Six kids too many…

Well tonight I anticipated coming home, BBQ chicken with the husband, maybe a movie, a hot bath, and early to bed since I’ve had a headache today.

And then life…

A friend announced she had gone into labor 3 weeks early, was at the hospital with no way of getting home, and all 6 of her kids there with her. She wondered if someone could take them so that her husband could actually be with her for the birth….and we volunteered.

Currently our house is CRAZY with 2 dogs and 6 kids under the age of 13 (the youngest being 3 year old twins).

Not quite what I was thinking…but neat to be a part of helping someone else have a better birth experience.

Maybe tomorrow there will be some cute baby pictures. Assuming I make it that far anyhow. 

Nothing

Tonight I’m feeling rather uninspired. I’ve been doing errands, baking a cake for tomorrow, and working all day it seems, and now I sit in bed with no real coherent thoughts. Humorous stories from a coworker about his 5 year old son, political snippets from the day, the latest Rangers baseball game, and my husbands sunburn are all rolling through my mind, none of them worth the space they would take up on the page.

Essentially, everything feels either underdeveloped or irrelevant.

Sometimes, thats how my life feels it seems.

My work, my hobbies, my day to day tasks….underdeveloped or irrelevant. I suppose that just means I have lots more thoughts to think, and talents to develop. But sometimes I’m afraid the whole of my life will go by and I’ll find I still feel that way.

 

Jobs – They’re What You Do

Today concluded with a pineapple shake from the local Sonic drive-in and a long talk with my husband about what kind of work, if any, I would or could find meaningful.

I’ve had a lot of different kinds of jobs – direct care, back of the office, physical, mental, rewarding and not so rewarding. 

Its fairly easy to determine what things I have not found to be innately life giving or inspiring to my soul.

More difficult is to locate those things that made me feel alive. So often when we experience the things we love and enjoy it feels so natural we don’t necessarily think to name what it is that we are loving so much. Then the experience slips away, and we know enough to feel dissatisfied with less, but not enough to be able to reclaim what it is, exactly, that we lost.

That’s where I’m stuck now. I can name lots of things I don’t like in a job (I am realistic enough to know that what ever you do in life, there will have to be things that aren’t favorites..), and I know there are things in life that I have done and loved, but I can’t seem to nail down what those “loved” things are in a tangible way that will help me refind them in the form of a career I feel passionate about.

Where are you in the process?

How did you find what you love to do? Did you use trial and error, or did you “just know”?

If you don’t like your job….why do you still have it? What are you doing to change that?

Peace & a Pope

The Pope is inviting the leaders of Israel and Palestine to the Vatican for a “peace initiative” to discuss solutions to the conflict in the Middle East. Not so much a political discussion; more of a prayer retreat. His expressed desire is to join together in “heartfelt prayer to God for the gift of peace”.

Both leaders have reportedly accepted the invitation.

Oh to be a fly on the wall of that prayer encounter.

Pope Francis, who will be hosting, is Catholic of course. I don’t know the religious affiliations of the other two leaders, but I wouldn’t be shocked to learn that one is Jewish and one is Muslim. Each of them have a very personal view of who God is, and even of what prayer is. Most people do – those things are personal to many of us. There are those who may be surprised that the Pope thought to invite either them to a prayer meeting at his house at all; but he did. And the people invited – who may be just as surprised as the rest of us – accepted. 

As a Pope, Francis is often the first to reach out, extending a hand of grace to those around him. And how many of us will turn away from an extended hand of grace, as long as it is offered genuinely?

On his trip today, he approached a separation barrier (erected by Israel), and reached out to touch it, with head bowed. Mustafa Barghouti observed, “The Pope did not only put his hand on a concrete wall. He put his hand on occupation. He put his hand on (an) apartheid system, on a system of separation, and discrimination, and oppression.”

I believe that the way he is the first to extend a hand – to offer help, hope and encouragement – is Christlike in its openness, its inclusiveness, and its genuine desire to help a fellow brother. 

May we each be willing to extend a hand today.

Editorial Calendar

Today I made an editorial calendar!

Its just a basic monthly calendar, printed out onto white printer paper, with the dates written in blue permanent marker.

Nothing too impressive. 

But it got me excited, to think beyond just stream of consciousness type meanderings and into a future with much more structure and intentionality. Right now I’m still in my “getting into the habit” phase, and I feel great about just getting posts out, high quality or not! But that’s no way to grow, so I look forward to kicking off a bit more structure in the upcoming months.

Setting goals and making plans inspires me to think big and dream big!

 

A little extra insight into my day…..I fantasized about my dream job. Here it is.

I would work for a wealthy person who has a huge library, with a fireplace and all leather-bound books. They would hire me to come to their home and read the books (because no one wants a library filled with unread books). There is also a bit about fresh flowers, smoothies, and the occasional venture to the bookstore to peruse more books to take home to the library. But mainly I would just read.

Heavenly.

Now accepting all reasonable offers.

40 Hours

40 hours a week, I am at my place of employment.

Its a solid job, with decent pay, good benefits, and advancement opportunities down the road.

It was a huge answer to prayer, as I didn’t have work when we first moved to Texas, and it took me almost 5 months to get this job.

Before this job…well, I had to take what I could get, and it was a terrible job, with terrible management, and was a constant source of stress and tension. 

So now I have this good thing. I should be happy, right? 

But I’m really not. I’m not stressed out. I know I can work this job for awhile without any real issues.

And as I posted earlier, one can always find meaning in the small things, the every day pieces of life that we so often pass by. But does that mean we can’t aim for 40 hours a week of greater meaning? Is it too much to ask for a profession – a career – a job – that might mean something behind 40 hours a week and my paycheck. 

Doing my job well – that is meaningful. But it does not imbue the work itself into something of meaning. 

Choosing to live intentionally and make my own choices and actions be something of value…can that compensate for a job that does not have very much value and/or meaning in and of itself?

Take, for instance, parenting. There are a lot of not so glamorous parts of parenting, and the day in and day out can seem pretty monotonous. You can choose to be intentional and make those moments special…and at the end of the day (or year, or 18 years) you are also doing something with a wider, greater, meaning that adds to the small, little moments of value and meaning.

But what if your job is such that no matter how meaningfully you live the small moments, there is no greater good at the finish line?

That’s the struggle, my friends.

What then?