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AGGGGG! ONE OF THOSE DAYS

AGGGGG! ONE OF THOSE DAYS!

(WEEKS, MONTHS,YEARS!)

AGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!

Okay; got it out of my system!  Thanks.

You having one of those days too?  Or weeks, months, or maybe even years?  I’m sorry to say but, it happens.  That’s just part of Life.  And I hear you-  it just makes us TOTALLY CRAZY sometimes!

“What is IT,” you ask?  Well, that varies for each of us, and it varies throughout our lifetime.  Basically, IT is anything that throws us or our routines into a loop.  Tests at school, someone gets sick, we need money, we have just way too much stuff to do and not enough time to do it in.  You name it, there’s probably a stress to go with it.

There was nothing major or life-threatening for me today, although I have had those days.  No, today was just a combination of tired, over scheduled, and not being able to prioritize very well.  I felt like I hit the floor running, and everything was totally NOT what I had planned for.

Can you relate?

Part of it is that we get plans in our heads, and it’s hard for us to shift tracks when things get derailed.  Or maybe we FINALLY have it all together with where we’re at for the moment when suddenly it changes, and we’re still trying desperately to do what worked before, or what we think should work.

So what do we do?  Instead of constantly battling, or falling apart, what can we do when we are having one of “Those Times?”

SO NOT IN CONTROL!

It shouldn’t come as any surprise but it still does.  WE ARE NOT NEARLY AS IN CONTROL OF OUR LIVES AS WE THINK WE ARE!  Yes, there are most certainly things we can control-  what we eat, how we treat people, our work ethic, etc.  But we can’t control Mother Nature, or when we get sick, other people’s actions, or life over death just to name a few.

So as difficult as it is for us to accept, the reality of our lives is that they will go much smoother if we don’t continually fight and expect to control the things we really can’t.  (Save your energy for what you CAN control!)  I HATE not being in control!  But let’s face it, when I get sick or injured, I can try and push on as if nothings happened.  I can moan and wail because it’s unfair.  Or I can accept the situation, and make the best of it, see the Blessings still around me, and trust that God is still working in my Life, for me and through me!

*God’s in Control

LIFE IS CHANGE

The truth is, we’re always changing in this Life.  Many of us like the predictable, and want our lives ordered.  But things change.  We grow up, get married.  We change jobs, get older.  We have pets or kids, people come and go in our lives.  So many changes.  And here again, we can cling to what was, what we want, what we expect . . . or . . . we can realize that Life has changed, re-establish ourselves, learn to see what is good in this new place we find ourselves.  As scary as the unknown is, sometimes it’s less exhausting or stressful that trying to fit yourself into a Life that has changed.

*The cool thing, though, is that God NEVER changes.  We can always count on Him and His Promises!

STRESS ONLY MAKES IT WORSE!

We all know that stress is bad for us.  Okay, not when a tiger is chasing you because it makes you move out of a dangerous situation.

But in general, stress is not good for your body, your emotions or your Spirit.  It makes everything harder to deal with.  Especially if we are in a constant state of stress.  God never intended us to live that way.  He wants us to rest, to sleep well at night, trusting in Him.  But how do we NOT stress?  Or at least minimize the stress?

Well, I’m going to share with you some things I have learned over the years.  I come from a family of major-worriers, and I stress.  But I have learned things that help.  I’m going to call them Power-Ups or Energizers, things that will help you de-stress, and bring positive energy back into your Life.  But first, we need to think about our Sinkholes, our Energy-Zappers, those things that drain the energy out of us, and lead us into stress and despair.

Please take a few minutes to think about what kinds of things steal your energy from you.  (Writing them down somewhere helps.)  Driving in rush hour, being hungry, dealing with certain people, being around crowds. having your living-room floor dirty, being constantly on the go, whatever they are, IDENTIFY THEM!

Now you have an idea about your Energy-Zappers so avoid them if you can!  If you can’t, 1.) you can prepare ahead of time if you know they are coming, and 2.) you can have techniques for dealing with them while they happen or after the fact.  These would be your Energizers.

