Tag Archives: Family

What does balance mean to me? Part 1


 

Balance has always been a big thing with me, physically, emotionally, spiritually, and otherwise. I guess I have to admit I am more than slightly OCD. When I was little, I would rearrange people’s couch pillows so there was the same number of pillows on each side. Teacups on shelves had to be evenly distributed. M&M’s were often dumped out on the table, sorted by color, and then eaten evenly by color. Playing with one friend who was a twin for a certain amount of time meant spending an equal amount of time with the other twin.
 
Looking back, I think I liked ballet an awful lot not just because I loved to dance, but because I had this need within me to always strive for perfection. An overwhelming desire for what was clean, neat, orderly, and, well, perfect. Of course I never WAS perfect. I had the wrong body for ballet, not enough turnout, short Achilles tendons, etc. That’s how ballet is though. Always striving for perfection, and never quite measuring up no matter what. Ballet dancers don’t get to be human. They have to defy things that humans take for granted such as food, gravity, body weight, etc. This suited me just fine, because even though I couldn’t be perfect, if I only just constantly devoted my life to striving for perfection, trying to always appear to be perfect and have it all together, nobody could say I didn’t try. Maybe eventually I would be perfect if I just kept going.
 

 
Some people blame their parents for this kind of pressure. But I put this pressure on myself. I was selfish in that I didn’t want to share my faults with others. I was independent. I didn’t need anyone else to tell me what to do. I was a good kid and got good grades not because I was pressured by anyone on the outside, I was pressured by my own need to be perfect. To never slip up. To always appear to have it all together. Ballet was just another way to demonstrate the pressure I could put on myself and still appear to be as perfect as possible.
 
You should have seen me try to do math as a kid and in high school. Many tears were shed because I couldn’t just pick it up, understand it, and do it. Math showed my weakness and my vulnerability. I needed help to understand it. I hated that. I wanted it to be like English where I could just automatically understand it and do it and be awesome at it. Looking back, I remember various points in the history of math classes where I would panic when I realized I couldn’t understand something, cry over it, gain sympathy for my tears, and then work with someone on the problem. I felt such a sense of accomplishment when math problems and formulas finally clicked. But also in looking back, I see that my greatest rewards and feelings of self worth came from acknowledging it when I needed help, showed that I was vulnerable, and worked with someone on the problem instead of trying to figure it out for myself.
 

 
Being homeschooled has many advantages, but one of the drawbacks is that while there are certainly other homeschool kids and activities to keep you involved with a group, the day to day grindstone of getting through textbooks and learning new subjects ultimately fosters a sense of independence. Independence and individual responsibility are very good things to have, and can be extremely advantageous. But the downside is that it makes it harder to ask for help when you need it, because there is nobody else asking for help around you. The absence of peer pressure in other words, made me pressure myself. I felt like I was missing out on something, and I was. I was missing out on being human and making mistakes.
 

 
Making a mistake was a tragedy in the world of me. Being measured and found lacking was a bigger fear for me than spiders and snakes. I had an incredible fear of skin problems, because they showed the imperfections I felt on the inside as plain as day on the outside. The very thought of getting chicken pox made me shiver. Poison oak leaves would send me into fits of tears. The fear of acne had me trying every new mask and potion I could get my hands on. If I could perfect my skin, nobody would be able to see my vulnerability. Appearing perfect was of utmost importance. I only shared with friends enough to make them think I was a perfect friend. (Whatever that means). If I had an issue or a fear or a worry, I only shared it if I felt like my friends shared that worry with me. I would only let myself be as vulnerable as they were. I couldn’t give away too much for fear of being judged.
 

 
Balancing on point shoes, balancing my math problems, balancing friends, and balancing my skin all had one thing in common…I was trying to show everyone how good I was at balancing things on my own, without anyone’s help. I didn’t need anyone to catch me, because I was never going to fall. And if I did fall, nobody was going to see me do it.

Stay tuned for part 2…

Cheers!

Christinjoyful

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Inner Me Boot Camp

 

Silly me!  I’ve been working so hard on my strength and endurance physically, that I forgot to tune in to what was going on on the inside!

The last few months have really been both an emotional and physical roller coaster for me. Some of the things I have been dealing with are too personal to post on the interwebs, sufficed to say that I have been doing a lot of soul searching amidst my Best Body Bootcamp training.

 

So in addition to my Best Body Bootcamp Training, I am now also self-enrolled in a more spiritual bootcamp.

 

As you know, I started this blog to have it help me find balance. Well here is my chance. I have been focused so much on the outside that I forgot to tune in to what was going on on the inside. My struggles spiritually have been due to my failure to communicate my feelings and emotions with those close to me, and my lack of faith and trust in the Lord, who is supposed to be my strength in times of weakness.

 

A verse in particular has been of great importance to me, and is the basis for my bootcamp. It has to do with preparing for spiritual warfare:

 

Ephesians 6:12-18

New International Version (NIV)

12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

So in addition to my daily workouts and stretching regimen I have taken up the following Inner Bootcamp training modules alongside my husband:

1) Daily Devotionals, share with Travis

2) Find a congregation to attend to with Travis every Sunday

3) Pray without ceasing!

4) Voice my needs and concerns without fear, anger, or doubt. Trust the Lord with my needs and give the burdens up to Him.

 

I need to take up the full armor of God in order to fight my spiritual battles. I have the tools I need, it’s just a matter of using them, practicing with them, and being ready and steadfast against temptation.

 

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SLO Much Fun…

Ah, family birthdays. For my brother in law’s birthday this weekend, we met up in San Luis Obispo (SLO), and visited a local apple farm. It was really cute, and had all kinds of neat family oriented things to do!

There was a store that sold all kinds of interesting flavors of local honey, from pomegranate to apple to lemon…all unusual and delicious sounding!

Also in the store was everything you could ever ask for and more in a better homes and gardens magazine, with themed kitchen and picnic items, grilling tools, cookbooks, measuring sets, teacups and teapots, unusual candies, grilling sauces, flavored olives in jars, jams, jellies, pancake mixes with various fruits, and on and on. I could have bought the whole friggin store if I had the money…everything was so darn cute!

There was also a deli/ice cream store…I got a salad, old fashioned root beer, and a piece of cake batter fudge for dessert! My Fluffy helped me eat the salad, but the fudge was mine all mine…hehehe.

There was also apple picking…you could go out and pick your own apples for $1 a pound, but we didn’t end up making it out there this time around…would love to go back sometime for that purpose though!
And then there was all kinds of barn animals to visit…various goats mostly, and chickens and sheep.

What’s up, chicken butt! haha!My father in law fed the goats corn on the cob…they ate the whole friggin cob…good times.

After that, it was present time! My Fluffy got my father in law and brother in law shirts to coordinate with his…typical Fluffy move to stir up some laughs and drama and general dissent in the ranks…good times! lol!

After that, we decided to head home for some weekend r&r…overall, a great day!

 

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