What doesn’t work, and what does.

What doesn’t work, and what does.

I’ve always been a different kind of person. I feel things deeply and I have a very hard time letting go of anything. When I was 11 and my family moved from California to a small town in Arizona what I was feeling was incredibly alone. For more than 10 years I tried to find a way to break that feeling. I tried to make myself feel anything else because the loneliness was eating me alive and I didn’t want to be entirely consumed. What I found was a lot of things that didn’t work. I found a lifestyle and an attitude that kept me from disappearing altogether, but in no way filled the empty, lonely places in my soul.CUTTING DIDN’T WORK!

For a very long time I believed slicing myself apart was the only way I could control the feelings that would rip through my head. I thought that lies and blood and secrets and pain were the best I was going to get. I wrapped myself in the identity of a depressed emotional girl and I held on to that tightly. I held my knives and my pain and my scars very close because I believed they defined me. I didn’t really want to be broken, but that was far better than being nothing at all.

STARVING DIDN’T WORK.

When I was 16 I put all the will I had into quieting the part of myself that told me I was UGLY, FAT, NASTY, WORTHLESS. I went on the diet. I pulled all my mastery at lying and hiding to the surface and I stopped eating. I lost 40 pounds within the span of 2 months and I sucked up the approval of everyone I knew. I thanked my parents and siblings and boyfriend when they told me I looked sick. I never told anyone when I passed out on the living room floor. I didn’t care when handfuls of my hair started coming out. None of it mattered. The feeling of being empty because I was starving was far better than the nameless ache for SOMETHING that I’d always had before.

LOVE DIDN’T WORK.

Falling in love with the wrong boys didn’t work. The label of being someone’s girlfriend didn’t give me the belonging I believed I needed. I still felt every bit as lost as I had before, but with the added fear that the boy would leave me. Because of course, I wasn’t good enough for them anyways. Falling in love with the RIGHT man didn’t work. Even when I found the man of my dreams, who has loved me the right way from the moment we met, I still didn’t feel like I was good enough. Why would this beautiful, smart, funny, charming man want a wreck of a girl like me?

CONTROL DIDN’T WORK.

Trying to control EVERY aspect of my life and my families life didn’t make me feel any more at peace than I had at any other point in my life. Budgeting our money, obsessively scheduling our time, and constantly worrying about absolutely everything DID NOT WORK. Those things did however drive my family crazy. I became someone I didn’t like being around. The expectations I put on myself and everyone else were nothing short of impossible to reach. So what have I learned from all of these failed attempts to make myself happy?

IT WON’T WORK.

I will never be able to make myself feel better. I will never be able to cut or starve or control the emptiness away. I can’t make my life or the lives of those I love perfect. I’ve learned that I DON’T HAVE TO. Through a faith that is growing every single day, I’ve learned that no matter what I do to mess it up, God does in fact have a plan for my life. In spite of my flaws and all of my brokenness I am loved beyond understanding. I have learned, and am still learning, that if I let go and trust I will be better than okay. Everything will work out exactly the way God means for it to work out. I’ve learned that even the things I’ve seen as bad in my life were being used for good. I’ve learned that I don’t have to be perfect because I’m already perfectly loved. In all of this, I am finally coming to know PEACE.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭29:11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

http://bible.com/111/jer.29.11.niv

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Faith in progress.

I am a Christian. I believe in God and Jesus. God is a real part of my everyday. I don’t doubt the power of God in my life. I believe with my everything that my life is not mine to plan, but part of a much bigger picture. I believe this. Well, I say I believe this. I believe I believe this most of the time. You know, until things get difficult at which point I get insanely control freaky and I start PLANNING! WORRYING! My boyfriend and I are compatible in most every way. He and I are an incredible team. We parent the children as a team. We take care of our life as a team. One of the only areas we conflict in is my worrying. I tend to over worry about our finances most often. When I worry, I go one of 2 ways. I get pissed, or I shut down altogether. Worried Harmony is not a good team partner to have. She is not a good mom. She is not a good friend. Quite honestly, she sucks hugely on every level. I KNOW this. Even though I know this, I still worry every time something comes up. This month for example, I have 2 weeks of unpaid vacation. I spent the last 2 weeks stressing out over this. I laid out an unreasonable budget for my boyfriend no less than 209 times. I stress my poor stepdaughter out with my worried, sucky, Harmony attitude. I had nights with my boyfriend where I refused to even speak to him. Not because things were bad, but because I was angry with him for not worrying with me about a possible time in the future when things may be difficult. How incredibly stupid is that? So yesterday I got paid. I made A private decision not to worry about the money situation. I prayed over my check when I got it, handed it to my boyfriend and committed not to worry about it. My not worrying about it equated to me telling my boyfriend I wanted nothing to do with the money situation for the rest of the month. “You deal with it. I’m not worrying about it.” I don’t think that’s exactly what he’s been waiting for me to realize. Mostly because he knows me way better than that. He knows I am incapable of not worrying about things. I can talk a lot of game about how I’m not going to worry while continuing to worry extra hard. Today I got a smack me in my doubting, worried, stupid human heart moment. A few months before I got my job, in the middle of my worrying I posted a bunch of stuff on EBay. I was going to be an EBay super seller and NEVER worry about money again!!! And then only 2 of my things sold. After I got my job I no longer thought about the EBay stuff. I let all my posts expire. Today I got a message enquiring about one of my expired posts. This item ended up selling today for exactly the amount that I won’t be making at work the next 2 weeks. What does this mean? This means that all my worrying was absolutely pointless. This means I’ve waisted days of our lives being a B word to my family for absolutely no reason. This means that God took care of us, like he always has, like he always does, even though my faith is CLEARLY a work in progress. I’m writing this as a public thank you and apology to God for being an idiot most of the time. And as a reminder to myself for the next time I want to slip into the worrying mindset. I am not the boss of my world and I don’t want to be. God can take care of us much better than I ever could. No matter how much I worry.                

