just a thought. · semi-random reflections

such a sad synecdoche.

when i took hermeneutics, this became one of my favorite words. it makes me sad that i don’t get to use it in conversation much.

a synecdoche is a form of figurative language when you refer to a part of something as if it was the whole thing.
like when you say “my car broke down,” and mean the engine fell out. it’s the engine, not the whole car, that’s broken.

or when i say “i love soccer.” or worse, when someone says about me, “she’s really good at soccer.”

i don’t love soccer. i LOVE playing goalie, and i’m okay at it. that in and of itself is my hands down favorite “sport.” but other than that, i hate soccer and i suck at it.

i had a conversation about that with someone the other day(they couldn’t wrap their minds around the concept of “no i don’t play soccer, i’m just the goalie”), and then i started thinking.

sometimes we pick and choose which parts of our lives to trust God with and which to try to take care of on our own. which disciplines we need to practice and which aren’t important for us.

so you’re going to church every sunday? that’s good. are you spending any time with God the other six days of the week? that’s a bigger issue.

it’s like we’re bragging about how well our windshield wipers work while the transmission’s been dead for a month.

just a thought.

just a thought.

hide, hurt, or help.

this is one of my favorite postsecret cards that i’ve ever read.

every single person in the world has been hurt. most of them are probably still hurting.

the reason we can’t always tell is because everyone reacts to it differently.
of every possible way i could think of, i found that each falls into one of three boxes.

some people hide.
these are the ones who never want to get hurt again, and the only way to do that is to never ever let anyone in again.
…with walls around our weakness, and smiles that hide our pain.
 
we hide because we are afraid. we have been wounded, and wounded deeply…to hide means to remain safe, to hurt less.stasi eldredge

others hurt.
i don’t mean just sitting and wallowing in the hurt that they feel. i mean inflicting some kind of hurt on other people, or possibly themselves. seeing something else hurt, even if it isn’t in the same way that they’ve been hurt, temporarily makes their own hurt okay to them.
kids who’ve been beaten push other kids on the playground.
middle school girls who’ve had nothing but terrible things said to them at home will say terrible things to other girls.
dancers who are told every day by their teachers that they’re fat will start telling themselves they’re fat and trying to fix it by starving themselves.
teenagers who constantly hear that they deserve to be punished will start cutting themselves.
it’s not always that purposeful though. some people don’t even realize what they’re doing or that it’s hurting anyone. people who grew up never seeing compassion in their families seem insensitive to everyone else’s feelings because they were never taught to care. kids who only hear negative talk at home never say anything nice to other kids because they don’t know how to notice anything in people besides faults. i’m sarcastic and blunt when i talk about serious things because i was indirectly taught to never show when things bother me.*
whether it’s purposeful or just out of an invisible habit, it doesn’t fix things in the end.
you spend your time trying to even the score, and you’ve got it in your head that you deserve a lot more.

but some help.
they take their hurt and use it to push them to help other hurting people. they pass on the hope they’ve found and the grace they’ve been shown. they call back into the dark tunnel they’ve escaped from to save the people who are still stuck in it.
this is where i say i’ve had enough, and no one should ever feel the way that i feel now.

in most cases, no one stays in one category forever.
there’s a lot of ways you might do a combination of all three throughout your life. a few of endless possible examples:
1. hide-get sick of hiding and start protecting yourself by hurting people instead-realize how much it hurts to see people hurt like you-start helping people instead.
2. hurt as many people as you can-realize this isn’t fixing anything and start hiding so you don’t have to deal with it all-get sick of hiding but know that hurting isn’t the answer-start helping.
3. try to help everyone-fail at it because you’re still hurting too much to know how to help-hide because you don’t know what else to do-with time after you’ve been helped, become able to actually help other people.

the list could go on, but i don’t feel like thinking of more, and you probably get the gist and don’t feel like reading more. if you think of some of your own, tell me!

in order to get out of either negative stage(hiding or hurting), and into the positive stage(helping), something needs to happen first. lucky for me and my semi-obnoxious alliteration, it also happens to start with an H:

you have to heal.

