It’s been too long, friends. When I don’t blog in a while, I get this itching, this guilt. This need to update the public, (I should say, those interested), settles itself in the back of my mind and eats away at me until I get to writing. It happens in about the span of a month, and I have no option when it happens but to sit down, carve a block of time out, and just go crazy in the blank, free expanse of creativity that is an unwritten blog post.
It’s late, but better late than never. Here’s a update.
I have been living here in Franklin, TN for a month now. I haven’t seen my family in a month and in the span of that time we have a new foster brother who arrived at our home at just 2 days old. I haven’t seen him yet. I hope he stays long enough for me to get to.
Living on my own, essentially, is really, really sick. There are a lot of pros to living in America’s 17th wealthiest county. The beautiful rolling hills capped with lush green trees, the quaint little downtown area that never gets old no matter how many times you stroll up and down its streets, the never-ending list of delicious eateries. It’s extremely safe – I can walk or bike anywhere without feeling like someone is going to drive by and kidnap me. Franklin is a beautiful place. I wouldn’t rather be anywhere else this summer – being here feels like coming home.
As I recounted honestly in my last blog post, however, being here hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows. When I moved in, I was accompanied by a gaping loneliness. It found its way into my heart, born out of a multitude of insecurities and a lot of confusion about a relationship I watched flourish then fall apart in the blink of an eye.
I am always someone who falls in love quickly and I always fall hard. That was the case in my first relationship. When it ended, disentangling myself from the memories and the beautiful moments and feelings was much harder than I expected. I struggled being here, in a completely new place, alone. In my loneliness I cruelly clung to a relationship I didn’t believe in but vainly wanted to resurrect. I selfishly considered only myself yet completely neglected my own feelings. It’s crazy how sometimes you can be completely selfish but pretty unselfish at the same time.
So right now I’m in a period of transition. I let go of that relationship, cut of all ties. I’m done with it for a while. It took me too long to realize that I had become someone I didn’t want to be, entirely too needy and dependent. When I stopped relying on someone else to define me and make me feel like I wasn’t alone, I experienced the sweetest freedom. I read a really sweet quote in a book I am absolutely loving – The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller. It says this.
“It is possible to feel you are “madly in love” with someone, when it is really just an attraction to someone who can meet your needs and address the insecurities and doubts you have about yourself.”
I realize this was the case for me. I had lost touch with God in favor of my relationship. I had neglected Jesus, the only one who is actually able to both 1) love me perfectly and 2) meet my needs. At one time I convinced myself that He wasn’t present in the crush of my loneliness. Sometimes I reached such lows that I was completely doubting the presence of God in the midst of my internal chaos.
It took me reaching the end of me, painfully severing off a relationship that I let take precedence over my relationship with God these last couple months, to realize that I desperately need God. And He came close when I cut away everything.
So now I’m on this self-improvement kick. I have been meditating on the love of God – literally, I don’t know where I would be mentally if I wasn’t consistently amazed by the relentless love of God for a sinner like me. I am content where I am, regaining confidence, eating right and working out, dressing up whenever I go out and smiling at the person I see in the mirror.
I am interning at a record label and have been incredibly blessed to be surrounded with intelligent, passionate people who love God and music. I was also blessed with a job I love at Build-a-Bear Workshop with people who are encouraging even when I’m struggling with the most simple tasks. For real – I send fluff flying just about every day and they are still always full of grace. My favorite part of my job is giving a child their bear after they stuff and put a heart in it. The way their faces light up as they hug that bear for the first time just melts my heart. I can’t wait to have kids of my own!
So this is me. The new version of me. Learning, growing, striving.
I am not going back to Ohio the same person.
Things are gonna change now for the better.
P.S. Here’s a semi-random little poll for your voting pleasure. My favorite place is Nashville. Where is yours?? Click a box!