Sunday, September 30, 2012
I'm too nice.
I'm never quite sure what to think when I hear that, but it's reasonable to interpret it as a micro-insult.
There are a lot of different camps of thinking in this field of group-home childcare. Although I'm not exactly the militant type, I know the world's problems cannot be hugged away.
Grape A told Grape B that a coworker and I are just too nice to the kids. And apparently that's a problem.
Grape B told me she explained to Grape A that we are good men and are Christian.
She then went on to say we all have strengths and weaknesses. She agreed we might need to grow in the area of firmness, but that our close rapport with the kids prove to be effective tools in behavior management.
Grape B basically said the same thing as Grape A, but with a couple major exceptions: 1) she actually said it to ME and 2) she didn't just tear me down. She was constructive, encouraging, and helpful.
My methods and motivation to work with the kids vary greatly. On one hand, I want to beat them into submission, quickly and sufficiently snuffing out all their nasty behaviors so I can look like a bad-ass life changer.
On the other hand, I know I need to just stand back and allow The Vine, the numero uno Bad-Ass Life Changer, to... well, change lives. And if I'm lucky, He'll do it through me.
Granted, that's not to say I couldn't toughen up a bit.
Although I already feel a little like rawhide sometimes...
Yep, that's a little self-defensiveness seeping through :-)
So now that we're all thinking about grapes (and you all know you got that awesome Marvin Gaye song stuck in you head), let's talk about fruit real quick.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control." Galations 5:22
This is not me. But this is what I aspire to be. And with that in mind, I do actually need to toughen up. A lot. Toughen up enough to pay no mind to Grapes like A, thank God and surround myself with more Grapes like B, and always look to The Vine for guidance.
Saturday, September 29, 2012
Sunday schools were first set up in the 1780s to provide education to working children on their one day off from the factory. It was proposed by Robert Raikes, editor of the Gloucester Journal in an article in his Journal and supported by many clergymen. It aimed to teach the youngsters reading, writing and cyphering and a knowledge of the Bible. It was a full 90 years in 1870 before children could attend schools during the week." -Per the eternally dependable Wikipedia.
Who knew!? What an origin...
Thank you for prompting this interesting research!
Friday, September 28, 2012
More drugs. More and more drugs. Do they alleviate or exacerbate this mess? I'm sitting in the pharmacy waiting for a prescription of mood stabilizers and anti-depressants to be filled.
I met with my psychiatrist today. He's taken good care of me so far, so I'm just going to go with it and pray harder.
I've slept less than four hours within the past two days. I feel fragile, like the slightest impact could shatter me. I'm sure some of that is simply a result of the vulnerability of this whole process of appointments, etc., but it's unpleasant. I just want to skip school and call off work so I can crawl into bed, regardless of whether or not I will actually sleep.
But alas, forward ho! Grabbing some coffee then off to class.
I learn what city and country you're from, what internet browser you're using such as Safari or Firefox, and it even tells me how you stumbled across my blog such as a direct link, Google search, a referring website such as Facebook, etc.
Basically, it offers me somewhat of a limited demographic of my audience. It's not always dead-on, but it's usually pretty accurate.
So why did I delete it? Well, remember that word 'audience' I used two sentences back?
I don't like it.
Don't get me wrong here.
Read me. Please read me.
But accruing readers was not my original interest when beginning this blog. I wanted to create a space of catharsis. A place for authenticity. A way to express creativity. To vent. To rejoice. To praise.
A place to accurately and honestly document the journey of a Christian, stripped of the stereotypes of continual cheer and optimism. A snippet of my song. With hopes to encourage other believers who just can't seem to wear a smile 24/7. With hopes to bring honor and glory to God.
But tracking the numbers of visits became a little too much distraction from this mission and clouded my mind while writing.
"That was an awesome post! MORE people should read it C'mon folks!" or "Ugh! I can't believe I actually wrote that in a public forum. TMI. And ALL those people read it :-/"
So I took some space to realign myself. And just out of pure curiosity, I'm giving it another shot. Welcome back, Feedjit!
