2017

The importance of the Rest Note.

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“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”
― John LubbockThe Use Of Life

 

Rest… No not sleep. Rest. I have slept many times and woken up more tired than when I went to bed because I am someone who is super guilty of not doing things that energise me and grow me as a person. I am very good at completing the task. I complete tasks so well that tasks can begin to complete me and when I actually stop I have no idea how to answer “Hey! What do you enjoy  doing in your spare time?” Firstly what is spare time and secondly… I will get back to you on that one.

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I absolutely love writing and love reading but I do not do this everyday … Why? Well there are other things I need to do.

“Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent and not enough time on what is important.”
― Stephen R. Covey

Dancers have a count in their dancing to ensure they keep the beat and don’t fumble around.. but here we are not going from 1,2,3,4 but from 123456789 and fumbling around and having more bags under our eyes than Prada has ever made. We will put our self in the trenches of dissatisfaction if we do not focus on the war of achieving, growing and being true to ourselves. Being true to ourselves has more to do than thinking we are nice people and this are our morals but it also has to do with who are we really? what makes us happy? what do we enjoy doing and are we taking care of ourselves. People become s sick that doctors put them on bed rest. Yes,bed rest. Not an endurance race to push themselves further. No rest.

I have developed something very interesting this year and yes it is self diagnosed but I have developed some sort of anxiety. I am good at getting things done that when “the reward for hard work is more hardwork” appears I accept it and just run from task to task in leaps and bounds that when soemone asks me something about my work I get on high defense mode and if I am not busy enough I sit and think about all the things I need to do and I can feel my heart beating out of my chest into my throat and then I shut down and create more lists… lists on lists. Goodness I could create a to do list for my to do list.

 

I have owned the plot twists that came my way this year  but I have fallen short in the regard that I disregard the moment to enjoy the bigger  picture but when the bigger picture comes around I am too busy thinking about how it is all supposed to play out that I miss that too.

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You need to sit and analyse where you want to go and how you actually want to feel when you get there. Make time for the important things – We are told to rest in God and not to be so exhausted that we cannot even finish our Bible reading for the day. If we ever become too busy for God then we are more busy than God ever intended us to be. Love others as you love yourself but being too busy to love yourself will result in you not loving others correctly either.

I once again have no quick or easy way to rest and to feel on fire instead of a heap of ash that you crave sleep for many many years but all I can say is praise God, praise Him again and breath.

Rest isn’t easy and I know for many people saying no isn’t an easy task and for me asking for help is even more daunting because I may be 5.4 but I can do this. YAAAS. Haha just joking but rest means saying no to the person who wants you to stay up until 3 again because they refuse to take your advice, it means declining that party because you have had a busy week, it means telling yourself to stop thinking in a certain way and imagining scenarios that haven’t even happened yet and probably never will. You do not need to escape from your life but you do need to know how to put rest in there and prioritise things like praying, reading your Bible, having 10 minutes of absolute silence because you are overwhelmed. It is about speaking to your soul and to forge ahead. Rest. Realise Even Superheroes Tire. Saving the world is hard work but resting doesn’t mean you never saved the world it is just about regaining your strength and mind. Rest isn’t an escape from life but enjoying it.

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Put your feet up, watch Friends again or eat that bowl of popcorn without looking at your emails. Get up and finally run the run you promised yourself you’d run. Do the things you have been putting on the back burner and in the midst of it all – rejoice.

“Rest and be thankful.” ― William Wordsworth

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2017

Oh she’s a fighter.

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Okay so I let people in and I’ve forgiven but now what.

There comes a time in your life when you have to be more than your struggle and you have to be more than your testimony. I’ve forgiven my dad , I’ve taken ownership of my life and I’ve surrendered to God but who am I when I am not sharing this story? What fuels me if this is not the drive? Where am I heading if not out of my struggle?