Think about things that bring you Joy, lighten your Heart, or help you during rough times.  Talking with God, or just BEING with God are vitally important here!  Being around people who bring Sunshine into your Life, relaxing to your favorite tunes, petting your cat, being in nature, whatever they are, please write them down!

THIS is your arsenal of weapons to use when dealing with Energy-Zappers!  For example, I used to ALWAYS wear my favorite dress when going to take a test because it made me feel confident and beautiful.  Plus, all the friends I saw along the way told me how nice I looked!  Major Power-Up!  Think of which things will help you before, during and after major stressers in your Life.

This takes awareness.  You have to choose how to react.  But only God knows your body better than you, so pay attention to it, and do what you can to help you in stressful situations!

I Hope this gives you some food for thought.  You’re going to have “Those Times.”  How you deal with it will make the difference between being overwhelmed or going with the flow.  For me, I am again changing priorities in my Life.  A new job and a husband awaiting surgery remind me that this is not the time to be hugely social or investing myself in major projects.  Those times will come-  in their own time.  For now, I need focus on how Blessed I am to have a job that I Love, and to be here for my husband, and with him, because he means the world to me!  Thus I will let go of trying to control so much, of trying to live up to my own unrealistic expectations for this stage of Life.  I will try to avoid things that drain my energy, and will instead focus on those that fill me with energy.

And most of all, I will trust God.  I hope you can do the same.

Blessings,  -Billie

RESOURCES:

Is Today One of Those Days? “Calvin and Hobbes” created by Bill Watterson

Crazy Town found on lovethispic.com, Taz created by Looney Tunes

Instead of Worrying, the Tiger, and Stay Away found on Pinterest

The Secret found on shambray.com

Stress Less from theorganizedhousewife.com.au

Shine from Simple reminders.com

FLUMMOXED AND BAMBOOZLED!

 

FLUMMOXED & BAMBOOZLED!

Dear God!

HELP!!!!

Please help me!

As David says in the Bible, I am filled to the depths with despair;

I call on Your Name for aid!

“O Lord, from the depths of despair I cry for your help; Hear me! Answer! Help me!” -Psalm 130:1-2 (TLB)

 

WHY!?!

Why does it all seem overwhelming at times?

My Life is not bad;

I have a GOOD Life that You have given me,

filled with Love and Family, Hope and Friends.

So, why then, do I find myself at times filled with despair,

my emotions all a-whirl?

 

LORD!!!!!

PLEASE HELP!

I am tired. So tired, all the time.

Owwwwwwwww. Pain,

in my back, knees, feet and legs.

God, I LOVE my new job!

I REALLY DO!

And I know that my body will adjust,

that I’m learning, and will not always be floundering to balance everything.

But for now . . .

I feel as if all I have carried

seems to come crashing down at my feet.

 

There was a time, when I was young and had energy,

when I could do the tasks You gave me,

juggling Home and health, Family, food, helping others

and time with you, God.

I find it harder now to deal with everything,

perhaps because I am no longer a Spring Chicken any more,

(Or a Spring Peacock for that matter- isn’t it cute!?!)

You tell me to take care of myself.

HOW DO I DO THAT!?!

The task seems insurmountable!

I need sleep, I need good nutrition and exercise.

Keeping up on medical issues,

not sitting so long at the computer or phone.

Spending time with you, Lord

finding time to relax and renew my Spirit.

Time with my husband, with Family, with Friends.

Caring for the Home, the pets, working,

TRYING to keep up on housework!

(AND DON’T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON THE YARD!)

 

How, Lord?

How am I to do all appointed to me,

and with good Grace?

How do I Love You, Love myself, Love others

when all seems overwhelming?

I don’t mean to whine.

You have seen me through so many hardships,

and have given me so many Blessings.

I thank You, Lord.

Even now, most of the time, I’m learning this new Life. And Loving it!

But I MISS my daughter! I miss my Mama!

I can’t find TIME! And I am so low on energy!

Even as I embrace and an excited about my new Life,

it’s hard to shift from the old one.

Can I just lay my head on Your shoulder?

Because when I do, I feel you caress my hair

as You whisper words of encouragement and Love in my ear.

You’ve got this,” You say.

I Love you, and all will be okay.”