Him: You don't know? Yeah, man. It was nice! Hundred bucks a girl, but they were clean, you know? They were clean! That makes it worth a hundred bucks, you know, dude?
Him: They shut it down though, dude. It was nice, man. Real nice.
Several minutes later he asked me what my tattoo's mean. I explained that one is the Greek word originally used in the Book of Ephesians to describe man as God's masterpiece, created for a purpose in Him. My other tattoo is Hebrew for hosanna, or "I worship you, God! I need You to save me!"
Him: Oh, you go to church, man? That's good, dude. Real good.
All within a ten minute time span, our conversation ranged from whorehouses to holiness.
Prostitutes to the Prince of Peace. Sexual favors to One True Savior.
Sorry. I get a little carried away with alliterations sometimes...
Anyway, whether you think tattoo's are sinful and senseless or beautiful body art, it's undeniable that, today, God used mine to draw focus to Himself.
From the darkness of the world and flesh to the eternal light of Him and His Kingdom...
God uses everything. Even me.
And even ink under my skin.
Thursday, September 27, 2012
Chips. Those damn chips.
Crunchy, salty goodness.
Kimberly and I love Mexican food. Nine out of ten times, if we're eating out, it's Mexican. But those chips...
They don't even let you get seated before they throw a basket of chips on the table with a side of salsa. And sometimes... oh, those glorious moments, sometimes the chips are fresh out of the frier, all hot and greasy.
But, as delightful as they are, at 600 calories in a 4oz serving, they're not exactly helpful on the battlefield against the bulge. So, as painful as it is for me to say... take these chips away from me.
Take them now. Quickly.
No, really. Now. Fast.
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Sunday, September 23, 2012
Today I decided I was going to find out what was going through my mind four years ago, as this is the furthest my blog goes back. So I used my handy-dandy timeline widget and found myself stepping back to September 23, 2008.
God works in mysterious ways.
Amidst this dark spiritual valley modernly known as a depressive episode, I'm reading these words God inspired me to write exactly four years ago..
- Loss of interest and pleasure in nearly all activities.
- Described mood as depressed, sad, hopeless, discouraged, or "down in the dumps." May feel "blah," anxious, numb, etc.
- Overall decreased appetite accompanied by increased cravings for specific foods (i.e., sweets or other carbohydrates) resulting in weight gain or unintentional weight-loss.
- Sleep issues ranging from hypersomnia (oversleeping), middle insomnia (difficulty staying asleep, waking up frequently), terminal insomnia (waking up and not able to fall back to sleep at all), and initial insomnia (difficulty or inability to fall asleep altogether).
- Psychomotor agitation (restlessness, jittery) or retardation (sensation of moving in slow-motion).
- Loss of energy. Fatigued.
- Feelings of worthlessness and/or inappropriate, excessive guilt.
- Increased irritability, demonstrating an exaggerated sense of frustration over minor matters. Obsessive rumination. May experience panic attacks.
- Memory and concentration difficulties. Indecisiveness.
- Reoccurring thoughts of death, suicidal ideations and possible attempts. Belief that others would be better off without them, etc.
Treatment and management of a Major Depressive Episode vary greatly based on resources, care providers, and clients' preference. Research online and speak to your general medical practitioner, therapist, and/or insurance company to explore options. If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts and are in immediate threat of injury or death, call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at1-800-273-8255.
Saturday, September 22, 2012
I didn't even think.
I just breathed.
Felt the cool air.
Breathed some more.
Ten minutes of blissful nothingness.
I haven't denied myself of mini-breaks here and there. I'll minimize the Word docs, close the DSM-IV-TR, and pull up something fun and pointless on Netflix for a little while.
But the whole time I'm 'relaxing,' I'm thinking. Strategizing.
Mentally going through the to-do-list with a fine tooth comb.
The hours at work only build. The assignments for school continue to skyrocket. The readings are towering.
It's been days since I showered. Yes, I'm openly putting that out there. No, that's not typically me. But when calculating sleep in minutes instead of hours amidst an insane schedule, I'd prefer a twenty minute nap. Real talk.
