My Favorite

Do you know what it’s like
That feeling inside
Your body, soul, mind

From that one glance
You’re in a trance
His eyes, his stance
You feel that romance

It can’t be ignored
Open the doors
Out your heart pours
He must be yours

And to be his
To bring him bliss
To take that risk
In that moment you kiss

Letting walls down
Sharing life now
Just being around
Relationship know-how

Things start to get tough
The ride is rough
The roller coasters of love
Have you had enough?

But you melt in his smile
Stay in his arms a while
His voice carried across miles
Reminds you it’s all worthwhile

Do you know how it feels
To know this is real
Every kiss that he steals
It’s all so surreal

Forever and always
Till my dying day
There are no words to say
How long your love will stay

Faithful and constant
To him, there’s no way it can’t
Be true and
Excuse me for this rant

But how can I not tell you
That he’s the only one who
Knows me better than anyone’s knew
My whole self through and through

He’s handsome and smart
He makes humor fine art
He cares for my heart
This love’s set apart

Our qualities aligned
Compliment and contrast their kind
We’re challenged and refined
The way relationships are designed

I’m blessed and overjoyed
Beyond in love with this boy
Our love’s been employed
I have my whole life to enjoy

No one else could make me feel like this
So complete. Nothing amiss
There’s not a moment I want to miss
My days are now and forever his

Words will never be enough
To thank him for his love
To express how proud I am of
This person who has become

My everything. I will commit
My life to making his perfect
He is my love. I must admit.
My Joe, my man, he’s my favorite.

Because Writing On Here Is A Destresser

Since I have about 20 minutes to de-stress,,,, 

Yesterday, I got up in the morning and went to church, took part in the worship ministry there, worked a 6 hour shift, came back to my apartment, finished a video ad for an event me and my team have been planning, and spent 4 hours after that preparing logistically (power points, music, scripture, set outlines) for my worship team’s all-worship chapel for today.

My schedule today:
8-9 class
9-11 ministry
11-1 work
1-2 lunch/hw
2-3 class
3-4 class
4-5:30 work
5:30-6 dinner
6-7 cleaning/getting ready for work
7-11 work

I work from 10am-5pm tomorrow, room check is tomorrow night, I need to re-dye my hair like I’ve been saying for a week and a half now, and I’ve barely touched any homework aside from reading for class in over a week. I haven’t talked with my boyfriend all day. I’ve barely talked to my parents for more than 15 minutes in over two weeks.  I’m averaging 5 hours of sleep a night (that’s with oversleeping and snooze buttons) which is horrible for my chronic fatigue.  My allergies are getting worse, and all my medicine is doing is making me more groggy. I work 40 hours a week with two jobs on top of my full time class load and two ministries.  Plus, I’m PMSy.  And honestly, I’m okay right now.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not great. I want free time and relaxation and a back massage.  But I’m not breaking.  

Why? Honestly, I think it’s because I’m in the environment I’m in.   I really don’t have a lot of time for devotions, personal reading, digging into the word, and setting aside time for prayer right now.  But I have church, two worship ministries, 15 hours of Bible-saturated classes a week, two jobs that let me listen to worship music while I work, and Christ-loving family and friends who post Bible verses and Biblical truth on social media.  Honestly, without those things pointing me to God, I’d be falling apart right now.  Yes, I could very well snap any moment, but I don’t think I will.  This time is making me very aware of how fragile and easily breakable I am, but I’ve got my Solid Rock and I’m grounded right now.  I need Him more than ever and I’m seeing the fruits of turning to Him in my time of this crazy hectic life.

Off to work! 

Ignorance On Twitter Kept Me Up All Night

My friends have gotten an earful from me about people saying “gay” as in “stupid.”
There’s a whole website dedicated to ending the derogatory use of retard(ed).
People on my campus debate all the time about who can use the N-word and who can’t.
But it’s time we talked about another word/phrase that we need to stop using.

