Tuesday, October 28, 2014

...all part of the process.

Yep, it has been a while yet again. This time was a more purposeful break. I don't want to come across as targeting people or complaining, but just to express my thoughts, feelings, and processes and how to get to other side better than I was before. I convinced myself to stop blogging, because it seemed to hard to hear people's responses at that time. I was struggling with trying to be my….well there is more on that below…it is all part of the process.

I am so blessed by the friendships in my life. God uses them so much to encourage me and to help me keep going forward. I am officially divorced and I just moved out on my own with my kiddos in my own apartment. Wonderful yet terrifying all at the same time.

The last month has been a roller coaster of emotions of all sorts. I have left relationships, cut off relationships, developed new ones, gone deeper with previous relationships, and been encouraged and completely hurt by relationships all at the same time. I am grateful that I got the courage up to go see a therapist, a 'non-christian' one too. I wanted to get an outside perspective and someone that I could tell everything going on inside my little overflowing brain and my broken heart. It has been an incredible journey. I know and can feel myself getting stronger and learning to trust myself or rather God in me, instead of second guessing myself or trying to please everyone. Although difficult, I am loving who I am becoming and where I am at right now. I am making tons of mistakes and falling short every day, but I am so ok with that, because in it all I am learning the depth of God's incredible unconditional, full of grace love for me. It is unreal. I am learning to hear God for myself instead of through others. I am learning that if I make mistake, I am responsible for the outcome and I can't blame anyone else for it. I am learning that sin is just stuff. That is all. STUFF! We can put so much stock into sin and it is just something God uses to get us closer Him, if we let it. I feel like a 'grown up' for the first time in my life and it is the most odd, freeing, empowering, crazy feeling. This is my life, the life God gave to ME! I want to live it to the fullest and and enjoy every single moment of it.

My business is up and growing and I will get my first paycheck this month. I am celebrating :) Now I just need to keep moving forward and do the very best that I can to make improvements and grow. I have 3, with the potential of 6 (one of which will have several under him as well) doctors who I am billing for. It is crazy how I feel like this has been literally handed to me. I have had so many people be so willing to help me with each process. I am grateful. I get so nervous about how I am going to support my kids and all that, but I keep standing on the fact that God has given this to me and He will provide every step of the way, so there I said it out loud God :). He is truly is good.

I feel like now that I have finally just let go of the trying so hard to be the perfect Jamie i.e. the perfect wife, the perfect mom, the perfect friend, the perfect sister, the perfect daughter, the perfect employee, the perfect christian (exhausting, I know) and life has felt like it has crumbled all around me, but I honestly feel like my life has become real. Life has value. Life is beautiful. I know who the 'real' people in my life are. I know who God really is in me. I don't fear like I used to. I am ok if you don't like me or disagree with me. It is my life. I get to live it.

Btw, my kids are also doing well. They definitely have their moments and things are hard for them as well, but I try to be as open and honest as I can with them about everything they feel they need to know (within reason). I am amazed at the questions they ask, the responses they give, and they way they are processing. I was so afraid because of what some said, so my only option was to be real with them and give them to God and I know that He is in work in each of their hearts. I have amazing kids.

Relief, joy, gladness, sadness, anger, anxiety, doubt, confusion, amazement, exhaustion, beauty, confidence, insecurity, HOPE, forgiveness, realness, rawness, honesty, trust, heartbreak, grief…these are just some of the emotions that have hit hard in the past month.

...it is all part of the process. Might as well enjoy it. :)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Be Brave...

Somedays I wonder if I should continue to write down this process for others to see, because some just don't like it. Others don't allow people to process, they want the end result right now and if it isn't exact, it is being done incorrectly. I am such a people person. I love people, I love relationships. I love the ups and downs, the wonderfulness and the difficulty of relationships. I have also began to love just having space too, which is rare for me. I find that just being alone makes me feel safe and ok to just be me. It is difficult during hard times to not let people get under your skin or allow people to drown you in their opinions or where they think you should be. I understand people mean well, but sometimes I feel we just need to let people be and just love them through their process.

My reason for wanting to be brave and write out loud is because there isn't much resource out there that for Christians who have gone through divorce. There are plenty of resources for bashing the ex, which I don't want to do either. I hope to be a resource of fresh air and life giving for whomever needs it, even if it just to get it out from inside of me, that is good.

