"Listen to the words that others can't speak; speak the words that others can't hear."

Thursday, August 18, 2011

And my heart turns violently inside of my chest...

I'm sitting here, on my father's recliner, forcing myself to write what's in my heart. The song I chose to play is "He Loves Us" by David Crowder Band. Finally, after a long long time, I am forcing myself to feel. Well, not really right this very minute, but earlier today. There's something about putting feelings into words and actually saying them that is extremely liberating.

"And Heaven meets Earth like an unforeseen kiss
And my heart turns violently inside of my chest
And I don't have time to maintain these regrets 
When I think about the way
Oh, He loves us, yeah, He loves us..."

Those are some powerful lyrics.... Talking to someone today, we were able to piece together how I've felt lately, and I didn't say anything but as she was speaking I was picturing exactly what I've been seeing in my head for so long but not admitting to myself. I don't know how to work through it all but it's good to know I'm not crazy for picturing that...

Picture a beach with white sand, steaming sun and perfectly clear water. There's is no one else at this beach but me. It's completely empty yet feels crowded. I see myself looking out into the beautiful water, it's so peaceful. In the distance, pretty far out into the ocean there is a wall. I see this wall and I used to think it was part of my weirdness, but judging by the tiny bit of psychology that I know, I can piece together what it means.. And I think it makes me more normal than anything else. On the other side of this wall I see everyone and everything and that's when I realize why I feel like it's crowded. They won't stop trying to climb over... And although I know my wall is sturdy, I'm afraid that something will break through it, and deep inside I know how I'd feel if that happened. It's a lot and it makes this beach feel packed.

This wall is put together by bricks of different colors. It took along time to put up. Each brick a different color, each color a different hurt, betrayal or experience in life. I've built this wall to be very strong and I haven't let people past it. The few that I have let through have, over time, become additions to the wall, making it sturdier, more durable. 

I broke through the wall a little bit today... Or at least chipped it. And it felt good, great actually. I can't say that it'll be something that'll happen every day, week, etc. ...but hopefully I can keep working on it because the only way I'll ever work through the pain is by breaking down this wall and just keeping a picket fence. I like picket fences, especially white ones. They are welcoming yet show a sense of protection. They say, "Come in, but know that if I see you jumping over my picket fence I will feel uncomfortable". If I had a picket fence I'd make sure the wood was splintering. (....or splinter causing..? Not sure how you'd say that!) I'd make sure it'd be painful to jump it. 

Sometimes I wish life had a fast forward button. No matter what, I know He loves us. I know I'm forgiven and I know I've granted forgiveness. The trouble is forgetting... That's always hard to do. 

Keep dreaming of tomorrow.


PS. I know He's also on the other side of that wall... and He's fighting all my demons, begging me to come through the wall and trust Him to shelter me. I have to swim through the pain to be able to get past it. The hard part is swimming and not drowning. 

"You know what you gotta do when life gets you down? Just keep swimming, Just keep swimming, Just keep swimming swimming swimming. What do we do we swim swim swim."
~Dory, Finding Nemo

**Now I have to work on the 'allowing myself to cry' part.**

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Mayor's Back-to-School Fair

     "Have I not wept for those in trouble? Has not my soul grieved for the poor?" 
Job 30:25

     I have never been thrown off by another person 'neediness' because to be quiet honest I have lived through most of it myself. When we first moved to Texas we experienced the late rent and "pre-eviction" notices, the debt collectors, cut off power and cell phones bills, etc. My parents have gone hungry 'in order to be able to feed the kids', and we know what it's like to have one or both parents unemployed. It's never easy, but we have felt loved through it all. 

     Today we volunteered at the Mayor's Back-to-School Fair in Dallas and it couldn't have been a more humbling experience. We got there at around 6:30 this morning and there was already hundreds if not thousands of families lined up to receive their free school supplies.

    There's only one catch to the fair... In order to get the free school supplies each student (or at least one person per backpack filled with supplies) has to go through several 'stations' before getting the supplies at the end. These stations include education, health and social services such as free dental cleaning, vision screenings (with free glasses if necessary), haircuts, immunizations, a book nook, Coca-Cola products, games and entertainment for the kids and other informative/interactive displays and activities.

     My brother and I were stationed in Line Control for the Wal~Mart Vision Screenings and blood tests; this basically meant we were going to be translators for everyone filling out consent forms for the kids, keep in mind the parents were encouraged and allowed to have everyone in the family tested including themselves.