As I cling to You, Loved in Your comforting embrace,

my tears begin to subside.

I have been so exhausted;

usually this despair comes upon me late at night

when I am overwhelmed by tasks yet unfinished,

and worries of the coming days.

 

“I am exhausted and crushed; I groan in despair.”

-Psalm 38:8  (TLB)

Yet, You are already there with me.

Through it all, You are with me.

And things I think so overwhelming and important,

are really just minor things in Your Grand Scheme of things.

Love Me” You say. “Trust in Me.”

When I am confounded and befuddled, anxious and worn down,

those are not of You, Lord.

You are encouraging, Loving, accepting.

You ALWAYS welcome me with open arms,

so filled with Joy to see me, to spend time with me!

You never contrive to overwhelm me.

If I am overwhelmed, it is because I have not turned to You,

I have not heeded Your guidance.

I struggle on my own strength,

pushing through toward the goals of my choosing.

“Commit everything you do to the Lord.  Trust him to help you do it and he will.”  -Psalm 37:5  (TLB)

You came to give me Life, and abundant Life.

Not weary worn frazzled Life.

Please, Lord, help me remember this.

And, yes, I hear You!

I am to take care of myself but also cut myself some slack.

For I am Yours and I am Loved!

Thank You, Lord, that in You, there is always Hope.

I Love You, Lord!

Amen

 

As you read this, please know that I do not live in constant depression, nor am I primarily sad and overwhelmed.  Life brings changes, changes that are new doorways for the Lord to Bless us with.  But they can be challenging and heart-wrenching at times.  We all feel anguish, dismay, confusion.

 

I choose to share this with you because I want you to know that it happens.  To all of us.  Yes, strong Christians get overwhelmed at times, feel lost, and don’t know how to deal with everything.  But there is always Hope in the Lord.  Please hold onto that promise, and remember that He is with you ALWAYS and that HE LOVES YOU and thinks that YOU ARE WONDERFUL no matter what!  And if God Almighty thinks you’re wonderful, then you better believe it!

 

I leave you this day with Love and with Hope.

Blessings, -Billie

“For the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, says: Only in returning to me and waiting for me will you be saved; in quietness and confidence is your strength; but you will have none of this.”  – Isaiah 29:15  (TLB)

Resources:

Bamboozled from hideyourarms.com

Crying in Anguish, Out of the Depths, Please Hold Me Jesus, and Hope found on Pinterest

Baby Peacock found on animalia-life.club

Overgrown Yard from homeguides.sfgate.com

Overwhelmed from thethingswesay.com

Life Abundant found at artbyerinleigh.blogspot.com

THERE’S A NEW BABY IN THE WORLD!

THERE’S A NEW BABY IN THE WORLD!

There’s a new baby in the world!!!!!!

What a totally magnificent, miraculous and wonderful thing to happen!

I can’t help but feel that “each time a baby is born,

it’s as if God is saying the world should go on.”

For those of us who have the child, it is truly a miracle of Life!

I know the science involved in it,

but to think that a new Life is created from two people,

well, that’s truly AMAZING to me!

Each time I look upon a new child,

I see God’s handiwork,

for only with Him could such a treasure come into being.

And to think that God has already Loved that child

since the beginning of time!

He not only a wondrous plan for the little one’s Life,

but also so cherished is that precious soul

that He, God, has ensured the chance for God and child

to be together for Eternity!

I can’t even begin to imagine the enormity of that Love.

But I get a glimpse of it whenever I see a newborn.

Halleluja, Lord!  Thank you for this child!

A PARENTS’ DELIGHT

So maybe not all of us are enamored with small babies.  After all, they’re not always adorable, they’re A LOT OF WORK, and they cry and make messes and need constant care!  Sure, the parents can know this too.  But they also see someone entrusted to their care, to Love and hold and share Life with.  God has made this one of a kind, tiny, helpless creature, and given it into safekeeping.

So, yeah, there are going to be those times when you’re ready to pull your hair out because the baby is crying and you don’t know what to do.  You’re going to question yourself, and wonder if you can take care of this child, and give it the Love it needs.  But just the fact that you care so much is what shows, that with God’s help, you can be an AMAZING parent!  Not perfect because there are NO perfect parents.  Just like there are no perfect kids.  But you learn and Love, you adapt and grow, you sacrifice and you are Blessed.  All by this little bundle that is new to this world.