You can have it all!

You can have it all!

I spent most of my life convincing myself I couldn’t have the things in this life that I wanted. When I was a teenager I told myself I couldn’t go to school because no one was helping me. I told myself I wasn’t smart. I was just a stupid little girl and I couldn’t do anything to change it. When I turned 18 I had a hysterectomy because I refuse to pass my genetic cancer on to an innocent baby. I spent the next 4 years telling myself that I’d never have a child. “Some Harmonys don’t get those things.” I believed I wasn’t worth loving, so I dated guys who were incapable of loving me. Then I cried when they didn’t love me. I told myself I couldn’t write well, so I never finished my stories. I told myself I couldn’t play piano, so I stopped practicing. I told myself no every single day. I knew moments of happiness. Laughing at jokes. Finding silliness in the kids I watched. My default mode though was sad. Dark. Down. I was an incredibly quiet and shy girl. I got away with that much longer than I should have because of my blindness. When you are blind people naturally overlook you. You have to stand up and demand to be noticed as more than an object of pity. I didn’t believe I deserved respect so I didn’t ask for it. “Some Harmonys don’t get those things.” People made me nervous. Life scared me. I didn’t know how to become more than just a character in other people’s stories. Tonight I’m sitting here with my step daughter sleeping in my arms and her daddy sleeping in our bed. I sang her to sleep with the song I wrote, and finished, for her and her daddy. On the shelf next to us is my high school diploma that I received last month. Tomorrow I will get up and go to the job I got because I didn’t quit looking when everyone I spoke to said they couldn’t have me watch their kids because I’m blind. At work tomorrow I will play with not only my work kids but the neighbor kids too. They’ll be outside waiting to play as soon as I come out, because I’m good at my job and they want to have fun with me. I’ll say hello to their mom who I know because I wasn’t to shy to have a conversation with her last week. After work I’ll go to my stepsons soccer game, then I’ll have dinner with the love of my life. I’ll have all of these amazing moments, and it’ll be just another Friday. Because it turns out, this Harmony does in fact get these things. I get the life I always wanted and never thought I could have. I get to be the girl I never thought I could be. I can stand confidently in a room of people and not feel like less than everyone else. I can go to the store with my eyes out and not feel like a freak. I can be myself and not apologize for it later. I can have it all. My life won’t be perfect everyday, but it’s mine and I love it absolutely.

Everlasting friends.

I’ve been to Blue October concerts before. I’ve even been to a Blue October concert with my Carmen before. This weekend though was something extraordinary. Carmen and I flue to Dallas from our separate parts of the world. We saved our money and planned our plans and we made it happen. I got to meet so many of the people I’ve talked to from the Facebook groups. As a general rule, I don’t do well with people. I get shaky and nervous. I get quiet and I try to not call any attention to myself. I try to just be without anyone looking at me to closely. At the concert Friday night none of that applied. I was just me. I was me with people who know me and accept me. It’s this overwhelming feeling of being loved. That doesn’t happen to me very often. I don’t get that kind of peace with other people. I couldn’t be more thankful for the absolutely beautiful people I get to call my friends. I thank God every day that my life is exactly what it is. The concert was simply breath taking. I’ve never been to a show with such amazing energy. I feel like I don’t have enough words for this. All I can say is I am beyond blessed that I got to be a part of such an incredible night, and that I got to share it with such wonderful people. Thank you all for being who you are.