Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Tune-In-Tuesday: February 20, 2018

I started writing this post today during my lunch hour at work and while I’ll still post what I wrote then, I must start this introduction over. If you know me in “real life” or you’ve been reading this blog long enough, you know my natural tendency is to be a pessimist. But, I just got home from a yoga session and I am in such a more optimistic mood than I was earlier. Not that I was in a terrible mood at lunch, I was just more melancholy. My yoga class and particularly my yoga instructor certainly changed that. My instructor is such an encourager!! I am so blessed by her every time we get together. She told me tonight that I was her best client regarding doing my homework – ha! When I was in school, I loathed homework, but this is different. I finally figured out that if I’m going to get better at anything, I must put blood, sweat and tears into perfecting whatever I want to get better at. Thankfully (as of now) there has been no blood, but plenty of sweat and some tears. Why wouldn’t I do the homework she gives me? I want to get better at this and in turn get better at walking. I had a great session tonight and it (through God's grace) changed my mood. Yay!

(Now’s where I’ll post what I wrote at lunch):

This past week has been a mixed bag. I’ve felt frustrated, but I’ve also had some great moments. The struggles make us stronger, right?! I haven’t walked like I’ve wanted to or as well as I have been walking. But then again, I haven’t fallen. I haven’t done my yoga exercises, “perfectly”, but then again, I’m still able to do them. I am still able. I must keep reminding myself of that. Even when it’s hard, I’m still able to do things without a walker or cane. It may be a little awkward or scary, but I’m still able. (Can you tell I’m giving myself a pep talk?!) Sometimes, I’m brave enough to go after things, sometimes, I’m not. But that’s life in general, right?!

I’m getting ready to “celebrate” (I’m not sure if that’s the word I’m really looking for, but I’ll run with it), two years post deep brain stimulation surgery(s). It was February 14, 2016 (yes, Valentine’s Day), when I had to have all my hair cut and shaved off (thank you again, Carrie). It was February 16, 2016, when the first surgery took place. That first surgery was to place screws to hold the halo that would be used in the "big" surgery. It was also to get an MRI to map out my brain. On February 23, 2016, I had the “big” awake surgery and then on February 29, 2016 was when I had the final surgery to activate the device. The irony is not lost on me that the surgery to activate the deep brain stimulation device took place on Leap Day. I like to think that it's God's way of saying that I will LEAP again one day! How has it been two years?!!! It’s been a journey to say the least! If I would have known then what I know now, I would definitely do it all over again. It’s been a physical journey, but it’s also been a spiritual one. To see how God has had His hand on every situation and weaved himself through every part of my life has been breathtaking. I am blessed.

This is not a good transition, but to get back to what happened this past week, I’ll start with a funny story. My co-workers and I had just been to a company-wide meeting on Thursday and we were standing around in the hallway talking to each other. I knew I was standing by a wall, I just didn’t know how closely I was standing by said wall until I turned around and walked right into it. Yes, no one ever said I was graceful – that’s for sure. Thankfully, I didn’t hurt myself (or the wall). My pride may have taken a bruising though. Haha. When I do things, I don’t just do them halfway, I do them epically. In this case, I didn’t run into a wall when no one was looking, I ran into a wall when there was a huge group of people walking down the hall. Oh well, such is life. Everyone (including myself) got a huge laugh out of it! This had NOTHING to do with dystonia or any physical handicap. It had everything to do with the fact that I’m just a klutz.

In a different situation last week, I was walking and talking with a co-worker and I was a little fired up about something. My co-worker commented later that she was marveling at how well I walked while I was pouring out my frustrations to her. It seems that when I’m fired up about something, I have absolutely no problem walking. HA! It’s because I’m walking “automatically” and not thinking about walking. It’s when I concentrate too much on walking that I have issues. A while back, a guy at my church said it’s like getting the yips. Yes, yes, it is. I just need to breath and remember that everything will be OK and not worry so much about what other people think (again, I’m giving myself a pep talk!).

On Sunday an amazing thing happened. I was walking ever so slowly and precariously into church, being careful not to fall. The oldest member of our congregation was being dropped off at the front of the church. I just happened to be there as she was, so I helped her out of the car and the two of us walked into church together. The instant I started to help her, my foot relaxed, and my leg became strong. She thought I was helping her, but she was actually helping me. I instantly felt like I could walk without any issue. All it took was helping someone else, to help myself and it was WONDERFUL! Thank you, Jesus!

