourself to God's will AND timing.

Submitting myself to God's will isn't something that I have had a lot of trouble with...I don't think. He may think so though. Hmmm. I may need to look into that some more.

Submitting myself to God's timing IS something that I have trouble with. I want to help Him help me. I like to think that I have prayed about something and I am allowing God to lead me along in His time, but in reality I am acting on some thought I've had and asked God for help after the fact. Kind of like the prayers that happen on exam day in school. "God, please help me pass this exam...even though I didn't study." "God, please bless what I've already done, even though I didn't ask you about it first."

I have found that this disobedience from me happens when I become impatient and I'm tired of waiting on God's timing. It's a flesh thing with me. I want to be in control of something, so taking things into my own hands (even when I've already given it over to God) seems like a good idea...until it falls apart or God applies some pressure for me to undo what I've done.

Then I become the pouting, belligerent child. "But Dad..." So the Father works on me until I submit and stop misbehaving.

I have realized that there are times when the only action God calls me to is to be willing to do His will. I don't have to actually DO it. Ooo! That's a tough one for me. I'm a doer. I am working on trying to recognize the difference.

Sometimes it isn't difficult to know the difference between being willing to do and being led to do. I had the opportunity to have a conversation with Kacie the other night about just that. I was led to do something without any warning. It was the still, small voice that when It speaks, YOU KNOW WHO IT IS!

Oh how I wish that everything were that clear!

So, my interpretation of what God wanted from me about the whole dating thing was wrong. He wants me to be open and ready. He doesn't need my help though. I thought He needed my help. Nope. He doesn't. He's got it all under control. My "job" is to be ready and wait on His timing.

So, I'm taking a deep breath and trying to wait on Him!

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Winter Blahs

I guess that's what I'm suffering from. We've had several days, maybe even a week now without sunshine. As I'm sitting here writing this, the sun is finally beginning to come through the clouds. I can see bits of blue sky beginning to appear as well.

Since being diagnosed with depression and PTSD, I have had more trouble with dreary, cloudy rainy days than in my entire life. I love a good raging storm. I love watching storms. It's when the rain and clouds carry on for several days that gets to me. I didn't use to crave the sun, it's warmth, the feel of it on my face. Now I do.

That's just another part of me that has changed since Keith's death. I'm not quite sure what to do with it. I know that I can't let that need overpower me, although this week I haven't done a very good job at forcing myself through it. I've been tired, cranky, grumpy, moody, lazy...goodness! I sound like I have the Seven Dwarfs living with me!

I know that I shouldn't be too hard on myself.  The PTSD flare up last week has carried over into this week. I'm dealing with it, but as with any type of big emotional episodes, it wears me out. This one isn't any different, and the yucky weather has just added to it. I have been in touch with MLCs. They all tell me that the way I am feeling is perfectly normal and I just need to give myself some time. Of course, that's nothing new to hear. That's what they've been telling me for 2 1/2 years. Healing takes time. Heart wounds take a LONG time to heal.

I'm not patient. I don't want to hear that. I don't like hearing that. UGH! I really do believe that God is stretching me again. It seems that every day for the last several (I lost count!) something related to me being patient and WAITING on God has come to light. I don't know the reason for the stretching, but then, I'm not God so I don't have to know.

He is definitely wanting me to be still and wait on Him. I'm trying, but it is difficult. In talking with one of MLCs last night, he suggested that I begin praying for God to sustain me through this period of waiting and stretching. Praying for sustenance. Hmmm. I have always thought of sustenance as food, nourishment, provisions for the physical body. I guess I've never really thought of needing sustenance for other parts of my "body"...emotional, mental, spiritual.

I know that I have prayed for God to give me a sense of peace when life has been in turmoil. I have prayed for God to carry me through a day or an event. I haven't ever thought to "label" these prayers and others like them. When MLC suggested praying for God to sustain me, I realized that I have been praying like that for a very long time. I realized last night that I need to add another topic to my conversations with God.

So, that's what I'm doing. I'm praying for God to sustain me through this time of stretching and waiting.

I'm not patient. I have a feeling this is going to be difficult for me to get used to.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Hope, Peace, and Being Direct

I am not a person that makes New Year's resolutions. It's just too much pressure on me, and I have enough already. One thing I will do is to set a goal of some sort for myself.

I spend some time in prayer about whatever God lays on my heart. I usually am able to see where in my daily life this goal is needed. Then I decide if the goal is something I can truly achieve. I really don't like failing, so I try hard not to set myself up for it with unreasonable expectations.

The first New Year's Day after Keith's death my goal was to simply make it through the year without Keith. The second New Year's Day it was to make it through the year without Keith, with Nick on chemo, and still stay sane. This New Year's Day was #3. I began to sense God moving within my heart in a different way. I will be perfectly honest and admit that what I felt God was asking of me scared me. It still scares me.

This New Year's Day, I truly feel that God has set before me some specific tasks for the coming year. These tasks or goals are not easy for me. They all require a lot of faith and trust in God. The goals are not something that I can necessarily ask for help with, except for prayer.

The first goal is for me to live this year with a spirit of hope. Yes, that's right. I said hope. That four letter word sends shivers down my spine. Hope is not something that I come by easily. I think in many ways my sense of hope died with Keith. When I was holding his hand, waiting for God to move in a mighty way, in the mighty way that I wanted Him to, I fully expected that Keith would open his eyes and declare that God had fully healed him. When God did heal Keith, but in HIS perfect will not mine, I felt that a part of me died with Keith. It has taken the  2 1/2 years since that day for me to come to terms with God's perfect healing of Keith.