And for those of you who just read that, rolled your eyes, and thought “People need to stop being so sensitive!”

Shut up.  Just shut up, sit down, and listen to me.

It’s time we stop joking about sexual abuse, not only joking, but trivializing it.

If you did an awesome job on a test, good job.  You did an awesome job on the test.  But no, you didn’t “rape it.”

If someone says they were raped, assaulted, abused, molested, used, etc. No matter what their character is, no matter how they present themselves, no matter how they dress, no matter how many hook ups they’ve had, no matter how many times you’ve caught them lying before… You believe them, you support them, and you find them help.  You don’t laugh about it to your friends or brush it off.

And seriously, if I hear one more trivialized comparison between a sexual remark and sexual abuse, I will throw my already-broken-laptop out the window.

Don’t understand what I’m talking about?  Let me explain…

Some students from my university put together a page where people could anonymously submit crushes and flirty remarks. Some of the comments have said things like “Jane Doe has the best butt on campus” “I’d like to ride John Smith” and “SoAndSo can pop out of a cake for me ;)”  Yes, they are sexual.  Yes, they are over-the-top.  Yes, they are inappropriate.  But the responses I’ve seen against this page have boiled my blood.

Obviously, people have spoken out against this page.  Calling it “immature” “rude” “offensive” “degrading” “disgusting” “childish” and many… MANY.. other words.  Seeing as how most of the posts on the page are silly, humorous, or things like “This guy is such a cutie” “She is so gorgeous” and seeing how even the inappropriate comments are mild… I think it is an overreaction. Out of the 54 posts on that site 12 could be stretched to be considered inappropriate.   BUT on to my point…

One dissenter of the page wrote “it is nothing less than a form of sexual abuse.” and that’s when I knew I would write this post.

Sexual abuse is “a crime to knowingly cause another person to engage in an unwanted sexual act by force or threat.”  Yes, those remarks can be considered inappropriate.  But sexually abusive?  Not a chance.  Degrading?  I wouldn’t even go there either.  Degrading is to de-grade someone, to lower them down in rank.  These comments, although inappropriate and immature, were intended to give someone a confidence boost, not to humiliate someone.  I can’t bring myself to call them degrading.  It’s just mindless people.  Not abusive.  And honestly, half of those posts were probably written by guys and their roommates about each other as jokes.

If you still stand by this idea that the people posting on the site are hypocrites and dirty pigs… and if you still think that what is being said on that site is sexually abusive.  Consider this.  Have you ever been locked in a room, pinned down, struggling to keep unfriendly hands and other body parts away from exploiting you?  I have.  I am a survivor of sexual abuse.  Survivor.  It’s a term applied to victims to honor and empower their strength to heal.  And I find it offensive that my assault gets classified in the same category as “That guy, the crazy one on the volleyball team, he can give it to me any day.”

To the person who said “it is nothing less than a form of sexual abuse,” I don’t know you.  I don’t even think we’ve ever said hi to each other.  But I will say this.  That page is MANY things less than a form of sexual abuse.  I’m not saying this to attack you or vent my anger.  I’m saying this to open people’s eyes.

I understand that the Christian community can be highly sheltered and doesn’t talk about sexual things outside of “I get to have sex because I’m married!  It’s awesome!” “Ye perverse sinners.  How dare you look at porn or quote Family Guy!” or “This is my testimony… BUT JESUS.” I would be willing to say that Christians are so afraid of how desensitized our culture is to sexuality, that they have over-sensitized themselves.  But seriously, let’s get our definitions right.  Don’t confuse stupid innuendos with sexual abuse.  Doing that trivializes the traumatic experience that someone has gone through.

Sexual abuse can tear apart families, destroy marriages, and ruin lives.  I’ve seen it cause problems for my friends and their relationships.  I’ve seen it make peers run out of classrooms sobbing from triggered memories.  I’ve seen it take over and consume my mind.  It is real.  And it is serious.