And even amidst sleepless nights, and car-rides with a crying baby, you still find yourself wrapped around their itty-bitty fingers.  You want to hold them, to be near them.  You rock them and sing to them, wake up to their cries, and go in to check their breathing when they sleep.  Because they are yours.

There are the times when you’re holding them and they intently watch your face.  They quiet when they are in your arms or hear the sound of your voice.  Those are the times that make it all worth while because to them, you are the most important being in the world.  Some of my most special times with my babies were holding them, singing them lullabies, and watching their eyes filled with Love as they fell asleep feeling safe and content.  In those moments, I thanked God for the miracle of my children

The Bible tells us that children are a gift from God, a Blessing to their parents.

We don’t always feel that way about our kids, at any stage of their life from newborn to adulthood.  There are times when they’re difficult, or we just can’t seem to do anything right.  We have to LEARN how to take care of them, and then learn the NEXT stage they enter.  And the next . . . and the next . . .  There is heartbreak along the way and worry, sleepless nights and frustration.

But you know what else there is?  There is MORE LOVE than you could ever imagine before you had kids!

You are THEIRS, and they are YOURS!  What an humbling thought to be so Loved, no matter what!  And talk about Joy!  You have a lifetime of memories to make and experiences to share.  Remember all those stages I said they go through?  Well, along each step, there is also Joy.  (Yes, even through colicky nights or rebellious teen-ages!)  You just have to be willing to see.

I write this post now because some dear people in my Life have just had babies, and I am filled with such a sense of the Divine KNOWING that God has given them this child, and that He has a not perfect, but still wonderful plan for their Life.  I remember how difficult it can be as a new parent, or as a not-new parent.  The times of worry, trying to do what’s best for my children, feeling totally lost, and not sure if I’m good enough.  Well, guess what?  We’re all going to make mistakes along the way as parents.  Our first responsibilities are to keep our children SAFE and to LOVE THEM!  And we do that to the best of our abilities.  When I worry, when I get discouraged, I turn it over to God.  I do the best I can, and I remember that HE GAVE ME THESE CHILDREN knowing the Mommy I would be, knowing how much I would Love them and do my best for them.

MY ENCOURAGEMENT TO YOU

First and foremost, praise God for the precious gift He has given you!  And turn to Him-  for strength, for guidance, for wisdom, for patience and help and LOVE!  And pray for His care and Blessings upon your children!

Try to enjoy whatever stage your children are in, from baby to college students and beyond.  Because, truly, these moments are fleeting.  Savor the times you have.

Don’t try to do it alone.  It’s really okay to admit you can’t handle it by yourself.  No one can!  Find other parents to relate to, stay close to your Friends for moral support, and find groups of similar families through church groups, play dates, Family Friends, or just in the neighborhood.  For your children, for your Family, and FOR YOUR SANITY!!!!!

AND VERY IMPORTANT!  IF YOU ARE SUFFERING FROM THE BABY BLUES OR POST-PARTUM DEPRESSION, PLEASE, PLEASE GET HELP!  It does not make you a bad parent!  I was depressed after the birth of one of my kids.  It’s pretty understandable since your hormones and lifestyle are all out of whack, not to mention the fact that you’re sleep-deprived!  Get help from Loved Ones!  For you and the baby!

Mostly, though, do the best you can, cut yourself some slack, and DON’T TRY TO BE PERFECT!  Parents Love their children more than anyone else on this earth.  That makes you pretty special, and He did entrust them to YOU!

So entrust your children to God.  Trust Him to guide you and care for your children because He Loves them even more than you do!  (I know that’s hard to believe but . . . )  And commit your works as a parent to Him.

With this post, I choose to Celebrate the miracles God sends to earth every day as newborn babies.  And I Celebrate their parents, and those who Love and care for them.  I encourage you to find others to help you on this journey of Parenthood because it is not for the faint of Heart.  But it is so worthwhile!  Trust God with your children, because only He can fully care and protect them, as well as help and guide you.  And don’t let Life and busyness, worry or fear, or anything else keep you from slowing down and really experiencing the Joy that God gives in children!