you can’t come out of hiding if you have no idea what to do out in the open.
you can’t stop hurting people if you don’t know what else to do with your hurt.
and even in scenario 3, where the first thing the hurt person does is try to help people, no good will come of anything until you’ve started to get your own wound stitched up.
i know you’ll help us when you’re feeling better, and we realize that it might not be for a long, long time…

so, if you’ve made it this far, or if you’ve scrolled to the bottom because you don’t have time to read all my thoughts, here’s a more easily processable,** thoughts-for-the-road version of everything i just said.

everyone’s been hurt.
everyone deals with it differently.
everyone needs grace.
everyone can heal.
everyone can help.

i’m ready to suffer and i’m ready to hope.

*serious things meaning cancer, anorexia, etc. for the longest time, i wasn’t even aware that i did that, much less that there was anything wrong with it; it’s just the coping mechanism i’ve used all my life. something in my head believes that if i act like it’s not as bad as it is, eventually it won’t feel that way to me anymore. thankfully someone loved me enough a few years ago to explain to me that it wasn’t a good thing and i needed to stop; i haven’t yet broken the habit, but i do notice when i do it and jump to apologize and explain myself at a mile a minute as soon as i realize.
**WHOA that’s a real word! who knew?

just a thought.

not better; just different.

today is oscar sunday.

instead of spending my afternoon arguing my predictions with strangers online, i took a nap while watching camp rock, then visited my old-but-still-loved youth group.

and instead of watching the awards, i read a whole book for school two weeks before it’s due, and now i’m about to watch last week’s premier of worst cooks in america.

the first two months of every year of my life since tenth grade have revolved around awards season. i blew off going to the movies with my friends so i could watch the golden globes. freshman, sophomore and junior year, i skipped class to watch the nominations announcements.

i don’t think i was wrong before, or that now i’m right. i’m just surprised at how what was important to me changed without me even realizing it. i used to love movies and tv; now i love writing and missions and sports. i don’t hate movies now, i don’t look back on all the hours i used to spend predicting the oscar winners and wish i could take them back, and i’m not bothered that i’d rather run five miles than read roger ebert’s opinion on the best picture nominees from the past ten years.

the only weird thing is that none of this is weird to me.

i think i’m getting better at changing. if you’d told me at 17 that someday i’d be 21 and not care about my formerly precious oscar night, i would have flipped out and told you that if that was true, then i was going to hate my life in four years.
but no. i was happy then, and i’m happy now. it’s just that different things make me happy today.

this is one of those posts where i’m not sure how to end it…so i’ll let you laugh at this poor little bulldog instead.

just a thought.

what are we hiding from?

like Eve after she tasted the forbidden fruit, we women hide. we hide behind our makeup. we hide behind our humor. we hide with angry silences and punishing withdrawals. we hide our truest selves and offer only what we believe is wanted, what is safe. we act in self-protective ways and refuse to offer what we truly see, believe and know. we will not risk rejection or looking like a fool. we have spoken in the past and been met with blank stares and mocking guffaws. we will not do it again. we hide because we are afraid. we have been wounded, and wounded deeply. people have sinned against us and we have sinned as well. to hide means to remain safe, to hurt less. at least that is what we think. and so by hiding, we take matters into our own hands. we don’t return to our God with our broken and desperate hearts. and it has never occurred to us that in all our hiding, something precious is also lost–something the world needs from us so very, very much.stasi eldredge, captivating, page 56(hey look jenna!). with my emphasis added.

just a thought.

ideas born out of insomnia.

i’m working on making my stuff easier to follow. whether you have only two minutes to read this or you just tend to lose track of my rambles, you can look at the bold print, the big letters, or the blue sections for the meat. the rest is important too, but not absolutely necessary for understanding the gist. tell me what you think! is it still too much? is there a better way for me to make my thoughts more readable for less-ADD-than-me people?

every now and then, i go crazy and can’t sleep.

it’s called paradoxical insomnia.

the doctor would charge me a lot to officially tell me this, but during my bouts of not sleeping, i’ve done enough studying to figure it out on my own.

