Saturday, August 31, 2013

When the Tide Turns

It just feels right.
God, in His infinite wisdom (because who am I to doubt), has decided to inundate me with writing opportunities. And for this, I am incredibly grateful.

I will be able to write from home. Or from the local coffee house. Or from a diner located off US Route 1 in Waldoboro, Maine. (Hello, Moody's!)

I will have to attend weekly staff meetings. Virtually. Which means I can totally wear jeans. Or nothing at all (as long as I have the web cam aimed properly).

I will get paid to pluck away at the computer. Learn things. Research. Share. Collaborate. Write.

I will be able to work late into the night or early in the morning or at any point in between when I deem to be the most productive to my employer.

I will be able to volunteer at the school. Throw in a load of laundry. Meet a friend for breakfast. Work on growing AVERYday Ministries.

And already, you guys? I have met the coolest, neatest, smartest people. People who smile. People who want to teach others what they already know and who want to continue to grow in their own understanding.

And the very, very best part of all? Listed as one of the official benefits is this: "Receive a company Starbucks card that's charged up every month."

Like, I can't even make this up!

And because my previous boss was a rock star and advocated for me to get paid throughout my resignation notice period without having to actually return to the office and work, I've been getting paid from my old job and my new job!

I feel like God finally said, "you know, Bridget. Let me make some good things happen for you."

And my hard work is my way of saying, Thank you!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Balance Restored

One positive thing to come out of resigning from my job is that I now have time. Time to do all the things that I wanted to do, that I dreamed of doing, the entire time I was working.

When I was working, taking time off was, well, confusing. Sometimes you had to fill out a form, but not all the times. And sometimes you could take time off even if your co-worker was also gone, but other times you couldn't. And sometimes it was okay to take time off to take your kid to physical therapy, but other times you were told to schedule that kind of stuff after hours. Sometimes I could leave at four o'clock to go to my grief counselor, but other times I had to cancel at the last minute because for whatever reason it was now decided I couldn't leave the office closed for half an hour (even though it was a slow day). I was never good at being able to tell which situation warranted which rule. And that made me exhausted. And crabby.

It was akin to tiptoeing up to your alcoholic mother and asking her to please sign a school permission slip; you never knew if she would slobber you with sloppy kisses, slurring about how you were the only light in her life and the strength that allowed her to wake each day, or if she was going to fly into an angry rage, chucking coffee cups against the back wall as she screamed about how you're the single worst mistake she ever made and you ruined her life.

*note: I am only assuming. My mother is not an alcoholic.
However, I did spend a fair portion of my young adult life
 watching way too many Lifetime movies.*

 Anyway, so now I have time. Time to sweep the floor. Time to eat my breakfast without watching the clock. Time to throw a load of laundry in - which I did not, because I read that in order to be a successful stay-at-home person you needed to establish a schedule, so I designated Tuesdays as Laundry Day, and today is not Tuesday, it's Monday, and Monday is Library Day, so I went to the library instead.

I went to the library where my mere existence offended Cheryl, who was obviously no longer thrilled by her employment, as evidenced by the way she sighed through my checkout. And then I offended Cheryl further by daring to ask if she had the books for the Adult Book Club. Apparently, the books are kept on a shelf off to the side of the circulation desk. I had no idea because I've never participated in book club before but I learned this by the exaggerated way Cheryl looked off to the side at said shelf and the exasperated way she explained that no, no the books were not on the shelf where they are kept for book club because if they were there then I would see them. And if she had the books she would have put them on the shelf, but she didn't put them on the shelf because she obviously doesn't have them yet.

Hey, anyone want to join the library book club with me?
It sounds like loads of fun!

I wanted to whisper to Cheryl, let go. Let go now! I wanted to tell her that I get it. I get hating your job, but guess what, Cheryl? You could let go and let someone else cherish that position! I am sure there is someone who gets all excited at the thought of lining books up like square little orphans just waiting for someone pick them up and take them home. I am sure there is someone that would get excited about the fact that a new face wanted to participate in an activity sponsored by the library. And I am sure there is someone who dreams of nothing else but to be the one who assists in the sharing of thoughts and opinions and creative imaginations that each book holds.

Then I thought, but what if Cheryl is that person?

What if Cheryl loves the library more than any place on the planet? What if she takes pride in putting the books back properly on the shelves so each and every one is easy to find? What if she wishes everyone loved to read as much as she does? But what if the logistics of her employment are confusing? What if there are things going on behind the scenes that I cannot see. Things that make her tired and exhausted and suck the joy out of her passion?

Who am I to think I can even begin to understand the why behind our twenty seven second interaction. Who am I to judge?

And so, today, Cheryl, my heart goes out to you. I pray that whatever is crooked be made straight again. That whatever is confusing will be made clear. That the hearts that need to be softened are. That joy is restored and passion is renewed. And that from here on out, you only feel good, really good, when you come to work.

