Battling Depression · Christmas 2017 · Uncategorized

Where Are You Christmas?

Hello everyone! 🙂

I’m sorry if it seems like I’ve skipped town this week–after writing a post every single day from December 1st till Christmas for Blogmas, I decided it’d be best to give my writing mind a wee break for a few days. Not that I didn’t love Blogmas! This was my first time being a part of this beautiful blogging community during the holiday season and I can’t tell you how encouraging it’s been ❤︎

But still, breaks are nice–as I’m sure we can all agree after the hustle and bustle of Christmas get-togethers!

And after all the hustling and bustling, it can truly be a physical and emotional shock when Christmas is over. The post-Christmas season can almost completely undo all that joy and magic Christmas created. It’s one of the most depressed seasons of the year.

So I wanted to share something my pessimistic, Scrooge-y father said when I was regaling him with my sadness about Christmas being over:

“Christmas every day Jordan.”

Simple, but it flipped my perspective on its head. We all associate values of generosity, selflessness, and enduring optimism with Christmas–and, for some reason, December 26th is a signal that it’s all over. I even do it, act like things are going “back to normal” after Christmas.

Why can’t normal be generosity, selflessness, and optimism?

“Christmas every day.”

Generosity every day. Kindness every day. Positivity every day.

I was so stunned by this revelation–and then by the level of my reaction. Is it so hard to imagine, so foreign a concept? And yet, it is. I no longer expect kindness from strangers I meet at stores, in restaurants.

Maybe… if I held people to the standards I do during Christmas,  perhaps… they would carry those standards after Christmas. If I keep holding doors, offering smiles, and giving love–with no demand for its return–, maybe others will catch on and pass it on to the next person.

Maybe you can pass it on too ❤︎

Call it the Christmas Spirit Movement if you will, but how are you trying to keep the joy of Christmas alive now that Christmas is over?

Thank you for reading my wonderful readers! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

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Christmas 2017

Maybe Christmas, He Thought, Doesn’t Come From a Store

Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more.

As we gather around our trees, warm by the fire… presents unwrapped, and good food in our bellies… let us not forget the reason for the season…

Merry. Mary. Mother of Jesus, bearer of hope for all people.

Christmas. Christ. The son of God, savior to all who ask his forgiveness.

Merry Christmas: On this day, God’s promise fulfilled; later, it would be sealed with Jesus’ blood on the cross.

But for now, we get to sit back and give thanks for this precious baby boy, this boy who gives us hope for the future and a promise for eternity. I wish you all a very, merry Christmas and pray that you are surrounded by loved ones in a day of peace, laughter, and love.

I pray you know how much Jesus loves you dear friend. That love is what brought him down this day many, many years ago- for you. You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Christmas 2017

“Tomorrow is Christmas! It’s Practically Here!”

christmas eve.gif

While the Grinch said this with utter shock and budding disdain, I am bubbling and bouncing with glee! This is it, my favorite holiday of the entire year is fast upon us!! (Granted, that also means that my favorite holiday is also closer to being over… but let’s not go there just yet, mmkay?)

Today, we will be hosting for my dad’s side of the family… Today, will be our first time hosting Christmas (even if it’s technically on Christmas Eve). Needless to say, we’re going to be desperately scrambling to make sure everything is just right before everyone gets here, so there’s very little time for relaxing with my laptop this morning! Have to love scheduling posts ahead of time, am I right? 😉

What all will you be doing today? Any out-of-state traveling or family get-togethers to attend? Or is today the stay-in day before all the hustle and bustle tomorrow? I hope it’s merry and bright, wherever you may be today.

Enjoy your Christmas Eve dear dreamers! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Christmas 2017

Christmas Bells Are Ringing!

Good morning or evening to all (depending on when you get the chance to, you know, breath for a hot second and read this)!

It’s only two more days till Christmas- can you believe it?! Well, okay, technically it’s three if you count all of today… but still, we’re so close! Hopefully you’re recovering from the crazy shopping rush and starting to actually enjoy the holiday- but if not, I’m right there with you. Today’s our last day to make everything spick-and-span before the family comes over tomorrow; no rest for the weary, huh?

So no eloquent posts for me today, just a quick well-wishing for your Christmas Eve Eve! (Yes, that is a thing.) Also, I thought this was a cute little correlation:

On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me… three french hens.

three french hens

We three kings of Orient are, bearing gifts we traverse afar.

we-three-kings-for-website1

You may think it’s silly, but I thought it was neat 🙂

Merry Christmas Eve Eve dear ones, you are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Christmas 2017

Christmas Time Is Here

Counting today, we have four days till Christmas!

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me… four calling birds (sorry, I had to, you know you were thinking it too!).