even as a kid i couldn’t sleep. i’m pretty sure this is why i’m so short and so weird; my body didn’t have enough time to grow, and my brain was in such a hurry to grow itself up in the little time i spent asleep that it crossed some of its wires wrong.

but seriously though. my sleep patterns make sense now. a weird sense, but sense nonetheless.

for a few straight days out of every month or so, i either
A-sleep for only 2 or 3 hours. it’s not that i suddenly need very little sleep; it’s that i either can’t fall asleep until 5 then have to get up at 7, or i fall asleep at a decent hour then wake up too soon and can’t go back to sleep. and despite being physically and emotionally miserable the rest of the day, i suddenly feel productive around “bedtime” and can’t let myself go to sleep for fear of wasting time, so the cycle continues.
2-keep a weird sleep routine while still being fully rested and functioning normally during the day, like going to bed at 4 in the afternoon when i get out of class, then getting up at 1 or 2 in the morning.
or
C-don’t sleep at all. sometimes this is because i have a nightmare one night, and for the next couple days am so terrified to sleep that i don’t even try to, but usually it’s because i just don’t feel like i need it.
when i’m at home, my mom will come downstairs and find me eating cereal in front of the tv.
she’ll say “why are you up so early?”
and i’ll say “because i’m still awake.”
this always freaks her out, so that night when it gets to be around 9, she’ll start suggesting i go to bed, and i’ll say i’m not tired.
next morning, the same thing happens.
mom: “did you ever sleep?”
me: “i took a nap at 3 am.”
mom: “and when did you wake up?”
me: “4.”

the most common symptom of any of these cases is feeling a desperate need to do something. the idea of sleeping puts me in a panic. “NO. there’s no time, i HAVE to finish this entire online course first and THEN i’ll go to sleep.” the other side of my brain says “dummy, it’s september…can’t that project that’s due at the end of the semester wait 8 hours while i rest?” but usually i listen to the side telling me that if i go to sleep i’ll miss something.

but you know the good thing in all this?
when i can’t sleep, i take all my racing thoughts and make things like this happen.
or there’s one idea, so big it hurts to hold inside me, and this comes of it.
some of my best work was written, or at least thought of, at 4 am when i’ve been awake for 28 hours.

right now though, i’m not feeling especially blessed by this deal…i haven’t written anything great tonight, and i have to be up in 2 hours and 37 minutes. so i’m gonna go curl up on my floor and let Friends season 4 play me to sleep for what little time i have.

oh wait. i am tired aren’t i? i just wrote this an hour ago. totally forgot. so there is an “at least” to remind myself of when i wake up tired in the morning. =p

just a thought.

Never hearing>never seeing.

If you had to lose one of your senses, which would it be?

Good question…but too hard for concrete, extroverted people like me. I live outside my head. If even one of my senses was out, I’d go literally insane from not feeling like anything was real.

But, for an assignment tomorrow, I had to come up with an answer. So I thought about it.

Touch has to stay. I’ve rambled in countless posts about love languages(mainly here), and touch is my off-the-charts number one.

Taste, I need. I know you’re supposed to eat when you’re hungry…but I just eat when I see something good and want it. So if I couldn’t taste anything I’d starve to death pretty quick.

If I’m keeping taste, I have to be able to smell. Have you ever tried to eat a potato, or anything more bland than a ghost pepper, when you’ve had a bad cold? Then you know exactly what I mean.

So I’m left with either sight or hearing.
Translation: a silent world or a dark world.
And when I thought of it like that, it was easy.

I like to hear, but I need to see.

My eyes are how I learn. I can’t focus if I have nothing to look at. Even today, if someone’s reading something out loud to me, I have to be sitting next to them reading along, or else I’ll forget every word within minutes. No matter how slowly and clearly my soccer coach explains something, I’ll never really get it until I step out of the goal and watch him do it. And even my favorite teacher, who I honestly could listen to all day, can only keep my attention for so long without writing on the board or pulling up a Powerpoint.

Besides being a visual learner, I just like to see things. Some people love to be told stories, but I love to see pictures. Or better yet, go places. When we were in Costa Rica, I never got tired of looking around. Even if I saw the same mountain every day for ten days, it wouldn’t get old. A little tip for peacefully living with me: if you ever get tired of hearing me talk, point out something cool to look at, and I’ll be quiet for the next ten minutes or longer.