People need to understand the weight their words have.  No more talk of how your team “raped” the other team.  No more disregarding or worse, laughing at, that girl’s claims that she got molested by her date.  And no more labeling things as “sexual abuse” that are merely inappropriate.

Don’t be so quick to give something a weighty label in order to drive home your message.   You have no idea who you can hurt by doing that.

Somehow The Words Flow Freely Now

God, how am I supposed to act?
What am I supposed to be?
Do I force myself to change?
Or should I do what comes naturally?

You teach me about morals and love
What about my personality?
Am I supposed to adapt and adjust?
Or revel in my idiosyncrasies?

Should I be vulnerable?
Or should I guard my heart?
Show me the line between showing love
And needlessly tearing myself apart.

How am I supposed to learn from my past
If I’m being told otherwise.
What if these lessons I thought I had learned
Are making me foolish instead of wise?

I’m all worried about implications and results
But not thinking about what I’m doing now
I’m worried about doing the wrong thing
I’m worried I’ll break my internal vows.

Everything in my life has taught me one thing
But now I need another way?
Can I make the choice to do what’s not safe?
Will I just be thrown away?

I can endure and fight through what is thrown at me
But do I dare start the fight myself?
God, I have no idea how to handle this all
Don’t keep the answer to yourself.

I’m scared.  I’m scared out of my mind.
I’d do anything to not go back to that place
And yet the only way for this to work out
Is taking the same steps I tried to erase?

My methods of coping and prevention
Are causing nothing but pain.
Show me God.  Just show me the way.
But don’t let me go there again.

You’re the one who guides my heart.
You’re the one who will will never forsake me.
Let me be open and obedient to you.
God, let me be free.

Overflow on a Late Night

He asked me what I was going to do this weekend.  I said I might write.  He asked me what I was going to write.  I told him I didn’t know.  There’s something about writing, that sometimes you just never know what it’s going to be or where it will take you.  And I’m not sure if I know what it is even now.  The irony that he would be my muse after our conversation and on the first thing I’ve written in months…

He’s an unwritable song
Nothing my fingertips could play
Nothing my lips could sing
Nothing my mind could pen
None of it would fit him.  

It just wouldn’t.
Not because he’s “too good” or “perfect” or “indescribable”
I just don’t posses the skill to capture his essence rightly.
It wouldn’t be done right.

He fascinates me.
His will, his mind, his strength
He is fascinating.
And he is beautiful.
His face, his desires, his soul.
All so beautiful.

He’s proven to me that God uses us to show each other His love.
That even though I’m not perfect, there’s someone willing to work through it all with me.
That the best kisses can be the still, soft ones.

There is nothing like the warmth that fills my heart when I see him smile at me.
Or the many smiles I can’t contain every time he does those little things that make him, him.

I used to think love left you with a hunger and an ache within yourself for someone else.
Or that it was this elation or joy that bubbled out from your core.
That love was an experience… or a story.

Maybe those are a product of love… a result… symptoms, if you will.
Maybe I don’t even know.

But I do know this.
I love him. 
And that love is happening now.  It is active.  It is constant.  It is here.  
It’s voluntary and involuntary all at the same time.

I just want to hold his hand,
When he is endearing, as a way to show him affection
When he is broken, to console him
When he is sure, to support him
When he is confused, to support him then too
When he is an ass, to remind myself of all the above
And when he is just who he is, to say “I want to be a part of this forever.”

He is worth more than I could give him.
He is amazing.  
He is better to and for me than I even had the courage to pray for.

God, keep my lips holy, my heart faithful, and my intentions pure.
Use me to show him your love, goodness, and peace
And guide us to you together.

Quick Post: 10 Tips to Pulling A Successful All-Nighter

It’s 4am during finals week and I have way too many words left to go on this paper that’s due by noon.  But I needed a mental break, so I’m giving you all free-advice that you probably already knew if you have ever googled “How to pull an all nighter” like me.

(Note: I kept this list short because if you’re actually trying to pull an all nighter right now, you really should be working and not reading this.)