So, for all those out there who, like me, tend be pessimists most of the time, remember that even in the frustrating times, God is always gracious, God is always with us, God wants us to be optimists and God’s Got This!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Tune-In-Tuesday: February 13, 2018

Happy Fat Tuesday, everybody! Tomorrow is the being of my favorite Holy season. It starts with Ash Wednesday and culminates with Easter Sunday. Christmas is most people's favorite holiday, but mine is Easter. I can't wait to celebrate it this year!

This past week was chalked full of every emotion and every season there is - at least that's how it felt! Last Tuesday, a faithful man of God was called home. He was the social ministry director at my church and his death was a shock to all of us. I knew of his death when I wrote last week's blog post, but didn't say anything as it was still sinking in. The Wednesday before I sat right behind him during Wednesday night services (as I always did). To have known then that that was the last time I'd see him alive, maybe I would have spoken more to him. He was always so very gracious and kind to me. He kept reminding me of the miracle I am that I can now walk without a walker or a cane - even when I'm having major difficulty. His death came as such a shock that it actually opened my eyes again to how fragile and beautiful and treasured this life is. Even with it's ups and downs and curves, we should treasure every moment of it and treasure the people we get to do it with. Paul, you will be missed, but I am secure in the knowledge that I know you are with our Lord and Savior.

Along with Paul, there were two other deaths of people I either knew personally or knew in association to friends of mine. Needless to say, it's been a little bit of a sad week in that respect. It's also been a week of sickness. Not me, (thank you, Jesus!), but everyone around me. East Tennessee has been hit hard with the flu this year. Schools were out almost an entire week (save for Wednesday) because of it. People in my own family have had it. I've just been trying to stay flu-free. I'm washing my hands and using Purell every other second. And then, there's the weather. One day it's sunny and in the 60's and the next day it's dreary and in the 30's. I guess, such is winter in Tennessee. :)

I mention all the above because it's definitely effected my walking. I have not fallen, but I haven't walked as good as I had been. But, there's good news. :) Twice in the past week, I KNEW I was going to fall. Like - completely lose my balance, fall all the way to the floor, hurt myself kind of fall, but BOTH times, I miraculously (by God's grace) CAUGHT myself. I credit that to the Lord and also to the strength training (through yoga) of my legs. I caught myself both times. Both times when I felt myself falling - and not one of those graceful falls where you barely hurt yourself, but one of those falls that are going to leave a mark - I miraculously was saved. I am so very, very, very thankful and so very humbled at the same time. I didn't fall! Praise Jesus. I don't take it for granted. I've fallen one too many times to take NOT falling for granted.

I did something this past week that I've never done before: I went to the symphony by myself! I know it's probably not a huge thing to most people, but I'm not most people - ha! The tickets were originally my parents, but they couldn't go, so my Dad gave them to me. I was going to go with my sister-in-law, but she got sick. I tried to give them away, but to make a long story short, with a start time of 8pm, I decided at 5:30pm to bite the bullet and just go and I am so ever grateful that I did! I had a blast!! I met new people. I saw people from my church. I got to enjoy awesome music and singing. It was their Valentine's concert, so it was love songs from different movies. I felt a little awkward about going by myself to a Valentine's Day themed performance, but I decided to embrace my singleness and just do it. It was so fun!! Did I mention that I almost needed an ARK to get there and back? Torrential rain poured down all day and night and I looked like a drowned rat after the symphony (I did have my umbrella, but when the wind is blowing...), but I have now proven to myself that I can go to the symphony by myself and have fun!

So, as I said, this week was full of different emotions, different seasons and so much more. In the scheme of things, walking is walking. Sometimes I walk well, sometimes I don't, but when I look back on experiences, will walking be the only thing I remember? Absolutely not! It may encompass some memories (if I had difficulty, fell or on the opposite spectrum, walked beautifully), but I'll remember the experiences and events more than how I walked.

I have to include this in this post. I saw it shared on Facebook and it made me laugh. It has nothing to do with my walking, but it's medical, so it fits in right? Even if it doesn't, it's too funny not to share, so here go.

