Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Hanging in There

So, I finally have a few seconds of downtime and a few seconds to myself. Whew! It seems the list of final tasks grows longer every time one is checked off rather than shorter. Tomorrow is the last day in my hometown and then Thursday we head to wedding destination city! I think I will be very happy when Thursday gets here. There will still be a lot of work to do, but not near like there has been, and I think my family will relax a bit once we're out of town too. At least I'm praying for that.

Mostly I'll be happy b/c fiancee will be around on Thursday. I am so happy he's getting to spend time with his family at the beach this week, but at the same time I am so frustrated that he is not here helping out and he hasn't been keeping his cell handy so I can reach him when I need to. I had to make an executive decision today b/c he didn't return my call for 4 hours, and I don't think he's thrilled with my choice but the caterer had to know before close of business today. Also, I don't think he means it to be a guilt trip, but both times I've talked to him since Saturday (don't even get me started on how we've only talked twice this week. We talked more often than that when he was deployed.) he tells me how his family misses me and wishes I was there. What I want to say back to him is: Well, tell them to make the 4 hour drive over to the wedding and they can see me. And don't expect me to feel sorry for you lying by the pool or on the beach when I'm back here working my tail off for the wedding that YOU wanted. If it had been up to me, we would have eloped from the beginning.

I do want to clarify that I think this weekend is going to be amazing and that once it starts I will enjoy most every minute of it. Right now I'm just feeling tired, frustrated, anxious, and a little bitter. Oh and did I mention that I'm on my period this week??? May be great for the honeymoon but sucks right now!

Well, glad I at least got to vent for a bit. Should probably go mark a few more things off of my "to do" list. Hopefully my next post will be a much more lighthearted and elated one.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Too much to do. Not enough time.

Hey everyone. Sorry I've been MIA for about a week. Unfortunately, this pattern is probably going to continue for another 3 weeks. I've been running around like crazy finishing up last minute wedding details and putting out very small fires. I've had a couple of posts I've really wanted to get up here. One on grief and one on forgiveness, but it seems I never have enough time to get them written out and posted, so I keep putting them off.

In addition, part of me feels I should be using my blog better as an avenue regarding all of the feelings I/we have about getting married next weekend and the honeymoon. Even in therapy this has been hard to talk about the past couple of weeks because I'm feeling sort of numb about it all. I don't think it's numb in a bad way. I think it's more the fact that I've been working on and planning this wedding for 11months and I just want the day to get here. I want to enjoy it with my family and closest friends. And then I want it to be OVER WITH! From everything I've gathered most brides hit this point, so at least I know I'm "normal".

The real question is how will I be feeling and what will surface when everything is over and things calm down? Is there more internal chaos going on than I am able to recognize at the moment? Will I be let down b/c I won't be planning and doing anymore? Will I feel relief? I'm definitely hoping for the positive emotions, but knowing myself like I do, I know that even if I'm unintentionally ignoring parts right now b/c my external life is so crazy, they always make sure I'm aware of everything going on the minute my external life slows down.

So, my current goal is to hope for something in the middle. Mostly feelings of relief and excitement about being married to fiance finally with some difficult feelings that aren't fun but are manageable and can be worked through with coping skills and internal communication.

I know it will be beneficial for me to post this next week up until we leave for our honeymoon (don't know if we have internet where we're going), but if I don't get to, don't worry. It just means I'm a buzy bee. I'll post again as soon as I'm able.

With that.... Off to do more tasks!

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Everyday I have some very close friends who struggle with suicidal ideations. I hate this struggle for the because I spent so many years there myself and even have reoccurences of those feelings occassionally these days. With people that struggle in these situations, I feel I stay well aware of how fragile life is and how I might lose one of them at any moment if they allow life to overcome them.... not that I would blame them. They're dealing with some rough stuff.... but I also truly believe God will sustain us if we trust him and don't life overwhelm us to the point of choosing to end our own.