1. Caffeine and 5 Hour Energy – They’re a must.
2. Public places with other people – You’re less likely to fall asleep.
3. LOTS of ice water – Keeps you hydrated and alert, plus nobody can sleep when they have to pee.
4. Burt’s Bees – Rub on the skin under your eyes when you’re desperate to stay awake.
5. Nutrition – Fruits, veggies, multivitamins, and protein are essential to keeping your body alert.
6. Food – (yes this is different than nutrition) Apparently chewing stuff stimulates your brain.  And honestly, I am always looking for excuses to eat.
7. DO NOT SHOWER – Unless its a cold shower.
8. Set alarms on your phone for intervals of time if you REALLY feel like you’re going to sleep.
9. Music – Specifically upbeat, high-pitched, annoying stuff you can’t fall asleep to.
10. Breaks and Rewards – You’re not a work horse.  Don’t think you can just power through the night.  Give yourself mental breaks (like the one I’m giving myself right now!) and reward yourself for accomplishments.

Jacking My Swag – How To Be Me In 50 Steps Or Less

How to be Kelsey Harding – Nov 2012 edition

In the past few months there have been several new “red-heads” (aka RED hair people – not gingers) on campus.  Quite a few people have talked to me about them.  These people say things like “They’re just trying to be you!”  While I laugh at those comments, it made me wonder… What would someone have to do to try to be me?  So I’ve made you a guide to being Kelsey (cuz you totally needed one).

1.  Take equal parts of Manic Panic Rock N Roll Red and Vampire Red hair dye, mix together and apply to hair.  Leave on overnight, then wash out, and proceed to have 34 people ask you if you did something with your hair.

2. Fill your closet with shirts that are mostly purple, blue, turquoise, and navy.  Wear them with denim, gray, or black pants.

3.  Eat wayyy too much candy.

4. Freak out about bad breath and the health of your teeth and over compensate in oral hygiene.   Wake up, brush teeth, tongue, and cheeks, use mouth wash, apply burts bees, use travel size listerine periodically throughout the day (usually around 10 times), brush teeth mid afternoon, use travel sized listerine another 10 times throughout the evening, brush teeth, tongue, and cheeks at night, floss, rinse with mouth wash, and rinse with hydrogen peroxide, mix a little bit of sugar with water, use homemade sugar scrub to exfoliate lips, rinse lips, apply a light coating of water to lips, apply petrolium jelly to newly exfoliated and damp lips, go to bed.

5. Be the most predictable woman ever and fawn over videos of babies and puppies… then go on pinterest for an unnecessary amount of time.

6. Put hot sauce on all your food.  It’s the only way to survive life in the cafeteria.

7. Watch the following tv shows:  Modern Family, Once Upon A Time, Happy Endings, New Girl, Switched At Birth, The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Ink Master, Face Off, The League, America’s Next Top Model, and Glee.

8. Memorize the lines to The Princess Bride, That Thing You Do, Two Weeks Notice, and While You Were Sleeping… then proceed to use them in every day conversation without people realizing it “You’re talkin jibberish!”

9. Perk up the second you hear the word “Vikings” then proceed to say “VIKINGS!” under your breath but just loud enough that most people around you can hear.  Even if you’re in history class and learning about historical Vikings…. You love the Minnesota Vikings too much to ignore an opportunity like that.

10.  Observe what mediocre things are going on in your life right now, think of how it would look if it was on sitcom, write down that situation, pull out a thesaurus to change words so you sound more intelligent, add a witty punch line, there’s your facebook status.

11. Stop eating meat.  Just do it.  Research the health benefits so you can defend yourself.  Then watch a whole bunch of videos on PETA’s website.  Now try to eat meat again.  Proceed to feel sick the rest of the night.  Congratulations, you’re now a vegetarian.

