Wash, Rinse, Repeat… ?!

Ever have one of those writing days where you don’t really wanna but you know you should, so you do? But then it’s like you have to push & shove & pull & fight to get 2 sentences on the page… and those 2 sentences sound like utter crap.

So then you begin a cycle of writing a couple of sentences, reading it, shaking your head, back spacing.

Writing a couple of sentences, reading it, shaking your head, back spacing.

over & over & over again.

Yep! One of those days.

But I will say that I did manage to get a page or two written despite all that & while it may be a total mess when I have to edit back through later… that’s okay. Something was written & that’s always better than nothing. Gives me something to edit in the future if nothing else.

Or who knows? May edit back through & find it to be an outstanding couple of pages. Future Heather may be like this is literary gold. πŸ˜€

So here I am blogging about my writing woes. But really if that’s all I have to complain about I must say I’m doing pretty good. πŸ™‚

Talk to you all later.
With Love,
Heather. πŸ˜€

This Is THE Game Changer…

So it’s been a minute since I’ve said anything more about the project I am working on. The last time I mentioned it, I believe I said something along the lines of, “Oh, I’m going to figure out some sort of schedule and devote to it the time & determination it is due… or something or other like that. (Definitely sounds like me. πŸ˜€ )

Anyhow, that was in July. (I’m pretty sure it was July, at least.)

I did not immediately do that. BUT!! I have some good news to report. You ready???

I did pick it back up in September. AND… here’s the important part.

There is no schedule. No rhyme or reason. BUT! I write EVERY DAY.

Imma be honest… some days.. it’s just a few hundred words. Other days though… it’s a few thousand words. — & I have made a ridiculous amount of progress over the last few weeks.

I find that sticking with it & the writing itself is now much more effortless. — But that’s not all…..

Ya ever wonder if you’re on the right path? If you’re going in the right direction? — Just a little bit of doubt… can really derail you when it comes to going all in on something. So I want to tell you a little story. — Stick with me… It has an astounding ending.. I promise!

When I started this blog.. I said I was writing a book. At the time, that was roughly 4 or so years ago. Also at the time… it was an entirely different one than I’m currently working on. — A lot has changed. I have changed a lot. — Lots of change, Y’all.

I couldn’t figure out where I fit as a writer back then. As a christian I thought I had to write christian fiction if I was going to write fiction.

I was also ashamed. — I’m gonnaΒ be real with you. — The literary world looks down on a romance novel. That’s not great literature. It’s second-rate. It’s blah blah blah. — Okay, there are all sorts of opinions like that out there. I was letting those opinions.. affect me in a way that was causing me to try to change the romance aspect or be ashamed if I wrote it.

To both of those things… at several different points along the way… I said, screw it.

I am not meant to write christian fiction and I have embarked upon a romance series … and every one else’s opinion is completely irrelevant. If anyone has a problem with any of it, anywhere, no matter who they are… then my work, what I write… is not meant for them.

Here’s the other thing. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING.

4 years ago… when I was working on the other book that I have since abandoned (Years ago) ….

I was in the living room floor and I was stumped. I couldn’t figure out what to do with it or where to go with it. I had papers scattered everywhere. My lap top open. I was trying and nothing was working.

I asked God, I said, What do I do? Where do I go with this? Tell me what to do. & I motioned all around me at the papers and work spread about, where do I go with this? …. and God said…

Charlie is important.

& I said, say what now? Charlie? See there was a character named Charlie. & he was not a huge part of the book I was writing. He was in it. But a minor character. & I said, I don’t understand. — & God said again….

Charlie is important.

Y’all I tried so hard to fit him into that book and figure out what in the world God was talking about. Cause, look, that’s all He gave me.

It didn’t work. I did end up tossing the book to the side. & I reasoned that I had not heard correctly and must have thought that up myself. That was 4 years ago.