It has been 7 months since our separation began. It doesn't seem like 7 months. It feels like just a couple. The time flies by, but the individual days at times seems so long. The divorce will be final on September 25th. I think that day will be a very odd day that seems a little bittersweet.

I have begun seeing a 'secular' counselor which I feel is a really good thing as I can get a different perspective and they are completely removed from my relationships. I have gone 3 times and it has been very beneficial. One thing she said to me this week, that has stuck and that I am still grappling with, it if I were stripped of every relationship I had, would I still feel like I am worth something. I'm not entirely sure. I want to get to that point and honestly am not entirely sure how to get there yet either.   All part of the process. I am so grateful not to have to do life alone though and wouldn't ever want to. I know some the worlds greatest people and I often wonder how I got so lucky. But I agree with my counselor, that I need to think I'm valuable regardless of the relationships in my life.

My emotional breakdowns are happening a little less now. I have days where I don't cry, but I don't feel like doing anything, that is frustrating. One day I am happy about where I am and the next not so much.
The past couple of weeks have been sort of unemotional actually. More numb feeling than anything. I am not quite sure how to explain it.

I did make a decision to plan out a bunch of fun things to do with my kiddos this month before school starts, to help me get to a point of motivation, We hiked last weekend to Cecret Lake and saw the wildflowers, it was beautiful and wonderful to get out of the city. We are going to go horseback riding next weekend and then come home and have a picnic on the living room floor and play games. We also got tickets to the Timpanogos Story Telling festival. We are going on Friday night to the bedtime stories session. We all dress in our pajamas and get to eat donuts and listen to storytellers. I am super excited about that one :) This has all gotten me excited and helps a lot with where I am at in the process.

Friday, July 18, 2014

A jumbled mess of new thoughts

I have so many different thoughts in my head right now and I am just going to write them all down and leave them here. Something that I am learning is that any marriage can get through what looks like an impossible situation, but the key is that not just one person, but both people have to be completely committed to each other no matter what, to work through it. To do whatever it takes. You are only responsible for you. For your actions, your choices, and what you put in to any relationship, you can't make any one do something or change something. This divorce has been so incredibly challenging and the reality is that even though this is the farthest thing from what my desires were, I still have desires, I still have value, I have still have worth, God still has a beautiful plan for my life, he still has a beautiful plan for my kids' life, and my ex-husbands life. Because He is just good that way. He is a pro at redemption and showing off and loving us in the darkest of times.

I had a conversation last night with some of my girlfriends about how sometimes when we begin to find ourselves as human beings and even more as one of God's kids, we start to believe in the amazingness of who we are and what we have to give and offer back to God, to those around us, and to the world. It can look, to some, like a snobby kind of confidence, but it is the complete opposite. It is that through us standing up and speaking out and being exactly who God created us to be, we bring Him the ultimate glory, because we are created by Him to do what He asks of us to do.

One of my absolute favorite quotes is this:

It is absolute truth! So no matter what you are going through, no matter how raw you feel and empty and lonely the situation is, you are beautiful, worthy, made to be exactly who you were created to be and the hard situations and bad choices and wrong paths aren't what defines you.

These thoughts are rocking my world right now and taking me to higher and deeper places. I would be lying if I said I felt great and everything was doing better and I wasn't angry with God. All of those feelings are still a part of where I am at, but I am working on getting to the truth of the matter and pushing aside all of the myths. The truth sets us free!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The process.

Each day feels like it moves so slowly, but when I think of the time that has gone by, it has gone quickly. Some days I don't want to get out of bed. I am so grateful I have my wonderful kiddos that give me a reason to get out of bed and get moving. I am finding a bit more energy to get organized and have things move a little more smoothly. I think when I go through hard times, you can tell in my home. Things aren't very clean and organized the way I wish they would be. I would rather not be home to look at it either.

This next week, my kids are leaving for the first time away from me for a whole week. I have gone without them before, but as a married person. I keep trying to think of the things I will do while they are gone. This is just another reason I am so grateful I live with people and not alone. Granted I want to get to that point where I can live on my own, but for now I just need to be.

