It’s non-stop. Every day brings a combination of new happiness or continuing sadness. As much as I hate sounding melodramatic, it’s true. I don’t know if it’s the stress of the upcoming nuptials (14 days!) or what, but as of late, stress is my middle name. And unfortunately, I hate my middle name. Like the long-lost cousin that moves into your house, pawns your jewelry, steals your money, sleeps with your husband, and then has the nerve to be mad when you get mad. I don’t know that I’ve ever had so much seem so wrong. And let me acknowledge to you and to myself, there is a lot of good in my life: Fiance and I had our first date in about a month of final plans for the wedding and our new home and family and traveling; my final check from my 403b (like a 401k but for crazy people like me who love being in the classroom, read: teaching) came in the mail and was SWIFTLY deposited; I was able to come home from work my first full day back in the country and not cook but relax amidst some cantankerous thunderstorms and go to sleep; and at the end of the day, I still have my health (such as it is), my family is mainly intact, plus my pretty face and rockin’ bod. (Kidding. Kinda.) But. And really, it’s a huge BUT: in almost every aspect of my life, there is some stressor. And yea, I get it, we all have our slumps, down days, but this is different from a problem at work or a problem at home or a problem with your extended family or a problem with your finances or a problem with your health. And while I sometimes feel like I’m whining because I recognize things could be so much worse, this is the one of the most horrifically stressful times in my life because everything, I mean every-damn-thing is under attack. The devil is powerful ya’ll. I mean he knows his way around your mind and heart and as of late he’s been pulling out all the stops. I can be uplifted one moment and discouraged the next. It’s not the roller coaster the world has me on; it’s the spirit-made one I built myself.
Let me say, I recognize part of the problem is me. No, let me rephrase that. We, as Christians, are under attack daily, not necessarily because of what we do, but because of who we are and Whose we are. However, it’s my fault for not having my guard up better: i.e. my study time has been wretched lately, i.e. none while I was in Japan and barely my daily devotional time. And that’s what it comes down to. This is a test that I’ve been failing miserably. It’s no wonder he got a hold of me so easily. It’s no wonder every little thing is ready to push me over the edge. Plus PT is here. PT: Period Time. Or Psycho Time. They’re pretty much interchangeable.
I do think my stress management style could use some improvement. And I do plan to look into it. Cuz seriously, ain’t no worse feeling than lying in your house, alone, on the floor, crying, throwing glass bowls, remotes, your damn glasses (which you still haven’t found), just all out falling apart, and not understanding if it’s because you’re crazy, everything in your life is stressing you so it’s ok to be highly emotional, that dag-gone PT, or a combination of all 3.
I came across this the other day in my daily devotional (which I love and recommend courtesy of www.CrossWalk.com). The one I subscribe to is written by various women. Love it!
“Because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.
Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:3-4 (NIV)
So, I get it. I know what He’s doing. I know it’s painful, and I know He’s purging me of some things as I prepare to be a wife, a mother, and a better me. I also know that it’s just that: a painful process. And I know all things work together for my good (Romans 8:28) and that at the end of it I’ll be “mature and complete, not lacking anything” but in the middle of it, when I feel the most storm-tossed and rest-deprived, when I’m weary down to my bones and hurting deep in my spirit, what I know is one thing, very simple, and very honest: Ouch.