I pray this because I am you, Cheryl. We all are. At times, crabby and tired and misunderstood. Or not bothered to be understood at all. I pray this because, honestly, it's just too easy to walk away. And God didn't put us on this planet to just walk away.

I'll see you when those books come in.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Trapeze Artist

Assuming I could garner the strength to climb to the tippy top of the ladder, and assuming I would be able to stand, toes on edge, overlooking the vastness of black depth, and assuming I could step off, fingers wrapped white-tight around the bar of the trapeze swing... assuming I could swing - assuming I would swing.... Oh! How I would swing!

Back and forth like waves of breath and life and joy and goodness, over the top of the mountain and back again! Swinging to allow my soul to fly and my heart to beat feel-good rhythms of wind that brings laughter. Oh! How I would swing!

 And yet, the back and forth swinging would not be enough. No. It would not.

Because repetition is good in the beginning when taking baby steps of learning, but it is not enough to sustain you when God gives you a world to break open and explore.

Back and forth simply becomes back. And forth.

And the heart heaves heavy with more-wanting and the joy seeps out with the tired ache of the muscles and the eyes whisper sadly, we have seen this already.

And then it is time.


The upside-down voice from the other swing - he, too, swinging back and forth, towards you then back again, legs bent, feet hooked, arms outstretched, yelling, NOW!

Let go now and fly to me.

Let go now and trust in me.

Let. Go. Now.

I look at the trapeze artist, suspended in air, (suspended in fear), and will them on, yes! Now! Let go now! In order for it to be spectacular you must let go!

And it is I on the swing and I in the fear and I hearing the voice whisper, don't miss this moment. Let go.

But I might miss.

I might wait a second too long or let go a tad too soon and I might miss.

And then what?

I fall.

I fall.

And fall.

And fall.

But you know what?

There is that net at the bottom. Stretched out arms wide, smiling, welcoming me home. I've got you. You might fall; but I will always catch you.

And so it is, that the time has come for me to Let Go Now. And I might make it. I might just swing across and grab tight the arms to take me flying, laughing, to the other side. But I also might miss. And I might fall into the arms of God Almighty who will wipe my tears and calm my fears and point me back to the ladder again... but either way, I am letting go.


Eight and a half years ago I accepted a job. It was a wonderful position and I was so excited to learn and grow and develop. But something happened through those years of employment. Back and forth we went. Never doing any more than what had already been done. I missed being challenged. I missed learning. I missed getting together to creatively solve a problem or create something new. I missed using my mind and my intelligence. I missed being allowed to grow.

And so, I told Matt, I cannot do this anymore. I cannot walk into this one single day more. Life is short. God knows how I have learned this truth! And the world is huge and there are people to meet and land to explore and so many things I want to learn. And Matt said, "okay, then quit."

And I said, "you're ridiculous. There is a salary to consider and health insurance and... and... I have no plan!"

And Matt said, "we'll figure it out."

And I looked at him and thought this guy is nuts. "Don't you understand what this will do to our financial situation?" And he replied, "maybe not. But I do understand what this is doing to your happiness."

And so I gave my resignation.

With no plan whatsoever.

It is, by far, one of the stupidest things I have ever done, and I am including the time I pretended I was married to some guy I had never met before just to get backstage at a concert where Ted Nugent almost murdered me in the back of an ambulance.

And yet I have let go. I am suspended in air between swings, between sky and ground, not knowing what will happen: will I be caught strongly and taken to flight? Or will I fall, fall, fall only to have to make the long climb up the ladder again? I do not know.

But I do know this: I feel freaking AWESOME!

Monday, August 5, 2013


I had literally fried my back. I was maybe seven years old and had never experienced so much pain in my life. The beautiful summer sun had turned on me, scorching my flesh to the point I could barely move my shoulders. My skin was tight, stretched beyond its limit; I was sure I would simply break open if I moved too quickly.

That night I slept on my stomach, Bactine sprayed as a salve.

A couple days later and I appeared normal. The brunt of the burn was gone, but under my shirt, it still hurt. 

I couldn't stop existing. I needed to eat. I needed to drink. There was TV to watch and siblings to tease. Although I was in pain, I also wanted to participate. I didn't want to be left out. 

And so I tried to play. And it would work for a while - until someone accidently slapped me on my back, or the dog jumped on me, or I bumped into a wall - and I'd be shocked by the intense pain that coursed through my body. It was as if, for just a second, I managed to forget I was hurt, only to be cruelly reminded without warning.

I looked fine on the outside, but under my clothes, my skin hurt.

I look fine on the outside, but under my skin, my soul hurts.

Photo Credit: Chuck Beautiful

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