12. Organize your email into about 15 subcategories.  Make sure it’s color coordinated too.  Proceed to wonder why your coworkers marvel at your organizational skills

13. Roll your eyes at every cheesy, inspirational Christianese quote you hear… Then read pretty much the same thing in your 500 devotional books you read every night before bed and tear up the whole time.  Inconsistency is the best.

14. Crack every joint and knuckle you can.

15. Always take the 10:05am shuttle to chapel.  Yes chapel starts at 10:00am.  But look at it this way.  This leaves an open seat for someone else on the 9:50am shuttle and an open seat in the chapel for them too.  You get 15 extra minutes to get ready, you still scan in on time, and you get to sit on the floor in the back so you’re the first one out at the end.  Win win.  All you miss is a couple announcements and maybe a song.

16. Spritz perfume on your hair before you go to sleep.  Hair holds the smell of perfume better than clothes/skin, and letting it sit overnight keeps the smell from being over-powering.  Then you can use your 1 spritz for your wrists, neck, shirt, or what have you the next day and still have nice smelling hair.

17.  Lay out your outfit the night before and shower the night before too.  You’re going to oversleep substantially in the morning no matter what you tell yourself.  You don’t want to be deciding your outfit in the morning when you’re half awake and only have 15 minutes to get ready.

18. Never underestimate the power of a Shakespearean sonnet.  Buy a mini book of all his sonnets and carry it around with you on a bad day.

19. Fat. Ugly. Stupid.  The 3 qualities that make the perfect dream pet.  Bulldogs, pugs, raccoons, pigs, and skunks all fall under this category.  Their patheticness will become endearing to you.

20.  Squirrels.  Better than facebook, tv, twitter, and your great aunt’s apple pie.  Spend time alone watching the squirrels.  You’ll instantly be in a good mood.

21.  Get a tattoo and a couple piercings.  I’d advise getting them with your parents foreknowledge… but if you want to be JUST like Kelsey… you’ll probably conveniently “forget” to tell them and they’ll probably end up finding out later on when your little brother lifts up your shirt and asks “WHAT’S THAT!?” whilst pointing at your ink/piercing right in front of them.

22. Become addicted to kisses and hugs and the sweet sweet love of your two youngest brothers.

23. Sit in bed and watch t.v. at nights with your parents when you’re back home.

24. You know that tomboyish quiet girl who’s dating your ex?  She’s gonna be your best friend, she’ll be a little crazy at times, and she’s going to kick that tomboy look in the pants.

25. Bite your nails.

26. Develop several “hard to explain” “can’t make a long story short” medical conditions.

27. Noodles. Bubble tea. Skittles. Whoppers. Chipotle. Pace Salsa. Vinegar. Pickles. and Domino’s Brooklyn style pizza.

28. Gag reflex?  Thing of the past.  The amount of time you’ll spend brushing the back of your tongue in fear of bad breath will end up getting rid of your gag reflex.  So much for trying to make yourself throw up that chicken wing your friends convinced you to eat and now is psyching you out into feeling sick.

29. Tea can be mighty powerful.  It does a good job of calming down an anxiety attack.  Stick with loose leaf

30. You love kids, cooking, football, fishing, and muscle cars.  Don’t tell the guys that though.  That can be a problem.

31. No one’s home?  Throw on some spandex, bust out the biggest belches you can muster, sing like you’re deaf, and start baking!

32. Everyone is your “new best friend”  be sure to know the difference between a “new best friend” and our real best friend.  Hint: A new best friend is often a 3-year-old you saw on a video on youtube and not someone you actually had the chance to be a best friend with.

33. You were a theater geek at one point.  Don’t forget all those lessons you learned in drama practice, acting lessons, and theater classes.  They come in handy.

34. You will always say “pop” not “soda”  Unless of course the person your talking to will make fun of you or have no idea what you’re saying… then quick!  Catch yourself and say soda!

35. Never give definitive answers unless you’re positive you can back them up.  You hate making promises you cant keep/going back on your word.  Don’t mess with that stuff.