There are plenty of things I’d miss if I ever went deaf, and obviously I hope I never do…but in this hypothetical forced choice situation, it’s easily the better one to go for me. I’d lose so much more without my eyes than I would without my ears.

It’s ok if I can’t hear you laughing as long as I can see you smiling.

I don’t need to hear your words, but I could never go on living if I couldn’t read them.

As sad as it would be to never hear music again, I always pay more attention to the words than the sound anyways; I can read the lyrics and appreciate it almost as much.

Most of my pet peeves have to do with sounds. Snoring. Over-enunciating the letter T. Loud breathing. Doors slamming. The Twilight Zone theme. Microphones squealing. Writing on chalkboards. Etc, etc…it’s easier to close my eyes to something I don’t want to see than it is to drown out something I don’t want to hear.

I’d so much rather see someone and not know what they’re saying, then hear someone and not see where they are.

I can sleep through someone cutting on a light, but you will wake me up if you come in making noise.

Most obvious loss: writing. That would be like cutting off my oxygen. I need to write like other people need to sleep.

And the biggest thing I realized about myself as I thought about all this:

I hear with my ears, but I listen with my eyes.

When I replay conversations in my head, I don’t always remember everything that was said, but I remember what the person looked like as they talked. I don’t pay as much attention to the tone in their voice as I do to the feeling in their eyes.

There are so many more things that I need sight for and would never want to live without:
Sunrises.
Playing sports.
Watching baseball.
Fireworks on the 4th of July.
The looks on my campers’ faces when they try something new, when our whole cabin is tired and laughing at everything, when I give them all hugs at bedtime, when they make an important decision on Thursday night…
and so many things that I tend to see that no one else notices.

Bottom line: if I go deaf, at least I can write about it or run to cheer myself up. If I go blind, I’m hiring someone to hold my hand and narrate life for me 24/7.

The fun thing about this question is that no one will give the same answer for the same reason. So your turn. Would you rather lose your sight, or your hearing? Why? What would be the hardest thing that you would lose with either? What would you not mind missing that you would lose with either?

just a thought.

celebrities vs "real" people.

disclaimer#1-i do not watch the bachelor. i do not like the bachelor. i only caught onto all of this because the first eleven tweets on my twitter feed all were mentioning it.
disclaimer#2-i am sort of calling the kettle black…i know i’m always saying that people need to be able to laugh at themselves.
and lastly, disclaimer#3-i’m not calling out anyone or trying to start a debate…just thinking out loud.

okay now, time to stop defending what i’m about to say and actually say something…

so i take a paper writing break and look on twitter for a minute. everybody is talking about this tierra person. i was curious to see how many millions of people hated her, so i searched her name.

thousands and thousands of people are all saying the same things. apparently she’s that girl this season.
but then i scroll down, and i see tierra herself. she tweets “okay people. thank you.”
this made me sad.
then i laughed at myself for feeling bad for her.
and then i started thinking.

now for the record, i haven’t watched the show and don’t know the reason for all the hate, and probably would be saying the same things as everyone else if i had seen it.
i just wondered for a second about how it makes her feel, or how other celebrities feel, to read some of the negative things people say about them online.

yes, she is asking to be made fun of, because she’s on the bachelor. i mean come on. she had to have been expecting this.
no, it’s probably not detrimental to her life that people are saying stupid things.
yes, she’s probably laughing at some or even most of the comments.
no, 99% of the people saying them aren’t thinking about what they’re saying; i doubt anyone is purposely out to hurt her. (although a small few of the tweets i’ve read are seriously cruel and i don’t know how anyone could say things like that and not give even a thought to what they sound like)
yes, i do the exact same thing all the time; how many times have i tweeted my hate for some pitcher just because he struck out one of the red sox?

i’m not sure what my point is here…i don’t have a sermon for you and no one wants that anyways. i’m more just sharing my small, minor revelation
most of us, myself at the top of the list, don’t think of people on tv as real people. people with real stories and real hearts. true, we never see the real them…they’re paid to be whatever people want to see. but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a real person under there somewhere.