Now tell me you didn't laugh at that! :)

Thank you once again for reading and following along. I treasure each of you, because each of you are a part of my life's story. I'm truly blessed and God's Got This!

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Tune-In-Tuesday: February 6, 2018

Another week is in the books...how did that happen?! Overall, the past week has not been bad, but I’ve struggled a little more with walking than I did the week before. Thankfully, my struggles are momentary. They come and they go. They frustrate me, but there’s always something in life that’s going to frustrate us, right? I try to move past frustration as quickly as possible. Some days or moments in time I’m better at that then others, but again, such is life! Walking may have been a little bit more of a struggle this week, but I didn't fall. And there were moments that I walked absolutely beautifully. It's those moments I try to hold on to.

This morning I got up early to work out (ride my stationary bike) and do yoga. It wasn’t until I got to the yoga part that I realized how off balanced I am today. I’m not dizzy, but I have no balance, if that’s even possible. Again, I'm shrugging it off to weather. We are supposed to be getting a lot of rain tonight. But no matter the reason, God used it to grow me.

There are a couple of poses that my instructor has taught me to do to bolster my balance: the tree pose and the warrior pose. I struggled through both today. But – I did them. Not gracefully and I had to use the wall to steady myself more than I wanted to, but I still did them.

God placed on my heart 2 Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for you”. That verse, seriously, kept rolling through my head as I tried to steady myself enough to do the yoga poses. I don’t know why that verse came to mind, but for some reason, God wanted me to hear it. The full verse is:

“But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

I’ve heard this verse many times, but this morning the word that really jumped out at me was “sufficient”. The dictionary.com definition of the word, “sufficient” is “adequate for the purpose; enough”. So, God gives me (and you and everyone!) adequate and enough grace (undeserved love) to get through the situation at hand. It’s JUST ENOUGH. He knows what I need and when I need it. And He knows it ALL THE TIME.

I'll admit, I was frustrated with myself this morning until I realized “it is what it is” and I must give myself grace to accept that. I have no control. Yes, I can work-out, I can strengthen my muscles, I can adjust settings in my deep brain stimulation device, I can take medication, I can eat right, I can get enough sleep, but in the end – some things I have no control over. When I love myself enough to accept the grace I’ve been given by God – that’s when things change enormously. Sometimes, I give myself grace, but more times than not, I tend to be very hard on myself. We are our own worst critics/enemies, right?! For some reason, God chose a random Tuesday in February, while trying not to fall over, to illuminate me with the knowledge that HIS GRACE IS SUFFICIENT FOR ME. It was seriously (and literally) like letting out the biggest sigh of relief. I've known this verse my entire life, but today, I got this verse. It's amazing how God uses circumstances and all kinds of other things to lift the blinders from our eyes to reveal His Word in a new and different light and when He knows we are fully ready to understand and appreciate it.

While doing yoga this morning, not only did I have 2 Corinthians 12:9 stuck in my head, I also had the song “His Banner Over Me Is Love”. Where, why, how I got that song stuck in my head, I have no answers for, but there it was. I choose to think God wanted me to hear that too.

By the time I was “done” with yoga for the day, I decided to try the tree and warrior poses one more time and while I didn't do them as well as I’ve done them in the past, it was MUCH improved from 30 minutes before. Yay! My instructor is so very encouraging. I absolutely love working with her. Even on her "homework sheets" she's encouraging me:

On a side note, I always thought that yoga was just meditation and while that’s part of it, I’ve learned very quickly that it’s very physical. I actually break a sweat sometimes and I feel my muscles stretching. I like when I feel results (doesn’t everybody?!).

I know I've only spoken mostly of one day (today!) in this post, but it was the most fresh in my memory! Very quickly, I'll say that on Sunday I woke up and my entire left eye was swollen. I looked like a bull dog - ha! I took pictures for myself, but will refrain from posting them here. It was not a pretty site. It reminded me of what I looked like in the days after my deep brain stimulation surgery when my face "fell". That was the weirdest, coolest thing to see. My eyes and then my face swelled. I was warned it would happen, but it was still a shock! I have no idea what caused Sunday's swelling. Maybe I got bit by something. Within an hour, the swelling decreased and then by the time I got to church it decreased even more and by the time the service was over, it was barely noticeable. It only briefly scared me as I thought it might have something to do with my deep brain stimulation device, but I'm pretty sure it was an allergic reaction to something. What that something is, I haven't figured out yet!

