October 2, 2016

Thank You.

It's been a strange week, inside of the mind of Jenny, that is. No odd events have occurred and nothing out of the ordinary has sprung up in my life; it's all just been weird inside of my head.

Being a hopeless introvert I tend to live inside of my head. I tend to pull up a chair and stay for awhile within the "comforts" of my own brain and then get up and leave when I feel ready and satisfyingly rejuvenated. But this week, I actually pitched a tent in my head (and I do not fancy camping in the least so I don't know why I'd ever even consider pitching a tent, but it's my brain, what can I do?), and stayed inside the walls of my skull for a very long time. Too long, in fact.

Introspection is a good thing. It's healthy to examine your own mental and emotional wellbeing and work to keep it intact. But too much dwelling within-the-minds-eye is when things get a little crazy. Trust me, I LOVE to be inside of my head. I love to process the interactions I have with people or events, envision the potentials of my future, seek out new dreams and goals, and just mull over my current life just as everything is. I enjoy all of this so much, in fact I NEED to do this in order to stay sane, but when I spend too much time analyzing and questioning anything and everything, that is when my joy takes a dangerous turn into bitterness, worry, grief, anxiety, and just plain unhappiness.

Is there anyone out there who can relate with me on this? (I know you're out there somewhere!)

An example of something in my life that I allowed to go from a joyful event to sorrowful one, is my upcoming trip to Canada. (If you didn't know, Canadian Thanksgiving is coming up quick and Jarryd and I are vacationing there for a week! YAY!) Anybody who knows me KNOWS that I am crazy excited for this trip. But a few days ago I found myself DREADING it. DREAD-ING. How?! Why?! This is going to sound so silly to you guys, but I knew that going back to Canada and enjoying my time seeing my family and my best friends again...meant saying goodbye AGAIN. And because it's Maryland's turn for Christmas holidays this year, it would be one of those "goodbye, I don't know when I'll ever see you again so...until who-knows-when so take care of yourself! See ya?!" :(

I honestly could cry right now as I've been typing all of this out, but I'm gonna keep it together, people!

My mind takes me on such insane trails that my sad obsession with the future goodbyes completely overshadowed how GOOD this trip is going to be. I shouldn't be dreading something I should be thankful for. And believe me, I'm so excited, thankful to God, and so happy that Jarryd and I get to spend an entire week in the best country ever  Canada. ;) <3 This whole ordeal was one of those times where I just needed to tell my brain to "shut up" and allow my heart to be a heart of thankfulness again.

So there was that. And then there was this overwhelming feeling of lostness...


I've lived here in Maryland for over two years and quite often feel all-of-the-above. (Is that too honest, or what?) I don't feel like I've found my place. I don't feel like I fit in. Amidst unattractive wet sobs I have said to Jarryd, "I've never felt so different in my life". To be honest I didn't think I'd feel much culture-shock moving here, but I feel it now, two years in more than ever.

When I feel like I'm different from everyone else and out of place, I begin to question everything about myself and my identity. I begin to feel like I'm losing who I am because I feel like familiarity is far and few between.

Fortunately, there are these times though when I meet someone new and feel a wonderful and warm connection with them and then I instantly have so much joy because I don't feel so out of place anymore. It feels like familiarity. It feels like my desire to know and especially be known is being fulfilled. I feel that sense of belonging that every soul on earth craves. There are seriously some wonderful people out there and I wish I could be surrounded by them all of the time.

Alas, I wish I felt that welcoming feeling from everyone I encountered. Unfortunately, many people I interact with make me feel like I'm too quiet. I'm too young. Like I need to build myself some thicker skin. Like I need to be more sarcastic, more obnoxious, and more aggressive in the way I speak. More crude. Never keep a serious conversation. Make everything a joke, yet don't smile too much. Make fun of everyone around me. Stop being so joyful. Keep a record of wrongs of every single person. Swing your moods a little more. Rid myself of all gentleness and learn to fight a good verbal fight.

I'm sure I've shared this quote before but I'm going to share it again because I LOVE IT:
I begin to question my talents, gifts, and skills until my mind decides for me that they're not actually talents, gifts, and skills. That I'm just a fake, pretending like I know what I'm doing. Or that I'm just kidding myself! But I know my God is bigger than my doubts, and according to Him I'm work of art and can create works of art. Please brain, you need to quiet down!

I know there are people out there like me, who feel the same way I do. Who believe that yes, the world is beautiful and that kindness, warmth, and welcoming-ness all go a long way.

As found in Galatians 5:22-23 But the Fruit of the Spirit is:

Instead of feeling lost, I want to feel all of the things above! I want to be the Fruits of the Spirit. And I can because my identity and sense of belonging are not found in where I live, who I know, or what I do. My identity is in Jesus and I absolutely refuse to let anyone around me change that, because they can't.

I'm thankful for the little BIG thoughts that God pops into my head to remind me of His promises.
I'm thankful to Jarryd for always always always being my proverbial "home away from home", he is my biggest sense of familiarity here in Maryland, and my best friend in the whole entire world.
I'm thankful to the people who have shown such great kindness to me, for giving me "mom hugs" and making me giggle with their "dad jokes".
I'm thankful for the--seldom--cashiers who carry on a conversation with me as if we've known each other forever (Dear Starbucks cashier, I don't even know your name but I'm pretty sure we're best friends. Thank you for bonding with me over Pumpkin Spice Lattes).
Thank you to the friends who aren't afraid to talk about the hard things. Thank you for your authenticity and not pretending to be perfect.
Thank you to the people who SMILE and say HELLO.
Thank you to the few people here who actually get my sense of humour. (It's a rare humour but it's actually the best, hee hee!)
Thank you to the girls who let me into the soccer game for free because I forgot to bring cash. Your act of kindness blew me away and it's not forgotten.
Thank you to my long-distance friends/sisters/family who don't mind me venting to them about how hard it gets here sometimes. Thank you for listening, encouraging, and always pointing me to the Truth! (You know who you are!!)
And thank you to the ones who take the time to read my blog. I know I don't always make alot of sense. I know I can be quite vague at times, more mysterious than I'd like to be, but I appreciate you guys hearing reading me out. I get so much joy out of blogging and I appreciate each and every one of you and the encouraging comments and private messages you send me. Your words seriously make my day!! <3

See brain! There's always SOMETHING to be thankful for. Always something to feel joy about. God is so good. :)


  1. If you're anything like me your mood tends to be a reflection of the things that are bouncing around in your head. If you have negative thoughts your mood is grumpy, irritable, sad, etc. So a speaker at Bodenseehof told me to memorize Philippians 4:8 and to take it to heart.

    Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

  2. <3 It's a hard life, but its a lovely life. Keep that soft heart. It's one of my favourite things about you. God made you well.