some

someday’s (today) i feel the heaviness of a life that is not yet mine.

i do not know what my life will be ten years from now,

and on some nights the enormity of my Youth crushes me, because it reminds me of my smallness.

and most days my feelings feel too big, and most nights my feelings feel too small.

i am on a quest for bravery,  and some 

most times i question if i am capable of being a person that feels like a walking dichotomy most nights, but

most mornings I wake and feel like the nights have erased my bruises – the day ready to let me try again.

how can i be so –                                                                                                                                       day and night, at the same time?

i talk and i wonder about my feelings too much.                                                                             is that ok? is that cute? is it ok if it is not cute?

for most of my days i have tried to be dainty and have attempted to fit myself into a perfectly wrapped box, but i can no longer fit –

the paper is crinkly and the sticky on the bow is no longer – sticky.

i write what my brain spews and i do not find coherency in my words but when i am done letting ink sink into paper, i find it in my heart.

is what makes me a writer – being good at writing?                                                                      is what makes me a writer – that i write?

i am here, and i am asking for an inkling of guidance. this is not an existential crisis, this is an existential acceptance.

how do i progress? will it always be such a swing between some days and some nights and some moments?

will it slow down? will this get better? will i?

how?

why?

when?

where?

with who?

how come?

but why?

i feel like a two year old that has just discovered that he has words.

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i wrote this in the night

i continually rewrite the same feelings over and over

The feelings, though, now

Are different and the same,

Simultaneously.

Because i feel so deeply, and i have always

I remember being small and feeling so big

But now these feelings,

Are so much more

Manageable?

Understandable?

Comprehensible?

It is like i have felt for so long –

But now i know.

I know why.

I have been infused with glory

From heaven above

Heaven above

Has come and made home in the concaves of my beating blood

And heaven has given me permission to be too much

Heaven has come

And given me permission to be, to be here.

To be here, seen

To be here, known.

I know that heaven hears my heartbeats

heartbeats beating with hope

A hope that does not cry out of desperation

But a hope that cries out of satisfaction

A hope that knows who she is

A hope that knows.

A hope that says

; wait.

Wait here, i am here,

too.

I’ll be there,

as well.

A hope that says

“i am here – inside of the deepest place of your heart, and i know, and i hear, and i am here. please keep hoping

please keep dancing

please keep waking.”

being me, now

I’ve decided that being me, now

, is a very strange thing to be.

Strange, awkward, slippery, messy.

Pieces of me lost, pieces of me found.  

I was in the backseat of my best friends jeep and the music was as loud as it could get, and I was thinking about how, up until now, I have spent a lot of time thinking.

Thinking about what I like, who I like, how I like things, but

I have not actually decided.

I want to decide,

I want to decide and be sure of my deciding.  

Here are some of the things I have decided:

  1. I am sure that Ben Rector makes the hopeless romantic in me seep out into the palms of my hands
  2. I am sure that I will probably rotate through the same four pairs of shoes for the rest of my life and still not get rid of the other 16
  3. I am sure that I do not like pants that are not tight around the ankles
  4. I am sure that I will continue to add to my “Want To Read” bookshelf on Goodreads and never read all of the books that i Want To Read
  5. I am sure that my heart is beating to write, and to sing, and to remind people to remember who they actually Are
  6. I am sure that this is hard
  7. and I am sure that this is worth it
  8. I am sure that I am afraid of responding to formal messages, ie. people asking me to complete something that requires them paying me, and responding to an email asking about how a company could improve. and I am sure that my heart will never stop beating too fast when I press send. 
  9. I am sure that I like to dance
  10. and I am also sure that I will never do more than a cheeky little side-step number when in the presence of anyone else but myself
  11. I am sure that when I am by myself and god has decided to tap dance on my heart I am more me than i ever am and my legs move the right way and my heart beats the perfect number of beats
  12. I am sure that in a day to come being me will feel less strange,

I think that being me, now,

feels a lot more strange then it actually is, because who i am has been twisted with who i am not for most of my life and i am finally untwisting a very twisty — twist. I am beginning to see through the knots into the depths of who i, elizabeth, actually am, and it is quite scary.

It is scary shaking hands with yourself and deciding to be ok with the grip.

It is scary being me, now, sometimes.

  1. I am sure that i am ok with being scared because it means that i am growing.

It has to mean that i am growing.

