The Lecture

I have been hanging around with my two friends a lot more often in the last couple of weeks. This makes me very happy because I am a very lonely person. I do not have any other friends and I live in the middle of nowhere so there isn’t a lot to do.

Yesterday, my friend invited me to go to this town that is an hour away. I agreed but I had a feeling that I was in for a lecture. After all, my friends just recently found out that I am considering leaving teaching and the decision kind of bothered them. In fact, in church on Sunday, one of them asked if we needed to have a discussion about my career plans.

Sure enough, the lecture came. My friend pointed out everything she considered nice about teaching. I know she had the intention of not only keeping me in this horrid town, but also to keep me in teaching. I felt degraded during the conversation. I really did not say much. My friend just doesn’t understand. She doesn’t know that I was feeling suicidal shortly after I returned to this place last fall and that is why I am currently in counseling. She doesn’t understand the anxiety and depression that fills me at work. For me, there are no nice things about teaching. I am very unhappy.

I did not say anything though. I felt like a little kid being told what to do. The tears threatened but I managed to hold them at bay. I am still trapped here for another two months and I want friends. But having no friends is just as bad as the lecture I endured yesterday.

I do not know how to communicate to my friends what I am feeling. I do not even understand my emotions or my thoughts. I still have no idea what I want to do with my life. I have no idea how to support myself and be happy at the same time. And it is the lecture that is making me consider why life is really worth living. I try to remind myself that God has a plan for me and I just need to be patient but it is so hard. There are only two more months of school left and I have no answers.

Am I Abandoning God’s Gifts?

Last night, I was hanging out with my friends. It was amazing because we never hang out anymore. But anyway, the atmosphere changed when we started talking about jobs. My friends know that I want to move away from this small town and closer to my home state. That is how the conversation started. They just wanted to know if I was looking. But then I let it slip that I am looking for jobs outside of education which of course, came as a total shock to them.

After that, I was told that I was a good teacher. I know that he really meant it because as school psychologist, he has been in my classroom before observing students. Then, he told me he has heard it from other people as well.

I have been told by several people that I am a good teacher. And maybe I am and maybe I am not. I look at myself both ways. But then I am reminded of the story in the Bible of the man who gives three people each a different amount of talents (coins) and they are supposed to use these talents. Two of the people do, the other doesn’t. The talent is then taken away from the one and given to one of the others.

I cannot help but feel like this one guy who doesn’t use his talent. If my one talent is taken away, what exactly am I supposed to do? I have no other talents. But teaching is not what I want to do. I do not understand why God would give me a talent that makes me unhappy.

 

I Am a New Person

It has been awhile since I have last blogged. My medication got changed and now I feel like a completely new person. The thing is, the only life I have really known is depression and anxiety which stopped me a lot of times from truly living my life. I am finding that being ‘normal’ is rather odd but also very nice.

One thing new I got to try was an event at church. In the past, I never would have gone to a church event without any friends going. But I went to a church dinner (something even scarier than regular church events) and sat with some people I  know and ended up having a great time. I was so proud of myself that night that I was almost in tears. I emailed my counselor that night and she was proud of me too. That night has become a reference to what my life has become.

I got invited to a Mary Kay party tonight but I am not sure I really want to go. It is a three day weekend and I am always lonely but I am not really into that kind of thing. Plus, it is some shaving legs party or something of that sort which I find kind of embarrassing. Plus, those parties are always about buying things and the products are so expensive and I am allergic to a lot of things that go on the skin. I guess even though I am a new person, I still will find things that are not right for me.

Another thing I am currently working on is trying to find another job. My counselor and I have decided that teaching is not right for me. I still have no idea what I want to do. I have applied for a lot of jobs and have gotten a few leads but they want someone right away and I am under contract until May. I am getting very impatient and am constantly being reminded by God that I need to trust Him. It definitely is not easy.

Life is still hard despite the medication. But I am trying and am at least getting somewhere than I was before the medication changes.

