On October 4, I received a notice from WordPress congratulating me on my two-year anniversary as a blogger on their site. My, what a lot of water has gone under the bridge in those two years. Much of it has been good. Much of it has been hard. But underneath it all have been the Everlasting Arms.
I am mindful of the fact that this would be the proverbial tree falling in the forest if it weren’t for my readers. (Is it really a blog if no one reads it?) So I want to say thank you for stopping by to read the muddled thoughts of a middle-aged lady in crisis. I am reminded of this song by Brandi Carlisle that states, “But these stories don’t mean anything when you’ve got no one to tell them to…” So thank you for letting me tell my stories to you.
As I look back over the years, I am grateful for the growth I have seen in myself. This month I bought a car for my daughter, and while I had plenty of help from my friends, I did it without a whole lot of panic and second-guessing. I also managed to get her piece of junk old car sold in a matter of 24 hours. It was just something that had to be done and I did it. I took care of the septic tank needing to be serviced. I got the air conditioner fixed. And all the time I marveled at the lack of tears and fears and panic. I have learned. I have learned to ask the right people for help. I have learned that I am able to make sound decisions. I have learned that the walls don’t crumble around me if the decision turns out to not be all that sound. Apparently this week’s lesson will be about winterizing a tractor, woo-hoo!
I have grown spiritually, as well. I have learned more about trusting in my Savior. I have learned tons about how to pray. I have learned to do what I can to make our lives function properly, and then to rest in the provision of God for the things that I can’t figure out. It is a discipline to work diligently while not resting on my own abilities to accomplish anything. As James so aptly says, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that” (James 4:13-15).
As for Strokeman, he continues to have debilitating pain in his abdomen. We have gone through various tests and found nothing of significance. I am learning that this is not all that uncommon. So we continue to use the pain medicine prescribed by his doctor along with various natural remedies. All this barely takes the edge off the pain. However, some of the natural remedies have given him a clearer mind. He has begun to have me pull engineering books off the shelf and find old files in the attic. He will spend a few minutes at mealtime going through one of these. It is good to see him doing some analytical thinking.
One of the underlying themes of the past few years has been the issue of finances. We are well taken care of due to the hard work history of my husband and a generous inheritance from his parents. But the truth of the matter is that we are spending money at a faster rate than we should, and we stand in danger of not having it last until we are done living. So I have gone through periods of searching for a way to bring in additional income while still fulfilling the role I have as wife and caregiver. I had settled into a pattern of heading in a potential employment direction until it came to a standstill, and then renewing my trust in the Provider of all things. I told my daughter, Faith the other day, “You just need to follow a lead until it peters out, and then you just trust that God will take care of you until the next opportunity arises.” This has been my journey.
The last time the urgency for money seemed to be at a high, I read most of a book called, What Color is Your Parachute. This book is designed to help you work toward getting a job that will best fit your personal gifts. One of the exercises was to write down your strengths and interests. I wrote down that I liked to speak in public, I like to write, and I like being in a position to help people. The logical progression in my mind was that this sounded like a teacher. But I hated the thought of assignments and grading homework. Plus, my life really does not lend itself to a job that requires me to be away from home for large chunks of time every day. I investigated a job at a nearby hospital for a part-time, PRN social worker, which was my profession a very long time ago. But when I started filling out the online application, I got stumped at the part where the job history only goes back 10 years. It has been 24 years since my certification lapsed (and how does one even manage to get that certification reinstated?) And so, I put it all to rest and set my face towards the needs at home.
At this point the needs at home had escalated with the return of my daughter, sick and weak and unable to care for her self. Most of the tools we used to get her back on her feet were Young Living essential oils and supplements. While my main interest in using them was to build the health of my daughter, I found that they also helped this tired momma manage to care for two needy people at once without totally going insane or dying from exhaustion. In fact, you may find this hard to believe, but I unintentionally weaned myself off of coffee using their Ningxia Red.
When I signed up to buy Young Living products wholesale, I told my sponsor that I did not want to be pressured into doing anything other than using the products for my own family. She promised to never try to push me to do anything I didn’t want to do, and she has kept that promise. But that membership gained me entrance to a private Facebook group where questions could be asked and testimonials could be shared. I began to read everything on that site. And I began to go to the classes that were offered to its members. And then I noticed that when people would ask questions, I knew the answers. I enjoyed being able to help others benefit from my knowledge, not only about YL products, but also about healthy living in general.
Then in August my financial planner reminded me that I was burning through the money too quickly and I started down the, “how can I bring in some money?” path. And it hit me. Here in front of me is an opportunity to speak in public about something I truly love and believe in, write about something I love and believe in, and help others (and no assignments or homework to grade!). The best part about it is that there is no risk, because this is something I am going to use whether I help anyone else or not. And so I am teaching my first Introduction to Essential Oils class at my house on October 18, at 5:00pm. I am hopeful that this might be a way of supplementing our income from home.
If you live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and would like to know more about this adventure I am on, you are welcome to come that night. If you want more information, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you do not live in this area and would like to know more, please feel free to contact me. This type of business knows no boundaries in terms of state and is even available in several countries.
If you have no interest at all in essential oils and could care less about learning more, would you please pray for me? This seems like a really good option for me, but I know I will need to work hard to make it more than just a hobby. Pray that God will give me wisdom and patience. Pray that He will help me to keep my priorities straight.
One of the hardest things about this decision has to do with my fear that it will make me even less consistent with my blogging. I am not so worried that you need me, as that I need you. The head of my YL team used to be a blogger, but has put that aside temporarily to concentrate on her growing business, and growing family. I hope that I can do both. There are some things I have wanted to write about in the realm of health, environment, etc., that may find their way onto a page in relation to my use of oils. However, I would probably do that in a separate blog. I don’t want this venue to become a perpetual advertisement. It has a different purpose.
To summarize (as Strokeman used to say), I want to thank you, dear readers for your love and support over the last two years. You have been a source of much joy for me. I hope we have many more years together to encourage each other to love and good deeds. I thank you for your prayers and ask that continue to pray for me as I seek to serve my family with a heart toward ever becoming more like my Savior.