  1. I am sure that i do not like odd numbers, so I had to add one last one to this list.

a line in the sand

years into this recovery business and i’m finally recognizing this body im in as good and capable

i am attempting to draw a line in the sand

to represent

the now and the then

to show that this is today and that was yesterday

but most days

it feels like all of the sand surrounding my line finds its way to seap deep, as if the line was never drawn

i am convincing myself that this is ok.

if i have to redraw the line each day,

that is ok

it has to be

on a day soon

my line in the sand

and all the sand surrounding it

will realize

that its presence is permanent

and the now

will scream: OH MY I HAVE BEEN HERE THIS WHOLE TIME AND I KEPT LETTING ALL OF THESE OTHER GRAINS GET IN MY WAY

and the then

will not

be able to scream at all

only whispers,

maybe, on days when my stomach is hurting and my knees are wobbly and too many numbers are surfacing to my center, the whispers will feel very strong

but the now will know,

that it is now, and it is no longer then.

it has a new name, and it will only be addressed by such,

no longer unworthy

(i am worthy)

no longer ugly

(i am beautiful, and my face may not tell me so every day. but i have noticed a beauty so much deeper than the shape of my nose)

no longer a disorder

(i am free. and that is the truest thing about myself)

no longer angry

(joy knocked on my door for so long and i finally had the guts to let her in)

no longer bitter

(i choose thankfulness because when i do my proverbial cup is overflowed)

no longer shaking hands with scarcity

(i am no victim. i am no poor man.)

i can feel it,

this line in the sand is

making room

it is giving my heart space to breathe, and just be where it is. it is giving my mouth space to open. it is giving my hands space to hold onto things that are good. it is giving my body space to fold and unfold.

i have been folded up for too too long,

and finally,

this line in the sand has given me a place to lay and rest and understand and notice and feel,

and be.

titled: 3 things

Rainy days inspire me. Ya know when you hadn’t realized you weren’t fully awake until one moment your heart feels like it’s beating exactly how it should be and your feet feel perfectly in place right where they are and then your brain is like…. oh. All these days we’ve been looking through parchment paper trying to see through and this… this. This moment, this one thing, is all we needed to muster up the courage to crumple the parchment and toss it aside. It feels like that thing thats been suffocating my eyes for so long is beginning to disintegrate and it is freeing and terrifying all at once and i am having to consistently remind my heart that that is ok. Here are 3 things I’ve written this year just because i want to share them:

1. titled: bitter(l)ess••

I’ve been trying to understand since my first scream out of the womb.

I’ve been trying to be enough since the first time i believed i wasn’t.

(i am not bitter. i am not bitter.)

i choose to let bitterness go.

It will do me no good

now

that i’m

here.

2. titled: the boy whose heart is as big as a watermelon •• sometimes it made it hard for him to

breathe

3. titled: trying to vomit a poem = surrender ••

anger and anxiety have filled up so many of my crevices for so long. and my crevices are creaking. they are on the verge of explosion – and explosion means known, and maybe known isn’t as scary as it’s presented itself. Maybe seen doesn’t have to equal fear. Maybe being vulnerable means your insides screaming

until one day

it doesn’t. Until one day it means help*.

(and help means good. means peace*)

and it means relationship with people*

(and people means good. means peace*) (*because help and people have meant anger. fear. anxiety, for so long.) –

vulnerable, vulnerability » one day when this feeling creeps up my stomach and starts banging on my heart i will acknowledge it and say to it “yes – today i am taking visitors, but i am the tour guide. so please, even though you are fierce, be gentle. We will get through this – together.” and then i will raise my hand when i have questions. i will go places and smile at people. i will dance in target and i will sing while putting gas in my car. and i will eat without anxiety coating my stomach and run without counting numbers. “i am not a song writer. i am not a poem writer.” I say this to myself as i write songs. as i write poems. I have held my identity in a choke hold for so long hoping it wasn’t true because i had not felt ready to play the part, but i have come to a small understanding that there is no playing there is just being. there has been a disconnect between my thoughts and my pencil, and i am hoping that if i keep doing this – it will stop feeling so foreign, it will be easier to step into myself. and say “hello. i am taking visitors today. i will not shut myself shut. i am here and that is enough because i have worked to be here. i am worthy of feeling and i am worthy of being worthy.” in the beginning we were trying and now we are here, the end of this small set of letters, and it feels simpler. like trying is no longer my middle name and surrender is the only name left.

1 am

Words and I have been at a weird stand off for the past year. The other week I wrote this in the middle of the night, and I want to share it here because it was the first time in a LONG TIME that I wrote something that really conveyed how I was feeling, the growth that I feel inside my chest, and the vulnerability that I am willing to shake hands with lately. It is Easter weekend, and I share this with you today, because the growth that this piece represents to me would not be possible without the sacrificial love that so willingly brought himself near to us. We are so wildly loved. I will say it again: so. wildly. loved. Our abba God chose to enter into a world of darkness and gore through his son, and this is quite a beautiful thing – that we are loved at the end of ourselves. that we are seen and known deeply and fully — and yet not condemned. Through Jesus we are made whole – through Jesus shame is no longer our birthright. Our birthright is righteousness, freedom, glory – because of his death and resurrection we are presented with a life seeped in joy, peace, and love.  Here it is –

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here. 