The rest of the week was pretty uneventful, except that I did notice at times that it was harder to walk. But like I said at the beginning, such is life. I'm so very, very thankful for the great walking days and so very, very thankful that God sustains me on the days when walking is a struggle. He's with me all the time and I rest on that!

I'll close with this: God’s grace is written all over my life and I know God’s Got This!

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Tune-In-Tuesday: January 30, 2018

I want to start this post by saying “thank you” for reading! I am incredibly humbled that even one person reads along. To my core, I’m an introvert and sometimes just writing helps me hash things out, while giving me a barrier at the same time. =) Not that I don’t love people and love face-to-face, but sometimes I express myself better in writing than “live and in-person”. And you get to read (or not read) when it’s convenient for you. It’s a win-win!! So, again, thank you for reading. I found this on Facebook and it is 110% me:

This past week has been a mixed bag, walking-wise. Walking hasn’t been all that stellar spectacular, but by no means has it been absolutely horrendously horrible. It’s been perfectly middle of the road.

Last Wednesday at church my friend, Carol, stopped to tell me how amazing I was walking. I found it a tad bit funny, because this was after I walked up to communion, got “into my head” and realized that people might be watching, so I didn’t walk as well as I had been walking. That’s just it – if I can get out of my head and just walk automatically, I can walk! It’s when I start thinking about it and putting too much pressure on myself that I lose balance.

Thursday, an amazing thing happened and you’re going to laugh (at least I think you will) because of what I think is “amazing”. While at work, I got up to walk to the restroom. As I was walking, I tripped over my own two feet. BUT, guess what?!?!?!?! I DIDN’T FALL! I caught myself. I was so proud. I practically ran (haha) back to my desk and exclaimed to my co-worker, Debbie, “Debbie, I tripped over my own two feet, but I didn’t fall!! I was able to catch myself.” She probably thought I was nuts! But, you don’t understand. Since having dystonia, I have never ever tripped and been able to right myself. I’ve always just fallen. Thank you, Jesus that you allowed me to have enough strength to catch myself!! Laugh all you want, but it was monumental for me and so of course I had to document it here on the blog.

The days when I get in bed at night and realize that I got everywhere I needed to get that day without falling or really even thinking about walking, are my favorites. I am so thankful that God allows the veil to be torn from my face so that I am able to recognize and SEE that he is a very, very good God.

Since having dystonia, anything that has to do with walk, run, feet, standing firm….well, I’ve tuned in to those things more. Little sayings, Bible verses, catchphrases…I’m all about them. They are reminders of God’s mercy to me. Have you ever stopped for a moment and contemplated all that God has kept you safe from in a day? I have and I can’t even start to fathom what all He’s rescued me from without my even knowing! Anyway, back to the sayings on walking and running and feet and standing firm. I saw this on Facebook and felt it was made for me:

I think this is why “Mary Did You Know” is my favorite Christmas song: “The LAME WILL LEAP….”
Since I was a child, I have always loved “HOW BEAUTIFUL (on the mountains) ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS…”(Isaiah 52:7) As a child I think I liked it more due to the Sandi Patty song about “beautiful feet”, but hey, I loved it as a child and now I love it as an adult.

My co-worker, Sarah, just returned from maternity leave and she brought presents. Is that not backwards?! We're supposed to be getting her presents and instead she's lavishing them on us. This was my present from her:
Oh my, how I absolutely LOVE it.

I'm learning yoga, ya'll!! I went to another session tonight and I did so much better on some of the poses. My instructor said she could tell I was doing my homework. And, I have been doing my homework. Even when I don't necessarily want to, I do it anyway and end up loving it. I love a challenge. Although, I'm an introvert by nature, if you dare me to do something, I'll more than likely do it (within boundaries...I'm NOT going to go skydiving or hold a snake - I have my boundaries!!). Like the time a college classmate dared me to flick corn at another classmate in the cafeteria. I did, but had such horrible aim, it went flying through the air to the next table over and hit a professor. =) Oops. Or the time I tried to eat (and by eat, I mean actually swallow) 6 Saltine crackers in a minute. Yeah, I lost that dare. You try it! I digress...but hopefully you get the point...if I'm told I can't do something or something's a challenge, I'm more than likely going to do everything in my power to prove that I can do it or I can overcome the challenge. Sure, there are days when I don't want to try at all, but overall, the stubbornness inside me can be used for good - to overcome. So, back to the yoga. It's a challenge for me. Like sweaty palms challenging, but there's a fire within me to keep going until I master it. No matter how long that takes. The same goes for walking. I'm not (actually, I can't!) giving up on it.