Here I stand bewildered. Not in wilderness but feeling like a wilderness. These are the thoughts and challenges I faced up until last year. I couldn’t share my story and say oh no I was insecure and I’m learning how to be confident in myself because I was confident in myself but something strange that came along once I overcame and shared my story came overthinking.

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Every single thing I did , everything people did to me I thought about. I became fueled with this need to be prepared for whatever could happen because I couldn’t be prepared for my dad not being there and I couldn’t be prepared for my bullying. I could be prepared for tests so that made me happy because if I failed when I was prepared I knew I did the best I could do. I could prepare for speeches. But I couldn’t prepare for how people perceived me and I couldn’t prepare for the heartbreak and rejection to come.

I guess you could call the next part of my story – the after shock or PTSD (Post Testimony Stress Drive. )

I forgave, I let my walls down, focused on how being a woman was something I should be proud of and I accepted the body I was given and who I was. But how am I supposed to prepare for the plot twist? For the next mean word? For the “I love you but I’m out of here” the unexplained ending of friendships. The abandonment and the people pointing “ you have daddy issues”. How? How ? How? Overthinking ruled my life and I had to find a way to solve every possible thing that could happen to me. Whether it meant I simply didn’t let people In too close or I appear as if I am opening my heart and soul but honey you only know what I want you to know. I seem vulnerable but this a mere facade.

I became a pro at seeming un-phased and I thrived on “ look I barely have emotions “. It was a controlled situation and it made sense to me. My desire for control , my desire for being prepared , my desire for knowing … oh boy they took over. Being a Christian and wanting to be all knowing and all prepared will really mess with your brain. Being Christian is about not being able to see but still believing.

I wouldn’t put myself into situations where I thought it would result in me not knowing what to say or what to do. I became socially awkward because “hello what’s your name?” Would be the start but who knows what they could ask next. I’d be terrified of phone calls because texting was easier for me because I could control what I said and which direction the conversation would go. I had time to think I had time to process. This whole spontaneous way of living life freaked me out.

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Hello I’m Katelyn and I suffered from post testimony stress drive. Which basically means I have overcome the initial issue but there’s a new level of stress that I need to yet again overcome.

It’s a strange thing to overcome and stumble upon another battle. Like cool I just won this fight and now I must fight again? No thank you this is exhausting. I am just going to simmer in these thoughts for a while and hope no one asks what’s going on in my mind.

 

That was me – now hello I’m Katelyn and I suffer from being unapologetically me and I cry when things make me happy or when things upset me – I vocalize my thoughts and feelings and I’m surrendered to what God wants from me and I love every human in my life in a way I never have before.

How did I get here? Well it’s simple and not simple at the same time. I had to make conscious decisions that I do not need to put the stress of figuring the plan out on myself and to trust in an all knowing God. How did I stop thinking? I haven’t figured this out 100% but I think maybe 40% of the time whereas before I would think myself into a flat panic 85% of the time if not more. My vision for the year was to “ live loved” and that is how I learned how to navigate this next battle. I approach people with the thought that they won’t hate me and if there’s an awkward silence let me just look at it as a silence instead of awkward.

The approach needs to change and one has to make conscious decisions and yes you have to fight a battle more than once to win it sometimes. I still fight the overthinking battle but instead of sitting in this constant frustration I have learnt how to ask for clarity and not fear looking “too much”.

So my lovely humans – seize the day, live loved, be you unapologetically and let God lead and follow His plan it is so much less stressful.

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2017

Spring? Is that you?

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It is said there are flowers that bloom only once in a hundred years. Why should there not be some that bloom once in a thousand, in ten thousand years? Perhaps we never know about them simply because this “once in a thousand years” has come today.
(Yevgeny Zamyatin)

Spring has come and some trees are still bare. There’s not one leaf, not one fruit, not one flower… Just dryness. What happens when spring comes but I’m not blossoming? Come on now I’m on a deadline. I have to be in full bloom by the age of 25. Or I have to have a boyfriend because what the actual heck is wrong with me if I don’t? All my friends have boyfriends. I don’t think trees look at the trees next to them and judge themselves wondering oh my actual word why don’t I have apples? Honey you’re not an apple tree that’s why you don’t have apples.

