You are worthy. You matter.

It sucks when someone makes you feel that you don’t matter. They have this way of making you feel as if you aren’t worth anything. Logically, you know they are wrong. Emotionally, they got you. This is something I have struggled with most of my life.

As I have gotten older I am stronger and have confidence that my worth is not measured by others. I know my value is measured by God… “but God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:8). If we didn’t have value, if we didn’t matter, God would have never done that. We matter. You matter. I matter.

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Most days I do not struggle with feeling as if I don’t matter because I am able to stay focused on the present in the moment. A while ago I wrote about being mindful and part of being mindful is living in the moment. I drink in the experiences as I am moving through them and get overwhelmed with gratitude that I have the opportunities to live it. Occasionally, past moments of bitterness, hurt, and rejection creep up. I call these moments “Balloon Poppers”.

When my balloon gets popped I can feel myself getting deflated. I can hear the painful words of rejection all over again. I can actually imagine the child version of myself hiding in the corner to protect herself from verbal harm. I am aware that this sounds like I could use some therapy, but that’s part of what this blog is for. :-). Actually, I may or may not be lying on the couch typing this up… Just like a therapy session.

I will feel these emotions strongly and as I feel them and notice that I am going down a dark path I begin to fight like hell. I start to battle the negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones. I remove myself from toxic people, thoughts, and images. I find which essential oils are uplifting, invite peace to my body, and are grounding applying or diffusing them daily. I can’t stand the feeling of overwhelming darkness.

From talking with others and being open about my own struggles I have, many people have shared they feel the same way. It’s universal… We all experience hurt. Some of been hurt more than others, but that does not negate another persons hurt. What amazes me is how those who have been hurt in an unimaginable and almost unforgivable way can find it in them to forgive the one who hurt them. They are able to set their anger & bitterness free by forgiving the one who hurt them.

This morning, I was looking to set myself free of the hurt I have been feeling. The stress and anxiety that I have been quietly battling was taking its toll on my spirit. I needed a release, especially since I know that the ones who were allowed to hurt me do not care. They may feel justified for what they said or did. So the message I received this morning and the message I hope to pass on is Forgiveness. Watch this video Forgiveness by Matthew West

Warning… Have tissues nearby. I cried. It’s powerful and its eye opening. I have held on for years the feelings of rejection and bitterness. This morning I have forgiven those who made me feel that way and have forgiven myself for holding on to those feelings. Forgiveness doesn’t mean that I am going to rush back and rekindle relationships that have ended. It just means that I am releasing the power they have over me to hold me captive in the darkness. To do this, I must forgive. My favorite saying is, “They don’t deserve it, but neither did you. Show them grace anyway”.

We matter and we deserve to live in the light. Jesus said, “What is the price of five sparrows – two copper coins? Yet God does not forget a single one of them. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” Luke 12:6-7

I hope you can find your place of peace. It’s a beautiful place. You deserve it because you matter.

Marshmallow madness

Some of the things I love having B in preschool is being reminded how fun can be so simple.  A few weeks ago his teacher sent home a bag with mini marshmallows and toothpicks.  My immediate thought was, “Oh he will never eat these”.  That’s when B informed me they weren’t for eating but for building.  How did I not think of this?  Did I miss this Pinterest post somewhere?

What has ensued the past few weeks has been nothing short of marshmallow madness.  I have picked up more of those little boogers around the house, but we have also had a lot of fun with them.  For me, it’s a reminder that with all of the technology out there, that kids really do like all kinds of fun that requires use of their brain, exploration, and absolute silliness.

I have to admit that I have forgotten what we used to do when we took our oldest our to dinner (pre-iPhone days).  I hate that I have forgotten that.  So now, my goal is to find as many silly games that he can play while we are out to dinner.  I also want to get silly with stuff we have at home and explore with that.  He loves fun science projects!

So, next time you find yourself at a loss as to what to do with the kiddos, get some mini marshmallows and toothpicks.  Get crazy with them and see what you can come up with.  They will love it!