Clash of Kingdoms by Charles Dyer and Mark Tobey

Are we currently approaching the End of Times? In Clash of Kingdoms by Charles Dyer and Mark Tobey, events from the last few decades could possibly mean that Jesus will be returning soon. From all of the political turmoil in the Middle East to the most recent events involving Britain leaving the European Union, there have been a lot of problems with no resolution. Even if there was resolution to these problems, what would it look like? Would the end of ISIS lead to something much worse? Or would it lead to the peaceful period predicted in the Bible at the End of Times?

History is what leads up to the End of Times. And there was a lot of history mentioned in the book that got to be a little long and boring; even if it does involve countries that are currently having issues and are mentioned in the Bible. However, the message of this book is very clear: The End is near and everyone needs to be ready for when Jesus returns to Earth to take His faithful servants. The way to Heaven is perfection. However, since no one is perfect, Jesus paid the price. All we need to do is accept His forgiveness and we all can spend eternity in Heaven.

I was provided a free copy from Book Look Bloggers.

No More Faking Fine by Ester Fleece

“How are you doing?”

“Fine.”

Asking someone how they are doing is a very common question and yet so frequently, someone is not fine. In No More Faking Fine by Ester Fleece, she addresses the necessary process of grieving, or lamentation. Without lamenting, faith can be lost. It is easy to move on with life and forget about the sadness or make comparisons to people who might have it worst. Lamenting brings everyone closer to God, however. This is not a time to be strong. The disciples lamented. Jesus lamented. Jesus even questioned God when on the cross. It is ok to question God. God wants our pain in order to heal us and move on with life.

Ester Fleece presents a strong message about lamenting and how good it is for the body in order to heal and then move on with life. The author suffered from depression herself and gives stories of her life and examples of when she tried to be strong and when she finally needed to just relax and lament. There are tough times in life. It is not karma from God. God is needed during the lamenting process and then afterward when there is a feeling of peace that comes from accepting and processing life’s tough moments.

I was provided a free copy of this book from Book Look Bloggers.

How Do I Talk to My Friend

Some of the people at school know that I am looking for a job. They know that I want a job outside of education. The bad thing is, some of these people are gossips. I need references, though. And that means asking some people.

I have always found it difficult to ask people to be references. I really do not get close enough for people to ever really get to know the real me. The people that actually do meet reference material end up leaving or something that makes it difficult for them to become references. My jobs haven’t always made it easy to find references, though. I quit that job at the pool. That job had the same boss as when I worked summer recreation the two summers before that. Then, I worked in an office in college. They were great references but I haven’t been there since 2012. The school I am at right now is very small and that limits potential references.

Anyway, references are not only difficult to find but with my social anxiety, it is even more difficult for me to ask. So yesterday was a big deal for me.

The worst thing about this whole situation is that a lot of people know but my ‘friend’ does not. I cannot ask her to be a reference. Also, she was not even at school yesterday. I am not sure whether I should tell her tomorrow so that she will find out from me or if I should just pretend that it is not a big deal and let her find out from the gossips. We are not really close anymore but I have a feeling that she will be upset if she finds out from them. I just don’t know what to do.

What Makes Me Happy

At counseling the other day, my counselor had me make a list of 50 things that make me happy. It is hard to think of 50 things on the spot. Plus, it would have been easier to do this at home where I would be surrounded by plenty of things that make me happy. Surprisingly, I was able to finish the list and was praised by my counselor for being able to do it.

On my list, I put my cats and favorite books, movies, and TV shows. I also put the different types of writing I do. I listed my brothers and my aunt and uncle that I see often when I live in the city during the summer and work at the amusement park. However, I was unable to put my mom and dad on the list.

That night, I could not help but dwell on how I left my mom and dad off of the list. They were good parents. They were actually involved in my life. They gave me everything I ever needed. Things have changed in the last few years, however. Now, I dread going home to visit or even talking to them on the phone.

My mom is a hoarder. She is not as bad as the ones on TV but she still feels the need to keep all of my brothers’ old toys and books even though the youngest is sixteen. I hate going home and being surrounded by all the stuff. It also doesn’t help that the house is extremely dirty. I do not expect my mom to be a neat freak. She is a busy person. There are times when the dust is very thick and the floors haven’t been vacuumed. One time, I went home and there were no clean bed sheets. My mom kind of made it my problem. I was tired of dealing with the mess so I thankfully, I just happened to have my sleeping bag.