I have amazing people in life that I am incredibly grateful for and who mean well, but say things that just get me at times. I am a very emotional person who feels alot. Actually I feel everything and very deeply. I have heard everything from, want to smoke a joint, to lets go get drunk, to just turn on the tv and don't think about anything. Don't get me wrong, I have thought all of those things myself and have contemplated every one. But because I feel so much and because I believe God allows us to feel pain, there has to be a reason for it. So I am determined to face this and feel it in every area I have to feel it. Please, remind me of this when I am having breakdown. I don't want any of this to sneak up and bite me in the butt later in life. I want to know that I faced this and walked through it and laid it at the feet of Jesus and grew from it. It sounds so easy when I am typing it. It isn't. I think the hardest part for me is that I don't feel like I can help my kids much right now, even though I want to. I don't have answers, I don't know what to say, and if I did know what to say I would probably just be a basket case. I am tense all of the time and on edge with them. They have a watched a lot of tv lately, which I hate. I don't want them to process with tv either. I just have to trust that they will walk this out with God and hopefully I will be an example somehow of facing things and moving forward. We say a lot in our home that 'you can do hard things'. I don't want to remove a mountain from my child's path, but I want to teach them and help them climb it. That is easier said than done at times too. All a work in progress.

I bought a new car this week. First time I have ever bought a car from a dealership. I was raised to never do that. I did it. I have a bit of buyer's remorse because I have never paid more than $7,000 for a car in my life and I have had a lot of cars. I am also grateful though that I have a car that won't break down and that will be a good car for a while.

My business is moving really slow still. There are a lot of stand still moments where I just have to wait on other people and can't really move forward. It is frustrating at times, but again I am grateful that it isn't super crazy and stressful.

I have been angry at God. I don't want to talk to Him nor do I want Him to talk to me. It has been a while since I have. I guess I don't want to know what is next. I guess I didn't want it to hurt so much. I guess I don't know if I want Him to say 'He loves me', like He always does because I feel ashamed of where I am at in life right now. I know that He meets us where we are and I know He is so good, but I am frustrated and mad at the moment.

I am going to attempt to update weekly. We will see, especially because I said it hahaha! Hope today is a beautiful day for you!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Starting Over...

It has been a few years since I have written a blog post. I love to journal and write, but I find it difficult to find the time amongst everything else that is always going on. It is a great joy and great relief to write though and since I once again am going through another season of transition, I am hoping that this will help the process. Not to mention sharing our own struggles and successes with each other is real and hopefully brings hope and encouragement to each other. Life is full of dramatic changes, transitions, failures, successes, joy, happiness, tears and sorrow. I want to be great at living a life of gratefulness and simplicity in the midst of it all.

Although it has been such a long while, my transparency in life has not changed and I am still a pretty open book. So I will start by saying that I am walking through something I never thought would be possible in my life. I am going through a divorce. It grieves me to just say that. I don't want anyone to follow in my foot steps and I feel that I have just wanted to isolate and seclude myself from the world so that there wouldn't be anyone who would want to 'be like me'. I have never experienced grief the way I have during this process. I thought I was ok at first and then one morning woke up with incredible amount of pain in my gut and an emptiness that I can't explain. I didn't want to get out of bed and I felt like I couldn't breath. I have heard people say that the best way to get through hard things is to press into the pain. I believe that as well, but when this happened, I wasn't sure what that looked like and what it meant. God allows us to feel pain, so I believe there is a reason for it. So instead of numbing it, I have been determined to feel every single bit of it and to allow myself to experience all the different emotions that come with it as well. Feels a little awkward when you are grocery shopping and bawling your eyes down each isle, but I just don't care at the moment. I want to get it all out now. America doesn't do grief very well.

I am now a single mom with three beautiful little creatures that I still love and adore. I am starting over. I currently live in some very dear friends' basement and yes we are squished, but I feel very fortunate at this time to be here. I have started my own insurance billing business from home, that I didn't think would be as hard as it is, but it is taking forever. There has been a lot of favor along the way though and I am grateful. I ran my very first 5K in May, which has been something on my dream list for 3 years now. And last, but not least, we were building a home, that has obviously come to a halt and even if it didn't, we recently found out that our 2.5 acres of beauty, is unbuildable for a home. Oh the crazy lives we live.

