Saturday, January 23, 2016

The ghost of Christmas past

I have lost track of the number of times I have written and deleted this post in the last few weeks. Why? Simply because I am exhausted and still recovering from "the most wonderful time of the year." When I am so tired I tend to be short,blunt, to the point and unkind. I am trying to be better about recognizing this because that is not who I am or who I want to be! This year seemed particularly brutal. The fatigue and fog brain was so bad it brought back the unrelenting nausea of days gone by. I don't know about you, but when I feel like this, I get annoyed that it is expected that I just go on when I feel so incapable of it.  But, as always, Grace wins (even when I'm not feeling so gracious). If I were honest, I'd probably recognize that I had not fully recovered from the crazy summer/massive shop building process. Then Thanksgiving, deer hunting season (it's a big deal in hubby world), and Christmas were all the greeting me with their own large dose of busy, insanity. And, of course, with weather more like spring it just didn't feel like Christmas, for this snow loving girl! The only redeeming thing is that I get to watch silly, cheesy, happy Christmas movies on TV instead of trying to read and tune out the usual Alaska survival, logging, and cop shows that hubby prefers. For the 25 days of Christmas, the TV remote is mine! *evil laugh* (I'm not really much of a TV gal anyway so I cope with earplugs and a book for the rest of the year!) Usually, it "all feels worth it" after it's over but this year is taking a bit longer to feel that way!The best medicine was visiting a dear friend yesterday and laughing like I haven't in a long time.  I had such a good time that I forgot how to get home and ended up in neighboring, Massachusetts. Thankfully, I was able to call Super Hubs and he calmed me down and got me home! At that point, I was beyond the ability to follow a GPS.  Upon arriving home I even discovered he had assembled the pizza ingredients I had left out so I didn't even have to struggle with dinner. He is pretty used to this sort of thing from me by now. Once (like a year or so after my aneurysm), a college friend and I were traveling to meet other college friends in Long Island. I was "navigating" aka: reading the directions we had printed out to her the best I could, as she drove. That trip I called Hubs and told him we were in NJ. He saved us that day too!

In all of my fog/exhaustion this season, I did have one small revelation that had nothing at all to do with Christmas.  It reminded me how hard I have always been on myself. There was a conversation on Facebook started by a fellow education major talking about how a professor had told her she didn't have what it took for teaching but how she loved it and it was her dream so she pursued it anyway. It has a happy ending too,she is now a teacher and still loves it. But, a few other Education majors shared stories of being given the same advice by a supervising professor or teacher. They had been discouraged and decided to change their major.  But, this thought crossed my mind as a result of their stories; maybe I wasn't such an awful teacher, like I had convinced myself, after all. Of course, I dug out my old teaching portfolio and read all the notes parents and teachers had written me. I even kept a copy of their recommendations of me and made peace with what I sometimes refuse to believe about myself. Maybe I was actually good at something. It reaffirmed for me that God used that major in ways I was not expecting at all. Maybe, not finding a teaching job wasn't about me at all. Maybe it spared a classroom full of children from witnessing my rupture, which doctors say, was likely not a pretty sight as the body responds to that kind of trauma.  Not having the responsibility of a classroom made it eventually "much easier to give up" And made recovery at that time a bit more simple without the inevitable responsibility I would feel for returning or making it "OK" for my students.  The daily struggle of life with a TBI is still very real but I could see how all things are working for good. Truly it is not and never has been, all about me! Although, I often carry it around like it is without even knowing it or meaning to!  IT IS WELL, despite the many times it sure doesn't feel that way.

Here is a link to one of my new favorite songs GRACE WINS by Matthew West

Grace Wins
By Matthew West

"In my weakest moment I see you
Shaking your head in disgrace
I can read the disappointment
Written all over your face

Here comes those whispers in my ear
Saying who do you think you are
Looks like you're on your own from here
Cause grace could never reach that far

But, in the shadow of that shame
Beat down by all the blame
I hear you call my name sayin' it's not over
And my heart starts to beat
So loud now, drowning out the doubt
I'm down but I'm not out

There's a war between guilt and grace
And they're fighting for a sacred space
But I'm living proof
Grace wins every time

No more lying down in death's defeat
Now I'm rising up in victory
Singing hallelujah
Grace wins every time

Words can't describe the way it feels
When mercy floods a thirsty soul
A broken side begins to heal
And grace returns what guilt has stole

And, in the shadow of that shame
Beat down by all the blame
I hear you call my name sayin it's not over
And my heart starts to beat
So loud now, drowning out the doubt
I'm down but I'm not out

There's a war between guilt and grace
And they're fighting for a sacred space
But I'm living proof
Grace wins every time

No more lying down in death's defeat
Now I'm rising up in victory
Singing hallelujah
Grace wins every time

For the prodigal son, grace wins
For the woman at the well, grace wins
For the blind man and the beggar, grace wins
For always and forever, grace wins
For the lost out on the street, grace wins
For the worst part of you and me, grace wins
For the thief on the cross, grace wins
For a world that is lost

There's a war between guilt and grace
And they're fighting for a sacred space
But I'm living proof
Grace wins every time

Yeah!
No more lying down in death's defeat
Now I'm rising up in victory
Singing hallelujah
Grace wins every time

Every time
Yeah, I'm living proof grace wins every time."

2 comments:

Gin G said...

Amen Lisa. You and Bill both inspire many of us. So glad to have met you by Grace.

Farmgirl said...

<3

You're very, very, good at keeping other people in your world on the right path. You're very, very, good at sharing light even when you feel like a grump. We're all very blessed to have you. Even on the "bad" days ;)