I know I usually seem like I have all the hope in the world. Most of the time I did and I do. In the quiet moments, when the grief and sadness would be at their greatest, my hope would wane. When Nick got sick enough that he needed chemo again, I felt my hope wane once again. I wondered how God could possibly allow us to go through the horrors of cancer AGAIN! I struggled with depression and trying to come to terms with THIS IS MY LIFE! THIS IS THE LIFE THAT GOD HAS GIVEN ME!!!! How could this be? How could God allow this to happen?

Notice I'm asking how and not why. The question of why has not been one I've been comfortable asking  God, primarily because the answer always seemed to be "WHY NOT YOU?" OUCH!
So I changed to how. Of course, if God answered me, I wasn't listening. He wasn't giving me the answer I wanted to hear.

Back to my goal of living with a spirit of hope...I'm not certain yet what exactly I'm supposed to do. I may not have to do anything, except just live with that spirit of hope. I got confirmation this morning in church that this is indeed something that God wants me to do. Pastor's sermon was about why we should look forward to 2012. Ok, I've already written in my private journal about needing to have this spirit of hope. I haven't spoken to anyone about it. Through Pastor's sermon, Scripture, and the choir songs, I KNOW that God expects me to live with a spirit of hope in this coming year.

This frightens me. It makes me wonder what is to come that will test my sense of hope. That leads me to the next task/goal God has set before me. He is also calling me to live with a spirit of peace. I have experienced the PEACE that passes ALL understanding. The peace that I feel God is calling me to is for me to be at peace with where HE has put me in my life's journey. Peace that I am right where He wants me to be, even though it's hard and it sucks. Peace that HE is WITH ME while I am in these stinky places. Peace that HE is WHO HE SAYS HE IS.

Once again, confirmation in today's sermon. God IS with me. HE will not leave me. His PEACE HE GIVES ME.

Sigh...ok God. I am listening. I hear You Lord. You want me to live with a spirit of hope and peace. SIGH...I don't have much choice here do I? No, I didn't think so. Oh, yes. Of course the Scriptures mention fear 365 times. That's one per day of the year. Hmmm. We are not called to live in a spirit of fear. That's what I've been doing? Really? I didn't realize. I'm sorry. Forgive me?

Living with a spirit of hope and of peace is very important for me. It's crucial for my mental, emotional, and physical well being. It's vital in my walk with Christ. If I let fear overtake my hope and my peace, I am letting Satan win.

I can not be afraid of what this year will hold, because God holds this year!'s blown my mind. I am trying though. Today provided all the confirmation I needed, not that I was really looking for any.

The last task is one of my own choosing. I have felt the need to be more direct and decisive. Since Keith's death, I have really struggled with making decisions and being direct with myself and others. Well, that's done. It's time for me to put on my big girl panties.

That is one reason I have decided to date when the right opportunity comes along. I have also opened my own business. It's something I've thought about doing for a long time, even before Keith died. I just never let myself live with a spirit of hope that it might just work! Note the tie in there...

So you see, God has really been working on me lately. I have accepted that I am still alive and God has work for me to do. I have realized that itch between my shoulder blades is from my wings trying to spread so that I can fly. I also really like the Kristy that I am becoming. I am realizing that life can be fun, even when it really isn't. I am finally understanding some of the things that Keith told me in what would become our final conversations.

That's about it for what is on my heart tonight.

In HIS Grip!


FYI: My business is KSB Designs. I specialize in custom sewing and embroidery. I also have opened an online store front @ It's still very early in the construction phase, but I am trying to add to it daily. Your prayers are greatly appreciated. This is a HUGE leap of faith!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

This is how it's going for now

Well...Kacie turned 12 on Tuesday. Wow! It is so hard to believe that my baby girl is 12! We're having her party this weekend. For the first time in her entire life, she had to go to school on her birthday. Kacie is looking forward to the party though.

It's been a long week this week, even though it's only a four day week. The kid's birthdays are still tough for me emotionally. The birthdays this go around have been easier to deal with, but still tough.

Added to that, a child was hit by a car on my street the other afternoon. I came upon the accident right after it happened. The child was injured and required emergency treatment, but his injures weren't life threatening. That is TRULY a miracle!

I stopped to help however I could. EMS wasn't even on the scene yet. Thankfully, I had a blanket that I keep in my SUV that I could cover the child with. It was right about 30 degrees, so it was cold.

I did not anticipate that my helping out at the scene would cause me problems with the PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). Well, it did. That night was rough on me. The following day was extremely rough. Thank God that I have good friends and good counselors who were willing to listen to me talk it through and get the toxins out.

I am much better today. It really helped me to find out from my counselors that my reactions and conflicting emotions to everything was completely in the realm of normal for someone who has helped at an accident scene. I don't know how the men and women that do these extraordinary jobs each and every day are able to process and separate the traumas. I am truly in awe of them. They are called by God to do what they do. It is not a job that just anyone can handle.

I've known this about many other areas of the medical profession just from the life that my family has led. Being on the scene of an accident and providing help, especially one involving a child, makes the list of things that I don't ever want to experience again.

Moving on...

I have decided to try dating. I know! I am gasping too! I never really believed that I would ever get to the point that I would even entertain the notion of anything that pertained to moving in that direction. I am going slowly, praying constantly, and I am scared!!! Most importantly is that I am ready and I KNOW that I am ready to take the chance. Only God knows what is to come, but I'm willing to step out of my comfort zone and try.

That's about all the news that I have for now.

It's been a busy week.