So now what? Now, I am going to try to take it one day at a time. I am going to rediscover me and the things I love and cherish and I am going to start dreaming again. I want to face this pain and healing and get everything I can possibly get from it. I want to be the best mom I can be and I want to work really hard to be there and help my children walk through this process of transition that they got the short end of the stick in.

There is an update on my life. I will be try and update on individual things as I go. Just to warn you, this will be messy, this will be raw, but this is real life.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Gratefulness and Rest

I went on a little much needed retreat over this past week. I have amazing friends and family who let me use their home to stay in and who took my kiddos for the 2 days, it was such a blessing. I feel like God has been trying to talk to me and I have been running, not sure why, but a reality struck me about a week ago, that I am addicted to busyness. Yikes! It's true. Although I would tell you that I hate being so busy, I create the busyness by feeling the need to be everywhere all the time doing everything, so I don't have to 'deal with' my stuff. I decided to make myself take 2 full days and retreat. I was dealing with some fear at first...what if God doesn't meet there or gives me the silent treatment or something. Or even worse what if He tells me is something I don't want to hear.

My first day I got all my stuff situated in the room, made sure I had some snacks and water, made sure my bags were in their right spot, made sure my toothbrush was on the bathroom sink, made sure there was toilet paper in the bathroom, made sure my pen was working, made sure that there were enough kleenex in the room and turned on some live IHOP webstream...and...started pacing the floor. Oh my goodness, sit down and shut your brain off, Jamie, I screamed and thus began the 'getting it all out' portion of my retreat. I yelled a whole lot of other stuff too, too R rated to blog about. I am so glad He can handle all that and He just listened. I cried and yelled and cried and yelled some more. It felt amazing. Then I fell asleep.

When I woke about an hour later, I felt completely different, the fear junk was not bugging me and I was able to just sit and read (still not in a listening place yet). I read more than I have read in years in one night. It was good stuff too! My eyes hurt when I went to bed. I slept so good and I had 3 dreams, yes 3. It was incredible. I woke up and wrote them all down.

I decided to go get some coffee so I could stay awake. There was a park with a field that was beautiful and calling my name, so I went straight to the middle of it and laid a blanket down and laid for 2 hours. It felt so amazing to just sit there with the sun on my face, there was a breeze blowing and I felt surrounded by the mountains. It was wonderful. I had an agenda to sit there and journal, but God started talking and I decided to just listen (finally). WOW! I kept thinking I should get up and write all this down, but I couldn't. He just kept talking and talking, it was beautiful, and it was just enough. He told me about how much He loves me and then told me about the dreams I had, and how much He loves me, then He told me about stuff in my marriage and about being a mom and how much He loves me, I am crying writing this because even though there was so much and it was so incredible it was so simple and easy. He met me right where I was. He is so good. He is faithful. That was my most favorite moment of the 2 days.

I went back to the house and read some more. I also felt compelled to read Song of Solomon in The Message Bible...Holy cow! :) Just read it. God is SO in love with us (His people, His church, You, Me). I thought it would be a great book for George and I to study together ;) hee hee hee.

I have been on this journey about finding 'me' for some time now and finally realize there really is no end point to it, we will discover more and more about ourselves as we grow and live in God, because there is so much to Him there is so much to us. I have said many times, I am so afraid to lose myself in the midst of being a mom and wife and that I need to keep up with 'me'. This is such a lie. If I am in God and He in me, then I am not going to 'lose myself'. We go through different seasons in life and I am in the season of being mom and wife. During this season I need to lay stuff in my 'self' down so that I can pour into my 3 blessings. This has been such a struggle for me, knowing how selfish I am and needing to stop being so selfish, but trying to hold on to keeping all my desires and dreams on the forefront. Not that I have to give those up, but they need to be laid down for a season or my kids will be shoved to the side for me to pursue them. The time with my kids is so so short. I want to not have any regrets about lost time with them when they are grown, so I am making a choice to give my family my all in this season and I absolutely believe that God will put more life to my desires and dreams in the end and I will have no regrets. That sounds like a win win to me :) This was a rather lengthy discussion I had with God too during these 2 days. It was good.