You’re not going to be perfect; don’t expect yourself to be!  But do strive to be the best you can, for your kids’ sake.  And please go watch this video about new moms by Kristina Kuzmic

Be Blessed with your children, because you are a Blessing to them!

Celebrate the gifts God give, and praise His Holy Name!

In Joy,  -Billie

RESOURCES:

Newborn Baby photo found on Pinterest

Before I Formed You artwork from amenprintables on etsy

Dad with Newborn, New Mom with Baby Girl and Happy Baby images found on Pinterest

Crying Baby from totallythebomb.com

Children Are a Gift From God found on etsy

Colorful Mother and Child artwork from novica.com painted by Bright Dankyi Mensah

Celebrate Life image found on keeperofstories.blogspot.com photographed by Kathy Sharp Frisbee

Jesus with Baby painted by Del Parson

A Parent’s Prayer from GodlyWoman.Co

COPING STRATEGIES FOR DEALING WITH FOOD ISSUES

COPING STRATEGIES FOR DEALING WITH FOOD ISSUES

One of my goals while writing these posts dealing with Food Issues was to educate people, but also to encourage those of you dealing with them.  It really is a life changing event when you discover that you or a Loved One has Food Issues.  So this week I wanted to share with you some strategies I’ve found for helping deal with these issues.  I hope they help.

STRATEGIES

ALLOW YOURSELF TO FEEL WHAT YOU’RE FEELING:

Ultimately, by taking care of your health, you’re going to eventually feel better.  But change is HARD.  Acknowledge your feelings, admit you’re scared or ANGRY or really, really sad.  A lot of people made light of our Food Issues, even those close to us, which made everything tons harder!  People don’t want to see you crying cuz you can’t have cheeseburgers.  They may take it personal when you tell them it makes you really sad to see them eating chocolate when you can’t.  But you know what?  Your whole life is in UPHEAVEL, and it will only be made worse if you try to squash down all of your feelings.

Allow yourself to go through the various stages of Food Grief.  Eventually you will get to the stage of acceptance.

EDUCATE YOURSELF!

The more informed you, the more options you give yourself.  You will be so much better equipped to deal in a society that, for the most part, won’t get it.  It is certainly better than it used to be, more food options, more medical personnel aware of the problems, more people have at least heard something about it.  But when you learn all you can, researching through medical channels, books, the internet, and other people with the same issues, you’ll begin to see that there is still a lot open to you, even when dealing with this major change in lifestyle.

GET MEDICAL HELP AND SUPPORT!

Your first, primary resource is going to come from your doctors and nurse practitioners.  Make sure you explain EVERYTHING to them about what you’re going through!  Ask questions, have them do the right tests on you.  You want a Doctor who will LISTEN to your concerns and WORK WITH YOU!  If they just ignore your concerns, blow you off, or don’t have the time to actually hear your fears then you need to FIND ANOTHER DOCTOR that is a good fit for you!  This is really important!  The first Doctor who actually LISTENED to all my daughter’s symptoms, who did not say she was too young or had no idea what she was talking about, who actually spent a great deal of time listening and then discussing options with us, well, that Doctor was AMAZING!  That’s what you need!  That’s what you deserve!  Don’t settle for less-  your life could depend on this!  And certainly your quality of life.

SURROUND YOURSELF WITH YOUR OWN SUPPORT GROUP!

I cannot emphasize enough have VERY IMPORTANT this is!!!  It’s HARD and it’s SCARY and we have no idea what we’re doing; we can’t do it on our own.  And God doesn’t want us going through it alone!  First and foremost, I can’t imagine going through this without God-  He’s who I turn to for comfort when I’m scared, but also for the strength I need to get through my trials.  And He brings people into my life to help hold me up, encourage me, and walk through this journey with me.