My mouth is full of canker sores; an unpleasant sign my body is not dealing well with stress. One word text messages turn into hours worth of worry about relationships and rapports; over analyzing, which interrupts those aforementioned naps sprinkling my day here and there. My appetite is waning, unless sugar is involved, in which case utensils become optional.
Patience is down. Emotions are up.
And I'm all over the place.
Friday, September 21, 2012
Friday, September 14, 2012
Diagnosing myself... and everyone I know, with all sorts of disorders :-)
It's all so fascinating! I've sat and flipped through this thing for hours tonight.
So far, I'm particularly interested in Cluster C of Personality Disorders, which includes Avoidant, Dependent, and Obsessive Compulsive Personality disorders, all characterized by fearfulness and anxiety.
Mood Disorders are pretty interesting, too! Soooooo much to learn!
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Saturday, September 8, 2012
I jogged a little...
Did some swimming...
But I mostly I played in the waves like I was nine years old...
Every muscle in my body is exhausted and I feel like one giant noodle. Its a great feeling! Can't wait to do it again one day soon!
Friday, September 7, 2012
I had decided I wanted to hike for about an hour, so when the first half hour had passed, I turned around. Simple math, right? Thirty minutes there + thirty minutes back = one hour long hike. But somehow amongst the twisty turning trails, I found myself completely lost. And when I say completely... well, I mean completely.
The second I realized I had fallen astray, the panic set in. The absolute beauty and wonder of the scenery around me suddenly became my solitude; my cell. I felt imprisoned and desperately wanted to find my feet back on the right path... I'm not sure what set off that alarm inside me. Maybe it was a survival sense, or maybe it was just me being a big baby. But the alarm... the alarm did sound. I didn't have to miss a meal or be attacked by a mountain lion. I didn't need to be caught in a terrible storm or even just wander around in the wilderness for a few hours. All it took was a wrong turn or two for the alarm to go off. That's all in took.
Needless to say, my one hour hike lasted about two hours. As trivial as that might be, it got me thinking about becoming lost. How do we lose our way and stray so far from the Path? Not the path, but the Path? How is it that the first wrong turn we take on a hike or while driving to a new restaurant the alarm instantly goes off, yet we can wander so far from God without really even realizing it until we're at rock bottom?
Thursday, September 6, 2012
I'm currently at a fifty-six pound loss, and when I'm done, I will have lost seventy-four pounds altogether!
I am 100% confident I will reach my goal; I'm just nervous about how long I'll maintain it...
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
'Cuz he be thinkin' 'bout somethin' nasty-nast!!!
I live under a rock.
Who needs TV?
I saw a Carl's Jr. commercial for the first time the other day. Um... skanky! I'm no prude; I'm aware that sex sells and that's just part of our culture. Love it, hate it. It is what it is...
But fast food? I mean, they sell kids' meals with toys and star-shaped chicken nuggets, forgoodnesssakes! We're not talking about ads for liquor or cigarettes, or some preview for a blockbuster R-rated movie.
We're talking about a fast food joint. With a kiddie menu. And an interactive website for children. Toys. Coloring pages. Fun-shaped food. Cookies and ice-cream...
And softcore porn for ads. On daytime TV. Billboards. Magazines. Etc...
I've only eaten there a couple times because there is a drive-thru conveniently close by my home.
But never again, ever.
Monday, September 3, 2012
Write about a memorable first day of school you've experienced.
Sunday, September 2, 2012
It's a great way to wrap up my 'day' before heading home and hitting the hay, and it's been really helpful.
You see, it's been hot outside lately, super hot, which makes it difficult to sleep throughout the day.
It gets nice and cool most nights here in SoCal, but that does me no good when I'm trying to doze off around 1:00pm.
The bright early afternoon sunlight doesn't help much either.
So, after hiking for a couple hours directly following a twelve hour overnight shift, I have been successfully exhausting myself beyond the point of caring about the temperature and brightness of my bedroom.
I've been stopping about midpoint in the hikes to do some devotions, bible reading, and prayer. Plus, it can't hurt my weight-loss efforts, either!
Sleeping sound. Spirit bound. Slimming down. Love it!