I also read through most of the prophetic words and words of encouragement I have received over the past while and that was very cool, several of them I read with such a new clearer perspective and had so much more understanding. I asked some of my closest friends a while back to write 5 things they liked about me. I decided to this because I had such a hard time seeing much good in me at the time. I read those too and I realized I have allowed so much ungratefulness and resentment to come in to my life, which is a large reason for the busyness. So many of the things people said was that I had so much joy, I kept wondering where it had gone. It didn't go anywhere, just needed to let go of some junk. It was so encouraging to read those and actually believe some of it now. I love seeing growth through tough long processes.

I ended up having to leave earlier then I planned to pick up my kids, but I think it was just enough time. I feel so refreshed and that I have purpose to focus on each day. I think I need to do this every few months to be honest. Maybe I wouldn't be so moody and ornery all the time...lol. Happy me, Happy wife, Happy mom, Happy home :).

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

December 2009

This an article I was writing for magazine that my sister was going to start, but ended up not doing it. I read it today was encouraged by what it said :) So I figured I would share it. It is an unfinished work, but I still iked it. I love reading things I wrote in the past, I can see wisdom and growth that I didn't see then that I had or see growth through a process. I am learning to really enjoy myself lately and although it takes great strength some days, if I don't enjoy myself then I won't enjoy anything. OK, now I am blabbing on...enjoy.

My name is Jamie and I would like to tell you a little about me and give you a glimpse about the things that you will get out of reading my articles. I am in the midst of learning who who I am, which I am sure I will continue to learn the rest of my life. It is an exciting adventure full of ups and downs and all a rounds. So my utmost goal is to be me and make you laugh hysterically, cry continually, and snort a bit too. I hope you finish reading and feel completely encouraged that life has so much in it and how God wants you to enjoy the simplicity of life. I totally believe that there is no pad answer to your life and how to be a wife, a mom, a daughter, or anyone. The only real answer is to look inside of you and discover who God is in you and go for it.

A really hard part of the process that God has me in is that during the breaking down of who I thought I was, was the not so pretty in between person hanging around for a while that would be mean to everyone and want to just be left alone day after day. It was difficult with my 3 kiddos that wanted my full attention or made messes everywhere or wanted to go out in public and play with their friends. I felt like everyday I was apologizing to them and asking for forgiveness for the way I screamed at them or the way I laid in my bed half the day. One day after they were all tucked in and asleep I sat in the bathtub crying my eyes out for the way I had been acting for so long and asking God if there was an easier way. I heard Him say to me, Jamie, just be YOU, just be real, just be YOU!

A friend of mine a few weeks prior to this moment has something that was very profound to me, he said that we need to learn how to function in our brokenness because that is when God shines through. When we are truly week He is strong. It isn't when I'm weak I hide and sulk, it is when I step out more and function in exactly that...the strength of God! Wow, that hit me hard. So this time in the bath was one of those moments of God showing me how when I am not being a very nice mom, that if I'm just honest and learn to function that my kids will see God in all His strength in me. How incredible is that?

One thing that I have really worked on with my kids is talking to them on a regular basis and explaining to them that the craziness that is going on with mommy is not at all their fault and that God is taking me through a process that has good days and hard days and that in the end it will be wonderful.

As I sit here in McDonald's writing this article while my kids play and my daughter argues with one of the little boys playing here, about how God is real. I am thinking about something I read recently that I could totally relate to. When a caterpillar begins to get ready to go into the phase of its life where it goes into its cocoon, it begins to eat and eat and eat so that it can be strong enough to live through the cocoon process. Once the caterpillar builds its cocoon around it and begins to change into a butterfly it then 'looks' like it is ready to emerge from its cocoon, but it isn't. It takes time for the butterfly to develop strength in its wings to carry itself and fly away. So as the butterfly struggles to get out of the cocoon, it pushes juices to flow into the wings of the butterfly to strengthen its wings so that when the time comes for it to be free, it goes for it and flies away. If someone where to cut a cocoon open too early, the butterfly would fall on the ground and not fly. The process has to be completed in order for it to function the way God intended it to. This reminds me of the kinds processes that God has taken me through. As I begin to grow in a process I feel trapped and want to get out of it as fast as I can. I am the type that digs around in my pocket to to find a pocketknife to cut the cocoon right open. Then what happens, I fall flat on my face trying to pick up all my pieces and put me back together. Instead of enjoying the process and allowing even the struggles to strengthen me and allowing God to do it and be in control, I somehow think I can do a better job. I loved this.