I am guilty of putting pressures on myself and deadlines that fit in my mind set of life. “Get all A’s” “Get a full bursary” “Get a degree by 21” “Get a license” “Buy a car” “Get a boyfriend” “Buy a house” “Get engaged” “Get married ” “have two kids by 35”. I used to put my entire life on a time line. I had a five year plan. Heck I had every second planned. The pressure of continuous planning is that when winds come to sway your branches you get upset because the plan didn’t include the wind. The set back. The drama. The break up. The tears. The plan only includes what we want to happen… It doesn’t include the reality and misfortunes of life. We get so frustrated with ourselves and when someone comes along and breaks our heart we get upset because it wasn’t part of the plan and it was unexpected… We put our internal pressures onto the external and try and force all the trees to grow in this way. Not every tree bears fruit in the same season… We were all planted at different times and some need to establish roots before they can bear fruit and provide shade and shelter. Is the tree dead? No. The tree is in full swing and it’s important that the tree has a good root system so it can withstand future storms.

 

 

So… Now the fact that we aren’t currently blossoming and that we feel like we are in a whirlwind of storms… Well you see pruning is important to a tree – when we hold onto the dead and give no space for the new. We hold onto that thing that happened to us and put it into every pain we have because letting go feels like we are saying that we are okay that that bit of our life is gone and let’s be honest if you loved your friend or boyfriend or girlfriend so dearly just letting go isn’t the simplest task? We refuse to let go because then we are accepting and moving ahead and eventually the chapter closes and we start writing a new one and “rather the hurt we know than the one to come” right? No no. Prune. Cut those dead things because this encourages growth. “How will cutting things off me make me grow?” Well you see pruning is actually beneficial to a tree because it helps it grow in the way it was supposed to grow. The hurts and pains are all important to our growth but holding onto our rotten fruit just brings flies and who wants flies?…

 

You don’t need to be blossoming and thriving right now. You can take your time. Do your pruning and take yourself to the true vine… The ultimate Gardener. God will prune you and develop you and bring the sweetest fruit out of you. Don’t put a deadline on yourself. Take the pressures away and R E S T in Him and trust him.

No it’s not easy. It hurts. Telling yourself that everything is a okay isn’t easy when you keep seeing the blossoms around you and you look at your feet and all you see is dead leaves… But the wilderness is a sign of the promise land coming. Be easy on yourself but be strict at the same time. You’re growing so allow yourself the time to grow but encourage growth and not setbacks. Trees don’t pick up dead leaves because they know there’s no life. They let it blow away in the wind… Let the hurts, distractions and worries blow away in the wind of resting in Him.

You don’t have to remind a flower when its time to bloom is near; it has been preparing for it all of its life.
(Matshona Dhliwayo)

Prepare yourself.

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2017

Cherophobia

IMG_5553“And there it was. Happiness just a shot away from me but here I was overthinking it to the point of being miserable.”

My writing is mostly fuelled off of experience and how I managed to deal with what was given to me and lately I have been… happy. Genuinely happy. However, I have not been enjoying this happiness. I have been figuring out how this will all leave me. How I did not deserve this or that maybe this is too good to be true. No not in a I walk around with a cloud of darkness over my head but if happiness was a couch I was merely sitting on the edge getting ready to be asked to leave my seat.

I did not rest in the comfort of happiness. Still struggle with that. I realised that I view breakthrough or joy as something that will be ripped from me and be yet another challenge I must face. But when the couch of happiness is in your face you really cannot keep ignoring it not allow anyone to sit on it in fear that it will be taken away. The what ifs will ultimately be the death of some of us. Changing your view on happiness is important. I know I have been guilty of not enjoying a breakthrough, good times and utter joy because if I did not enjoy happiness as much surely I wouldn’t be in the same amount of pain when sadness comes? I know right how sad are my thoughts sometimes.