A couple of months ago I was working out and something had recently happened that had brought some of my past screeching back to the forefront. and my mind was on that. — Well in the middle of working out… God revealed to me with such clarity…

Charley’s story is your story.

And I stopped and I was like that’s it! (Mind you, the Charlie of my old creation was a guy and I had long forgotten all about him. This Charley, is a woman, and completely different character.) I had been wracking my brain trying to figure out her back story for months. I knew her quirks, and her personality and character. and I had always said she was the character most like me of all the ones I have created. But I hadn’t put all of the pieces together yet.

I was excited that I finally had the answers for her and I started working out again… and God said…

I told you Charley was important.

Y’all!!! Now see here, I had long forgotten about that. It was years ago and I had concluded that it was never God to begin with.

I stood there for several seconds just in awe. God knew.. He knew 4 years ago when I had it all wrong and I was going down the wrong path and it wasn’t working out, that years in the future, I would get on the right path and He would get to show up and say, I told you then.. so I could give you the revelation now.

And y’all.. I’m telling you.. it was such a powerful moment.

He gave me one little piece of a puzzle, that made zero sense at the time, because He was planning to give me the rest of the pieces years down the road when I needed them. — See.. Charley’s story was always going to be important because it was always meant to be the closest thing to my story. I didn’t know that then… But He did. — He knew I’d create a whole new world, with all new characters & that I would eventually name one Charley at the last minute because the original name I had for her just didn’t seem to fit somehow. He knew it all.

If there was ever any doubt, and okay let’s be real… there was heaps of it!!

It disappeared that day.

I know I’m on the right path. I’m going in the right direction. Charley’s story isn’t the one I am currently writing. Hers will come a little later on. But God revealed to me in that moment that I was going in the right direction. & all the doubt fled. I now know with certainty these characters and their stories are the ones I am meant to tell.Β  — So between knowing that and making the effort to write each & every day…. (& let’s be real… God guiding & blessing all that I do.. ) — I’m in a place with my writing that I’ve never been before.

& y’all!! It feels fantastic! πŸ™‚

Love to all!
Heather! πŸ˜€

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Purpose Lies Ahead…

I wanna say a little something real quick.

While working out earlier it hit me that some times in life we get in places where we can’t see past where we are currently at. Especially when those places are painful. When we don’t know which way is up or down & we can’t seem to claw our way out of the darkness we find ourselves in. It can get hard & tunnel vision becomes a real thing.

I’ve been there. As I’m sure most people have been. — Once upon a time I couldn’t see how or why in the world I was ever going to make it. It’s now years later… & I can see it.

I used to think there was no hope. I used to think that I was so incredibly broken that I would forever be in pieces. I couldn’t understand why in the world God would have me here, on this Earth, so shredded & torn apart. & I used to ask Him, why? Not why am I in pain or why is this misery in my life… but why am I here at all when this place is breaking me & I could be with You instead? Because I knew back then.. Ya know, this is a fallen world & full of sin & it’s bound to be a hard place to be sometimes. So that’s not the question I had for Him when asking why… it was why am I here, rather than why does it hurt so much.

In those moments, when I was lost in my own misery, He would always show up. Never giving up, never quitting on me. He would show up with an I love you, it’s going to be alright, I’m with you, you’re not alone. But I would still struggle with the why.

Because I could never see past the pain. I couldn’t see down the road, to the future. I couldn’t see what was on the other side. Or even a light at the end of the tunnel. It appeared to be darkness ahead.

All I saw was my shattered soul & broken spirit. A girl getting swallowed up by the world.

All those years ago I asked why. I begged & I pleaded. Why? But there was so much pain & turmoil I couldn’t see through it.

God has a plan for my life. It made zero since to me back then. I couldn’t fathom how that girl, who she was all those years ago… how she would possibly fit into any plans He had. So it didn’t make sense & I couldn’t see it.

