Tuesday, October 6, 2015

It's Ok To Be Where You Are


Greater is He who is in me, than He who is in the world. 1 John 4:4

This verse basically means, regardless of what's going on in our lives, our world, God is bigger. God is even stronger and more powerful over death. As a christian, I believe He has conquered the grave, meaning I believe in after life, but when it comes to losing someone so close to me, as I've said before, I've rethought it. I've wondered. "Where" is she really? I refuse to believe she is in that ground. The real her anyway. Maybe her vessel, her body if you will, that held her unique voice, her glowing hair, her beautiful blue eyes, her soft skin, her pretty nails, her lengthy frame...and I shutter to think of her in the ground. I was overcome with thoughts of this last week and told my husband in a panic, "I actually thought of Amy in the ground this week, like her body, and it's process there and I'm scared...I can't, I just can't..." As he tried to respond, "Then don't..." I interrupted and said, "I must..." And isn't that the truth with life? We must. 

We must pay the bills. We must get sick. We must cry. We must lose our jobs. We must go hungry. We must struggle in relationships. We must not get our way. We must say goodbye. We must lose our loved ones. We must die. We must go bankrupt. We must be left out. We must be teased. We must get in accidents. We must experience pain. We must go through the process. We must face hard things. We must do what we don't want to do and what we shouldn't have to be doing. We must, we must, we must.

But we also must persevere. We must train. Many people understand the concept of training for a marathon race, but not for a life race spiritually, emotionally or mentally. I wrote this when I was in Hospice with my best friend:

"Life holds both extremes; the ultra highs--births, weddings, good health, promotions. But it also holds the extreme lows; sickness, divorce, losses and even death. Maybe the key to living well in the middle of both of these is taking the thankfulness and wisdom they each bring."  In Hospice with my dying friend, June 4th, 2015

Paul says this in 1 Timothy 4:8

"For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come."

Why would we ever think life gives us all lemonade? It's almost like we all missed the memo on getting lots of lemons. I think so. Especially death, I never thought it could happen to me. Now I feel like I'm "one of those"...I've experienced great loss now, and I'll never be the same.
But in the everyday life, is it possible to get by a little less stressed, a little less guilt ridden, a little less sad, if we accept that this is all part of life? What about feeling what we feel, without any boarders or barriers. Most of the time we put those up because we are afraid of appearing "weak" or "not having it all together". Who started that line of thinking anyway? Oprah?! I remember her always talking about "having it all", and that is the biggest, fattest lie that ever existed. WE honestly can't have it all and can't do it all. Yet life makes us go through times that can break us down. Some call it balance. I say, accepting it is how it is. Life having the extreme highs and lows, and figuring out how to live at the center of it all. 

All I know is we have got to train. If we don't go through the low of the lows, how will we grow and grow? How do we become mature and learn knew ways to live better? So isn't that a good thing because we gain some wisdom. I admit I am still searching for the good in the death of my best friend. And maybe I never will find anything good from it. Maybe I don't want to. But I've gained wisdom. I certainly gained a lot of wisdom in moving out to Cali from Minnesota, even though it was hard as heck to get here and it's still hard to be here. I can accept my season for all it is, and learn to live in the middle of it. And in the high times living out here with all the traveling I get to do, and seeing new places that are so stunning, that brings me to happier places, so I'm thankful. Extreme lows, extreme highs bring thankfulness and wisdom. 

I can have an outlook at the life ahead of me and be fully aware that they will not all be happy with extreme highs. I can expect something else to go "wrong". I can expect something else to hurt and bring me pain. But I can also expect to feel happiness sometime. I can expect to have some highs too. We get so focused on not wanting bad things to happen, like we think life should be all good. But it's neither all good nor all bad, so why not accept that? That's where we need to learn to live. We can't stay living in wanting it to be all good, wishing we could always be happy. And we can't have a bad attitude thinking it's all bad, or it's going to stay miserable. 

"What about not being overwhelmed by all the good or all the bad when they happen to us? What about "it's all good"? I'm not saying to not feel what you feel when you have an extreme in your life, I'm just trying to give you a better option in the middle of the rise or fall." Gina Norman

How about radically accepting that we go through seasons as humans, and all of it is showing us a thing or two about a thing or two. I may not have found the good in my friends death, but I've certainly grown in my agony through it. How about being less tough on ourselves and being a bit gentler when it comes to where we are at at any given day? Not unnecessarily torturing ourselves if we can't do all we want to do, or bashing ourselves if we feel we are going backwards. How about just observing where we are instead of judging where we are? 

"A season is a season, that is all. Tears, laughter, pain, happiness. It's all part of the process of living. The key is learning to observe gently where you're at within your process, instead of judging it. Accepting what you feel and think, and finding where to live well right in the middle of it." Gina Norman

I know ahead of me I will lose someone else. And you will too. But you will also see sunny days, and so will I. We have them both. So we must persevere. We must keep our chin up. We must stay positive. We must pray. We must smile. We must feel what we feel. We must talk about what's real. We must stay true. We must give things time. We must accept. We must learn in the middle of it. We must see goodness. We must not give up. We must endure. We must keep the faith. We must allow ourselves to be where we are, because that is right where we need to be.


3 comments:

Unknown said...

Wise words, my dear daughter-in-law. You have summed up much of life's journey well. None of us have endured what Paul the apostle did, nor likely ever will, but he sang, preached, witnessed, and persevered in a dungeon of a jail, counting it all joy!!! And to top that off, Jesus willingly hung naked and died on a cross for us. What examples.
Keep your positive words, my dear. Preach on!

Cinder said...

Wise words, my dear daughter-in-law. You have summed up much of life's journey well. None of us have endured what Paul the apostle did, nor likely ever will, but he sang, preached, witnessed, and persevered in a dungeon of a jail, counting it all joy!!! And to top that off, Jesus willingly hung naked and died on a cross for us. What examples.
Keep your positive words, my dear. Preach on!

Ferial Trammell said...

This is a wonderful reminder, Gina. I'm so grateful that you share your process and your heart. Love, Ferial