Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Plotting a Plot

I took some time off to start feeling better emotionally again. I know why my emotions were raw and why I was fighting off depression, but it wasn't anything worthy of a post. It was just stuff with my in-laws still bothering me.

Instead of focusing on that, I'm going to focus on my book. Lately, I haven't been writing on it, but I have been fleshing out my characters more and adding parts to my plot. The only problem with that is that all this work has been done when I've been away from my computer, so all my notes are slightly scattered and need to be gathered together.

But I'm starting to get a much fuller idea as to who at least some of my characters are and what happened in their pasts, which helps to determine what they'll do now. I still need to work on a few other characters, to round them out more. They need more dimensions than 2. My bad guy is still fairly flat. He needs some depth. Even if I never explain his background, I need to know some of it.

But I'm happy that my plot is coming along. I'm okay with not working on the actual book portion right this second, since I'm still working on the book. It's funny, because I already know the main plot of this book, but the details are starting to come together. I already know that one of my characters is clamoring for her own story to be told. And I know, roughly, what I want that story to be. Once upon a time, I never dreamed that I'd be writing a book, let alone that book having a sequel. But here I am, plotting them out, working on telling these stories.

And maybe someday soon, I'll be writing this book out, instead of trying to get all the details and such organized. Won't that be a wonderful day!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Describing My Feelings

Yesterday, I tried to describe to Ace. We were on our way to prayer night and I was trying to explain why I wasn't working on my novel, after finally finding my way past some major writer's block.

It's slightly difficult to describe feelings. Especially ones that are painful. I told him that I didn't understand people who cut themselves to stop feeling emotional pain for a while. My emotional pain feels physically painful. And I dislike physical pain, why would I cause myself pain? I will admit to having hurt others emotionally while I was hurting. I know that I was trying to lash out, even when they were offering sympathy and comfort. Sometimes the pain seems too hard to see past in the moment.

I've been fighting off depression. I know, in my head, that someday I should talk to someone about this depression. I should find out if there is a chemical imbalance, or if it's just my own cycle of negative thoughts that bring me to these dark places. But right now, it's not the right time. Financially, it's the totally wrong time. And the negativity of the people we are living with isn't helping.

I wish I could adequately describe how depression feels for me. The English language doesn't seem to have the right words. And it's never that the simple, basic things are any physically harder to do then, but they FEEL like they take all this effort. I FEEL like I have no energy. While I have the energy to feed myself if you set food in front of me, I don't FEEL like I have the energy to get up to make food for myself, until I am extremely hungry. Getting up and moving, while not physically painful, is painful. Anyone making any kind of request of me during that time seems to be asking me to move mountains for them (not literally, obviously).

Most of that last paragraph, that's the closest I can come to describing how things are when I'm depressed. Part of me wonders why I should do anything, when it's all so difficult to do and feels painful to boot. Ace, in his own wonderful way, helps me pull myself out of that funk. He understands, at least as much as he can, that I am trying. He refuses to just let me wallow in my head until I finally find my way clear. If it weren't for him, I'm not sure where I'd be.

If anyone knows of any better descriptions of how depression feels, let me know.

Monday, June 20, 2011

As I Lay Trying to Sleep

Saturday night, as I was trying to get some sleep, I finally figured out some key things for my novel (the one I'm supposed to be writing, but hadn't been able to in a long time). I finally felt like I broke through some block that was keeping me from writing.

I wish I could say that thoughts coming to me as I'm trying to sleep was new, but it's not. My brain could be half asleep and I could be drifting off to sleep until my head hits the pillow and then my brain decides it's time to wake up. And often it's the time when I have amazing insights into things.

And all of that would be great, except... Except that I'm supposed to be going to sleep. And those insights, they wake me up more. My brain starts making more connections to things, and figuring more things out and I feel the urge to get up and make notes about whatever it is that is going through my head. Then I feel tired the next day, because I didn't get enough sleep, because I had this stuff in my head that "needed" to be dealt with right then.