But I can see it now. Because that girl… she fought, clawed, & climbed her way out of the darkness. (Slowly & not of her own strength, mind you.) — & when she came out on the other side… she was no longer the same person. She could see.

Every day I still fight the good fight, trying to keep my head up above the water. I keep moving forward, little by little. Good days & bad days, doesn’t matter, I keep fighting. Because I know why now. & because I know why… the will to fight doesn’t come from just trying to survive anymore… it comes from knowing that God has a plan & a purpose for me & my life & I have to keep moving forward to execute it.

So to anyone out there who reads this… God has a purpose for you. Whether you can see it or not… it’s true. So if you ever find yourself where I once was, feeling like you’re lost & you can’t figure out why in the world you’re here. That’s why. — & it’s a beautiful reason to be here. πŸ™‚

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Went Somewhere With This…

Ya wanna know the one thing I dislike more than most things? & before I get to that… just let me say that I dislike a lot of things. Hot weather, bacon, (which some would say makes me un-american.. πŸ™‚ ) scary movies, animal abusers, heavy metal music, going to the dentist, terrorists… I mean… the list could go on & on. — But at the very top of it, there is one thing I dislike more than most things…. & that is a hateful christian that uses the name of Jesus to justify their hatred.

See I bet you didn’t think I was gonna say that. Not after I put terrorist on the list. But see that’s the thing… A terrorist needs Jesus… & I know that. They may not know that… but I know it. So when I’m looking at it from that perspective, while I may be absolutely appalled by whatever they’ve done… I am aware that they need a revelation from a life changing God. — Which brings me back to those hateful Christians.

I can be a hateful person. I can be mean. I can be petty.. I can be judgmental. I can decide that someone is sinning far worse than I am. I can put the spite in spiteful when I so choose. I can take “I am right & you are wrong” to a ridiculously condescending level. I can show people unkindness when I’m angry or disagree with them. I can do all these awful things. & I am guilty of doing so on many occasions. I am not perfect & I am well aware of it every single day. But here’s the thing….

I own that… I own up that I am a flawed human being because I am not perfect. I own my weaknesses & am aware that hate can pour out of me sometimes. But here’s the thing… I am never going to give God the credit for those things. If I show hate to another human being in any form… I am not about to put that on God. It’s not from Him & He doesn’t deserve to be cast in such a light as that. I don’t expect people to be perfect, but when someone fails to walk in love, and we all will time and time again, I also don’t expect them to give God the glory and credit for actions rooted in hatred. It’s not from Him.

It grinds my gears that there are christians that quote their bibles word for word, but look down on someone who lands in prison…. because God says so. That there are christians that spout about their christianity all the time, but shun their families should they sin differently from them… because their bible says they must. That there are christians that sit in church & preach compassion, but then lack that very same compassion for people on the outside of their little circles… because God says their way or no way. That there are christians that speak of God’s love, but show people the very opposite by what they say & what they do… because God backs their words & actions with His word.

It makes me angry. But it makes me angry because people are watching. People that don’t know God are watching & they are forming opinions & making decisions about Him based off the actions of these people. They are doing God a disservice & an injustice & they are using Him to justify ugliness. They are telling a world full of unsaved people that God is not love. They are saying to the world, He loves you if… He loves you when… He loves you… if you walk, and talk, and think like we do. As if His love, compassion, and kindness are conditional. When they are no such thing. He loves you… period.

It drives me insane. & while I can’t do anything about that… I did recently realize there is something I can do.

I can be louder than them. I can be kinder than them. I can choose love, where they have chosen hate, & God will use the platform that I am to show people who He is, through me. But He can’t do that if I’m so angry & wrapped up in hatred for these people. I have to let it go. — & I’m not good at letting things go.

But I am a work in progress. & for the first time, in a long time, rather than anger… some days what I feel in regards to them is pity. I feel sorry for them. That they have all this knowledge of Jesus… but they don’t know His heart. & I don’t want to lose myself & stray so far away that I become them. I’m not good at being the bigger person… but that’s what God calls me to be. & if I want others to see Him in me…. I don’t have a choice.