( hello new – i am grateful for your stay.)


meet me here

where im at

it is 1 am

And there are so many things

that i could be doing

rather than sleep

so many things i

could be thinking

about

but instead

i am thinking about

how

when i lift up my stomach

underneath

there are these deep

red

lines  they are not lines

they are

marks.

too strong to be lines

they are deep

but out

hidden

but loud

when i touch them

i feel connected

to my body

in a

strange

strange

way –

they also remind me

that my body has

stretched exponentially

I feel like i need to

scream to the World

that

I HAVE BEEN AT WAR
FOR SO LONG

and finally.

Finally.

my white flag is up.

its ragged and torn

it is at half mass

but

it is up

finally up.

i did not know

what it would feel

like being here

but it feels like

shouting

I AM HERE
AND I WANT TO, NEED TO

BE seen.

known.

it feels like not enough

but enough.

these marks.

i could let them

haunt me

and let every 1 am

be filled with hatred

but on this 1

i’d like to choose

gentleness.

my body is ever

changing

ever

evolving

i am not

stagnant

i am not

lost alone

i am near.

i am here.

i can feel

my hand about

to knock through.

my ribcage

is shaking

rumbling.

it knows something’s coming

it feels

the graceful

presence

of change

taking place

and i guess

I

can too

because my rib cage is in

me

and we both

feel the same wind.

i have been afraid

to write

because

i do not

want to do it

wrong

i do not

want my

un-qualifications

to put me in a choke hold

and i definitely

do not want

my un-qualifications

to actually be visible

and actually

be quanitified as

un-qualifications

but maybe

with change

comes new.

new words

new eyes to

look at my body

with

to eat food

with

to filter feelings

with

to rationalize others

with

( and to accept that rationalization isn’t always concrete)

(with?)

new eyes, new me?

new eyes, new words?

new words, new eyes?

new words, new me.

new eyes, new me.

new eyes, new words.

let peace flow through

these veins

and let love seep into

this aching heart

let joy escape

these smoky lungs

let mercy enter this

messy bag of bones

make me more than a bag of bones.

let color come

and make me move

glory to glory

i am grateful i am here. i am grateful You are near.

it’s 1;42 am

and despite it all

i

am

glad

to

be

alive

right

now

because

it means

there is

still time

to be.

band aids

Look up the song “In My Lungs” by Chris Renzema. There is a bit in this song that goes like this

 

“So don’t let me, live my life with this bandage on

Don’t let me, let the fear of what I’m not, make my heart numb”

 

When I heard this bit my heart crumbled, because I feel it on so many levels.

The easiest thing to do is to take a look at our lives – at our pasts, at our nows, at the things that hurt, and at the reasons as to why our futures seem hopeless – and sit in a pile of self pity. Instead of confronting these things that we are afraid of, these things that ache, it is easier to just slap a bandaid on them, and wait for them to get better. I am sat here today well aware that this is the easiest thing to do, because I have done it for so long. The hardest thing about entering into recovery from eating disorders was letting go of the false safety net that eating disorders offer. Now – as I am confronting the anxiety and depression that have had a chokehold around my lungs for so long – I am finding it most difficult to think about being anything but a girl with anxiety and depression. It makes my stomach ache thinking about how I could be anything else but these labels I have held onto with calloused hands. Now that I am discovering that I am more than these things — it is hard to take the bandages off. It was easy to put them there. To hide them for nobody else to see. When I was younger I remember there a came a point on my scraped knees that my grandma would say the band aid was no longer needed, because it needed to be exposed to the air in order to heal completely. I think I am at this point in my healing from mental disorders.

 

I don’t want to cover my hurts from the wind that holds healing anymore. I don’t want to be ashamed that I struggle. I have come to this point in my life where I know that I want to get better. I want to learn different ways of thinking about myself, and my circumstances. I want to be gentler with myself, and with others. I want to be less angry. I want to stop hiding from things that are hard. Broken people don’t have to stay broken forever – and I am holding onto the promise that freedom is ALREADY mine, even though I am still fighting for it. I am holding onto the promise that this fight I am fighting right now will not always be this difficult in my existence.

 

I believe that recovery is possible – if we fight for it. Fighting for it looks different every day. Keep waking up. Scream if you have to. Sit quietly with yourself, and get comfortable with emptiness, so that when fullness comes you are prepared to feel it. Speak even when your voice is being strangled by your insides – it’s ok if you’re shake-y. Being shake-y is a side effect of being brave. Cry. Dance. Sing. Do these things, so that days from now – when you no longer have a sticker on your shirt that says “Hi, my name is: *insert name of mental disorder*” – you can look back on how they used to be hard. How you used to be a shell of a person. I believe that we won’t always be shells of people. We can get through this. We can be heart beats bursting through rib cages. We can be footsteps seeping with purpose. We can be veins flowing with hope. 

 

If you are struggling – please don’t let the fear of getting help stop you from actually getting help. You are worthy of love. Worthy of help. Worthy of being known. Worthy of this fight. Worthy of change. Worthy of freedom. I am here fighting with you, and I hope that today – we can let go of what we’ve been holding onto that has calloused our hands for so long, and replace it with these gentle but fierce truths of our worthiness – together. 

 

“The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”

  Zephaniah 3:17