Saturday, July 14, 2012

Or not!

In my last post I was musing about how I had things to say but wasn't sure what to say or where to say it... so I was having trouble saying anything.


It turns out that writing that post (and finally getting a newsletter out!!!) and your kind comments here and on FB really helped me. And God. ( He helps me always with everything. And often uses you.) So for the first time in QUITE A WHILE I am feeling excited about writing again.  And I think I understand better now how to do it and realize that it's quite okay to have different avenues for different styles/topics of writing.  This place will always be the place where I ramble and think "out loud" and work through my thoughts and questions and feelings. I've also come to accept (and perhaps embrace?) being a thinker more because I realize that it's just the way God made me and that through putting my thoughts into writing I often come to a new understanding of things and sometimes I can help others put into words what they have also been thinking/feeling/wondering but maybe not had words yet to describe.

While working on our latest newsletter, I also realized there are quite a few things I'd like to share about Peru that haven't made it into a newsletter or post anywhere and our other blog really is a good place to do that. And it's not that I can't be or won't be honest there about struggling at times, but I also don't have to feel bad for not pouring my heart out there - as long as I'm being honest with people somewhere. : )

And, well... there's one more thing.  : )  While it might seem crazy, I have also decided to start up another blog. (Hold on before you declare me insane!)  But this one is going to be for practicing writing in Spanish because I REALLY want to improve my Spanish skills and know this is one way I can practice.  I'm going to find a couple of ladies to help me with proofreading and correcting my language/grammar so I can learn from my mistakes and hope it will turn out to be the beginning of a way I can share with my friends here some of the things God has taught me and is teaching me.  (And in case you'd like to listen in on my Spanish sharing, there will be a translate button so you can easily have it translated - though I can't promise how well it will work!) I'll post a link to it when I have something posted there.

I'm also not making any promises about how often I'll write anywhere (I've done that before and it didn't go well!) but I'm excited about having some new avenues to share and some clarity of heart about how/where to do it.  I'm also shifting some things around in my schedule that will hopefully allow me to write more because I think it's one of the things God wants me to do.

And next time instead of writing about writing... I'll write about something else.  : )

Chau amigos!

Thursday, July 05, 2012

When not knowing what to say and where to say it leads to not saying anything at all

Oh goodness.  Why do I do this to myself? I'm having trouble these days shaking the feeling that I'm not doing a good job at so very many things... so many things that matter deeply to me... that it's hard to breathe sometimes.  Like being the kind of wife and mom and daughter and friend and Jesus-follower I want to be... oh, and the kind of missionary I want to be too!  The pressure can literally suffocate the joy of life right out of me.

Let's just look at the writing/communicating pressure I'm feeling at the moment. We have a total of (wait... I have to add them up...)

  • the blog for our family missions-related posts
  • our general newsletter that we used to send out every 6-8 weeks and hasn't gone out for over 3 months now (writer's block and procrastination anyone???)
  • our prayer update emails for people who want more info and are willing to pray for us (or at least want to know what we are asking for prayer for)
  • and this blog for my just plain "Melissa in a t-shirt, jeans and a pony tail with a baseball cap on" posts

OK, so that's 4 different places to update - not counting facebook and twitter (yes... I just started a twitter account or whatever you call it.  I don't know why.  My curiosity got the best of me finally) for photos and spur of the moment quick updates.

Is it any wonder that I have sort of gone into deer-in-the-headlights mode when it comes to communicating? The tagline on my blog here used to be something about being a girl who thinks way too much and this is one of those things that I'm probably making too hard.  I guess it comes from the oddness of going from being just another member of the church to a missionary. Sometimes I don't know which Melissa to be.  Melissa the Mom or Melissa the Missionary?  I know it's supposed to be the same, but in my head it feels like this:

At our ladies prayer groups back in Fresno I could show up in the t-shirt, jeans and baseball cap I mentioned earlier and spill my tears about how I was struggling with packing and moving or saying goodbye or whatever.  It was where I shared the more vulnerable parts of my heart with women who knew me very well and loved me - I think even more because they knew me so well.  Because they were so amazing like that.  I sort of feel like writing on this blog here is like sharing there.

At the beach recently...
But when we would go to visit churches for fundraising presentations?  Well... I think it would have been a bit odd to show up dressed that way and crying on stage.  It wasn't that I didn't tell the truth when I put on a dress and did my hair (a little nicer anyway!) and shared our joy about Peru. And I did cry a few times. But it was just a different side of the truth.  A bit more polished and planned (Lowell and I both had to know what we were doing after all) and power-point presentable.  And I think I feel like writing for our newsletter and other blog is more what I would share dressed up for a presentation.  And I've been having trouble lately figuring out what to say there.

Back in Kansas in Fall last year
 Am I crazy or do any of you know what I mean?  There is a difference between what we do for work and what we do at home, right?  Well, what about when what you do at home becomes your work?  I feel like sharing my heart, but much more often than not lately don't feel like doing it "dressed up."  I feel like I can't get out of the jeans and flip flops. (In more ways than one...)  I don't even know if I will bother to actually publish this - except it would help break the silence and get me past the thinking too much before I am willing to share by a step at least.  It still doesn't get me putting out the newsletter or writing on "the other blog" but I suppose it's better than nothing.  

Anyone out there will have some advice for me? Should I just post this over on the other blog and start showing up there in jeans and flip flops because that's where I am right now?  Thanks for listening anyway.