In the spirit of the season, I thought I’d list four of my favorite Bible verses:

  1. Jeremiah 32:27 “I am the Lord, the God of all the peoples of the world. Is anything too hard for me?” I’ve been turning to this one over and over recently, when I’m wrestling with things I just can’t control. God is God of the impossible, nothing is too big for him- and he’s on your side, so give it to God and feel peace 🙂
  2. Psalm 73:26 “My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.” Bad times suck, and they seem to hit us out of nowhere: 2016 was the year of a barn burning down, a knee injury, a bad breakup, and my lonely first semester of college. But if you turn to God and share that pain, I promise it will get better.
  3. Proverbs 3:6 “Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” In case you didn’t know, I pretty much have no clue what I want to do for the rest of my life… aaand I only have two more years of college to figure that out. So when I get completely frazzled and overwhelmed, I turn to this reminder. Things will fall into place for my good, if I just remember to put God first.
  4. Matthew 10:31 “So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” God, the creator of the universe, looked at this great big world and thought it needed one of you. He wanted one of you. And he wanted one of me. That sure makes me feel pretty special, and I hope it makes you realize just how loved you are my friend.

Let me tell you, I didn’t realize how many verses I had marked up in my Bible until I had to narrow it down to four! And this is coming from the girl who used to think of the Bible as the most boring book in the world- yep, you heard right, I couldn’t stand it. However, that was before I’d begun seeking God’s love for my own.

But that’s a story for another time.

Have a wonderful day dreamers, thank you for reading! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Christmas 2017

Last Christmas: Lessons Learned and Paths Taken

Good morning and a happy first day of break to all those finally out of school! My brother’s first day off is today, and I won’t be surprised if he sleeps in till noon or later…

Recently, Kaylaannauthor wrote a post about her favorite Christmas songs, and–as I have been listening to Christmas music off and on since October–it got me thinking about the song “Last Christmas” by Wham!. This time last year, I was still recovering from a serious breakup that’d happened at the beginning of the semester, so this song especially struck me (sort of a theme song, if you will).

This time last year, I wasn’t the me I’ve grown to be.

And so, as I was pondering the significance of this song in my life, I thought I’d write up a list of things I’ve learned in the past year:

  1. Lean on God: 2016-2017 was the hardest year of my life. My family life was in turmoil, I had no friends to share my burdens with at school, and the depression took its greatest toll. But, the funny thing is, once we hit rock bottom, we’ve got nowhere else than to look up. The more I trust God, the more I get to see the joy of being shielded in His love. The bad times still suck. But He’s always there.
  2. Leave tomorrow ahead and yesterday behind: Worrying is something that is just plain human. “What if”‘s, “If I had just”‘s, and “Would’ve/should’ve/could’ve”‘s are probably the most-used phrases in the human vocabulary. Tomorrow may come- it may not. Why let the regrets of your past mistakes or the worries for a day that’s not even guaranteed ruin the peace you could find in today? Just smile 🙂
  3. You can’t control it all: I think this one speaks for itself. We carry the weight of the world on our shoulders, even the weight of things we know we aren’t responsible for. Let go and let God my friends.
  4. There’s a great big hunk of world down there with no fence around it“: (brownie points go to who can tell me what classic cartoon this came from??) I’ve always considered myself a homebody, a “scaredy-cat” who’s going to live in the exact same town I always have lived. There’s a whole big world outside of where you and I are though- let’s go explore it!
  5. It’s okay to make the first move: In case you’re new to me, I’m shy. Painfully, awkwardly, mess-up-an-entire-conversation shy. I don’t like being the conversation-starter. People at my school often have that “resting beach face” (you know the one- and yes lol, I did substitute beach) and are completely unapproachable. But, I’ve often found that if I open the door and say hello, underneath is a person that’s every bit as shy as me and was just scared to say the first word.
  6. Not everyone is going to support, or understand, your dreams- and that’s okay: Recently, Niki Meadows did a post that got my gears spinning: Why You Shouldn’t Share the Dreams You’re Building. It could be weight loss, aspirations to write a novel, or investing to start a company, but whatever your goals, there will always be opposition. I have this bad habit of sharing my beginning dreams with my family- and dashing them at the first sign of distaste from one of them. Sure, a little constructive criticism could greatly help, just make sure it’s from the right people: a gym partner, fellow writer, experienced businessman. People who will encourage you and provide beneficial advice.
  7. Habit trumps motivation 100%: Keep at it while you’re motivated until it’s a habit, then you’ll no longer need to “feel like it” in order to do it. Allow motivation to spur you on when you begin pursuing a goal, but don’t rely on it in the long-run. If I went to the the gym every time I “felt like it”, I’d end up going like… once a month. Maybe twice.
  8. Friendships come and friendships go: It’s been bittersweet the past two years, seeing old friendships slowly dissolve, new friendships bud, and the true friends stick around. My post Love For a Season expanded a lot on this, if you’d like to go check it out.
  9. It’s your dream for a reason: If you feel an urge, a passion, a dream, go for it! It’s your’s, it’s been given to you for a reason ❤︎  I’ve constantly downplayed my interests through the years (whether it’s writing or drawing), saying “Oh it’s just a hobby” or “I’m really not any good at it”. But these are the things I love to do, so my job is to figure out how I can incorporate these into what I do for the rest of my life.
  10. Love selflessly: I haven’t begun to perfect this one yet, and I don’t know that I ever will… I’m selfish. I’m human. But nothing good has ever come out of anger or hate, and even if I never get that same love in return, as a daughter of God I will show love to those I can.

