Wednesday, September 7, 2011

You Can't Get There From Here..or Can You?

Tonight, I am plumb wore out as we say here in the South. It's been one of those days. I feel as if I walked backward uphill both ways, while barefoot, in the snow....yet another good Southern sayin'! It is a tough thing to try and wax poetically philosophical about this journey I'm on given my level of fatigue. But, I made a promise last night. If you showed up again, I'm guessing you expect me to at least try to keep it. So, here we go!

The Chinese proverb says a journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. If you had asked me last year this time how far I had to go to dig out from where I was, I would have said, “You can't get there from here!”

Scripture says a man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.
If, and that's a big qualifier, I've been trying to plan my way a single day in the last 2 decades, God has put up a detour sign every other step. I still wake up every morning wondering what HE is up to and what I SHOULD be up to. There are some days I wake up feeling as if we have arm wrestled all night long and are still in a draw. This one might have been that kind of day.

Courtesy Mad Penguin Creative
I'd like to think I'm so caught up in the little picture of what happens on a day by day basis that I just can't see the big picture in progress. I'm hoping some of you looking on from fraidy cat space can see it better than I. ( that I think of it, if you can...hit me up with the 411? There might be chocolate in it for you!)

Amazingly, it has dawned on me the last few days that a lot of changes have taken place since I went to the rehab...uh..I mean the writer's May. A friend who has known me for about 30 years, and through thick, thin, and thinner, commented a few weeks ago that something amazing was happening thru the process of the blog. She opined that I am finding 'my voice'. Seeing as how she is a paid writer and all with a DEGREE in writing, I took that as high praise. (Secretly, I thought she might have had too much high fructose corn syrup spiked with hydrogenated corn oil and was waxing overly sentimental!)

Funny. I started out wanting to write about how OTHER fraidy cats overcame their inner quaking and shaking. Early on, that idea came to a screeching postponement. Why? Because: I could hear the words of 2 gals I met at the conference echo in my brain, “You know...till you settle this thing with you and God, your writing is never going to be as effective as it could be.” Those words got to working on me night and day til I gave in and started writing my way back to God. Or at least trying to.

If everyone promises not to freak TOTALLY out and head for the end-of-the-world bunkers again, I can report that I have actually held a book by Elizabeth George in my hands and looked at the title page. It felt good. I felt almost ready to read it and do the workbook that comes with it. Given that a year ago, I was ready to pack up my entire bookcase of like books, I'd say that's some progress. Ya think?

A year ago, I felt as tho' my sons could barely stand the thought of me much less tolerate the sound of my voice. I don't mind telling you that your individual clicks have upped my creds with them on a DAILY basis. (For that assistance – unwitting tho' it was – UPS will shortly arrive at all your homes with Little Debbie cakes. Whaaa? You know...I'm a cheap date and a cheap chocolate kind of girl. You expected more?)

Sons #1 & 2 have suddenly begun to look at me with renewed interest and respect. They buzz with excitement every time I hit a new blog count milestone. Yea, even Son #2 who early on told me all my visits were 'by mistake' and that no one would come back for a 2nd look! We have real conversations again. In some of them, they even seem to think my opinion counts for something. A Pulitzer for literature could not seem any sweeter.

Courtesy Mad Penguin Creative
A year ago, I could barely stay in the grocery store long enough to grab $20.00 worth of food. Other than that, I tried not to leave home lest someone see me for the freak of nature I felt I was. Today? I am out and about almost daily and able to enjoy outings and my friends. I guess my sunburned emotions and soul are showing signs of healing?

Amazingly, I don't feel like the WEIRDEST one in the bunch anymore. I realize every single one of us struggles even while keeping our happy faces on so no one else knows how bad we are hurting. I've realized we 'Christians' are the WORST about that issue. I missed it for a LONG time because, especially in some churches, we make such believable mouth noise about BEING transparent. But, God help us if someone waxes transparent anywhere but from behind the pulpit on pre-approved occasions.

I've also figured out that some of the more miserable folks are the VERY ones who look at me with disdain because my transparency is threatening to them. They might read my blog in SECRET but they wouldn't dare tell a soul. They'd literally DIE before they hit 'share' under my blog link for fear of what others who know them would think about them reading it much less sharing it.

Courtesy Mad Penguin Creative
Looking back, I think they are the ones I've been most afraid of. I wanted into their 'never let 'em see you sweat club' REALLY, REALLY badly. So bad it HURT. Tonight? Nah...not so much. I wish they wanted to be in MY club. I hurt for them because they couldn't admit it if they did want in. Are these realizations part of the process of me finding my voice? Is it all part of settling 'this thing' between God and me? Is my wrestling match almost over? LOL...if any of you know...can you help a girl out here?

This is a fraidy cat world. If we are going to make it out in one piece, we are going to have to be there for each other to patch each other up when the world and all its hurts tear us apart. That means telling the truth when the truth hurts. It means not gasping and retreating when some brave soul will not be silenced about their pain anymore.

There's my update for tonight. What's yours? How bout coming back tomorrow and bringing a friend? I dare ya', fraidy cat. Love ya long and strong. See you soon. I'll be here if you will.
Courtesy Mad Penguin Creative

Ezekiel 36:26
And I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you: I will take away the heart of stone from your flesh, and give you a heart of flesh.


  1. Thanks for taking us on this journey with you. Truth be known, we're all fraidy cats at some level and at some point in our lives. Some are just too fraidy cat to admit it.

    You're the brave one.

  2. Another good post! Yes, it seems as if you are pulling through... but does the journey ever really end? Not until heaven.

  3. I'll in box you on where to send the Little Debbie. ;)
    Your writing inspires me to look closer at myself and to be more tolerant of others. Thank you for writing even when you don't feel like it. Hugs, Susan

  4. Vonda...if bravery involves nearly dying of fright, I'm your girl! I am humbled and honored, yet again, by your gracious support and encouragement.

  5. Elisabeth, I fear you have hit the nail on the fraidy cat pun intended. I'm not sure we will ever escape our tendency to fear until we are delivered completely out of harms way here on this old earth and into the presence of the one who conquered all fear for eternity. Today, I am pulling ahead. Tomorrow...I'll know when it is over! Stay tuned!

  6. Susan, I don't know how to break this to you gently. Maybe you should sit down? I ate the Little Debbie....I had good intentions...really I did. If I can inspire anyone to take a closer look at a struggling friend and resist the temptation toward a strident response, I will be humbly and deeply gratified. It is such an easy trap to fall into...assuming how we'd react or behave in someone else's shoes. When you are the one before the firing squad, it looks a lot different! And..I rarely feel like writing by the time I can get everyone settled down and quiet so I can. Somethings gotta give in that department!