36. Develop a case of the eternal, ever-so-timely, loudest hiccups ever known to mankind.  Proceed to hiccup at the absolute worst moments possible.

37. Stop eating breakfast.  Yeah, Kelsey doesn’t do that.

38. There is never such a thing as “too much Taco Bell”  Don’t forget to save the extra sauce packets for the cafeteria!

39.  Live for awkward moments.  Life isn’t complete without them.

40.  Tell “funny” stories NO ONE wants to listen to in the least funny way possible… then mumble to yourself about how no one is listening.

41. Use “Your Mom” jokes at any chance you get.  They are still funny.  Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

42. Have an extensive list of nicknames you’ve collected over the years.  My personal list includes (but is not limited to): Koolie, Bessy, Beans, Gecko, Klessy, Cowsey, Paris, Cows, Kelso, Red, ATL, Hotlanta

43. You’re super ticklish.  Deal with it.

44. Speaking of ticklish.  Whenever someone touches my neck/shoulders the left side of my body gets goosebumps and I lose all ability to focus.  You’ll have to adapt this ability if you want to be me.

45. Day dream constantly about being a mother someday… then proceed to tell yourself you’ll be single forever.

46. Countdowns rock.  Always use countdowns for everything.  28 days to the Hobbit. 74 days to my birthday.  Things like that.

47.  Your inner Kelsey is at war with herself.  She can’t decide if she is more of a “IN MY BUBBLE” person or a “touchy feely” person.  She’s both.  Now act out life as if you’re going back and forth between the two.

48.  Be able to do a couple cool body tricks.  Show them off at parties and things.

49. “Challenge Accepted” is the motto of your life.

50. Last, but not least, change all of your personal information (name, date of birth, social security number, address, etc.) to mine.

TADA!  Now you’re Kelsey!

“You Wronged Me… And I’m Okay With That”

Think about that person… You know who I’m talking about.  The one you love to hate.  The best friend who back-stabbed you.  The girl who cheated on you.  The guy who didn’t care that you said “stop.”  The father who was never there for you.  The mother who would rather perfect you than love you.  Go ahead.  Think about how much it hurt.  Think about how angry it makes you.  And think about forgiving them.

Yeah, I’m going there.  Forgiving that person you can’t forgive.  Um, hello.  Welcome to my life.   This is something I’ve struggled with FOR YEARS and now I’m talking about it.

I thought about it.  I thought about all the terrible things that people have done to me.  And I realized that a lot of those people are Christians.  And those sins that were done against me, are covered by Christ’s blood and God’s grace.  Those who aren’t Christians… They could be my brothers and sisters in Christ one day and the same rule applies to them.

The worst wrongs ever done to me.  God says to them “I forgive you.  I do not hold this against you.” So why can’t I say that?  I hated thinking this.  I knew I didn’t forgive these people and yet God could.

But then I thought… I’m no saint and I’m sure anyone who has known me well enough could agree with that.  You know those people that get up in front of church/chapel/small group/etc and say “I am a sinner.  I am not perfect.” and the crowd nods and murmurs “amen” while they think about how they themselves are not perfect?   Yeah, well I’m the person that gets up, says “I am a sinner.  I am not perfect.” and every person in the crowd that knows me laughs and says “I know that’s right!”

I know I have hurt people.  I know I have wronged people.  But I also know that God has forgiven me for that, and that grace?  That undeserved gift?  That mercy?  I didn’t do anything special to earn it… and neither did those people that have wronged me.  It is completely WRONG that I should receive the gift that Christ’s death has given me, but you know what else is wrong?  The fact that I accept it for myself but don’t think it should apply to those people.

God is good, merciful, and forgiving.  Maybe I think those people shouldn’t be forgiven, but hey, neither should I.  And you know what else?  This world does not matter.  It is not what is important.  I am waiting for the better days of life to come in heaven.  And one day all the mess and crap of this world will be gone. One day, it will not matter that you hurt me and I think that is a beautiful prospect.   I cannot wait for the day that this world passes and it’s just God and His kingdom.

