Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

"There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven. A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up. A time to weep and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance. A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing. A time to search and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep and a time to throw away. A time to tear apart and a time to sew together; A time to be silent and a time to speak. A time to love and a time to hate; A time for war and a time for peace." Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Friend vs. Acquaintance

SO, last year someone told me "you are a fake friend. you don't mean to be. you just are right now and you can't help it."
I had thought I was a real friend. I had hardly any sleep, struggling to figure out how to be a mom and survive on my 45min-2hr chunks of sleep and was trying to be a friend to my friends when I so desperately needed someone to just hug me and tell me everything would be ok.

Instead... this was the profound, painful thing told to me. Its haunted me for a year.
This person often rubbed me the wrong way, but I knew God put her in my life to help me be a better person. To humble me. To show me where I need to grow. So I constantly was trying to "be a good friend" to her.  Not that I fully went out of my way. Or tried REALLY hard.  just... thought I was. I wasn't doing anything less "friend-like" toward her than any other friends.
I had never ever been told this.

So hearing this from her, hurt.
A lot.

True, what she said wasn't really something a "good friend" would say, but then again, wouldn't a "good friend" tell you the stuff that hurts? The difference is they they would say it IN love and would love you and help you become a better friend, right?

This last year I have really struggled with reaching out to people, as I didn't feel like they didn't have time for me, since they never reached out to me. As I was craving for someone to just call me up and say "hey wanna go to coffee?" or "can I come over and chat" a few times that happened... but nothing like it used to when I had a lot of friends before I had a child. Or was married...
This month I have really decided to take action against what my "friend" had told me about being a fake friend.
I have been struggling to come to terms that maybe I really am not a good friend. Or maybe I used to be, and just because of my post-partum depression, I really just suck at it right now. Which is very likely in either case.

But the more I think of it, I KNOW I have reached out to people asking how they are doing. Invited them over. Texted them. And many of them, I have not received any type of that back. Like they might come hang out with me once in a while, but they aren't going to invite me to do anything.

So thinking more on this, I have decided that maybe what the issue is, is that they aren't friends. Maybe that's what a "good acquaintance" is. I have decided that my view on friends vs. acquaintances is this - your friends will MAKE time for you & anything special pertaining to you. They reach out to YOU as well.
And good acquaintances are just nice to you. You can chat, and they might come hang out, but they don't reach back out to you. They don't text you out of the blue. They don't invite you over.

This month turning 30 - I'm taking a look at all I know, and realize I have A LOT of good acquaintances. Quite a few of the people I called friends, but I think too often that is used, when they aren't really.  Or maybe they were and just life has changed and they have moved on.

So I think for me to be NOT a "fake friend" I need to stop trying to be friends with those who aren't trying to be friends back to me. I'm not "getting rid" of anyone, just not going to put energy into relationships that are 1-sided anymore.
That way I can be a "REAL friend", and put energy into people who are interested in being a "real friend" back to me.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

So much, already

January has a been a full month already and its not exactly over yet.  I turned 30, two of our nephews turned 11 and 17,  a dear friend's mother unexpectedly passed away, a woman in my Bible study suddenly had a brain hemorrhage and passed away, finally got a health answer on my abdominal pain, I had an interview and got a job (not starting for a while), a friend has come to visit for the weekend, having a party for my big 30 this weekend, and am possibly planning to be gone traveling all of February except for one week. Without Jon, but with Karlie. Can I do that?
Emotions are turbulent at best. These dear women passing away have really caused me to stop and remember that LIFE is PRECIOUS and fleeting. We can't take a day for granted. We have to rejoice that we will see these women again one day. God has great plans and its selfish to want to keep everyone near us while we are here on earth, but I still hurt for my friends who are suffering this loss. I can't imagine being in the shoes of either of these families.
And then I get busy, and I forget about making each moment important and meaningful. About creating more time to hold the ones closer that are dear to me.

Motherhood has already been working on my selfishness. I never would have said I was so selfish, but being a mom you constantly are choosing to do what is best for your kid (really it is the best for you too in the end, but doesn't really feel like it at the moment) and put your wants aside. Its so good for me. But hard!!
And I'm learning to be more content. oh... two hard lessons at once, Lord have mercy on me!!!  Yet He promises to not give us more than we can handle. So often I feel so overwhelmed.

In Bible study this week Beth Moore was talking about how it takes energy to be defeated and depressed. That is SUCKS the life out of us and that is why you are always SO tired and just want to sleep. amen. I can agree to that. For so long I really thought "I" had beat depression. Oh yes, God helped me. But I did it.
Well, Postpartum, here you are. The Lord is showing me that "I" did not beat anything. I may have repressed it and held it off, but only the LORD can heal me and remove it from me. As I've struggled these past 15 months, or more... So often I have felt my cries fall on deaf ears. I felt as though the Lord wasn't listening, didn't care, had more important things than me and it made me angry. So angry. I have never been more angry at the Lord than I have this last year. And I've told Him that.  I have screamed, cried, thrown fits, told Him I was going to leave Him if He didn't do something soon. 
Yes. Me.
I am sure He just was loving me in my fits saying "Baby, I'm working on this already. Why do you think you are having these fits?? why do you think you haven't left? I am here, my grace IS sufficient. You need to lean on ME and not your own ways. I WILL give you the endurance and strength. You and I both know it, but we have a lot of this Selfishness and Control issues that need to be dealt with, and you just need to keep holding on and believing, we're getting through it."
I didn't want to work on me. I was "fixed" already! I had taken care of what I saw needed "fixin" already Lord.  Why you wanna mess a "good thing" that I had goin already? Couldn't He just make things around me easier and better than they were and leave me alone? 
I didn't mean that.
did I?

Okay. I am going to cling to you like a clinging vine Lord. I can't do this. Only You can and You will have to give me the strength and endurance and JOY and love while going through this, because I am empty. I AM exhausted. I am SO tired from my defeat and depression, that I can't fight. So Lord, please fight on my behalf.

I am believing that He IS creating a New Thing in me.  Its kinda scary, I don't know what/who this "new thing" is and what if I don't like me? That's silly, I know. But I'm kinda excited too. I am tired of this. Tired of being sad, depressed, unsure.
I am ready to be POSITIVE, upbeat, energetic, excited about life, definitely wanting something NEW! I guess my prayers for the Lord to CHANGE ME, has been heard! :)  when you pray it, watch out, He will move. But He is so good. He will help you through it.