just a thought.

just a thought.

one more reason to never complain.

after listening to my teammates complain about being up at 6 am, suffering through mile repeats, or running in the heat, all i’ve been able to think is, try going nowhere on a bike in the air conditioning behind dr dan for a week.

and so i’ve realized, no matter where you are and how much you hate it, someone somewhere would give anything to be there.

if you have six projects due in one week, remember all your friends who couldn’t afford to come back this semester.

if you’re sick of people coming in your room all the time, remember the people in single rooms who never see anyone ever.

if you’re sick of caf food, remember all the people downtown with no food.

you get the idea.

i may be stuck inside going nowhere, but at least my legs still work. at least i can run again someday. at least my coach cares enough to force me to be patient and get better instead of pushing me to start back the second the pain gets bearable.

just a thought.

just a thought. · rambles on ciu sports

oh wait, i DO love running!

if you know me at all, you know that i hate getting sick or hurt, and when i do, it takes about a 14 on a 1-10 pain scale to get me to admit it. i’ll go on a youth retreat with a 101 fever, stay at camp for a week with the flu, dance for a year with tendonitis, and play soccer on a sprained ankle, with a broken finger, with a dislocated thumb, with a concussion…you get my point. i keep on trucking. there’s too much fun in life to put it on pause.

due to my need to be in constant motion, on the rare times when i get sick enough or hurt bad enough that i have to stop, i go crazy.

this is most obvious right now, because in my right mind, i would never miss running.

last thursday i rolled my ankle. and being me, i ran 3 more miles and pretended nothing happened. i woke up the next morning hurting worse, woke up saturday, felt fine and raced, woke up on sunday hurting again, woke up on monday and couldn’t walk.

so now we’re here…and ALL i want to do is run.

i think i may love this.

a month ago i would have been thrilled to have an excuse to be lazy, this morning i cried because i couldn’t do mile repeats.
every other race, i’ve at some point wished i was dead, and been happy to be done with it at the end. last saturday though, with every mile i felt better and better, and at the end, i was sad and wanted to do it all over again.
last monday(like a week and a half ago), i ran five miles, on my own, just for fun. FOR FUN. running is not fun. is it?

when i so reluctantly signed my commitment forms on the last day of school, i told myself i was not going to become one of those crazy people who runs when they aren’t 1-being made by a coach, 2-playing some sport with a point, or 3-involved in a heist.

oops. guess i lost that bet. but the good thing about making bets with yourself is that if you look at it the right way, you always win. so i’m always happy. =]

just a thought.

mornings.

i’ve never been a morning person. you know how most kids get up early when they’re real young? i wasn’t like most kids, at least at an age that i was old enough to remember.

true the world was made for morning people, and they’re the ones who get 4.0 gpa’s and make six figure salaries someday, but night people have the most fun. think about it: mornings on youth retreats or at camp are never the times you remember the most. the highlight of a sleepover is not waking up the next morning. no big movie has ever premiered at 5 am. fun times come at 10 pm or later.

but, ever since my sophomore year when i came to ciu where you have almost no choice but to have morning classes, i’ve made it my goal to become one of those people who wakes up early without trying and gets things done before noon.

after many failed attempts, i’ve finally come to the conclusion that i was not created for mornings.

the only thing i’ve accomplished with my most recent attempt is that i’ve made myself no longer a night person.

i used to be able to run off 6 hours of sleep anytime; sophomore year i went to bed at 1 or 2 and got up at 7 just fine. i’d be tired right when i got up and all through my classes, but around chapel i’d wake up and be totally normal until at least midnight.

now, i go to bed around 9 or 9:30, get up at 5:30, and i’m exhausted all day. and even on the days i get to sleep in(meaning i get up at 7:30), i still can’t stay up hardly past 9. last friday night i went to bed at 8:00. i haven’t done that since the 2nd grade.
i’m consistently getting eight hours of sleep every night, plus i’m getting that hour of exercise all the napkin holders in the caf say you should get, and i have about half the energy that i did in the days when i only slept if i felt like it.

this makes no sense to me.