Thursday, January 19, 2012

Wholesome- and that's okay

So it’s been well over a week since the unveiling. When my emotional nude photos debuted the internet. I sweat bullets as, with pounding heart, I typed out the inner workings of my soul. A day later I began thinking about art and beauty. You see, I am one of those bad christians who appreciate (tasteful) nude photos. I see not sin and scandal, but honesty and creation and beauty. After publishing the last post I started wondering if the blunt honesty of my last post could be offensive... I hope not. That wasn’t my intention.

I’m struggling to find a balance. I’m deciding if I believe balance is relevant- or even possible. I’m seeking a healthy perspective. I follow a really neat woman on facebook who is always telling us to be kind to ourselves. To be understanding. She simply says that as we learn to accept ourselves and our struggles, that is what will flow out from us and we’ll more easily be able to accept and understand others. I think I believe that to be true. But then again, maybe I don’t. I am good to myself, for the most part. Sure I ate a slice of hershey pie for breakfast this morning. So I drink more coffee than I ought to... I do usually take pretty good care of myself. I’m just really bad at giving myself a break. Do I deserve a break? Is THAT even relevant?

I see that there is so much that is good and wholesome in my life. I am blessed. My incredible parents have opened their home to me and my family. I get to live in a warm home that is full of love and energy. I get to share burdens with people who are close to me. I have three amazing children. I have a loving husband who knows me so well. I have a car- without car trouble. My husband has a good paying, reliable job- more than that, he has an invaluable skill set. He knows a trade. My boys have a 24 hour stomach bug and that’s the worst kind of illness my family has had to deal with. These are just *some* things that come to mind in a few seconds of pondering what is good in my life.

Then I sit and chat with a beautiful woman who is also struggling.

I think of all the women I know who are aching to bear children. I see their desperation and feel so guilty for never having shared in this pain. I think about the upcoming anniversary of Roe vs. Wade and realize there are women who are aching to be rid of an unwanted pregnancy. The women who are dealing with such a heavy weight of life. I become speechless when, upon seeing a poster about “ Sanctity of Human Life Week ” Gideon asks what the poster says. How can one even begin to explain abortion to a child. I understand anguish of these situations. I see their hopelessness and feel so guilty for never having shared in this pain.

I read a post from Lore that reminds us of the vile reality of human trafficking. I read the soul-wrenching words of a woman who survived and escaped a 5 year imprisonment as a sex slave. I hold my little girl close as sighs and tears are offered as the best prayer I can muster. I see this anguish and I feel so guilty for never having shared in this pain.

I read the words I just typed.

I feel so guilty for ever struggling. With anything. Knowing how blessed I am. Knowing how beautiful and wholesome my life is and has always been. And then I see.

Why I’ve held onto every little hurt.

Why I can’t give myself a break.

Why I haven’t struggled at all.

Why I am struggling so much now.

Because I am blessed.

Because I don’t believe in “fair” or “karma”, I’m just not that good a person- I believe that I have been created. I have been placed in my life. That I have made choices that affect my life, but pretty much have just done my best with what I’ve been given. Which means that even the worst I’ve had to deal with, isn’t that bad.

How can I allow myself to struggle with anything, when there is so much that is wrong in this world? I feel so guilty for having a happy life. 

And all of the sudden, it comes flooding out. When I can’t hold one more thing in. When it gets to be too much and the dam breaks. Every single thing that I’ve suppressed- every single thing that has never been dealt with or even thought about, comes spilling out. All that I’ve ignored, on account of the lie that I’ve told myself, crashes to my feet in a hideous mess. I have lied to myself my whole life. I have believed that in comparison to the burden of humanity, a burden that I believe I must carry, “whatever I have going on, just isn’t worth my energy. Forget Janice, mankind is suffering.”

Doesn’t that sound so noble? Doesn’t that seem right? For the first time ever, I’m beginning to see that it might not be true. I am part of humanity. I am a part of the body of mankind, but just because mankind is suffering from a fatal cancer, doesn’t mean that our fingernails shouldn’t be clipped...

Oh my word. I was planning on just posting some light words and a bunch of photos of what’s been going on in the house lately. I promise, even though my words are heavy and my topics are serious, I am having a wonderful time adjusting to our new life here in the big white farmhouse. My life has been beautifully diverse these days, with fits of tears, and afternoon naps, with nutrient dense chicken stock and delectable hershey pies, with dear old friends and little baby smiles. With the neatness of an army of helping hands and the mess of unpacking. I am happy, I am full. I am blessed and that’s okay.

As we observe national “Sanctity of Life week” and “Human Trafficking Awareness Month” I hope you open your heart to the bigger picture of humanity and get involved with something that is bigger than yourself.

As we reflect on the observation of the life and triumphs of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. may you be encouraged that we can change the world with our own two hands .

And as you may have heard, that it’s also National Popcorn Day and National Hot beverage month, I hope that you will find some time to sit in stillness and reflect on your inward workings. Take an honest look at yourself and figure some things out. I hope you find warmth and peace in this moment.


  1. Janice,
    I think that you are bringing to light something that a lot of us struggle with and I thank you for sharing it. I often think to myself, am I really struggling or am I just complaining? Maybe I am so spoiled that I think these things I struggle with, which seem so small in comparison to problems world wide, are actual something worth getting upset over. I have to be reminded that we are created by a God who loves us all, right where we are. If He doesn't think that are problems are too small to be bothered with, then we need to allow ourselves to deal with and struggle with the things in our own life without comparing it to everything around us that seems so much worse. What we learn throught the trials in our own lives in what prepares us to deal with whatever problems we are positioned to deal with in the world. Allow yourself to not feel guilty :)

  2. you just know things. am thankful for your insight.