However, I still am always taken aback by the sudden, unexpected deaths that weren't at one's own hand. In these moments I am reminded how fragile life is for everyone on this planet.... how easily someone we love may be called away from this earth or how fragile my life still is even though I am no longer my number one death threat.

I apologize that this post sounds so morbid. It's just what I've been reflecting on this evening. See, fiance and I had dinner at his commander's house tonight with a couple of other captains and their wives. We were all having a wonderful time. They are such nice people, and it's very nice for me to actually know some of the women whose husbands will be deploying with mine in Feb. As we were wrapping up dinner, fiance's commander got a phone call. The call was to tell him that his mother had just passed away. Obviously, this was the end of the dinner party. The 6 of us guests helped clear the table and tried to do as much as we could to make clean up easier on the family. I got the impression that the major's mother was not ill and the phone call of her death was a shock.

"You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man's life is but a breath." Psalm 39:5

I need to remember that I do not know how many days I will be blessed to have those I love here with me or how many days God is going to bless me with on this planet. No day or moment should be taken for granted. Lord help me remember this when wedding stress or PMS or bad moods keep me from appreciating all of my blessings and keeping my focus on what is most important.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Wedding Rollercoaster

Less than 3 weeks till my wedding day and I'm feeling all of the stress of it. My family is very helpful but they are definitely increasing my stress level. All of the minute detailings seem to be building up and some days I feel no one else sees themselves able to make any decisions. Some days I feel as though I get 500 questions a day and that 490 of them could have been answered and handled without talking to me.

In addition, my internal world has finally decided to make their feelings known about their fears of being married through the form of body memories (mainly a nauseous stomach and gastrointestinal problems). I've been asking for 11 months for them to share only getting answers from a couple. Now, 3 weeks before the wedding, I'm being overwhelmed with thoughts, fears, flashbacks.. Ugh.

The wedding we're having is so much larger and grander than anything I ever wanted either. I wanted something small with just family and a couple of close friends. We're having a huge catered event with close to 130 guests. Now, I will admit, the actual wedding weekend sounds like a blast if I can get to it without having a major meltdown or developing an ulcer first. I am going to get to see so many dear friends that I haven't seen in awhile, and I am very excited about that! Sometimes though it feels like I'm just planning the party of the year for our family and friends and the idea that fiance and I are getting married seems to be a by-product.

I've been so moody and irritable the past few days. I know I'm not fun to be around despite my best efforts to suppress the worst of my negative feelings from reaching the words that actually come out of my mouth. Finace really has been great through all of this. I know he's not happy with my attitude the past few days, but at the same time I think it's helped him realize that I need him to step up and help me out more too.

Tonight before he went to his house, he told me to make him one promise: Starting 12:01am Friday, May 28 I have to be through working. From that time on until after the wedding, everyone else does for me. I don't work the wedding weekend.

Now, that is a promise I look very forward to keeping, and his patience and concern the past few days are continued reminders of why I am marrying this man in less than 3 weeks.

This bride is definitely ready to have the wedding behind her and married life in front of her!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

East To West

For some reason I've had Casting Crown's song "East To West" on my mind and in my heart all day.... so much so that I'm feeling compelled to post the lyrics here. So if anyone out there needs these words right now, here ya go:

Here I am, Lord, and I'm drowning in your sea of forgetfulness
The chains of yesterday surround me
I yearn for peace and rest
I don't want to end up where You found me
And it echoes in my mind, keeps me awake tonight
I know You've cast my sin as far as the east is from the west
And I stand before You now as though I've never sinned
But today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way

Jesus, can You show me just how far the east is from the west
'cause I can't bear to see the man I've been come rising up in me again
In the arms of Your mercy I find rest
'cause You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other

I start the day, the war begins, endless reminding of my sin
Time and time again Your truth is drowned out by the storm I'm in
Today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way

I know You've washed me white, turned my darkness into light
I need Your peace to get me through, to get me through this night
I can't live by what I feel, but by the truth Your word reveals
I'm not holding on to You, but You're holding on to me
You're holding on to me

Jesus, You know just how far the east is from the west
I don't have to see the man I've been come rising up in me again
In the arms of Your mercy I find rest
'cause You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other
One scarred hand to the other
From one scarred hand to the other

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Memorial Service *TW* Talk of Suicide

I attended my first military memorial service today. At times, there was some discomfort for me in the formality of the event, but at the same time there was a sense of honor and respect being paid to the deceased because of the protocol being followed. Overall, I left very impressed with the way the memorial service was handled.