Please get the people who Love you on board with this!!!!!  They WANT to help you!  You can also connect with others who share your same issues, either through forums and support groups online, or talking with other people you meet who are going through Food Issues as well.  It just helps to know you’re not alone.  It helps that people understand, or at least care and are trying to help you, and validate you in this journey.  My Dad doesn’t understand food allergies at all; it took him a long while to accept when we say we can’t eat something.  The day he brought Fried Chicken, potato salad and watermelon, only to find we couldn’t eat ANY of it was heartbreaking, but also a break-through.  Bless his heart, he accepted our refusal with grace and Love, even though he didn’t understand.

EDUCATE OTHERS:

Most people don’t really know about Food Issues, and what can be involved.  (For instance, I didn’t know wearing braces could make it where you can’t eat rice among other things.)  You especially want to educate your Family and Friends, and as much as you may WANT to stand on a street corner proselytize to EVERYONE at the top of your voice, that really isn’t the best way to get through to people.  I KNOW it’s frustrating when people just don’t get what you’re going through, but please try to remain patient with them.

Have articles to share with them about what your Food Issues involve, take Family members with you to the Doctor, let others with similar issues talk about what it’s been like for them.  And we’re not just talking about the food and the physical issues here.  Yes, those are important.  But so is what you’re going through emotionally, how it feels to be dealing with this.  If you don’t tell people, they won’t know.

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!!!!!

YES, with FOOD!  It’s going to take perseverance and self-control.  At first it’s going to be hard, but you can do it!  And God helps!  He really does!  Turn to Him and ask for help!

-But also take care of yourself emotionally because right now you are at a delicate, fragile stage.  OOOOOO-  I HEARD THAT!  We don’t like to hear that, do we?  In our culture, we don’t want to be seen as weak.  But you know what?  There are stages in life where we ARE weak!  We have to take care of ourselves, re-adjust, regain our health.  So get that extra sleep, ask others for help, and be gentle with yourself.  God says He shows up best in weak people.  (2 Corinthians 12:9)  Isn’t that the truth?  Because we certainly can’t get through everything on our own!

TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR DESTINY:

I know that might sound a little weird after what I just said, but there are things you CAN control.  Research restaurants with food you can eat.  Find recipes or invent them with food that works for you.  If your will power is not strong enough, DO NOT LET FOOD IN YOUR HOUSE THAT IS GOING TO CAUSE PROBLEMS, either physically or emotionally.  It’s okay to tell people “no.”  This is ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT if you, or someone you Love has severe allergies that can be FATAL!

IF YOUR CHILD HAS FOOD ISSUES:

Please remember that YOU are your child’s protector! You’re the one who’s going to have to research and learn, and to console them and stand strong EVEN WHEN YOUR HEART IS BREAKING FOR THEM!!!!!  You’re the one who has to teach them, so they grow up knowing how to protect themselves.  Don’t let society or other people dictate when your child’s life is at stake!

God made you the Warrior Protector of that child!  Stand strong for them, but also, PLEASE take care of yourself because you’re going to need it!  But it will be, oh, so worth it, as you see your child grow strong and healthy and able to navigate through a dangerous life on their own!

Finally,

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT IT WILL GET BETTER!!!!!

It may be hard to see right now, but as you regain your health, you’re going to start feeling so much better! In my family, we actually eat better now then we did before Food Issues.

And,

DO IT FOR YOURSELF OR YOUR LOVED ONES!

Even if no one else gets it!  Your health, your life, is more important that than other peoples’ opinions or annoyances.  If they can’t accept that, they’re part of the problem, not the solution!  Do you know that some people are so sensitive that just KISSING someone who recently had their “danger food” can lead to a life threatening occurrence!?!  True statement!

So you want people in your life who are going to accept your Food Issues, help you with them, and LOVE YOU!  Not in spite of the fact, but just because they Love you!  This is just something that makes up part of you!

I know there are lots of Caps and Exclamation Marks in this post; can you tell that I am passionate about this subject?  I want people to know that this is serious, that this is important, but that good will also come out of it!  Did any of my strategies bring you Hope or give you something to try?  Are there people who might appreciate it if you share this article?  PLEASE REACH OUT FOR THE HELP YOU NEED!  Because you are SO WORTH IT!  In God’s eyes, and to the world!

Blessings, -Billie

RESOURCES:

All Images Found on Pinterest