Monday, July 16, 2012

Encouragement

Sometimes, I think I might like to be a greeting card writer.  Is that still an actual job if you aren't already a poet of some sort?  I don't want to write silly birthday cards or generic anniversary cards.  I'm talking about the "encouragement" and "get well soon" and "thank you" cards that you send to someone just... because.

I recently received a card like that in the mail from a friend.  It brightened my day and lifted my spirits.

I'm in a funk right now, I'm in a down and stressful place.  No secret about that.  But I have tremendous blessings in the people who surround me.  I have friends who sincerely pray for me- even when I don't reach out and specifically ask.  I have friends who think of me and send me encouraging notes or cards.  I have friends who don't hesitate to say "I love you."  I have friends who text me just to stay connected and remind me that I'm loved.

Friends who let me know what I mean to them- which warms my heart and soul when I'm struggling with stress.

Yesterday, as I was walking down the card aisle of a store and the word "encouragement" caught my eye.  I picked up a card and it was cute but honest and really spoke to how I've been feeling and the wonderful response I've gotten from my friends.



So I bought it for myself.  To remind me of all those people who have been reaching out, praying for me and my family, checking in on me, and so on.  I'm going to add their names to the card and keep it with me so I remember how many people are out there loving me and are available to help me through all of this- if I ever figure out what I need.

I won't list it all here... but I had a great talk with a friend Thursday night and I ended up talking about a lot of the stress in my life in more detail than I have with anyone else.  And I realized there is a lot more troubling my heart than just my job stress.  The job stress is the foundation but the past year, and especially the past few months, has really ended up creating a big compacted ball of stress with vines of guilt and exhaustion running rampant throughout.  I'm in a place where the best pacae for me to focus on the positive is those relationships with the people who continue to reach out and lift me up- because there are a lot of major areas of my life under stress right now.  In addition to realizing and accepting that I am living with increased levels of stress in a lot of major areas of my life, I've also been made clearly aware of how this ongoing stress is impacting my physical health.  I know how I've been feeling emotionally for a while... but realizing the negative impact on my body hit home, too.  And added more stress.

So I'm focusing on all of you who have dropped a note, a text, offered a hug, looked me in the eyes and asked "What can I do?"  Those who are trying their best to take care of me, even as they go through their own struggles.  Those who do the best that anyone can do for someone else- love me.  Keep loving me, keep checking on me, keep praying for me, keep reaching out.

It means more than I can put into words.

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4 comments:

Alison said...

Hi Liz. I haven't been commenting much, and reading only a bit more because my ancient internet browser at work tends to seize up on your blog for some reason. Just wanted to let you know I'm still following you, though!

Your work situation sounds tough, and makes me wonder if it's time to sit down with your boss and explain it's impossible for one person to do well all the tasks you've been assigned over the past year. The more you accept what they give you without complaint, the more they assume you're ok with it. Welcome to the new "increased worker productivity."

Not an easy thing to do...but surely it wouldn't hurt to keep your eye open for other opportunities. Because work shouldn't be taking so much away from your real life for so, so long. Here's wishing you get some kind of breathing room soon!

C. Beth said...

Praying for you, Liz. Long-distance hug, being sent your way.

Fran@Broken Cookies Don't Count said...

Work stress can be so awful. I finally quit my job in Dec. 2010 due to stress related to the job itself and difficulty with a particular co-worker. I'm broke, but I feel better. We're working on moving from New Jersey to New Mexico. That will complete the stress reduction. Hugs to you Liz, I hope things lighten up for you soon!

Garret Atherton said...

I send you uber hugs. You've been a friend for so long and you deserve happiness. You're an amazing blogger, mom and wife and hopefully you know that! Smooches sista!