Saturday, June 13, 2015

Mistakes Happen

I wish I could control my children. I just do. Life seems safer that way. I wish they would do exactly what I say when I say it. I wish they would heed my warnings and my "I'm more experienced" words with trepidation rather than with attitude. But. Those guys were born with their own personalities and their own brains and their own way of thinking that can be guided, but ultimately they make THEIR OWN CHOICES. 

This gives me cause for great worry and consternation, especially as they get older. Because when they get older, they form a few opinions about life: A) friends are cool and should be listened to and impressed (some adults have not gotten past this stage and still think drunk/rebellious/deranged stories are really cool and impressive to tell. They're not. So don't). B) parents are not cool. C) fun is the most funnest thing ever. D) risky behavior is cool (see A above). E) they don't actually have to do what you say, because you can no longer physically force them into submission.  F) sometimes the behavior is so worth the punishment. G) is it their job to bring the sass back into your life. Maybe they think we were missing this in life and they needed to spice things up a bit. 

My sweet girl made a choice recently that brought out the crazy in me. She has the unique ability to do that to me. Jon has a term for this. It is called "mad woman". I can see where he may have thought this as I tore up the stairs in our house, screaming things like "ARE YOU CRAZY" and "WHAT WERE YOU THINKING". My throat hurt after this incident, due to all the "mad woman" screaming. (I prefer to think of myself as a crying dove. Innocent. Delicate. A flower among thorns.) It was quite the drama. Both A and her friend stood frozen in her room, staring at me with round eyes and gaping mouths. I've known the friend for almost her whole entire 11 years, but I don't think she has ever seen such a display from me, especially when I looked at her and talk/yelled "if you were doing what she"--hand jabbing in the general direction of A--"was doing you are in T-R-O-U-B-L-E". 

Maybe I'm just like my mother
She's never satisfied. 
Why do we scream at each other
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry. 
{prince/strange symbol/the artist formally known as prince, a true musical genuis}

Yes, I actually spelled TROUBLE. It was my nod to country music's realest (word) bad boy (it's the mullet that makes one a real bad boy--business in the front, all about the party in the back. I wonder if he wore white tube socks like one proud, coiffed-and-curled mullet-sporting friend admitted to. With a tux. Oh, yeah.) Travis Tritt. (Of "I smell T-R-O-U-B-L-E" fame. 1990s country music. Impressive musical geniuses.) I don't think she really knew what to think, other than there is a chance Miss Heather has lost her marbles. Who spells TROUBLE to someone who is in trouble? Me. 

I was really worried about what the friends mom was going think about A's behavior. Well, I was worried first about safety and good decision-making, etc., but I was really worried about my friend. She's been my friend for a long, long time, and she's a really good friend, and I didn't want A's stupid choice to make her think twice about letting her daughter spend time at our house. It happens, right? Even if you don't want it to affect the way you think about someone else, it does. And it hurts to imagine anyone thinking now we/they can't hang out because of this. 

I have known loneliness in my life. Middle school was lonely. Adulthood has been lonely. The time surrounding my moms death was lonely. Our last move was lonely. Even when there are lots of people around, even if there are people everywhere, living life without a close inner circle can be incredibly difficult and lonely. But having a tight inner circle is easier said than done, and it takes trust and respect to accept and be accepted as a part of The Circle. I think that's why when there is strife and animosity inside a person's own four walls, it creates a very lonely atmosphere. 

It's hard to make friends. At least it is for me. Sometimes it feels like dating. And most of us are soooo past dating. I went through a time where I felt so sad and so lonely I thought that maybe even the friends I had didn't want be my friend anymore. It felt like everyone else was too busy and too involved and had too many other friends, and I felt seriously sorry for myself. 

*Nobody likes me
Everybody hates me
I guess I'll go eat worms. 

*I'm positive my grandma did not actually make up this song, but she used to sing it to me when I would complain about  being in trouble with my mom or not having anything to do or middle school/high school drama.

Pity party aside, the issue was mostly mine. Some of it was just me being me--I'm not incredibly outgoing and am not necessarily what I'd call a people magnet. (Confession: There have been moments when I wished I was Jen Hatmaker, perceived People Magnet extraordinaire.) I have this habit of being slightly walled-off, meaning I want to be invulnerable to being hurt. This is hard, because it is hard to get to know someone who is not open. It annoys me when people step in their own pile of crap and then complain about it, but this is exactly how I operate. So I guess I annoy my own self. 

Pity parties get old, and after awhile of feeling sorry for myself and half-heartedly trying to figure it out on my own, I started praying. Things happen when you start praying. (Disclaimer: these things may not always be what you anticipate or have planned. You're dealing with God. And they will always be better. Trust. So move over and watch Him work in your life. Your preconceived notions are nothing compared to what He can do.)

Trusting God is not something I'm innately good at. It takes a lot of prayer and wishy-washy behavior before I turn over the keys to Him. And even then I am prone to snatching them back. (I am the first-born. I am controlling. No one ever voted me "Most Fun" or "Most Relaxed" or "Most Anything" in high school.) But I have found the most amazing thing happens when I hand Him the things that I can no longer deal with: I have peace. Peace in my life is something I'd pay a lot of money for. And here it is for free! My problem may not be immediately solved (there's that whole reap/sow nonsense that must be dealt with) but He offers what can't be found anywhere else: peace. Plus lots of other things (see: The Bible for: Things God Offers That The World Cannot. Talk about helpful.)

There is a reason He is known as YAHWEH-SHALOM. "The Lord Our Peace". 

When loneliness threatens to encroach, it's easy to give in. But I have a lot of fight in me, and this is my fight song. I wave my banner high and proclaim The Lord Our Peace is my peace, despite the noise from the world. 

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I'm alright song
And I don't really care 
if nobody else believes
Cause I've still got a lot 
Of fight left in me. 
{fight song, rachel platten}

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