One of my all time favorite quotes comes from the actress Ingrid Bergman. I don't really know anything about her as a person or an actress, so don't judge me on that behalf, but this quote, well it's me through and though: "I was the shyest human ever invented, but I had a lion inside me that wouldn't shut up!"

I found this saying on Facebook (Again! what can I say, Facebook came through for me this past week with witty sayings...) and I love it:

God is good, even on the days when I’m not walking as well as I would like to be. He keeps me humble. He keeps me under his wing. He keeps me close. He renews my strength. He gives me hope. Yes, the devil and all his ways surround me and sometimes get to me, but God is faithful. He never leaves. He sees me through the trying times and rejoices with me in the joy-filled moments in life that are worth so much more than silver or gold. How could life NOT be wonderful when GOD’s GOT THIS?!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Tune-In Tuesday: January 23, 2018

I must admit, I’m having major writer’s block this week as to what to put in this post. It might be that I’m tired. Yes, it’s only Tuesday and I’m already tired! But I guess it’s mainly because things have been “status quo”, which is a good thing! I remain on the same level and amount of electricity. I have great days walking and then I have some days where walking could be better.

Last Tuesday, we got snow and ice here in Knoxville, so my yoga class was cancelled. I was really quite bummed about that, but you know what? I still had the "homework" that my instructor gave me and I could do that! So I did. Throughout the week, even when I didn't necessarily want to do it, I kept up with the homework and it’s getting easier! The reason I’m posting this blog update so late is that I had a yoga class tonight and it was amazing. It pushed me and stretched me in ways I didn’t think possible and I’m learning! My instructor introduced me to the “tree pose” tonight and that’s my new challenge. It’s all about balance and I can say, even before I had dystonia, my balance has never been good! BUT, I’m learning this pose and I’m determined to master it. So what if I fall? I'll get back up again. (I didn’t fall, but that’s what I am most scared of!). If I can conquer the “tree pose” maybe that will help me conquer my fear of falling. I’ve never walked better than I did tonight walking out of yoga. Today, in general, was a good walking day. I’m walking MUCH better than I did yesterday, so that’s good!

Yesterday was one of those days that I didn’t walk as well as I would have liked. While I walked better than some of my previous “good” walking days, I was still having issues. I blame it on the weather (as I tend to do!). It was warm here, like 65-degree warm – in JANUARY! I loved it! However, I think the huge temperature swings are messing with my body. Going from freezing to 65 so quickly, plus the rain it brought in, well, I’m blaming the weather for my not-so-great walking. But – I didn’t fall. I got where I needed to get and back again fine, so in the end yesterday was a win no matter how you look at it. Alive, breathing, thinking, able to work, walk and talk…yeah yesterday wasn’t as “bad” as sometimes my mind likes to trick me into thinking. And, I was in a fantastic mood. It’s usually the other way around. When I have issues walking, I tend to get grumpy. But yesterday, not so much!! Praise the Lord. I also MADE myself get up from my desk at work more often. Yes, I was feeling shaky on my feet, but I made myself walk despite that. Some days bravery comes in bigger bites and on other days not so much. But God was and continues to be faithful.

On Saturday, I went to a baby shower for my friend, Christie. While there, I saw another of her friends whom I’ve seen at various birthday parties and baby showers for Christie. She said I looked fabulous. I told her thank you, but didn’t realize until later what she meant by that. Somehow, later in the afternoon, deep brain stimulation came up in conversation. Mary interjected that the last time she saw me, I was using a walker and recovering from surgery. Then she said, “Look at you now! You’re not using anything!!" Perspective. It all came full circle. While I still have limitations and you can tell that there’s “something wrong” sometimes, I’m not using a walker or a cane. Sometimes, you should look back to see how far you’ve come. On a side note – Christie had her baby today!! She got that baby shower in, just in the nick of time!

