An update.

Six months since I’ve written. What can I say about that time?

I finished my first semester of seminary school.
I was in Death Valley for three months.
I started my second semester of seminary school.

That about sums it up. Chronologically and factually.

What about emotionally? Oh, I’d say it has been a roller-coaster. More like a kid’s roller-coaster. You know, the kinds that just slightly has it’s ups and downs, nothing major. Still a roller-coaster though. Death Valley was a dark place emotionally. I felt lonely and separate from everything. Most of the time I kept my emotions in check. It was hard work. I’m lucky that I was able to mostly keep it together.

Now I’m going into this second semester of seminary. I’m feeling mostly good. It feels amazing to be back home. After my summer experience, it really feels like a huge blessing to be where I am right now. I have the stress of school. I have the stress because of my current weight. My body doesn’t feel well. My mental health is suffering as a result. I have to put in the hard work for my body. But at the same time I have to put in the hard work of school. It’s already a month into school, and I haven’t quite gotten into the rhythm of anything. I better step up fast.

My prayers are just that I can keep myself together emotionally and do what needs to be done. And there is a lot to be done!

Gym Intentions

Today I woke up 3 hours late, ate 50 cent grilled cheese sandwiches and went to the liquor store, instead of going to the gym.

I had all intentions of going to the gym. But it simply didn’t happen. I had nightmares this morning and had kind of a hard time recovering from them. Nightmares are unusual for me, so it was particularly distressing. I kept wanting to wake up from it but the dream kept repeating and I couldn’t get out of it. It was a little bit terrifying. Eventually I did finally break free of it, and I quickly got out of bed.

 

I wanted to go to the gym today. But because I got up late, it couldn’t happen during any other part of the day. I’m learning to be forgiving of myself for not always being up to par. Sometimes you just can’t control circumstances. However, I could have made better choices like not eating grilled cheese sandwiches. You can try better next time. Because I couldn’t go to the gym today means that I must go tomorrow.

“Act justly, love faithfulness, walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

Tomorrow

Trying to think about today. You know what, forget today (it was a good day) but let me move on to tomorrow. Tomorrow’s going to be a long one.

I start work at 6AM. It’s my first shift back to work after taking leave for my mental health. I’m both excited and nervous about it. Mostly It’s going to be good. And I enjoy working there. I’m looking forward to my coworkers. It will be fun.

I’ll have a few hours after work to get some coffee and brunch before I have my psychiatrist appointment. I’m looking forward to that as well. I need to talk to her about the medicines making me put on so much weight and making it ridiculously difficult to lose any of it. Plus some work related things. Mainly I just want to be off my meds so I can get down to a reasonable weight. Right now as it stands I’m officially obese. I’m way past the overweight category. I’m smack in the middle of certifiably obese. I do not like that word and I do not like what it means. It puts me at risk for all kinds of preventable diseases like diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, etc. I don’t want those things. I want to lose fat and build muscle. I want to be healthy! Ok enough of that rant.

After the doctor’s appointment I’m going to workout, and straight from there I have my lecture and group session at church. I’m supposed to have written a Psalm of my own.

It’s a jam packed day. The only problem I have with it is how early I have to get up and leave the house. I wonder if I’ll have time to do part of my Bible study in the morning. I better make time for it. That’s super important and will set me up for a good day. I’ll try that.

In Summary:
Work. Study. Doctor. Read. Workout. Group.

Women’s Conference Weekend

I am not a “girly girl.” I am not a tomboy. I’m not a woman’s woman. I don’t even know what any of that means. I wouldn’t consider myself as an advocate for women. But the fact remains that I am indeed a woman. And so, as such, I went to the church’s Women’s Conference.

I found myself amongst all these women who were there to connect with each other in a way that was exclusively for us. I don’t know that I would have gone to it if I hadn’t been asked to serve. A giant group of women isn’t the kind of environment into which I would volunteer myself. In fact, of all the conversations I could have had the first night, two were with two of the only four men there, and the third was with another woman who doesn’t consider herself a girly girl. What does that say about me? I have no idea.

The second day was a bit different in the sense that I knew what to expect. I took so many notes throughout all the talks. I had heard so many wonderful thoughts about life in general and what it means to be a “Woman of God.” I identified with a lot of what was said, especially regarding suffering and racial reconciliation. But I couldn’t identify with everything.

Half the day was focused on relationships, being single versus married. I realize that a large proportion of women worry about these things, myself included. And yes, I realize that a women’s conference is designed for us to be able to talk to other women about what’s going on in our lives. But can’t we talk about other aspects of our lives through our special womanly world view? I’m tired of everything being so focused on relationships or lack thereof. Is that all we are? Half the population trying to figure out their place in the world based on their relationship to the other half of the population? I’m so sick of it. I’d rather talk more about what makes us individuals created in God’s image.