 

I am here just to say that we should not have a fear of happiness and that we should jump onto that couch and cuddle right in it with a pillow of laughter, a blanket of love and be dressed in clothes filled with affirmation. Happiness should not be a guilty pleasure but it should be enjoyed. Fully. Happiness isn’t something that will stop coming around and while it is here I think we should be grabbing it with both hands.

 

” He fills my life with good things so that I stay young and strong like an eagle.” -Psalm 103:5

 

Take your happiness back into your own hands. Silence the thoughts and celebrate once again. You know that you want to. That relationship you have been so scared of because you fear you aren’t good enough? Sit on the couch of happiness because you are good enough and you deserve love. That trip you have been terrified to take? Sit on the couch of happiness because you deserve to explore. That smile you have been scared of smiling? Sit on the couch of happiness and show us those pearly whites.

 

Cherophobia: The fear of gaiety, happiness, joyfulness or rejoicing.

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2017, Uncategorized

I should be there.

“Personality begins where comparison leaves off. Be unique. Be memorable. Be confident. Be proud.”
Shannon L. Alder

The comparison game is a nasty game but a game so many of us play. It starts off with an innocent joke like “Oh I wish I had your hair” and deepens to a “let me destroy her image so I appear better”. I used to be a pro at playing this game. I was the girl you would compliment and I would immediately say no I am not pretty, no that is not true or no you are much better than I am. I did not want to say those things about myself but I unfortunately just began picking up this bad habit which took years to shake off.

What you allow is what will continue. I allowed myself to be treated badly (I am not saying that being bullied was my fault- I am saying that I could have put an end to it sooner). I had words thrown at me that apparently described me and I took these words to heart and basically repeated it to myself day in and day out. My primary love language is Words Of Affirmation. Meaning that to me – actions don’t always speak louder than words. Compliments mean a lot to me and criticism- when said harshly – can hurt me a lot. Unaware of “love languages” when I was much younger I did not understand why the words I heard hurt me so badly and why I took it to heart.  (http://www.5lovelanguages.com )

It took years for me to overcome these hurts and struggles in my life ( this is to come in a later blog post when I can properly retell the story) but insecurities do not just go away. Insecurity is like an addiction if you do not guard against it, it can come back and take control when you least expect it. The words you say to yourself sit deeper than words others tell you and fortunately I caught this addiction of mine early enough. I was sitting next to my mom the other day trying to take a selfie with my epic rainbow under lights hair and when I took the selfie I looked at it and immediately told myself, oh my word look how chubby my face looks, my eyes look funny… my smile doesn’t even look genuine. Sure the selfie would not have been put in a collection of my greatest selfies of 2017 book but it really wasn’t terrible.

Lighting impacts many things and when the source of the light is not from within the spotlight can taint your view.

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This picture may not show my face but it was taken the same day I felt very down and angry. Posting this picture was me taking a stand against all those negative words and this post is not just about me and me patting myself on the back. It is me showing you that bad days will come, you might have a sad day, sad month but do not tell yourself you are not worth it. Do not enter into the pit of overthinking. Treat yourself the way you would treat someone you really love and respect.

I should be further in my life, I should be married, I should be in university, I should be able to drive, I should be there… The reason those words are the title of my blog is simple. You should be where you are right now. You should be focusing on growth and happiness. Shower yourself with love and compliments without being filled with pride. You should not be where she is and you should not look like him.

…Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?… – Esther 4:14

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2016, Uncategorized

Pain. Suffering. Agony-Ouch.

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“If the wounds on her heart and the bruises on her soul were translated on her skin, you wouldn’t recognise her at all.”

– Verona Q

“How could you hurt me like that? How could you say those words? How could you just hit me ? Instead of asking you these questions…I asked myself. The pain became so unbearable that I began to question everything I was. In my mind happiness resulted in sadness…Love resulted in heartbreak…Friendship resulted in loneliness and beauty was temporary.”

