Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Are you kidding me?

Really?  God is not this cruel.  And so help me, if I hear anyone talking about how God is planning mass final destruction on a city they know nothing about except "Girls gone wild" videos and slanted Mardi Gras press coverage that they shouldn't be watching anyway because they're "good Christians" (and good Christians shouldn't even see those things), I might go buck.  And I don't mean "buck" in a So-You-Think-You-Can-Dance kinda way.  I mean "buck" in the back-away-from-Leanne-because-she-might-kill-you kinda way.

Here's the story

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

One other thing that makes me request

My little brother.

Things that make me smile

Well, one thing in particular.

I'd like to see Angelo imitate THIS baby.

The Happy Housewife?

Some of you know that last week was a pretty rough one for me. Consider that my last blog was the beginning of said week and you'll understand. So today, I am working on becoming a "Happy Housewife". Here are just a few of the good deeds on the agenda for the day:

Christopher and I have FINALLY loaded up an item that has needed to be returned since almost 3 months ago and we will be returning it this evening.

Last night, in a fit of "needing" to have food, I bought a clearanced bag of dark chocolate kissables when I stopped at CVS to get toothpaste for Bella. Unfortunately, I did eat a substantial amount of the candies last night. BUT I have decided that instead of eating the rest of the bag like a pitiful bon-bon eating housewife, I will bake cookies with them, like a June Cleaver-esque sort of housewife.
This is not to say that I haven't eaten some of the batter, nor that I won't eat any of the cookies. But at least this way, others might benefit from my chocolate-buying insanity.

Bella and I took advantage of our early morning outing to the Hub (we dropped Christopher off at work) and swung over to Seal Beach to play in the sand. Other than Bella running and hiding behind me whenever she heard a big wave, it was a lot of fun. And even the hiding part was fun for me.

We have a play-date with Jessica and Mare, who we haven't seen in ages.

Hopefully I'll be meeting a friend for coffee during Bella's nap this afternoon.

And finally, the most ambitious of all these undertakings, I will put the laundry away. And by doing this, I might also pack for my trip to New Orleans this weekend (it might be the only thing that motivates me to sort through all the clothes).

So that's my day. Nothing big, but it should be much more positive and productive than the majority of my last week.  Here's to the Happy Housewife.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Am I really blogging about this while I'm on vacation?

It's really hard for me to unwind, especially when I'm with other people. It doesn't matter that the "other people" are the part of my family that I love the most. It's the fact that I'm still a mom and a wife. I still feel like there are expectations. And when I feel like I HAVE to do ANYTHING, then I don't know how to relax. Maybe I don't know how to relax regardless. Or maybe I honestly have such a hard time dealing with change that, no matter where I go, it takes me a good 2 days to acclimate. Or maybe I'm so insecure that when I have freedom, I don't know what the heck to do with it so I put needless expectations and pressures on myself.

I think part of the reason I had such a hard time our first 2 days here was because of the book I was reading. It's called "Running in Heels" and it's about a single girl who's struggling with every corner of her life. A third of the way through the book, the reader discovers that the heroine battles with anorexia and her newly developed habit of binging and purging. It was at this point in the book that I began to relate with the character and my focus began to shift inward.

Those who know me well, know that I struggle with food. I've never been anorexic or bulimic. The only reasons for this are that, 1) I don't have the self-control to starve myself and, 2) I hate to throw up...and I'm barely successful at making myself throw up when I'm truly sick anyway. But I can't tell you how many times I've thought about how much easier my life would be if I could cultivate one of these 2 habits.

(And yes, I know it's bad to think that starving or purging could somehow make life "easier" or better in any way.)

At one point, Natalie (our heroine) says:

"As I work on the toast, I add and subtract--calories gained, calories spent, eating it on, running it off--the sabotage is involuntary...What do people do, who don't think of food? Their lives must be gaping holes, chasms of nothingness punctuated by random meals. What would I think about, if I didn't think of food? I'd think the unthinkable. So food is what I think of."

I get this. I wish that one day I will know what it's like to not "think of food". It's constant. I feel good because I've (finally) made a healthy choice. Or I feel guilty because I've eaten a "bad" food...or too much of a "bad" food. Or I'm thinking about how I'm going to eat as much as I can in order to not feel the things that I'm feeling. Or how I'm going to burn enough calories to make up for what I've eaten. Or I don't want to go out to eat socially because it means appetizers and heavy foods and looking at deserts (and wanting them). Or I'm worried that I'm going to become the 286 pound Leanne that I've been able to avoid for the last 6 years. And it's all because I'm afraid. Afraid to feel. Afraid to make a bad decision. Afraid that people won't like me if I assert myself. Afraid that I'll feel lonely if I don't have it. Afraid that if I have another goal, I might fail. And I can't fail at food. I know food. It knows me. Intimately.

"I'm bored of using my body to speak my pain. If only I could learn to use my voice instead."