The reason for the service was another reason. The sergeant we were memorializing committed suicide last week. My fiance was deployed with him in Afghanistan until they came home in Dec. All I heard about this sergeant that may have played into his suicide were that he came home from deployment to his wife divorcing him and then the weekend before he passed away, his girlfriend broke up with him. These issues on top of reintegration from war, send a "well duh" thought through my head. However, it seems no one else saw it coming. He had future trips planned, he wasn't giving away everything he owned, etc.

Many of those (including my fiance) that I had the privilege to speak with are in total shock. I understand their shock. Even with friends that have committed suicide and I knew they were in a space they might do that, there is a shock that comes along with not being able to believe they actually followed through. At the same time, being someone who was suicidal for so many years and watching close friends of mine struggle with suicidality, I highly doubt there were no signs. The signs were just too subtle for the "normal" person to notice.

I say "normal" b/c I believe those of us who have been suicidal at one point or another in our life or have people close to us who are gain a better understanding of what to look for and a gut feeling of when someone else might be struggling that much, even if they're hiding it from 95% of the people in their life. I believe it's also hard for a person who has never been suicidal to fathom situations or feelings that would push someone to that point. I bet you anything, those closest to him didn't realize the internal turmoil he'd probably been dealing with since returning home in Dec or even before. All it took was something big (or small) to be his breaking point.

Memorial services for someone who dies from suicide always feel so much sadder and more painful for me. When someone dies in battle, or in a car wreck, or in some way that is out of their control, for some reason it is easier to cope with. It's easier to think they've found peace with Jesus. NOTE: I do NOT believe suicide equates the inability for God's grace to cover you and grant you eternal life with him. I do find myself feeling more that the person's life was cut short though. What great things might they still have seen, done, or felt in the name of the Lord if they'd just stuck it out? Feelings are ever changing. I do know what it's like to be chronically depressed and suicidal for 5 straight years, so I know it's tiring, but I also know that the depression and impulses did wax and wane during that time, and it is possible to overcome.

I think part of the sickening thud that settles in my stomach when I hear of a suicide and especially if I attend the person's funeral or know the person personally is b/c I know how close I was in the Spring of 2008 of causing that pain on so many around me. In the moment, I couldn't see past what was directly in front of me, so I don't hold guilt per say. I was very sick. But I constantly praise God that he put me in a place where people could intervene and I could be given another chance and receive help from people who could help me.

At the memorial service today, I cried. I never met this sergeant. My fiance didn't know him all that well. Yet we were both greatly affected today by his death. For me, it's just another reminder that people I don't even know might be effected if I chose to end my life before God calls me home.

I am very much in prayer for the family and friends of this sergeant and of anyone who has lost a loved one to suicide. In addition, I am in deep prayer for those people I know and those I don't know who are having suicidal impulses. God always provides a way out, we just have to choose to pay attention to it and take it.

And praise God that he took care of me when I didn't want to pay attention or take advantage of my way out of my suicidal impulses and acted on them. If I had succeeded, I would not be getting married to the man of my dreams in less than 4 weeks, I wouldn't have been able to realize my dream to be a therapist - and a good one at that. And I for sure wouldn't have realized my desire to function well and happy on only 20mg of Prozac instead of 10 psychotropic meds at one time.

God is bigger than suicide. I wish I knew how to help people (including myself) remember this in moments of utter despair when all you can see, think, feel, act on is getting out of this world and ending this life as soon as possible!!!!