I want to be real. Well, that’s only partially true. Here’s a statement that is a little closer to the truth. I want to be real but also appear perfect, but also deep, deep down I want to be known. And because I want to be known, I know that I have to be real. I haven't done my taxes yet, my room is perpetually messy because I hate putting laundry away, and I swear more than you would like to think.
So, here is a true confession. In the past week, I have had quite a few breakdowns. The first came quite unexpectedly, when I came home from Wednesday night with the kiddos at the church and was in a bad mood. I quickly retreated to my room and asked myself, “What the HECK?” (Truthfully, I did not say HECK but it started with H and had four letters) Then, I remembered... Breath in, breath out. It just so happens that I had been stuffing my emotions all day. In the morning I had a two hour conversation with a friend who has some tough stuff going on in her life, and then later in the evening I heard that my grandfather had been hospitalized for another TIA (mini stroke). “Oh yeah. That explains it,” I thought to myself. Breakdown number one was resolved with a good night’s sleep and some journaling.
True confession number two. On Friday night I got an e-mail back from Tania at MMI. It was about some of the details concerning my trip and where I’m going to meet up with the team after I land in Lima. It was completely in Spanish. Tania joked in her opening sentence that it would be good practice for me to start communicating in Spanish. I looked at the first two sentences and immediately felt like the air had been sucked out of the room. Something like this was racing through my mind, “AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! THAT IS A DIFFERENT LANGUAGE THAN THE ONE I AM USED TO!!!!!!!! I AM GOING TO PERU. I AM DOING THIS ALL ALONE!!!!! WHAT WAS I THINKING!!!!” Breath in, breath out… Breakdown number two was partially resolved by the realization that, yes, I could actually understand what Tania was saying in her e-mail. But first, I had to let go of the perfectionism that told me, “Unless you understand every word, you are useless.” Right now, my adequate Spanish has to be enough.
I say that breakdown number two was only partially resolved because that is the truth. Honestly, breakdown number two transitioned into breakdown number three which happened on Saturday while I was at a baby shower. I was looking around at all my friends who I love, who have wonderful things in their lives, and who are staying HERE this year. They are staying here and doing things like having babies, loving their husbands, or enjoying the single life. Yes, I know that life here is not always bright and shiny, but I love being with these people and solving our problems together. I will miss them. I will miss holding these babies and hugging my friends. And my biggest fear in all of this is that I will feel alone.
So, here’s my problem. I have breakdowns, and breakdown number three is probably going to last me for a while. Right now, the moments when I push through my freakout moments and actually talk to people have to be enough.
Here is a picture of me symbolically cutting up the lingering Type A tendencies that infected me during nursing school. (please note the crazy eyes)
I’m a wreck and it’s probably good for me. Also, this is probably a good time for me to tell you that I need prayer. I need help with getting ready for Peru, I need lots of encouragement, and I NEED prayer. Please pray that I will continue to be real, with myself, God and all of you people who love me.