    I can't tell you how humbling this experience was. There were times where I wasn't only a translator, but a scribe as well because the parents would tell me they simply didn't know how to write. The smile on the kids face when they found out they were "finally getting tested" was so heartbreaking and warming all at once! For the first two hours it seemed like everything was perfect, the families were being taken care of and everyone was happy, but once the first big wave came through, the mood and overall ambience changed drastically.

     Almost immediately I could tell when parents no longer wanted to be there instead had to be there. Keep in mind the only prerequisite that these families need to have is proof of income (or a Lonestar card, food stamps, etc.) and dallas residency, so it really isn't hard for people to get in. Right around nine parents started asking why they couldn't just get the free supplies and leave and if it was possible to do their own screening but not their kids. "I can take them to Children's if something happens to them", they would say. Do they not realize that even if they can do that in case of emergencies, they can't just take an uninsured child to the hospital for a regular physical? Do they not see the opportunity they were getting when being offered free eye glasses?! I was getting angry at these parents, but who am I to judge their parenting? I don't know what they've been through... Or at least that's what I kept telling myself.

     Not too long after that, I was helping a woman fill out the forms for her and her three children. The emotion that built up inside of me when she had to ask HER children their date of birth was so powerful and I was caught so off guard that I had to excuse myself because what would have come out amidst the tears would not have been pretty. What can lead a mother to be so neglectful of her children?! Sadly, she wasn't the only one. My heart broke to pieces when a boy of about four or five looked up with big eyes at his mother and said, "You don't know my own birthday, Mommy?" .....She replied by saying that there were too many of them. 

     That same woman signed a consent form for herself and one of her kids all the others were left waiting. I just don't even have words for how little of a person I think she is. She is a monster more than a human being. If checking all the kids takes too much time out her day, than maybe she should not get her eyes checked and let one of her meal tickets get it done.

     I better change the subject because I could go on forever about bad parenting.... All in all it was a wonderful day! The fair serves about 15,000 students each year and I'd say I was there for over 8,000 of those. I already can't wait for next year!!!

     On another note, I had a very real conversation today that left me feeling...pained? Since I used that word, I have to say it's a good bad kind of pain. It's the kind that's so real it's liberating, but at the same time so frightening you just don't know what to do or where to go.

     I think this is a step forward, or at least I hope. No promises. I've been feeling pretty empty inside lately, or simply not feeling at all; it's about time I feel something... I think this is something, for now at least.

More on this later..?

Peace and prayers.
<3 Bella

PS. "You can't run when you're holding suitcases..." Dara Maclean

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


"But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."
Isaiah 40:31

     Around here lately it seems like the brighter the sun shines the darker the world gets, and maybe it's the heat but the arguments come more and more often and they are less and less intense. Everyone's tired, and that's not ever a good thing.

     I'm praying for the right words tonight because I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea, but it's been said that when in doubt one should 'write what you know'. Well, what I know lately isn't anything worth writing about. What I know is painful; it's lies upon lies and hatred. I know that I don't know and I know that I'd give anything for stability. 

     There are three people that I adore that are suffering right now and although I don't know what is hurting two of them, I've been praying like crazy that whatever it is goes away. I've ran like hell and sat down begging God to take all their pain and transform it into something beautiful. I've prayed to take everything of their shoulders and put it on mine, but sometimes that's not a great idea. I know that too, I learned the hard way. 

     I know that meditation is a great way to free the spirit, but lately it's been feeling like a jail. I sit and think, open laptop to turn my emotions into words and all of a sudden, everything I've come up with gets sucked right back in only to be let out at the worst of times. 

     I've learned to be alone also. I've learned to look for God in the hardest of times instead of hoping He finds me. I've gone to church on days that aren't 'obligated', I've sat in an empty sanctuary fighting with my Maker, my insides screaming for His love. 

     In the silence I have found the answer to the questions that have been asked several times, "Isabella, why don't you ever go out with your friends like you used to? Why are you always at church? Why don't you ever just go out? What happened to so and so?" 

     Well, it just so happens that my friends have changed. The old friends are nothing like they used to be, and to be honest, I'd rather spend a night cuddled up in a blanket with a book seeing a world I'll never know but won't ever forget than going out and doing things I'll never remember. And since when did church become a bad thing? Since when is it not okay? The people I've met there have changed me, they love me for me and not anyone that I'm not. They share my morals and beliefs, they love God and see the beauty of being human. 

     I don't know where I was going with this post, but then again I never know. I've written several drafts and have given up on most. I was supposed to write a letter that I haven't written yet, and I think that might be what's keeping me from feeling. I don't want to feel anything right now, but I know that I need to feel it all.

     I know two things are certain: I wont give up and God is fighting. That's all we really need.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wHIUfEOnJc  This video keeps me going through it all!