On the plus side, I have a place to start working on my book again. I can be creative. Hopefully, the book will content itself to my waking hours and let me sleep when I'm trying to sleep. Hopefully my characters won't start demanding more of my bedtime.

And those are the kinds of things that happen as I lay trying to sleep.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

The other night, I was trying to think of something to write about my dad. I was supposed to be going to sleep, but it seemed important to figure out some way to celebrate my dad on Father's Day, since I wasn't going to get to see him on the day this year.

Then, I remembered how he entertained me while we went grocery shopping when I was younger. He'd tease me in several ways. He'd pretend he was going to bump into all the posts holding up the roof, but that it was my fault because I was in the driver's seat (I kept pointing out that I was just riding, he was steering, but it just kept happening). He would pretend that I was going to be supper (not that I really believed him). He'd scratch my head and tell me that puppies liked to be scratched behind their ears (and that he was just stating a fact when I pointed out that I wasn't a puppy).

I'm fairly certain that half of the purpose of entertaining/teasing me was to entertain and tease himself, but it did keep grocery shopping from being completely dull. I don't remember half the stuff my mom put in the cart or most of the meals she made, but I remember him teasing/entertaining me throughout the grocery store. It takes a special kind of person not to care if someone was going to look at you like you're crazy just to keep your child entertained. And, as much as I feel silly admitting it, I miss that stuff. It was silly and probably annoyed me quite a bit as a child, but it was the kind of thing that started the wonderful relationship we have now.

Happy Father's Day, Daddy! The next time I go grocery shopping, I think of you.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Less Broken

Ace and I were talking recently and I talked about how I don't feel quite the same person as I was when we got married.

Shortly after Ace and I got married, I went through a faze of trying to fix myself emotionally. I read a lot of self-help books and tried to undo some of the damage my mother had done. After a while (roughly a year), I realized two things: 1. I couldn't fix the broken parts of my relationship with my mom. and 2. I wasn't going to be able to fix the parts of me that the relationship with my mom had broken.

After I stopped talking with my mom, things sort of started to get better. I had a few bumps of wondering what was wrong with me that my mother couldn't seem to love before realizing that it had nothing to do with me, but I would imagine that's part of the healing process.

I realized that I don't feel nearly as broken as I used to. I've had a few other, unrelated things that made me feel broken, but my emotions seem to have done quite a bit of healing. It seems that while I've been busy living my life and trusting God to heal my emotional wounds, they've been healed.

I don't know when I'll be fully fixed. I know that I'll always have some emotional scars. I have been changed by my experiences. Some of the pieces may not fit as well as they should. But I am closer to whole than I've been in a long time. And I'm certain, in the end, I'll be whole again.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Whirling Thoughts

One of my cousins just announced her pregnancy earlier. I, not being that close to her, didn't know until I read her post. I'm not quite sure how I feel.

This is a cousin who routinely makes me think about how ready I am to have kids because she is still finding it hard to adjust to having children (2 already, 1 on the way). I'm not sure why she and I are on such different wavelengths with regards to being a parent, but we obviously are.

This was a surprise pregnancy for her. She wasn't planning on having any more children right now. I'm trying not to think of how long Ace and I have been trying and how many months I've been disappointed to see my period show up. I am holding on to most of my thoughts to sort through them and discard the unuseful ones later. I am not talking about how my emotions are mixed, because I seriously take issue with myself for having mixed emotions.

One of my cousins is pregnant. I am on the tail end of one of the shortest periods I've ever had. I'm not sure all the hormones are gone yet.

My cousin is pregnant. She's due in January. And the only full thought that keeps ringing through my head is "My cousin is pregnant."

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

God is Faithful

Despite the feeling that the second half of May was stormy and frustrating, I never did get caught up in the undertow and dragged down into depression. For that, I am truly thankful. I did feel, towards the end of the day on the 31st, that I had nothing left to give to anyone because people kept making demands of me, but I wasn't depressed. I was just tired.

It's been just over a week since then. I'm feeling better, now that I've had some time away from demands. I feel a bit more like myself. I'm still looking out for the undertow, because I remember how quickly it can drag me to places I don't want to be. I'm trying to find my peacefulness again.