What all have you learned since last Christmas?

Thank you very much for reading! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Christmas 2017

The Best Way to Spread Christmas Cheer is Singing Loud for All to Hear

” I’m singing! I’m in a store and I’m singing! I’m in a store, AND I’M SINGIIIIING!”

Good morning dear readers! I’m singing with all my heart!! I simply cannot contain my joy and gratitude to this blogging community- a community I very nearly missed out on due to my inherent shyness. I thank the Lord that I had the courage to face my dreams of touching others with my writing (typing?) and start my blog a little over a month ago ❤︎

 

Thanks To:

Not in a million years did I go into this expecting to receive any form of award, but in their generosity and kindness both T. Shaw and Claire Yang Writer nominated me for this Mystery Blogger Award. I can’t thank either of you enough! T. Shaw had me hooked from the start with her intro/about page (go check it out and tell me how much you agree! ❤︎ ) and Claire Yang inspired me by her similar desire to obtain all that she can about writing, so please go visit these lovely ladies!

About the Award:

The Mystery Blogger Award is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging, and they do it with so much love and passion.

Okoto Enigma

Rules:

  • Put the award logo/image on your blog.
  • List the rules.
  • Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well.
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
  • You have to nominate 10 – 20 people.
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
  • Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify).
  • Share a link to your best post(s).

3 Things About Me:

1. I am a Christian. Even when I didn’t know God for myself, His love shined through the unending kindness that pours from my heart despite the things I’ve been through- it’s this impact I am able to have on others that lead me to Him, because He is love ❤︎

2. I love the color yellow: not mustard-y, greenish yellow; not tacky, sticky notes yellow; but the soft yellow of a tulip in bloom or the brilliant yellow you see when you turn your face to the sun.

3. Manatees are one of my favorite animals.

Questions for Me From T. Shaw:

1. What inspired you to start blogging?

This school year has been a phenomenal year of growth for me, and it’s only halfway through- I’ve been pursuing the talents I didn’t ever dedicate my time to, writing among them. My love of writing, my desire to touch others for God, and a need to escape family problems drove me into this beautiful blogging world.

2. What is/are your goal(s) for 2018?

Funny you should ask, I actually just did a post on this- it’s not everything I would like to do of course, and who knows how much more will come my way, but here is My 2018 List.

3. What was the most memorable moment/event that happened this year in 2017?

The exact day I realized, truly, that I have the power to be happy, to be absolutely joyful, outside of whatever chaotic, painful mess life has tangled me in. God loves me, God built this whole wide world and thought it needed one of me here too. I can’t think of a better reason to smile.

4. What is your favorite comfort food?

I don’t know if I was sick as a kid when my mom gave it to me, or if it’s just that thing, but my mom’s spaghetti- no sauce, no cheese, just some butter and noodles.

5. Would you rather sneeze every minute or never again get to pick what clothes you wear?

Oh gosh… The sneezing, though it would drive me bananas. I can’t give up my modesty, sorry imaginary-closet-planners.

Questions for Me From Claire Yang:

1. What is the most memorable moment in the year 2017 for you?

Look above 🙂

2. What do you wish to accomplish in the year 2018?

LOL, also look above (I’ll spare you some rereading, sounds fair right? 😉 )

3. Besides blogging, what is another hobby of yours?

Drawing (I included one of my recent doodles in my post “It’s Christmas and We’re All in Misery” if you’d like to check it out!)

4. What was that one birthday gift that you’ve always wanted, but never got as a kid?

… I honestly don’t know. But I do know that every year, birthday/Christmas/daily, my wish is that my parents find happiness in their marriage.

5. If you could be any animal or insect, what would it by and why?

I have a fascination with the big cat species–I don’t think there is anything more gorgeous, more raw than a feline predator in its natural habitat–, so I would want to be a Snow Leopard. (As a little girl, I’d even dream of being one- kind of like a werewolf, but a wereleopard. Call me weird, but sometimes I still dream it.)

My Nominees:

1. Solace987

2. Kaylaannauthor

3. Discoveringyourhappiness

4. Sadiethewallflower

Questions for My Nominees:

1. Where is your happy place?

2. If you had all the money in the world, what would you do with it?

3. What is the most memorable, outright-funniest joke you’ve ever heard?

4. Do you have any visible, seeable (is that even a word?) quirks you do: sticking your tongue out when concentrating, tapping your foot in line, etc.?

5. And finally, since this is the Blogmas season after all, what is your favorite thing about Christmas?

Thank you all for reading- never forget, you are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