Those of you who've struggled with these types of addictions know that this quote speaks to the root of the issue. We use food, alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, sex, work, money, things, hobbies, ANYTHING to occupy us instead of dealing with what is real. We don't use our voices. We act out. Like children.

My daughter doesn't have much of a vocabulary yet, so when she gets upset, she hits someone, she bites something, she throws herself on the floor. She acts out. But she is 17 months old. She doesn't know how to use her voice yet.

And apparently neither do I.

Oh, I know how to use my voice when it comes to others. I can see straight through most other people and I can tell them what their problems are and how they should deal with them. But when it comes to myself, I'd rather hide in a corner (or any other dark, solitary place) with a bag of Oreos.

But like the quote says, "I'm bored" of it. It's annoying. It's tedious. It's tiring. And it's time to use my voice. Time to be an adult. Time to stand up for myself and take my life (my body?) back. Again. Because trust me, this isn't the first time. Or the 2nd time. Or the 50th time. This is everyday. And y'all, I'm so tired. It wears me out. And a lot of you are sitting there right now knowing exactly what I'm talking about. You're tired too.

If I'm writing this to you, then know that I feel for you. You can comment or not...these kinds of issues aren't for the faint of heart. These aren't things that most people want to publicize...just the ones like me, who are just 'off' enough to not care if people know they're crazy. So know you're not in this alone.

As for me, I'm going to cry a little bit for myself, and then I'm going to try to live my life. And enjoy it all the while.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Praise the Jesus

That's right. We are FINALLY taking a REAL vacation! See ya, Long Beach, Downey and surrounding areas. Big Bear, here we come!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Saturday, August 9, 2008

A declaration.

Most people go about their lives doing what they think is right for them. And certainly there's nothing wrong with that, but it's not something I've ever really prescribed to. From high school on, I've only wanted to do what God wanted me to do. I've listened for and sought out God's voice to the best of my ability, to the chagrin of some of those closest to me. I've learned a lot of lessons about my own humanity and about the true Grace and Joy God has given me to give to others. I'm not saying that I'm perfect. Far from, actually.

What I'm finding as I get more and more distance from the day Christopher was asked to leave Journey, I realize it was that single event that brought about a pause in the way I seek God. God didn't say to leave. A group of men did. We left. Somehow, we end up in the Midwest. Anyone who knows Christopher and I knows that move couldn't have been in line with the passions God had given either of us. We made that move. Not God.

I get pregnant. I say I'm not having a baby in the Midwest. God says nothing. Or maybe we just forget to ask. We come to Southern California. Through a series of events and the Spirit of God somehow moving in the midst of our ignorance and disobedience, we end up back in ministry. It takes us a while, but we start listening again...individually. And God begins teaching us again. Slowly.

And here we are. Ready to listen. Ready to obey. Ready to "pick up where we left off" as some might say. This is not an easy task. This is not a simple journey. The road ahead will be riddled with joy, pain, hardship and confusion. But here we are. A family now standing in the place of those 2 individuals who met almost 4 years ago. God knew what He was doing when He crossed our paths 4 years ago, and He knows what He's doing now. And dare I say...

It's go time.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Anyone up for some live music?

A while back, I was reading Jamie's blog about her good friend, Shannon Curtis, who also happens to be on tour this summer. I checked Shannon out and found that I really like her style. Very sultry. She reminds me a little bit of Diana Krall. So I added Shannon as a friend on Myspace and told her if she's in the area, I'll totally try to see her.

Well, folks, she's coming to Molly Malone's on August 10th and I'm totally stoked to have an excuse to go hear some quality music in what looks like will be a fun venue. If anyone is interested, let me know! It would be fun to go as a group.

Friday, August 1, 2008

I hate drama

Why do people feel like they can't just be honest about what they're doing? If they sin, they should sin boldly, right? When I know someone is doing something wrong, it kinda tweaks my nerves when they tell me they didn't do it. I know you did it. I know when you did it. I know how you did it. I'm pretty certain I know why you did it. Please don't tell me you didn't do it.

And you know what else? Even though you did it, I still care about you and want to help you. But as long as you are lying to yourself, I am powerless to help you...everyone is. Including you.

This particular issue in any relationship or circumstance brings out more passion, fire and gut reaction from me than anything else. Maybe it comes from knowing Jesus. Knowing that where there is honesty and truth, there can be healing and newness. Lives can change. But as long as people continue to believe lies and live in the murkiness, there is absolutely nothing anyone can do for them. Even if they mean well. Even if they want, with all their hearts, to make a change.

I'm not going to talk about any details. Those of you closest to me probably know what's going on. Those of you who don't know; dthis is not an affront to our relationship. I just don't believe in airing anyone's dirty laundry on blogs. And you can also rest assured that if you're reading this, I'm also not talking about you. I don't believe in communicating my feelings toward someone via world wide web. I'm not 12. My feelings have been communicated to the party in question. This is simply residual ranting.

So thanks for stopping by and sticking around long enough to get to the end. And if you're going through anything that feels like this, as my friends in the South say, Bless your heart. It's certainly not for the faint of heart.