So while I still don’t like it. & they will always be at the top of my list. I can’t focus on that. I have to do every thing I can to counter it. So that people watching may come to know Jesus Christ & all that His grace & love have to offer. I have to be on His side, which means I have to set aside all the anger. I want to make sure that while the world is hearing them say, He loves you if…. & He loves you when…. that they’ll also be hearing someone else saying, No.. He loves you despite…. He loves you. Period.

That’s the only way..

So until next time… πŸ™‚

 

Well This Gets Embarrassing…

Ay-Yo! πŸ˜€

So I wanna tell y’all about all the neat things I have learned from this whole weight loss/exercise journey. Things I have learned about myself… Also there may be things you will learn about me here that may entertain you to no end… who knows?! (Me! I know. Just don’t go telling everybody..Β  it’ll be our little secrets!)

So here’s a thing… if there were ever a class that someone wanted to offer to people about quitting & not following through with things… they would hire me to teach it. & they would definitely have themselves quite the qualified instructor. I could teach you all about it. Except…. let’s be real.. I’d probably quit.

So now that we’ve established that I almost never follow through with things I start. I would like to explain that low self-confidence & fear of failure are the number 1 reasons that I’d be perfect for such a position. Of course, that’s also why I wouldn’t be too! — (You see what I’m working with here? I’m a hot mess. — Literally, I live in the south… it’s hot here. πŸ˜€ )

Anyhow… I said all that to say this… I have not quit this time. — One day, back in February, I asked myself… what are you doing? Why are you not fighting for more out of life? & I knew the answer. It’s the same ol narrative it’s always been. I am too afraid. I am scared & I don’t believe in myself. — & there was something that just sorta hit me like a ton of bricks.. ( Prolly Jesus tbh… tho… I mean.. I’m sure He wouldn’t actually swing a sack of bricks at me… tho… I won’t test it.. I can be a real pain. You can ask my mom.. she would back me up on that one, I have no doubt. πŸ˜€ )

If I don’t make a single move to do anything worthwhile at all, if I stay right where I am…. I lose. If I make moves, aim for something worthwhile, refuse to stay where I am… I could still lose…. but it wouldn’t be without a fight. I wouldn’t just lay down & die like I’ve been doing. & I stand more chances to come out on the other side if I make the effort to do so. As long as I’m stalled, here where I’m at, I’m done for… & it’s not because I didn’t fight for more or push forward… it’s because I let the fear of failure determine my future… I let the idea of failing cause the very failure I dreaded. — & in that moment, on February 16th, 2018 (Yes, we have a date to go with this pivotal moment πŸ™‚ )… I chose to make a move.

You see earlier that same day I got dressed & my jeans were too tight & I was all like, I need to go shopping & get me some new jeans. Bigger jeans. (Because who doesn’t love having to size up? Me… it’s me, I don’t. ) — But then I decided to make a move & new just where I was going to start. With myself. The me that I let go because I felt I had no purpose & was already defeated. That person needed to learn to fight for herself. — Which she did.

It is now over 3 months later, I have lost 25 lbs.. (Okay.. 24… but seriously… it’s much more fun for me to round up. πŸ™‚ ) I exercise every day & I love it. I drink more water a day than I used to drink in a week. I quit soda. (mostly… I do have like a small can on occasion. The little 90 calorie cans, you know the ones. The ones you see in the grocery store & you’re like… it’s only 50 cents cheaper than the 12 pack, might as well just get the 12 pack, more for my money. — Yeeaaahh, I did that too. Now I just get less for my money & less coke… I’m not sure I’ve won anything here… but oh well! πŸ˜€ ) I live & breathe calorie management.. I literally do math every day… & I don’t even like math. —