I have been watching all the medical dramas that I got on DVD for Christmas, while I work-out. I finished watching season 2 of Chicago Med and now I’m half-way through season 2 of Code Black, and I still have season 5 of Saving Hope to watch. Between real-life medical stuff and watching these shows, I feel like I could be a doctor. I mean, I do know CPR and the Heimlich maneuver! I surprised myself this morning while watching Code Black in that I knew what an ABG was – haha!! Seriously! It’s an arterial blood gas. I have no idea what that is, what it does, what it effects or if you could die from it, but I know what the letters ABG stand for! I’m half-way to being a doctor! (Full disclosure: I "Googled" it and almost fainted. I’m OK with most things medical but when you start talking about arteries and veins and needles and puncturing, well, I get a little woozy. When I have IV's inserted or someone takes my blood, I can't watch. I can't watch them put the needle in. I look at it after the needle's in, but not while they're actually inserting it. But, even after "Googling" it, I’m still unsure exactly what an ABG does). In the season that I’m now re-watching of Code Black there is an entire episode dedicated to Deep Brain Stimulation. How cool is that?! I wrote about the episode in this blog when it first premiered. The deep brain stimulation was done to treat Parkinson’s, but it was still all about DBS! I was enthralled the first time I watched it and the second time and the third time and…well you get the picture. =) Of course, it’s a drama and there will be mistakes and inaccuracies, but the episode was all about DBS!! I remember my dad telling me, after watching it, that he didn’t realize everything that went into it. The person in the episode having the DBS surgery was a doctor himself and was very reserved about having the surgery. I was the complete opposite. Ignorance is bliss sometimes!! I was gung-ho, let’s do this all the way. And I’m so happy I did. What’s that phrase? “It’s a marathon and not a sprint”. Yeah, NOT having Parkinson’s (which I am SO BLESSED that I don’t have!), I don’t see “instant” gratification, but when it does click and I start walking like I haven’t in years – that’s what amazes me. God has, is and I believe, will continue to grow me through this process. I think that’s the coolest part. My reliance on God has grown in leaps and bounds. I’m also learning more about myself. Although there are tears and frustrations and “bad” days, there is definitely – without a shadow of a doubt – joy in the journey.

So, for having "writer's block", I think I've written enough! I’ve hit the highlights of last week. I’ll end with this. Some days I feel defeated, like I can’t do anything right or things in life will never get better or easier. But then God sprinkles love and worthiness and hope and faith on my life and I see how wonderful this life is with Him at the helm. I had that song, “Ooh-oo child, Things are gonna get easier, Ooh-oo child, Things'll get brighter, Ooh-oo child” stuck on repeat in my brain this morning. I have NO IDEA where it came from or why it got stuck in my head. I hadn’t heard it on the radio or on TV, but when I just let it be (and didn’t try to figure out why it got stuck in my head), I thought - maybe God wanted me to hear it. Things will get easier and things will get brighter. Then things will get harder again and there will be storms. That’s just life. Everyone has those days, those ups and downs. But one thing’s for sure and I stake my life on it: GOD’s GOT THIS.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Tune-In Tuesday: January 16, 2018

Ya’ll, I’ve had an amazing week walking wise, so although you may not be reading this until Tuesday when I post it (or later), I’m starting this post on Sunday afternoon. I figured I needed to try and capture how amazing I feel. If you’ve been reading this blog long enough or know me in person, you know I’m more of a pessimist then an optimist. I don't like bringing attention to things like the fact that I've been walking so much better, just in case it doesn't last but, when the Lord does things I can’t keep quiet.

It just happened…there was no defining moment or day...it just happened…I started walking without issue. My feet landed in the right place, they didn’t spasm, or curl up…it just happened. It’s not constant, I still have days where walking is a challenge, but I’ve had more good days then bad this past week and it's brought me so much JOY.

This past Thursday, I had a couple of meetings at work. I was walking with my co-worker, Debbie, to one of them when she said she had something to tell me when we got to the meeting. When we got to the conference room, she exclaimed, “I’ve never seen you walk better. You kept up with me and I wasn’t going slow.” To get the whole picture here, I did have some issues at one point, where I did slow down, but overall, she was right, I kept up! She said she wanted to cry she was so happy.