To all the people I’ve held grudges against… to those who apologized and never hear me utter these words… I am sorry and I forgive you.  I understand that what you did was wrong and yeah, you hurt me.  But God is greater than my pain and my hope is in Him.  I hope you have found your freedom in Him as well and that I can one day stand side by side with you and we can praise Him together.

Thinking like this has really helped me understand the cross more… It’s one thing to feel the weight of my sin and guilt, but it is a whole ‘nother thing to think that through the cross that person that wronged me the most can be made my brother/sister in Christ – that we can be reconciled together as forgiven creations of God.  Like seriously, holy cow God is good.  I would love nothing more to be able to look that person in the eye and not only be able to say “I forgive you” but also be able to rejoice with them in the fact that Christ has forgiven them as well.   God is good ALL THE TIME and I’m glad He does not turn people away who ask for His forgiveness like I have.

You know, I once thought “There’s no way I could ever forgive them for what they did to me…” but silly me I forgot that “I can do ALL things through CHRIST who strengthens me.”

It’s Been Another Year

November the 7th.  Back again.  I was hoping that this year I wouldn’t think about it, and that one day I’d be like “Oh… isn’t that day coming up?”  Only to discover it had passed several days ago.

Only it didn’t.

I was sitting in class.  I wrote down the date on my notes and was tracing over it with my pen… and it hit me.  11/7.  So much for paying attention in class?  I couldn’t focus.  My mind was consumed.  I couldn’t make eye contact with anyone.  I wanted to get away and get alone as soon as possible.

But I really couldn’t.  There was a snow storm today so I couldn’t be outside, my roommates were all in the apartment, and there was no way I was going to hash out these issues in the silent library.   There was just no where to be alone.

So I distracted myself.  I stuck with someone who helped me keep my mind off of it for most of the evening.  And I was blessed by friends with kind words of encouragement and a wonderful, perfectly-timed cup of hot chocolate.  (I’m really beginning to think that my love language is, in fact, food.)

Yeah, there have been times today that I’ve questioned whether or not to take a second shower because I needed to cry… (and I HATE crying)  There have been moments that I have gone into other worlds, consumed in thought about it all.  There have been moments that I’ve muttered strings of four-lettered-words under my breath in bitterness because not only did something happen that I didn’t ask for and that I tried to stop… but it is also still a part of my life today.   “Hey cool… You weren’t invited. Oh, even better!  You’re not leaving.” (more four-lettered words…Lime, Ruby, Sand, Work… )

But today… as crappy as it has been mentally and emotionally… today was better than last year.   Last year I was in the fetal position on the floor of my apartment doing the ugly cry after I had written out everything I was thinking and feeling on paper.

It’s been two years.  I wrote this post last year at this time and while I do experience a lot of that from time to time… I’m so happy with the progress I’ve made.

I’m not as sour at people for being sympathetic or trying to be encouraging… I really appreciate it.

I feel more comfortable with talking about it, which I needed.

I’ve been having fewer panic attacks… thank GOD!

And I really feel like I’m healing.

But the two most important things?  I’ve found myself again and I’ve found peace with God.

I don’t know why bad things happen… why there’s evil… why God allows it to exist.  But I do know that God loves me and wants what’s best for me.  And what would be better for me?  To have a perfect/harmless life?  Or to wrestle with God in order to understand and know Him more?  I think I’m better off with Him than I am with this earthly life.

And myself.  I’m so glad to be back.  I’m glad to feel stable again.. to feel like I can freely give out hugs without fear again.. to feel confidence, joy, and beauty in myself again… to be making decisions in prayer and thorough examination and not just fear anymore..  I love it.

Today sucks.  The world sucks.  Sin sucks.  Evil sucks.  November the 7th sucks.

But my God is good and He’s making His face shine down upon me today and I cannot thank or praise Him enough for that and the progress I’ve made.  Hallelujah