Joy.

   

 

December 10th, 2016.

It’s finally cold outside, appropriate for the beginning of winter this time of year here in Birmingham.

I got home after an early, cold, morning easy run and then work all day.

Saturday- the end of one of those weeks where it feels like everything that could have gone wrong…did. You kind of feel aloof to anything else that could possibly pop up. Not surprised by much now anyways.

I stopped by Trader Joes before heading home. I grabbed a cheap california roll, a two dollar bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, and a fresh loaf of an olive-demi baguette for dinner.

I had a lot on my mind after such an emotionally, spiritually and physically draining week. And let’s face it..my bank account was getting really scary..like life alert, tragically depressing scary.

I had come to the end of the 2016 year at a pivitol, transforming time for my life(which I will in detail, talk about in my next “end of 2016 on to 2017 hoorah!! post”) and really seemed to be feeling the weight of everything in the past year hit me at once.

At least that’s basically how I felt after this week..that I had been climbing the highest, cruelest, most relentless mountain and I’m almost to the top but I’m standing on a ledge right before I get to the top and I am just fatigued and ready to be there already!!!

Anyways, I know your all so curious about my 2016. Just be patient and read my next post. I’m saving all the juicy tidbits for that!

As for this last week- I have felt super tired from training(as most of you know, I’m a post collegiate/somewhat elite distance runner currently for Skechers Performance seeking to improve my times!!) and increasing mileage. All of that is going great but this week I’ve felt extremely tired while training, in part from the emotional stress lately..and so I’ve decided to cut any/all December races to focus on getting my life together and plans set for 2017 and just train through this month.

The “root” if you will, of my distress stems from this career change that I’ve decided on and honestly feel 100% supported by the Holy Spirit in this one! A week ago, I passed my AFAA certification to become a personal trainer(I am also preparing a whole blog to tacle that story too, be patient people I’ve had an avalanche of a year! lol seriously.)

This could not have come at a better, more needing of hope time in my young adult life. For the past few months I’ve been living pretty scarce..paycheck to paycheck. And I know, it’s my choice to live the way I do and not work full time and devote my ass to a desk for 40 hours a week and try to cram 60-70 miles a week and train like an elite athlete too, I get it.

I have been working part time, trying to survive and have more time to train for my own benefit(which it has, I’ve PR’d in my road 5K and 10K this season under my new coach-Brock) and also I needed more time mentally to study and prepare for my AFAA Exam to become a personal Trainer(finally..I’ve been praying for this dream and making small changes for this for the past year).

So, as you can gather it’s not been easy spreading myself into a financial pretzel and barely skating by if you will for the last months in order to “have time” to plant these seeds for the dreams that I want. BUT-like anything worth it..cliche I know, stay with me. it’s not easy.

I passed my exam, I’m about to start work at an actual gym in addition to my part time job which I adore-at Lilly Pulitzer. And my training is in a great spot going toward the spring season as long as I stay smart and listen to my body.

This past week was exceptionally stressful just because of mainly the financial strain I’m in(which I know I put myself in, not by carelessness or spending frivolously but in my mind-sacrificing more time to do what I want to create room for what I’m going to do soon). 

Last night, I argued with the one human I respect and value the opinion of most on this Earth- my father. My dad, like any dad wants what’s best for their kid. So when my parents visited last weekend and I confided in them my current situation and my fears- they of course worried and wanted to help.

My dad and I got into a “serious adult conversation” about life(we’ve had many of these this past year..) and my dad told me, “adults don’t do what they want, adults do what they have to do”. He’s right. But I told him to trust me, that of course I don’t want to live like this forever and I know God is using this and has a plan for me.

I fully believe, even after the stressful, reflective and fearful week I’ve had where I’ve been worried, tempted to give up on my dreams, misunderstood and tempted to fall back into old habits and unhealthy relationships that have conveniently appeared just as I’ve felt weakened; that my faith that God is with me and God is for me has not once been shaken.

You may feel the weight of every single thing “crashing” around you but you can be strengthened and feel true Joy from the Holy Spirit within you.

A reoccurring whisper I’ve felt throughout this week, even during uncertain thoughts is- “Wait, not yet”.

I’ve felt God’s presence with me the whole time, reminding me of his timing and to fully trust Him, that He will provide for me and show me when something is right.

In my career, in relationships and when I feel impatient or discouraged for being alone or feeling alone at times I’m reminded to wait, and it’s always worth the wait for what’s good..

So when I got home tonight, feeling tired, emotionless at this point, and freezing; I shed my clothes, took a hot shower as a swirl of jumbled thoughts and questions flooded my mind..

I sat down, lit a favorite candle  and knelt by my bed just asking for God’s presence. I grabbed my bible and read from Mark 14. The last Supper-

22 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.”

And so, I took the Olive loaf I had gotten at Trader’s. I broke it and prayed over it for God’s blessing and that everything that I did with my body would reflect His and would serve Him this year, not turning back to anything.

23 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it.

So I took the red wine I had bought and prayed that Jesus’s sacrifice for me would remind me that nothing I’m going through is more than that and that nothing can separate me from that. His grace is new every day, and that I should feel Joy in that.

24 “This is my blood of the[a] covenant, which is poured out for many,” he said to them. 25 “Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”

26 When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

I smiled as I eat the olive bread after reading “they went to the Mount of Olives”..

I looked up and saw Joy, literally. There’s this wooden piece on my vanity mirror that was attached to it, hanging loosely when I bought it back in July. It reads, “Joy”.

I’ve almost made it out of 2016, not unscathed, not perfectly, but not completely broken. I’m faithful and excited going forward. Even with feelings of loneliness,tiredness, worry, and frustration exploding from the whole year onto the last week, I can’t wait for what’s to come, even if I don’t feel like I have much to offer with myself right now.

 

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