I’m finding that I MUST get out of my head when walking. I’ve been noticing more and more this past week, that if I walk without thinking (walking automatically, like everyone else), I walk beautifully. It’s when I’m concentrating too hard on walking or being distracted by thinking of what people may think of me, that I slip up. This was never more apparent than on Sunday. Walking into church, I was doing well, until I realized there were people behind me. For whatever reason, I always feel like I must get out of the way of other people. I get anxious and worried. I still made it into church just fine. After Sunday school, I walked down to the Family Life Center for the worship service. Since I was still a little early and felt like I could do it, I decided to walk to the mailboxes to see if I had any mail. I did fine until I got into my head and then I would hiccup. I didn't fall, I just didn't walk as well as I had. It was almost comical, because I knew what was happening. When I thought of something other than walking, I did fine. When I looked around at other people or felt like people were looking at me, that’s when I tripped up.

I really don’t mind at all when people tell me that they were watching me walk – if they tell me AFTER I’ve already walked to them or gotten to my destination. But even this – walking in front of people – has gotten better. I’m not as self-conscious as I used to be. Oh, don’t get me wrong, the fear is still there, but God and I are working on that too!

I’ve shared this before, but I’m sharing it again. I feel like Peter (in the Bible) when he walks on water. If he had his eyes on Jesus, he walked perfectly. When He took his eyes off Jesus he started to sink. This is me, ya’ll. To a T. I have never felt more like a person in the Bible then when I read about Peter. But isn’t Peter all of us to some degree? If I fix my eyes on Jesus, I’m good. The minute my eyes divert to other things, I stumble.

And now, I’m writing on Tuesday. Yesterday (Monday, MLK Day), I got my hair chopped. ON PURPOSE. I don’t know what’s gotten in to me. It is BELOW FREEZING here and I went and chopped all my hair off. I love, love, love long hair, but I just got the sudden urge to go short(er) again. I love that my hair curls even more when it's short. So, I went and saw Clare and got it chopped. For reference, I took a before and after. You’ll also see in the picture my new shirt. It was $1 at Wal-Mart. I know, I splurge big time! But I love what it says. "Perfect is Boring. Be Imperfectly You."

Speaking of being imperfectly me, that’s just what I am at yoga: imperfect. But, I’m doing it. I even did the “homework” my instructor gave me. Four days in row. I HATE homework, but I did it anyway and found that this homework is fun. It’s getting a little easier. But then again, I guess it really depends on the day. Some days I can balance beautifully, some days I’m a klutz. Oh well. Such is life.

I can’t close without mentioning the SNOW we are getting today. I don’t like snow or ice or cold weather, but I confessed to a co-worker that I was a little giddy today when it started. I also didn’t fall in it, so that makes it even better. Just like the weather, there are different seasons in life. Some are cold and icy and harsh and some are warm and inviting and lovely. I’m thankful for all the seasons both in the weather and in life!

I must praise Jesus for this last week. It’s given me even more hope that God hears and God heals. He is still working in and on me. I know there will be bad days ahead because we live in a sin-filled world, however, I also know that there will be amazing days ahead because after all, GOD’S GOT THIS!

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Tune-In Tuesday: January 9, 2018

Happy Tuesday, everyone! Thanks for stopping by and reading.

The past week was a pretty good week. I am continually amazed (although I shouldn’t be!) at how God works. Keeping me (and you as well) safe and getting me through things I think are monumental at the time, but realize later were so minuscule that I shouldn’t have even bothered worrying about them in the first place. I get where I need to go, do the things that I need to do and God provides every single time.

I’m thankful that when I sit down to write these posts, that I “let go and let God” so to speak. I really have no clue when I begin a post what I might end up writing or where God leads me. He just leads me and words turn into a post. I’m also thankful that when I write, I’m able to look back at what was and realize that God was and is in everything – every little thing. Thank you, God for the ability to be thankful (and it’s not even Thanksgiving!)!!

I took my third yoga class last Tuesday and I’m not going to lie, I got frustrated. That session made me realize that I do have limitations (as everyone does). My perfectionistic, type A personality wanted me to do everything “just right”, but “Rome wasn’t built in a day” and neither was me learning yoga. ;) So, for whatever reason, I went back again tonight. Do you ever wonder why you keep doing something (good), even if it’s hard? I mean, sure, there are things I give up on, but then there are things that I keep at even though they frustrate me and/or challenge me. I like to think that that’s God giving me a nudge, even when I don’t necessarily want to do it. In last week’s session, I told my yoga instructor that I tend to be the “worrier” in my family. At first, she thought I said I tend to be the “warrior” in my family, so she ran with that. What if I changed my status from worrier to warrior? Something to chew on because it doesn’t happen overnight!

