Hark! What Light Through Yonder Window Breaks?

I’ve been wanting to update this thing for a while, but haven’t wanted to update it with the depressing shit that’s going through my brain. I even chose not to share at check-in on Friday in our therapeutic writing class, which I always view as a bit of a cop-out. But we had to share a short poem we had written (according to a certain form), and this one wasn’t really suitable for a classroom setting. I’m pretty sure if I’d shared it, my prof (who I’ve already talked to about having a rough semester and needing a bit of leeway on assignments) would have walked me across the street to the counseling center.

scattered / worrying endlessly / white hot pain / what to let go? / retreat

And then another!

stuck / shame spiraling / deeper darker black / where is the light? / gone

So….yeah. It hasn’t been a good semester so far. I was demoted to meeting with my dietitian every week again. I was nearly demoted to meeting with my therapist every other week. I self-harmed for the first time in months. I lost/left my job because I was too damned depressed to move.

Then Jesus decided to throw me a bone. A friend invited me to an improvisational music weekend at a gorgeous retreat center this past weekend. And she paid for the whole thing for me. (At nearly $250, this was not something that was even in the realm of possibility otherwise.)

So we drove to the retreat center on Friday afternoon and chatted the whole way there. She loves God and she is not shy about it. She prayed constantly (out loud), often thanking God for getting us where we were going or the sunset or the lifting of the fog (which really was miraculously timed.) Sadly, we got there so late that we couldn’t get seats together at dinner, so I sat awkwardly amongst strangers, then left after a “reasonable” (?) amount of time.

As I walked back to my dorm, I noticed a friend in her car, chatting out the window with one of the retreat facilitators. Weird. I wave and she finds a place to park and hops out to give me a hug. She lives about thirty minutes away and we had talked about perhaps getting together for a walk before dinner, but the aforementioned late arrival meant we had to cancel that plan.

So instead, she decided to stop by and drop off a little care package for me (and my roommate). What?! A thermos, some tea bags, some fruit, and dark chocolate. Oh, and some delightful lavender soap. Totally unexpected. The next hour spent with her and her daughter were also delightful and her daughter took to my ukulele quite naturally.

To say that I needed this weekend might be a bit of an understatement. Just the first two hour session on Friday night did my heart well. It was an event organized by Music for People, which believes everyone is musical and should get the chance to express it. And it opens wide the gates for things considered music. Honestly, I had no idea that a choir of eight BUNDT PANS could sound so gorgeous.

There are no wrong notes. No wrong sounds. No pressure. I met some awesome musicians who love to just play and it reignited that love for me. All I want to do now is improv!

At any rate, throughout the weekend, my roommate (the friend who brought me) kept giving me little gifts. She brought me some lovely soap and some teas as well. She was clearing out some of her old clothes and brought me sweaters and such to try out before she dropped the rest at goodwill. She offered up a bunch of her old clothes from her practicum because she “doesn’t like to wear black” now and I’m hurting for professional dress.

What the hell? It feels a bit like I have a fairy godmother.

I feel completely unworthy of it all, especially after the past month and a half.

I can’t say I’m totally on the “Yayyyyyyy life! Yay recovery!” train again, but I’m taking this weekend for what it was: Respite. And a reminder that Jesus really, really loves me.

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Choosing Love: Feel-Good Music

I’ll be honest, this one is sort of a bust for me. Sarah challenged us to make a mixed CD of music that sends us the following messages:  I am beautiful, I am loved, I matter.  And then we are supposed to play it at least once throughout the rest of our week.  Awesome!  I love music!  But…

My hard drive crashed a few months ago, taking with it all my precious music.

My iPod followed suit.

My new hard drive is not equipped with a sound card.

All this to say, I have no way to listen to music or burn it to a CD or anything of the sort.  (So if you’re out in the blogosphere and want to send me a copy of YOUR CD, feel free.  My car CD player would greatly appreciate some feel-good music on my 45 minute commute to work each morning.  End shameless plug for mail.)

However, I will pass along these youtube videos of songs that I adore and that make me feel loved, beautiful, or worthy.  Or, in the case of the last one, just fun.

Ingrid Michaelson “The Way I Am

David Crowder Band “Oh, How He Loves

Switchfoot “Twenty Four
(This was my favourite song on a mixed CD a dear friend made me for my birthday one year.  It is a beautiful song and always reminds me of how loved I felt when she gave me the CD.)

Switchfoot “This is Home

Regina Spektor “The Call
(Yes, I have a thing for The Chronicles of Narnia.  Sue me.)

Mika “Big Girl (You are Beautiful)
(It seriously makes me want to dance.)

What about you, friends?  What songs do you love?