Lost in the moment

Today is one of those days I want to be sitting on the couch, wrapped in a blanket and snuggled up to the man I love.

 

Except that I know I have to be careful with what I say.

5 years from now I’ll probably be texting you saying, “Help, the kids are crying, the hubby wants dinner and I would love to be sitting on that couch, in solitude”

 

That was a text I sent one of my best friends last week. I was feeling sick and just wanted to be taken care of and quite frankly, be sharing my life with someone. (When I’m ill I have a tendency towards the mellow dramatic…I use the phrase “when I’m ill” loosely).

So last night I did just that. I made pasta (apparently my increase in running is making me actually want the stuff), put on one of my favourite girly movies, lit some candles and found a blanket. The flat mate is out and I am alone.

AND I LOVE IT.

So many of you may be thinking that I’m rather weird. Either you are married and wish you still had time alone or you just think I’m strange for thinking the way I do.

Well, historically I have been known to oh, live in the future/hate the season I’m in/want it all now and yesterday. Contentment never really came easy for me. It is not that I don’t appreciate life but I’m a wee bit of a visionary/planner (Emily, if you’re reading this I know, I know…”wee bit” is an understatement), so therefore enjoying the moment is not my strong suit. Casting vision, planning, being creative…all that plays on my strengths.

Enjoying the moment…nah, what’s next?

Except that lately I have learned to simply enjoy the moment. It might be because for the first time since I was 15 years old, I haven’t had to work full time in a summer. I have an entire 3 months to do, literally…whatever I want to do. I have TIME!

Fast forward to June 2014. This is the month I have to hand in my Masters’ dissertation and from that point onwards “real life” will need to begin again. I don’t know what that will look like, but I’m pretty sure “real life” will not include the ability to do whatever I feel like all day long. You see, this is my season to write, to work out as much as I want, to see friends, to lay in the park, to read for hours on end. This is a very unique and special season and I almost ruined it by wanting something that’s just not in this season.

It’s a simple lesson but the grass always seems to be greener on the other side. However, when we learn to water the grass, to appreciate the season we are in, or the side we are on, then that prepares us and makes us ready for the “other side”.

Truthfully? There are a plethora of things that I would like to see in my future, but if I don’t enjoy the season I am in now, if I don’t appreciate and take it step by step then my tomorrow won’t come out the way it’s supposed to.

So, let’s enjoy the seasons we are in and appreciate them for what they are. I am going to stop wanting the next thing all the time (so there’s always room for goals and for dreaming) and simply love the moment.

Now, I’m going to get back to my book…I may just read all day…

Back to the Basics

“I don’t like doing anything that I am not good at” or Get out of your comfort zone

 

 

Stood in front of the mirror, fresh from the shower, I had a few minutes to myself before I ventured out into the corridor again. On a winter trip with a few of the teens from my church I decided this was the year I was going to snowboard.

Pretty sure I made it up the KIDDIE hill (or Barnbacken på svenska)…oh, once.

I never thought I’d want to declare war on a tow-lift but alas even getting up the hill on that evil contraption was about as fear-inducing as going down, fast, while my feet were glued to a board.

So there I was, a few hours later, completely covered in bruises and feeling…amazing. Yet something I said to my friend B who was teaching me to board, run in my head…

“I don’t like doing anything that I am not good at.”

A few nights ago I was out with some friends for a movie when, prior to the movie, we were chatting and my Swedish skills were put to the test. One guy said to me, “Michelle, you need to get out of your comfort zone.”

You see, I can speak Swedish…and I understand so much, but I don’t speak it a lot with my friends. Why you ask?

 “I don’t like doing anything that I am not good at.”

Recently I started running again. I’m still thinking I’m going to sign up to another ½ marathon but for now, it’s just for me. I’m on day 26 of my 365 running challenge now. The first few days were a struggle. Not because of my fitness levels, but because I was pretty sure I looked ridiculous running. Have you seen those images on the internet? Those “What I think I look like when I’m running” vs “what I really look like.” One image usually involves a bikini clad super model and the other a slobbering hound.

Truth is, I don’t look like either of those but it’s amazing what our minds trick us into.

I’m in the middle of what I call my “life break”. It’s actually not a break from life, you can’t take a break from life but you can have a season where things change, where you break away from the norm, where you refocus and redirect. This is the season of life I am in.

It’s a season where I am constantly having to get out of my comfort zone. You see, I have a LOT of dreams and ambitions for life and frankly, prior to August 22 I was living a great life but I was also smack RIGHT in the middle of the comfort zone.

And with all the respect to my old life, which, to many, and even to me, was fantastic…it sucked.

I had become too reliant on norms, comforts and myself.

I was lounging in the comfort zone.

So, being…well me…as you all know I changed my life drastically and with only one focus to ensure I kept running my race well and towards the ultimate goal (Jesus, if you didn’t know). I want all of my life to focus on Him, bringing glory to Him and showing others His love and grace.

I figured if I’m running to Him then everything else will fall into place.

What I have learned though is that following Him has taken me so far out of my comfort zone that I am pretty much constantly uncomfortable.

 

Going to church…

Uncomfortable.

 

Going to school…

Uncomfortable…

 

Writing for Beyond Rubies and SoWorthLoving…

Uncomfortable…

 

Just all…uncomfortable. Although they are seemingly normal and mundane things to one person there are aspects that make all these things uncomfortable to me. There are aspects to each of these things that I am not good at.

“I don’t like doing anything that I am not good at.”

I know I have been called to a certain life, to accomplish particular things and this season in my life is preparing me for that.

But I think the greatest lesson I have learned is that it’s okay to just not be good at something.

I read this great quote…

As Christians we are called to live in excellence, to do all things for God and not for man.

So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.  1 Corinthians 10:31

And He is going to help us along…

I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13

So what I am trying to say is this…

Get out of your comfort zone. Don’t step, don’t tip toe…JUMP. He has given you everything you need to accomplish all that He has put on your heart.

 

Start today. Whether it’s writing a book or getting healthy. If it’s asking that girl out or talking to your neighbor who just needs a friend.

 

Do something that you are not good at.

Do something that scares you because you really never know what will come from it or whose life you will impact.

 

I got a letter after I wrote a particularly “scary” post on SWL. Without sharing someone else’s story the letter detailed how the post helped someone through a break up. The truth? I hated writing that post. I cried writing it. I didn’t want to share it because I knew that it might get a couple people angry (if they misunderstood my intentions), it was uncomfortable.

However, as I read the words of one girl knowing that she was worth more than rubies all the uncomfortable feelings I had left me and I realized that although I didn’t like doing it…it impacted someone.

So maybe snowboarding or speaking Swedish perfectly doesn’t seem like something that will impact or make a difference but who knows? At least I’m going to try…