Tonight’s yoga class redeemed last week’s – haha. It was so good! I now have homework and I’m actually excited about it. As my instructor said, she can only get me so far, but I have to put in the time if I want to see results. Just like anything else in life, right? One thing I’m learning is to “get out of my head”. The more I focus on something, the more I fear it (sometimes). If ALL my focus is on walking and not falling, I tend to have more issues. If I do it (walking) naturally, without thinking about it so much, I do it!! I don’t overthink it. That’s my problem: I overthink things way too much, so if I “get out of my head” and do what comes naturally, it flows.

On Sunday, when I got to church, there wasn’t a single parking space to be had unless you went to Timbuktu. Literally – there wasn’t one space. This is an AWESOME thing for a church. Truly it is! It’s not so awesome if you’re the one stuck with no space and have to walk from Timbuktu – ha! I circled the parking lot no less than 5 times. I circled it so many times that someone came out and asked if he could park my car for me. While that was so super sweet of him, the words that came out of my mouth were “No thank you.” What?! That meant I was going to have to walk from Timbuktu. So I did. And it was challenging, but it was good. I didn’t fall. (For those that go to my church, I had to park way out past the sheds.) Only those in my Sunday school class know how late I was. ;) I was convicted on several levels about this experience though. On one hand, I worried that I had not done God’s will in letting someone help me. Maybe it would have been a blessing to the helper and a humbling experience for me. On the other hand, maybe God was telling me, “You can do this. You can walk. Trust me.” Sometimes I must do things myself to overcome the fear of what I think may happen if I do them. I told a friend once I got to Sunday school, that since I was so late, there was hardly anyone in the parking lot – which was great, I didn’t feel like anyone was watching me walk. She only brought up later, “What if you fell and there was no one there to help?”. I hadn’t even thought about that! I was happy with the opposite – a people free parking lot where I could walk at my own pace. I don’t think there is a “right” or “wrong” answer to my dilemma about either having someone help me or doing it myself. I feel like God used what I chose to help me. I know I can walk that far and I can do it without falling or the help of others. I also know there will be days and times when I know I can’t do it. That’s OK too. I know that there are people that are more than willing to help in any way they can and just knowing that gives me a peace of mind too. On the way back to my car, I walked with a friend who said, “I don’t want to read on your blog that you fell after I left you!”. Once we parted ways, I didn’t fall. ;)

Also at church on Sunday, I had a friend tell me that she had a dream about me the night before and I was running in a Mud Runner race. I was running in a dress and no shoes and she gave me her shoes. Haha. I love that I was RUNNING in her dream. Maybe it’s a foresight of things to come?! There are times when I do feel I could run. We shall see…

Do ever feel like you fail at life? Well, I do. I get frustrated at what is and what isn’t in my life and I tend to take that out on others. I lose my temper quickly, I’m moody and cranky. I fight and I cry and I feel horrible about myself. But then, there’s God’s grace. The older I get the more I crave His love and forgiveness. Going back again to Sunday, I told my Sunday school class that one of the best times in the service for me is when my dad or Pastor Travis announce the forgiveness of God given freely to me. I crave that moment. As a child, I didn’t understand or rarely even listened to that part of the service, but now, it’s one of the most sacred moments of the service. So, I constantly ask God to forgive my short-comings and my sins and ask Him to cleanse me of all unrighteousness. I struggle with being who God wants me to be daily. Sometimes that’s even on an hourly basis. He gives so much, yet I complain so loud. What is walking perfectly in the scheme of things? NOTHING!!! It is NOTHING!!! When I look back on my life, do I remember whether I walked perfectly? Nope! Yes, most of the times I remember if I fell, but even that is NOTHING in the span of a lifetime. So in the words of Ana and Elsa from Frozen, I just need to “let it go”. All my (mostly unfounded) worries and fears and frustrations are in the hand of an everlasting, almighty Father who knows what He’s doing. I’m preaching to myself now! In my heart and in my head, I know that GOD’S GOT THIS!