Then, there is the fact that my parents, particularly my mom, feel the need to offer unwanted (and not nice) advice. I still get lectured about traveling in any amount of snow. I got a really bad lecture last November when it snowed and then immediately melted away and I made a trip the day after that. I am not stupid. The roads were decent. But that is the sort of conversations I get with my parents.

My parents do not make me happy. I dread going home. I dread calling home once a week. Even though they are very kind, they do not make me happy. I feel extremely guilty by putting my cats and my aunt and uncle on my list but not my parents. But if I am not honest in counseling, how is that helping me?

Blood Money

The other night I got offered a freelance writing job. When I first started doing freelance, I seemed to get tons of job offers and I had to really work hard to get all the assignments in on time. Now, the jobs come every once in awhile, when I honestly don’t expect it.

This new job seemed rather odd to me. I was first given a picture of the assignment directions. Then, I was given an example of the assignment and then a list of short videos I needed to watch to complete the assignment. Mostly I write reviews, blogs, and articles so this assignment seemed very different. Most of the time, I never learn where my writing will be used. I always try to imagine it though. And this time, the picture I was getting was for school. I had the suspicion that I was doing someone’s homework.

Another assignment was given to me last night.  Again, I got the same resources to complete the project. Only this time, I was even more positive that I was doing someone’s homework. In fact, based on the project, I am doing someone’s speech homework.

I graduated valedictorian in high school and Summa cum Laude in college. I had to work extremely hard. In college, I also worked and had to get classroom observation hours. Time was very precious to me. Yet I still had to do all the work. Even though I am not certain I am doing someone’s work, it is still wrong if I am.

I give the money I earn from writing to a Christian group that funds mission trips. To earn money for doing wrong and then give it to the church just isn’t right. In my mind, it is like the money that was given for Jesus’ death. That money could not be used for the church so instead it was used to buy a graveyard. I feel like I am earning blood money here.

Cheaters never prosper and this guy won’t either. Since I am doing the work, my personal opinion has been inserted into what has been written. I have watched the videos that would have made this guy a better speaker. I would just love it if this guy had to have a discussion in class about the videos. In the end, his cheating will pay (and not just me).

Reflection

I have mentioned that my ‘friend’ is bossy and is always telling me her opinion. In counseling, I have been learning to focus on myself. As selfish as that sounds, it is important to pay attention to my needs and not let others control me. Even though she still likes to tell me what to do, I make the decision about whether or not to do it and how I will feel based on my decision.

I have made it no secret though that there has been some distance between my ‘friend’ and me lately which has caused me to feel very alone. It came to my attention this morning that unintentionally, I have been letting her control me even when she is not there. I am letting resentment and anger about our relationship consume me which makes my lonely nights and weekends even worse.

As lonely as I am, I know that the right thing for me to do is to completely let go. I need to stop thinking about her and how we are not friends. That is not going to help with the loneliness but I have got to stop her from controlling my thoughts and feelings.

Helping or Enabling

There is this large family I know that struggles financially. I understand what that is like because I grew up in a large family too. My mom stayed home in order to not have to pay for a daycare. That meant that we were living off what my dad made as a poor farmer. People were very kind to us. Sometimes, people gave us their old clothes. And even though times were tough, my mom still volunteered with field trips and at church.

Even though I understand what it is like to have a large family and little money, I still feel like I am enabling this family whenever I help them. I have given them clothes before and am currently trying to help them with another issue (I do not give money though). I did some investigating and found that the family has Netflix. Every one of the kids has a tablet that came from Grandma for Christmas.

There are times when I feel like they need the help and then there are the times when I feel like I am only enabling them. Then, I begin to feel really bad. As a Christian, I know that it is my duty to help. Plus, it is not really the kids’ fault at this time. However, they are learning from their parents. And even with the information I learned from my investigations, I know that I do not know everything about this family and should therefore make no judgments. I am just at a loss about what I should do and how I should feel in this kind of situation.