June 28, 2010

the real girl

School’s back in session for the summer! The two-week break between terms was thankfully well-timed to accommodate the transition between work at the Fish and the church. Now my schedule is roughly: school in the morning, church work in the afternoon…. and there is also time left to write spots (commercials) for the radio station. Yes, in the week of freedom, I was re-hired. Perhaps I will never escape? But I am happy to be doing something I enjoy with the freedom to work from home.

There is also time to take a break and play with Kelly’s dog, or walk outside, or open a window, or light a candle, or……

I recently saw “Lars and the Real Girl” at Sophia’s house. It had been recommended by multiple friends- for good reason. Ryan Gosling gives an excellent performance, and it’s a fun, quirky film. The best thing was the demonstration of a loving community helping someone heal. At face-value, it’s a response to mental-illness that is rarely seen. Of course, “community” does not have to be synonymous with an entire town. It can be a family, a church, a group of friends….. whoever fills the pool of support. But the same principle applies to all kinds of healing, be it physical or emotional. The power of unconditional love (and yes, the love of Christ) overcomes more than we typically expect. Unselfish acts, like taking a doll to the hair salon, could change someone’s life. Can Will you and I love that simply?

As someone with a mental disorder (or just as an average human being with their fair share of brokenness), I can attest to this truth. Healing is born when God’s love is actively brought to life. The encouraging support comes from family and friends, church and theater, and sometimes even work. All of these hands formed a chain to pull me out of the pit that is depression and continue to guide me toward a better way of living. The moments of listening, prayers, patience during the ups and downs of bipolar cycles, the lack of judgment when I am just plain ridiculous, the generosity when I am in need, and of course the precious times of laughter and joy…. these are gifts to be treasured until the end of time (and perhaps even beyond). I can see my past self, a person who lacked feeling and hope, from my current vantage point- that of a real girl, she-who-is-alive.

June 24, 2010

hidden treasures

One of the joys of the new situation is discovering the neighborhood. It seems that there are never-ending points of interest to find! Of course, part of this could be because I focus on one thing, while oblivious to another. For instance, because I’m usually so preoccupied with wherever it is that I’m going, I failed to notice the coin-operated car wash JUST AROUND the corner from our house. Seriously, it has taken me over two months to register its existence. Moreover, the only reason I recognized it was because I had to slow down to find the driveway to the little smog check place next to it.

However, I feel the reward is in the small-town feel of these locally-owned businesses. When I walked into the small waiting area for the smog check, I was greeted by a very handsome german shepherd. I heard a voice from the next room inviting me in, and then met the owner, a little old man eating his lunch- fresh veggies and some kind of casserole in a tupperware. While he checked my car, I played tug-of-war with the dog in the very simple waiting room- a couch, a small table with a variety of magazines (mostly “Lucky” and “Allure”…..?), and not a single thing hanging on the wall (in the waiting room, that is. In his office, there were pictures of family, and even more pictures of the dog).

Tonight, my friend Leah and I will be checking out another neighborhood gem- Shakespeare by the Sea. I’ve heard of people performing Shakespeare in parks, but recently discovered that they use the small stage in the park down the street that overlooks the ocean. And it’s in my budget (read: free). And with my next paycheck, I intend to check out the Friday farmer’s market down the street… and the local coffee shop….. and so on……

But for now I must return to children’s ministry tasks. In this week before summer semester begins, I have allowed myself to be a little relaxed in my schedule, but starting Monday I will have work, school, and even some writing to do… and it will only happen if I am disciplined. Oh, responsibility…. Can you imagine what my procrastinative younger self would say if she saw me now?

June 19, 2010


So I didn’t mean to take time off of blogging. Yet, it seemed strangely appropriate. It wasn’t like I didn’t have anything to say, but energies were directed elsewhere in the whirlwind of my life.

In the time I’ve been “away”, so much has happened. Since you likely follow my twitter/facebook (and if you don’t, you should ;) ), you know most of this already.

- We completed work and performances of “Risen”, and it continued to be the amazing experience it was in production.
- I moved to San Pedro with my friend, Kelly. We live in a groovy little apartment in a neat neighborhood near the harbor. I see the ocean every day, and couldn’t be happier.
- I finished my first semester back to school. My grades weren’t the “A’s” I desired, but considering that this semester held much transition, I accept that.
- My time at the Fish has ended, and Sunday will be my first day as the children’s ministry director at a local church.

Of course, a zillion moments, large and small, fill the three-month space since my last entry, but I kind of like that they're set apart and unrecorded. It almost makes this transition time a little bit sacred in its own way.