Yesterday, Ace and I went to pray for a local ministry. While we were there, we got to fellowship with a fellow Christian. She gave us some money for a dinner out to celebrate Ace's birthday. She helped us see the brightness of our future instead of focusing on our current circumstances. She blessed us far more than she will ever know. And she kept telling us that we were blessing her too. She found it hard to believe that we are coming up on our 8th anniversary, because we are still so obviously in love.

Things like that are what help strengthen my relationship with God. Every time I think I've reached a breaking point, I find a new measure of strength. Every time I need encouragement the most, someone is there to encourage me. When I need hope the most, some how hope finds me. Every time I wonder if some part of my story is going to have a sad ending, I find that the end hasn't come yet.

I understand how having something that hurts you to the core, shakes everything you thought you believed, can pull you away from God. I understand how losing something you had been praying for, waiting for, hoping for can make you mad and hurt and not ready to be friendly with God. But I also understand how, when the time is done and you find out more of the story, God's mercy and love can be seen shining through.

Every time something tragic and painful has happened to me, I found that after it was over, my faith had grown stronger. Every time, I found out something that showed me how God was looking out for me. No matter how much the emotional storms are raging, God always finds a way to give me the compassion and love that I so desperately need to find my way through to the end. And every time I start feeling like giving up, I only need to remember the good things, no matter how small, that have happened in the past to find the strength to carry on.

I know what it is to hurt. I know what it is to face loss. I know what it means to be broke and hungry. And all of those things have made me a stronger person. I have found that my God is bigger than my circumstances. He loves me. He never lets me walk alone. And during all those times, He has helped me find peace.

"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." - Phil. 4:13 KJV

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Rehashing Old Ground

Ace and I have spent time this past week rehashing the "discussion" he had with my in-laws. Today, I think we found some of the main reasons we are so frustrated with this whole situation. But that's not what I want to talk about (again).

I'm wondering why Ace and I keep talking about this kind of stuff. Is it that we are trying to find logic? Are we trying to figure out how this isn't all our fault? Why do we keep circling the same topics, topics that my in-laws are the ones to bring up in the first place?

I have no answers for my questions. I know that part of us is looking for logic, but that part will keep coming up short (there is precious little logic in most of my in-laws' decisions). How do these people keep stirring up things that keep chasing our figurative tails around in circles of conversation?

It's not the first time I've noticed that Ace and I have conversations that keep circling back to one main topic, but it has been fairly frustrating this time around. Every time we seem to start moving on, one of us (okay, usually me) realizes something new about that whole "discussion" and it's the topic of the hour again. I think my brain is chasing something and it won't quite leave the insanity alone until it's found what it is chasing or loses it completely.

At least this time we aren't rehashing stuff my mom did in the past. I'm pretty sure Ace is glad to hear about someone else for a change.

Other than that, life is much better.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Moving Forward

I survived May 2011. This is probably a bigger deal in my head than in real life, since the month of May isn't really out to get me. But this year, it felt like it was trying since May was so stressful.

Yesterday, we cleaned out our car and sold it to be scrapped. The guy who we sold it to had promised us one amount and then when we got there (with the title) he would only give us a different, lesser amount. It was stupid and frustrating.

After the way everything had been going, I cried a bit. I fought crying, but it happened anyway. Then I spent the evening doing nothing in particular except relaxing (the plans Ace and I thought we had weren't happening, so I could just relax without it being a problem). I declared my night anti-social and shut out the world from our room. I took the night off and spent it focusing on me. Today, Ace let me spend the day mostly focusing on relaxing and getting rid of residual stress.

But, now that I'm closer to feeling like myself again, it's time to move forward. It's time to focus on June and the potential it has. It's, hopefully, just about time to get a newer vehicle and soon after move out of my in-laws' house (they gave Ace a potential lead on a job that will pay enough for us to get out fairly soon). It's time to remember Ace's birthday and our anniversary. It's time to move forward with our lives and not dwell in the past.