Sometimes I wanna be lazy.. & I have to push myself to get up & get down to some Toby Mac. That’s right… I dance. I haven’t mentioned that part yet… but I’m not a runner, or a walker, or a workout video follower… I’m a dancer. & to be honest with you… when I say I’m a dancer what I mean is that I’m a dancer at heart. On the inside. On the outside… I can’t promise I don’t look like some sort of discombobulated chicken? I also try to sing while I dance.. & I can’t hardly breathe.. & so my mean ol Husband (Not really… he’s my favorite & I adore him.) records me at the door & giggles about it later.Β  I mean I don’t know. I have no rhythm. I’m not very coordinated. & not sure you’d want me to dance at your wedding… but it works! & it’s fun & makes me feel alive. So imma keep rolling with it.

I rambled on about all of that to say this… for the first time in my life I have learned so much about perseverance, determination, motivation, & pushing myself when those very things fail me. I have pushed myself 10 more minutes, only ate 10 chips at the mexican restaurant.. 10! That’s all I could have. Used to eat half a basket & come to find out 20 chips is around 300 calories. Say what?! That’s just a free appetizer? Can’t even have more than 10 chips! That is dedication if I ever saw it, I tell you. I am dedicated, can’t say I’m not! πŸ˜€ )

I fight for it every day. & I stick with it even when it’s hard & when it’s not fun. Like when I raked leaves til I had blisters (cause I don’t rake leaves on the regular & my husband informed me an hour & a half in that gloves would prevent blisters… ohhhhh, now you tell me. I just wanted to burn some calories… not my skin!) Or when I shoveled dirt & came inside later covered in bug bites. (the prices I have paid, I tell you, for trying to spice up some calorie burning.)

The thing is, as hilarious as it has been sometimes, I have pushed, I have fought, I have kept going… even when the guy at the register of the fast food place was like, but the burger is going to cost you the same price with or without the fries, you sure you don’t want the fries? — Yeah, I’m sure. — But it’s the same price… I can just give you the fries too.. — nope, I’m good. — But it’s the same price?! — Sweet Lord, get behind me satan! No seriously tho..Β  I know he was just trying to be nice & help me out. — But I stuck to it. When I could have easily said, ya know what… yeah.. might as well. & ate them anyhow. But I didn’t. & I’m sure that lovely employee thinks I’m a loon. But that’s okay! I was determined to stick with it… & I did.

I have stuck with it since the beginning. I have made so much progress. Not just physically, but mentally, emotionally… it’s been life changing. It may seem small to some, I’m sure. But for me…. it was a huge leap & something I was afraid I would fail at. But I’m still here fighting the good fight. Confusing restaurant workers & embarrassing myself in the name of exercise. πŸ˜€

There’s no going back now! You guys are all just going to have to buckle up because you’re along for the ride… πŸ˜€

 

 

A Letter…

To the Christian person that says our feelings do not matter, that emotions have to be set aside as they may contradict faith & all things that are holy…. while I appreciate that you wish to further me along in my journey with Jesus… I would like to share a little something with you.

You have not walked, not even one moment, in my shoes. You have absolutely no idea of the depths that I have descended to. You have no idea of the pain & suffering I’ve survived. You have not a clue how lost & broken a soul I have been. You were not there when I lost the battles. You were not there when I was lost in all the surrounding chaos. You have no idea how far down rock bottom was when the fight went out in me.

You do not know me. You do not know my heart. You did not pick me back up. You did not come to me in my darkest hours & comfort me. You did not show me hope & love when I no longer believed in either of them. You did not restore my faith. You played no part in my healing. You did not even know I was broken. — God did. He knew. He showed up pouring out nothing but love & concern. He cared what I felt. He cared how lost I was. He cared about my pain, my suffering, & my broken spirit. I was wrapped up in all sorts of emotions & feelings. & He cared.

You can come to me all day long & say that I should set aside my feelings as they do not matter in the grand scheme of things. I’ve even heard it said that it’s selfish to focus only on one’s pain, rather than on what God has said. You can try to educate me all day long on the subject…. but the facts remain the same.

