Friday Feels: April 2018

Friday Feels - the one place where I'm planning to keep the alliterative post titles. I can't help it, I just love this series too much to change it.

I don't know if it's the calm that settles in after I take the time to write one of these, or the fun of exploring myself and my feelings in such a random way - but whatever it is, I just had to keep this series going.

Things are still pretty crazy for me and the girls, and will likely only get crazier in the next few months as we end another school year, begin another summer, start Josephine's transition to high school, and hurtle toward the exciting unknown lying in wait behind our upcoming move. So it's not at all unexpected that I would be feeling lots of feels - including these:

1. Absorbed:
I've definitely been absorbed lately in solidifying my plans for the upcoming move. I've chosen a couple of places I think the girls and I would like, but since those places happen to be full at the moment, I've got us on waiting lists for openings. In the meantime, I've been making plans for how to use the move in my writing, thinking about what I want the new place to look and feel like, and obsessing over all the various things I need to figure out in order to make the process as seamless as possible for my little family.

2. Disappointed:
We all have them - the people we look up to and admire, the people we want to emulate, befriend, and impress. The ones who seem to have things together, who have good hearts, who can (and do) accomplish all the things we long to accomplish ourselves.

I have a solid number of those people in my life, people I think of as mentors, whether they realize it or not. Recently I had one of those people show an entirely new level of ugly, and while it made me sad for them and those impacted by their behavior, mostly it just disappointed me. This was a person I have thought highly of for a long time despite many different issues - and it hurts my spirit to have that mentorship so shattered, not only because I lost faith in that person but also because it intensified my doubt in my own ability to judge the characters of those I surround myself with.

3. Distrustful:
The same person and issue mentioned above comes to mind here too - not only because now I feel more certain than ever that this person cannot be trusted or counted on, but also because, as mentioned before, their behavior and treatment of others has made me distrust my own judgement even more.

This is a person I truly thought the best of even in the worst of times, believing in their heart and their desire to do good and see the best in others ... and now, if the recent ugliness revealed to be lying beneath the surface is what's really there and I never saw it ... well, now what?

At the very least, I've been praying earnestly for better discernment as I choose friends, mentors, and other influences in the future.

4. Fascinated:
The thing that has fascinated me most lately is the impending project of taking what will be an embarrassingly empty apartment and turning it into a comfortable home - chill enough for the girls to relax in after much too long of not being able to do so, and yet pretty and organized enough for me to love. I've been looking at color schemes, scouting decor options, daydreaming about art, and even planning crafty projects around the thought of creating my own home my own way for the first time.

In the past I've always had a mashup of hand-downs and things that were purchased and used not because they were wanted but because they were the right mix of necessary and affordable - I often didn't even like the things I found myself surrounded with, and it had a huge impact on me over the years. What I'm most looking forward to with moving is actually the emptiness of the new space, and the potential lying in that emptiness.

I am making a point this time not to accept or purchase things I don't want, instead choosing to save up for the things I think I'll love best while also finding budget solutions for certain necessities. This upcoming project is the singular thing I am most excited with in my life lately, and I have been spending every spare moment planning and brainstorming.

5. Fuming:
I don't know if this is really "fuming" or not, but I have been feeling a very decided sense of anger over the lack of compassion I'm seeing in the world lately. Particularly in certain parts of my personal circle, there is an assumption that if someone isn't whining or complaining all the time, it must be because they don't have anything going on, and are therefore available to be used as an emotional dumping ground - or a source for the suction of emotional vampirism.

Lately I've been really bothered by the way people don't think of each other. We don't assume that someone's acting out because they have something going on or because they're ... whatever. We assume instead that this person is a jerk, is dishonest, is a user, is ... whatever. Too often, we don't show up with open hearts or open minds, and we don't give each other nearly enough grace.

Then again, maybe my perspective on this is how I ended up with the kinds of people in my life who make me constantly doubt my character judgement. But I suppose that's fodder for another post.

6. Hopeful:
With so much uproar in my life lately, I've been wavering a lot between being full nearly to bursting with hope and positivity, and being completely overwhelmed with everything and totally devoid of hope.

But when I'm hopeful, I'm hopeful for good things to come from our move, good things to come financially and with my writing. Good partnerships with sponsors for the blog. Growth and healing for myself and my daughters ... and so much more.

7. Powerless:
A lot of things in my life right now are just kind of a waiting game, and while I'm doing what I can to move things along as quickly as possible, there's so much that's out of my hands. I've been doing a lot of planning, yes, and I am hopeful because I truly believe everything going on is going to work out for the best ... but for a girl living with chronic and often crippling anxiety, the waiting is extremely difficult and incredibly stressful.

And I can't change that. All I can do is keep giving my best to this life, to my family, to my loved ones, and hope that that's enough. In the meantime, I've been praying for change, for peace, for patience, for strength, for confidence - because feeling powerless absolutely sucks, but it's also a great exercise in trusting God to mean what He said in Jeremiah 29:11.

8. Respected:
I've talked a lot over the last year about relationships that have either taken a back burner in my life or ended entirely, and I've talked about the way that happened - partly a natural happenstance of the way individual people are always growing and changing, and sometimes they simply grow apart, and partly from the impact of my learning to love myself more and set stronger boundaries that require a certain level of respect from the people around me.

In some cases, these changes within myself have conflicted with the people around me, particularly people who have been in my life for long periods of time, and because I've allowed myself to be treated with certain levels of disregard for so long, I've lost or given up people who were once very important to me. I learned exactly how valuable I wasn't in the eyes of some of the people in my life, and while that was incredibly painful to go through, the empty places left by those people have since been filled with amazing people with huge hearts.

I've never felt so supported in my entire life as I feel now, by the people in my close daily circle of influence. From the friendship and encouragement of the PA in charge of helping me to promote and grow my writing, to the people who have stepped up to back me on Patreon, to the friends who care enough to check in on me if I go too long without contact, my personal community is richer now than it has ever been, and this is in large part due to the simple fact that these people appreciate and respect my contribution, not only to our individual relationships, but also to society and the world in general. Because of them, I feel not only respected but supported and valued. These people make my world keep spinning around, simply by being as awesome as they are.

9. Upset:
Honestly, there's not one specific thing to mention here, other than the overwhelm of all the other little things rolling together at the moment. I've definitely had more peaceful times in my life - and I have complete confidence that peaceful times will roll in again at some point - but right now my life is a storm and I'm just holding on until it passes.

In the meantime, I'm overwhelmed and exhausted. There's a lot of chaos, a lot up in the air, and I'm just doing the best I can to juggle it all.

Which means I often go to bed only to lay in the silence and stare at the ceiling. When I sleep, I often have nightmares. I wake up already in the midst of anxiety attacks. And yes, I'm upset.

10. Warm:
Spring is rolling in here in East Tennessee, and while I despise the onslaught of the tree and flower pollen that literally rains down on the valley during these months (seriously, you should see it all over my van), I do love watching everything come back to life after such a long, bitterly cold winter. The colors are beautiful and vibrant, the temperatures are exactly where I love them best, breezes are strong and frequent - and the perfect time for taking the girls to hang out at the local parks is on the way. The anticipation of sunny days and summer outings thrills me.

What have you been feeling lately - and why?

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