I want to talk about how we can serve our God better. I want to know what my career looks like through the light of the Gospel. I want to think about each day with the joy that God has created me for His good works and I want to act that out. I want to learn about what it looks like to live a missional life. I want to focus on living each day in worship to our creator. I just want to talk about loving God as a unique individual in a community of believers. And I want to talk about these things with other women who may or may not be in a relationship. It shouldn’t define us. God defines us by his design. So let’s celebrate that and have discussions about how we do life as women who loves Jesus.

 

 

Today’s Neurology Appointment

Just as expected, my test results were all normal. Straight up normal. Nothing wrong. But my symptoms remain. So. What do I do now? He increased the dose of one of my medicines. And he ordered another test, a 72-hour EEG. I’ll have to wear a device on my head for three days while it monitors my brain wave activity straight though several days, rather than just a 20 minute interval that was done in the office. Not exactly looking forward to that. But hopefully it records something useful.

In other news, I worked out hard today. But I feel pretty good about it. I don’t have a picture of today, but I do have one from yesterday. Also went grocery shopping with Mom for a good portion of the day. And finally in the evening I went to my City Group to catch up with friends. Several of us really didn’t want to be there today. But we all got though it. I had several staring spells. And ended up leaving 8.

Now I’m home, and I really need to sleep. My eyes aren’t staying open, and my ability to type properly is diminishing. It’s time to say goodnight. So, Goodnight!

Good Things Going Forward

Today I got to discharge from my outpatient program at the hospital. What a good feeling. I’ve been doing a lot better, and I’m so glad that I’m doing well enough that I get to go out on my own. So exciting. I’m beyond excited. I’ve got so much that I want to do!

I’m going to dream big. I’ve pretty much decided that I want to go to seminary school and then go to law school. I want to be an influencer in this world. I can’t just stand back while things happen in this world. I have to do something about it. And nows the time to start making good things happen.

I’m so excited for the future. God has some good big things planned.

Also today I started the Whole30. It’s going well so far. Eating lots of healthy foods. I need to make sure that I get my nutrition timing right too. I ate dinner way after my workout. I should have eaten sooner, or at least have had a backup recovery bar for post-workout. Oh well, I’ll get there soon enough.

And of course CrossFit is going well. Made it a priority to go today. I missed the early class, so I went to the evening class instead. It was good.

Met with my Porterbrook cohort right after my workout. We had a great discussion about the readings we had done. I enjoyed our time today. It was well spent.

Long Ramble, Anxiety, Etc…

Today was a good day. It was a good day because I believed that it would be a good day. It had its challenges, but I overcame them. In the morning I made tea for the family. During the day I accomplished a lot of the things that were on my list, most of which involved reading. I love reading! It was fantastic. Also during the day I had a lot of energy. I drank two energy drinks, because why not? I was feeling great. Actually I drank them because after my tea I was still tired. Also, I’m starting the Whole30 soon and I didn’t want them to sit in the fridge for another several months. So I drank them both.

Before Mom came home from work, I decided to put on some makeup because I was feeling really good about myself. Once she came home we made a tentative mental list of the things that I wanted to get from the grocery store to start the Whole30 on Monday. She also agreed to take me to buy some new makeup. Sweet!

On the way to the store, we stopped at Hobby Lobby just for the heck of it. It was an eye opening experience. My anxiety soared through the roof. It was almost debilitating. I had to get out of the store as soon as possible. There were so many people. So many noisy children. So many people crowding me. It was unbearable. I felt sick to my stomach, dizzy, crazy. It was close to a panic attack. But we got out of there quickly, and I started to get better. We went to another more calm store, and I was fine.

After that we finally went to Ulta to look at makeup. We started talking to one of the consultants, and I ended up getting a lot of foundation put on my face. It looked good at the store. My anxiety didn’t affect me at Ulta. We were in kind of our own little spot away from all the people, so it really felt like only the three of us. We picked up some samples of that makeup and then went to JCPenney’s. We looked around and bought some makeup there. I couldn’t stay there too long, it was also kind of crowded. The makeup shopping took up a lot of time. After a couple of hours it was finally time to go to the grocery store.

Once inside the grocery store my anxiety shot way up again. So many people. So many children. So much stuff. It wasn’t as narrow of a space, but it still felt crowded everywhere. The produce section was making me crazy. I could barely handle it. I took some deep breaths. I told myself that it would be ok. I told myself that I was able to handle myself at the other stores, I should be able to handle this as well. I talked myself into feeling better. I was able to externally pull myself together even though my insides were still screaming. I still had all of the physical symptoms of anxiety going on inside of me. Eventually I sort of calmed down. I focused on the task at hand, and got through the rest of the grocery trip.

I told Mom that I was able to stand up to that major challenge of getting through the grocery shopping trip, but ahead lies the next challenging: Being able to keep up the control over myself even at home. Once I get home I tend to relax the control I have over myself and stop doing anything useful. I completely shut down. But tonight I was able to hold myself together all the way until after dinner. Even now, I’m feeling good. I’m a little bit on the manic side though. Probably because of those two energy drinks.

This post ended up being one long ramble of my day.