You were not on the floor with me the night I landed on it, writhing in an emotional pain I was apparently not allowed to feel.Β  I cried & I cried & I said, ” I’m all alone. No one understands. They don’t care. Life is beating me to pieces & I’m all by myself.” & I heard God respond… (Mind you the same God that I had known for years. The same One I had been angry with. The same One I yelled at in all my rage & confusion… because in all my honesty here… I was nothing, if not honest with Him too.) I heard the same very God tell me I was not alone. He said I’m here. I care. I love you. — He reached out to His broken child & He said, I’ve got you. — That is a God that cares. — Sure… He also can’t & won’t tolerate sin… but that does not make Him an uncaring God when His children are broken.

So while I appreciate that you are attempting to help & enlighten me… I remember all too well what it was like to feel like my suffering did not matter. People will descend further into an abyss when they feel no one cares. To stress to them… that the God that loves them more than we could ever comprehend… does not care about their feelings, only their faith…. is not something I will participate in. — You may call me wrong. You may say that it’s cause I’m all up in my inappropriate feelings. & that’s okay. I am all up in my feelings. It’s hard not to be when I know somewhere out there is some broken someone who just needs someone to care.

Because I would rather that… than to abandon someone who, maybe just like me, has crumpled to the floor.. in an emotional agony they can’t handle anymore… by leaning down & saying, hey… I get that you’re upset right now…. but these feelings… you need to push them out-of-the-way… this is selfish… God’s not in the business of caring how you feel… it’s all about the faith. —– Because that is essentially what you have done. Whether you realize it or not, this is what they’ve heard. & I will not do that to another human being in turmoil. — I cannot.

So please understand, you can tell me all about this subject time & time again…. but you & I will never be on the same page about it. To be honest, it is what it is.

Yours Truly,
Heather.

 

 

 

Not Everything Changes..

I recently moved about an hour from the town I’ve lived in my entire life.

Bought a house, moved further away from family, shop in completely different towns now. Every thing is different. There is so much change. — & I am a creature of habit for sure.

It’s been stressful. It’s been strange. it’s been fun & exciting too… there are pros and cons galore. Our dog has been adjusting… she is also a creature of habit. She’s now a bigger baby than she was before… tho I didn’t think that was possible before now.. ;). Life’s just been different.

I used to live out in the country. No neighbors nearby. Now I live.. well, still sorta out in the country… just in a subdivision with a ton of neighbors. They are lovely people… but it’s still different for someone who has never really had so many people around all the time.

Back at my old home.,.. I used to sit outside at night, under the stars, in the dark… turn some music on, close my eyes, & let all of the stress and anxieties of life just slip away for a while. — It has always been my de-stresser. The one thing that kept me going when life got tough. Somehow.. it just does wonders for my soul. I always feel more at peace afterwards. It’s my thing. πŸ™‚

Since I moved… oh, like 4 months ago, that has not happened. Not even once. Suddenly there are neighbors every where… I don’t want to disturb them somehow… I also watch a lot of Dateline… & well… I don’t want to show up on an episode of that… lol. So I just haven’t bothered to sit outside at 2 am cause.. well, it’s all so different here.

Tonight tho… I did just that. Went outside, popped my headphones in, leaned back in a chair, & let all my worries wash away for a while.

It was fantastic. Absolutely amazing. & Oh how I had missed it so much.

Sometimes things all around us change. Life becomes different & unfamiliar. We create new normals & move in all sorts of directions. It’s always full of happiness & excitement… but it also has it’s downsides… it can be uncomfortable & difficult too. But when everything around you changes… there are still some things that will always stay the same.

For me.. that’s washing away stress under the stars after midnight. For you, I’m sure it’s something else entirely. But it’s nice… that despite all the changes in life… some things are just a part of who we are. πŸ™‚