We all deal with pain and suffering differently and pain and suffering is different to everyone. Pain is a reaction to allow healing but we make pain the walls we build around ourselves. Pain becomes our bodyguard and the thing with pain is that it does not know who the VIPs are or who should not be on the list. Pain is the bodyguard that will not let anyone in thinking they are not welcome.

Pain is a funny thing because you feel it when you get a paper cut but you do not feel it straight away when you twist your ankle because of adrenaline. I think emotional pain works the same way… We cry when  dogs die in movies but when we receive the most heartbreaking news we sit in silence and become numb because we fear we will never stop crying.

“I felt so much pain, that I started to feel nothing…”

I think that is when we go wrong… We do not allow ourselves to feel and we just work through the motions of life ignore our emotions because they cannot be easily understood and the tears do not seem to heal the deep wounds but the ignoring of the wounds results in them becoming infected and never truly healing.

“Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it.”

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Pain is something that needs to be felt. When we get close to fire we start feeling pain and that tells us that if we proceed we will harm ourselves but when it comes to emotional,spiritual and mental pain we react differently. But why? Pain is pain and acknowledging it makes  all the difference. I thought that  feeling numb was much better than feeling pain but in reality the pain still needs to be felt the numb feeling is just a mere cover up and prolonging the healing process.

When I was at the tattoo parlour the other day this guy next to me applied so much local anesthetic to the area he was about to get tattooed in that he barely felt much. The artist told him that the pain will still come even if it is delayed and that got me thinking to when I blocked out pain and pretended it wasn’t there just so I did not have to feel it until the pain demanded me to feel it. Pain or the blocking out of it results in one blocking a lot of other things out as well…When I decided to ignore the bullies words it did not mean that I immediately forgot all the things they said to me I just chose not to show them I was hurting but I was a hypocrite because in public I looked like I had it all together and then when I was alone I was a complete mess. The words of the bullies did not stop at their mouths it became the only way I saw myself. It took me years to train my brain to think of myself in a different light.

Acting like I had it all together resulted in  me cutting people out of my life and pushing people far away especially people who cared about me because in my mind they are the ones who will hurt you the most. That is true but they are also the ones who you can love and support you the best. (I know this to be true now). The words that I heard over and over again became the truth I lived my life by. The only truth I would accept. Pushing people away resulted in me pushing God away for creating me…” I was not what the world needed…nobody wants me here so why am I here?? “-Thoughts I lived my life by.

Pain demands to be felt sometime or another so when the pain hits I think we should fully feel it in the moment and we should not turn from God in those moments because when we block pain out -we block happiness out- we block love out and then we just become zombies that are numb to all things.

“While other worldviews lead us to sit in the midst of life’s joys, foreseeing the coming sorrows, Christianity empowers its people to sit in the midst of this world’s sorrows, tasting the coming joy.”-Tim Keller

Pain sucks but pain will always come… The way in which we choose to deal with the pain changes who we are. If I acknowledged  the pain I was feeling much earlier and cried and became angry and let it out I honestly think it would have been so much better. Pushing people away in life only leads to our own destruction- we need people and we need God.

“I DON’T CARE!” Harry yelled at them, snatching up a lunascope and throwing it into the fireplace. “I’VE HAD ENOUGH, I’VE SEEN ENOUGH, I WANT OUT, I WANT IT TO END, I DON’T CARE ANYMORE!”
“You do care,” said Dumbledore. He had not flinched or made a single move to stop Harry demolishing his office. His expression was calm, almost detached. “You care so much you feel as though you will bleed to death with the pain of it.”
J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Pain sucks I agree 100% but when we deal with other humans it will always be a factor we have to acknowledge. We cannot not have pain because then I do not think we would really appreciate happiness or healing… There is a term called “redemptive suffering” it is basically suffering for the benefit of others. Jesus suffered for our benefit.

