Sunday, April 3, 2011

Enlightened and Joyful

I was speaking with my friend Nicole last weekend and realized I had been having some insane thoughts;) As I was talking, I realized my emotions weren't necessarily logical and in fact not healthy.

We moved here to Sheboygan a year and two days ago;) What should have been a VERY stressful move, was effortless and easy. For the most part, we REALLY love it here. Our home is more peaceful. I didn't emotionally always "fit" with the city life style. I find the underlying stress we lived with gone. I hope I never take an attached garage or a large beautiful yard for granted. I find such joy in watching deer and turkeys roam in our back yard. Life here is slower paced. There is no traffic. For me, it often has felt like life is taking a deep breath and slow exhale. It's a blessing.

What has not always been easy is building community. My last two large moves were different. In college, you build friends quickly. Everyone is in the same boat, everyone is outgoing and intentional. Next, I moved to Chicago. I did that with my best friend. I had her from day one. Yes, we branched out and made other friends, but I never was "alone".

Our move here was a bit more difficult. Time is VERY limited. I have three small children (actually giving birth to number 3 here). Others already have their lives established. It's hard to know where you fit in. As I was talking to Nicole, I realized I have developed insecurities. I am outgoing. I have always had friends and one of my passions is being a good friend. But I have internally begun to question EVERYthing I do. If I do something nice for someone, I worry that they will think I came on too strong. If I call someone, I wonder if they hang up and are annoyed the new girl just took up their time. I was warned that with the culture here, one has to be outgoing and reach out. I am fine with that and I have been trying to put in much effort to do that. All the while, however, I worry people are annoyed. I wonder if people think I am a stalker. I wonder about whether or not to invite people over. If they say "We'd love to get together" but then never call, I wonder if they forgot or got busy or if they really didn't mean it;)

As I was talking to Nicole I realized what a waste of time this thinking becomes. As with every stage of life, I am called to love others. If I invite someone over and they say yes, I need to just welcome them into my home and hope they feel loved and supported here. I need to be friendly and allow time to show which relationships are meant to stick. Before moving here, my Aunt Lynda told me it takes about 18months to feel like a new place is home. It's been 12 and in many ways this already feels like home; I need to just be thankful. I need to take these self defeating thoughts captive and commit each day and each interaction to my Lord. He called us here and he has a place for us here. As I seek him, everything else falls into place.

It's a week after this "light bulb moment" and you know what- God has again been faithful. We had a WONDERFUL weekend. We got to connect with our care group and not one but TWO couples over a meal. WOW! God always blows my mind. I was able to enjoy myself (so much, in fact) and not act like an insecure blubbering idiot. I feel so very very thankful.


  1. you are an amazing friend and ANYONE is blessed to count you as a sister. Praying for you more after reading this. Thanks soooo much for coming out and our day of adventures in the burbs and sun. It was awesome!

  2. I know that we talked about this when we were over, but I just have to say that you are a BLESSING to be friends with! -hands down, no question! Anyone in Sheboygan who doesn't think so just hasn't met you yet!