This is what I do, don't try to understand how I do it; I don't really know either

Archive for May, 2019

Creating a New Language

Previous generations didn’t talk about things. Sex and feelings are the top two that I see that were taboo. That void has resulted in misunderstanding, missing out, hurt, an inability to navigate relationships, and mental heath issues. Since these conversations were never embarked upon, we don’t know how to have them or start them.

I’m proud of my generation for wanting something different, something more. We’re not sure how to do it so we screw it up all the time but at least we’re trying and have opened the way for younger generations to take it further and maybe get it right.

I have talked with my children about my passion for this next stage of my life to be encapsulated but the Swahili word – Nakuona. It means I see you. People need to feel seen. This morning my youngest son said “mom, yesterday the cat ran away from me and my sister didn’t want to play and I felt unseen” oh my heart lept for joy. He’s getting it and I have taught him that vocabulary for his feelings. Brene Brown uses the term “rumble” for engaging in a difficult conversation. She also uses “the story I am telling myself” and I am really trying to make those part of my vocabulary.

It’s like we now have our own language between us so we can communicate our feelings. We can work through things. I explained to him that the cat ran away because he was angry and stomping around so that scared the cat. We could then talk about how to be angry and not scare others – something that we can learn together because I suck at that.

We need to give each other words. There is power in words. There is a freedom when I can speak my truth. It’s hard. Telling someone that I had been abused was hard but I found the words and it freed me. I can’t heal if I am silent. I am excited that I have private languages with people in my life. My kids especially but even my best friend and I can text one letter to each other and it means a whole lot of things that we both understand. There are lots of languages I can’t speak, but if your willing to teach me I would love to learn yours and I will do my best to teach you mine. It is then that I see you. Nakuona

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Eshet Chayil

It is amazing how someone you have never met can have such a profound impact on your life. Rachel Held Evans gets to party with Jesus now and I feel like I lost a friend. Her writing encapsulated many, especially women, who struggled with their faith, doubt, and the church. She helped us to find hope, to know that we were not alone in the struggle, and to not give up.

I remember reading A Year of Biblical Womanhood and it was like it connected to my soul, the very core of my being. She helped me see scripture in a new way that made me feel more confident in who I was, how I was created, and how I fit with the body of Christ. I learned from her that the “Proverbs 31 woman” wasn’t a list of expectations of who I am to be. Growing up,  Christian women were compared to that list and I always felt that I never measured up. Her research liberated me from those expectations and allowed me to celebrate all my victories – Eshet Chayil. I printed those words and they hang on my wall to remind me that I AM a woman of valor.

Several months ago I picked up her newest book Inspired and my children and I have been reading it slowly during our devotions. It has sparked amazing conversations about the Bible and its stories.  Her faith journey resonates with so many because it’s what so many of us have experienced. She talks about how unacceptable it has been to ask question or challenge theological beliefs but we ALL have them. She makes it ok to have questions and still hold your faith – something that was not permitted before. If you questioned then you were not a believer and if you were a believer then you didn’t question.

This is a huge loss to the world. I don’t understand God’s soverignty, what He allows and what He doesn’t. In this instance, like many others in my life, I will allow Him to be God and accept that I will not understand until I get to be with Him. I will also allow Him to be my comforter and pray comfort for Rachel’s family and friends in this very challenging time of loss.