“But resurrection is not just consolation — it is restoration. We get it all back — the love, the loved ones, the goods, the beauties of this life — but in new, unimaginable degrees of glory and joy and strength.”-Tim Keller

“Madge: I don’t know why I keep shouting at them.
The Doctor: Because every time you see them happy you remember how sad they’re going to be. And it breaks your heart. Because what’s the point in them being happy now if they’re going to be sad later. The answer is, of course, because they are going to be sad later.
~ The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe”

Steven Moffat

I do not have all the answers as to why pain happens or how to make it hurt less but just like getting a tattoo cover up- it can hurt really badly in the moment but it turns into the most beautiful thing if you put yourself under the hand of someone trustworthy. When we are in pain we should go to the ultimate Artist and let Him turn the pain into something beautiful.

“Turn your wounds into wisdom.”
Oprah Winfrey

 

 

 

 

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2016, Uncategorized

You don’t know what you are missing

“But to cry in front of you, That’s the worst thing I could do.”-Rizzo,Grease.

“How dare you show any sort of emotional connection to anyone?! This is not what we spoke about. Keep it together.” These are the words I told myself whenever someone said something mean. I was not always like this. When I was much younger than I am now I was a victim of bullying. Social media was not a very popular thing when I was in primary school which I am so grateful for. I never saw flaws in myself (I am not saying that because I believed I was perfect and a gift sent from the Heavens). When I say I never saw flaws in myself I mean that I did not think being skinny was wrong, being short was unattractive, growing up with a single parent was wrong… I never thought that being a late bloomer was in any way wrong or not enough until one day…

I remember the day as if it was yesterday… I was leaning over to talk to a little child and someone walked past me and said no wonder you do not have a father, no wonder he left you… I would have left you too. I stood up and was so overwhelmed by emotions that I did not react, did not say a word… I just stood there and told myself you better not cry. Before this moment I was told that it was not attractive to have a thigh gap, or to be skinny or to be short or to be clever or to be an achiever (I am a bit of an over achiever and have no shame about it). What I am trying to get at is that I did not see fault or see lack until someone else pointed it out to me. I was fully satisfied with who I was and I adore my family and I would not have changed it for the world.

I need to set one thing clear:My dad did not leave, he was simply just not any way part of my life. I do not have any childhood memories of him and I have no sort of hatred or disgust towards him. Having a child is not an easy task especially if you want to give your child the best of everything. He was not ready or capable of that and my mom stepped up and raised me with such love and grace and I would not trade her for the world.

Anyway back to my story. I did not see an issue with emotions or expressing feelings or anything until people made me believe that it is weak. I felt a rage build up within me and anger became my natural reaction to everything. You called me ugly? Okay here is some anger and sarcasm. You back-stabbed me and spread rumours about me? Oh here is some anger with a touch of insult and bad words. Anger was comfortable for me because I believed it made me look strong and as if I have everything in control. I never told my family about the bullying and torment and because crying is weak I never shed a tear about these issues so how would the have known something was wrong?

My mom is my biggest role model and she is my biggest supporter. I failed to recognise her sacrifices and her love through the years because I was listening to what the little kids said…saying I need a dad and because I do not have one I am not enough. You see I did not see myself as a beautiful creation for so many years and I did not see myself as worth anyone’s time. I did not see myself as a blessing I believed I was a curse and that I needed to have curves and all those things that made a girl worth anyone’s time.

Here is something I should have told myself instead of do not cry: You are enough. You are allowed to feel any emotion you choose to feel. You deserve love. This is not your fault. Recognise what is in your life currently and stop focusing on what you are missing out on.This is not called settling it is recognising that this is who I am and this is what I plan to do to improve myself and not try to be someone else. The featured image is an image of my latest tattoo. The inspiration behind it is instead of being  a Barbie that was “Made in China” I am a child of God “Made in His Image”.

 

“A rose can never be a sunflower and a sunflower can never be a rose All flowers are beautiful in their own way, and that’s like women too.”-Miranda Kerr

 

 

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