Feeling a bit stuck today. Not just today but lots of days, but especially today. Stuck in a sort of good place.
I’m puny right now. Been on the couch quite a bit. I’m not very good at this “listening to my body” crap and normally I do what I want or have to do regardless of my body. These days, I feel like I don’t have the gumption to get up and go. Sucks. However! I was stir crazy enough by yesterday evening that I was excited to go to Bible study last night! That’s a good sign I’ve learned to recognize in myself. When I *want* to get up and go and have the motivation to do it. A real good thing.
I’ve left my last two shifts at work early. I sent out a message to get another florist hired to replace me ASAP. It’s not what I want to do, but it’s what has to be done. I know who I want to hire. I’d appreciate prayer that the flower shop continues to thrive, that I am able to give it over to God in every way, and that my team continues to make it happen while I’m absent. Thankful that my mom is there to oversee a lot of the day to day operations. Thankful for my Barbara and her loyalty to me over the years. I love you, B. Thankful for Shannon, Alexa, Greg, Kelsie, Toby, and D’Ann. They all make the shop what it is.
In an effort to understand God’s love for me, I’ve decided to start documenting stuff about God and His love. I’ve been wrestling with some ideas. A lot of us look at “love” as one blanket term. I’ve learned that with God, love is revealed in different forms. They even have names that I don’t know how to pronounce. As a parent, you can identify some of them without knowing that there are scientific psychological scholars who were paid tremendously for making up a word we can’t pronounce, but know is there.
See, if you put yer kids in time out, you love them in the way of discipline. You want them to be better human beings so you choose to punish them to correct behavior. Welcome to my relationship with God! Seriously. I have a lot of discipline left to learn before I am an acceptable human. I’ve gotten a lot better, but I still need so much refinement in this area. Doing what needs to be done even if you don’t want to do it. I suck at discipline. And, I respond to it in anger toward God, a lot, which He doesn’t really honor so much. I look at it as rejection and being disliked. Regardless of how *my* brain interprets things, I think we can all agree that discipline is a difficult form of love.
In contrast, some of the more obvious forms of love – affection, time, and gifts – are the way that most of us have learned to receive love. When God plays the ole switcheroo and suddenly love is not in the form of provision or protection, but in the form of discipline… um, it’s a stinky baby. Ha. Not that I haven’t been provided for or protected, because I have. But, the physical withdraw from God and His replacing that physical love with spiritual love, has been very difficult for me to understand.
This is how I think God would be talking to me right now.
“Dana, we need to talk. (*sigh*) You’re going to sit in time out and think about things because I need you to realize that my love for you hasn’t changed. I still love you the exact same way I love all of my kids. But, I want more for you! It’s ready and it’s yours! But, you’re going to have to go through some tough crap to get there. I promise that it’s going to be worth it. But, I guarantee that at some point you’re going to want out because, girl, the tough stuff hasn’t even started. Here’s the thing – whether you choose to acknowledge me or not, I’m there. You can choose joy, because I am there providing you with joy when you have none. You can choose peace, because I am always there offering my peace when yours is rocked. You can let go of those negative, scary, anxious thoughts and think about me and my stuff. My stuff is way more powerful than anything you can contrive. My stuff, added onto your uniquely made self, is a pretty rad combination. You are where you are for a reason. Look at those babies, look at your adorable husband, Toby. I’ve given these gifts to you. Look at your beautiful mother and sister. They may not make it to me, without you. You need to be here. You need to get over yourself. You have a purpose. You better buck up, pull up your big girl panties, and get’rdone.”
Yesterday Toby held the kids and they were all crying over me. It really sucked. We all know my health is getting worse and they are so scared. My throat issue is pretty intense. It’s actually kind of funny because it feels like the sensation of being choked. Not painful, just awkward pressure. I have to gulp extra sometimes. Food doesn’t seem to bother me as far as choking on it, but I get tired eating meat or cheese type of textures. Yesterday, it was as though every 30 seconds to two minutes, I get these waves of choking in some parts of my throat or esophagus. If this is an MS thing, it basically falls on the mercy of our Lord. I don’t think that there is much in the way of treatment and it’s associated with more severe forms of the disease. The 28th can’t come soon enough! My friend, Elise, has some of the same swallowing issues and she is warned against eating alone and stuff. I’m not ready for those types of restrictions! Like I would really obey that.
Anyways, the funny part about it is that my husband is a purple belt (?) in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. A big part of this sport is submissions and choke holds. It is the goal. It is what Toby works so hard to learn how to execute and what I am seeking so hard on how to avoid. Irony. God is grinning right now.
Until we know what is next, the girls have been asked to step it up a notch in our home and that is difficult for me. I know I rely on my Q a lot already. She doesn’t complain. Toby doesn’t complain. Sometimes he gets frustrated, but seeing how statistically men tend to bail ship when the wifey gets sick, it’s pretty profound that he’s still here. I am not a big ball of sunshine, so the only reason I know I have him is because God loves me.
God loves me enough to give me three amazing, healthy children.
I know God loves me because he blessed me with the best mother on planet earth.
I know God loves me because he gave me D’Ann, aka “thebestbigsisterever”
God loves me enough to bring me the most loving, supportive church family a girl could ask for.
I have a flower shop and more importantly, my Barbara.
I have a house, car(s), and more than I physically need.
I am blessed enough to have to deal with 1st world problems.
A door opened to get me into my neurologist much sooner than expected.
I know that God loves me because he has taught me to be more obedient with my money which has helped with a lot of stress in my life.
Today is my real day off. Which is really a day at home with my babies. Homeschool. Housework. I’m so thankful the Lord has given me a rest. I could get used to this “love” thing.