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I Said No and My Potentially Crappy Day is Now a Giant Hellllll Yes (And more on how trusting God is everything or He is nothing)

https://unsplash.com/@vidarnm

This post is dedicated to Tessa who left me such a sweet comment on my last post. Made my day. Thank you, darlin’.

Two days ago I had one of the worst substitute teaching experiences of my life.

I was told by my sponsor, “You don’t trust God. In fact, based on how you keep walking in the opposite direction of your gifting I believe the real truth is ‘You Hate God.'”

If I didn’t feel terrible before I called her I did when I hung up.

I didn’t feel much better the next morning as I swirled in shame for canceling a sub assignment I had previously accepted. (Truth bomb: I’m way less driven by my emotions now that I’m sober, but I have not yet reached enlightenment.)

Instead of taking contrary action and help other people to take the focus off myself (as we program people are encouraged to do because it works) I moaned to Tuskany about my horrific road blocks. I complained about how I couldn’t sleep the previous night due to my rapid heart beats of fear and trying to figure it all out. I complained about how I’m terrified of being at odds with Rex about finances, that I think maybe having a birthday party is a terrible idea and that perhaps I’m never going to find my purpose in life after all other than to find a magic genie at one of my thrift stores who agrees the only thing I need to do to be happy is drink coffee, inhale carbs and watch the final season of Glee.

Sorry you all missed the Pity Party. I’ll send you an advanced invitation for next one.

But that fiesta won’t be today because… the rest of my day turned out to be Duckin’ Awesome!

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Why the quick emotional turn around? Well, it’s pretty simple. I trusted God. I decided I didn’t need to do everything perfectly. I didn’t need to decide that yesterday was the day to go into a downward-spiraled depression over my floors that need re-varnishing, my walls that need repainting or the lack of funds in my account for Disney passes and a trip with my kids to this super cool Finland hotel that would make Elsa weep with jealousy.

Image of The Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort in Saariselkä, Finland taken from
https://worldinsidepictures.com/8-spectacular-ice-hotels-around-the-world-that-you-must-visit/

I could ask God to remove my fear of not being a good enough parent, a good enough daughter, a good enough worker and a good enough friend.

I could trust that God has me subbing because I’m growing my soul right now, if not my bank account, but that I don’t have to do it every single day anymore.

I could trust that in turning down a 20-day guaranteed assignment in an emotionally disturbed classroom might cost me $1000 (to cover my kids’ driving lessons) but there is no hourly rate on my own personal mental health.

With all this ridiculous amount of surrender and trust out the way (I’m super greedy with God’s love) I was able to BE loved rather than BE God (as I’m wont to do) and things just lit up like a slot machine for the rest of the day. I mean, God really showed off.

With that psycho-analysis/dark night of the soul/mental loop to loop THANK GOD I LANDED IN PEACE epiphany out of the way I was able to write. I could trust that God did not give me all sorts of words and ideas only to say, “Just kidding. Go and be miserable at a sub job for the rest of your existence.”

For me, after almost 24 hours of hell, that was exciting news! And it still feels amazing.

And… here’s best part of my current pink cloud awakening – and the reason for this post: When I woke up at 530am to the sound of the school system calling me for a job, I was able to listen with confidence in my heart, not pounding fear, thanks to this news.

When I heard they wanted me to teach music in a prison like middle school where the kids ditch my classroom would rather play their phones than a tuba, I did something I’ve never done before.

I said “No.”

God is everything or he is nothing.

I put my head back on the pillow with confidence that something better would come along.

Five minutes later I got a call to teach a super chill high school. “Yes Please!” I drove to work with joy – yes, joy – and even got a great space in the parking lot.

Similar to my experience at this school last week, I have done very little teaching. All classes have either been taught by other math teachers (and let’s get real, I wouldn’t know the quadratic formula if it pinched my white butt on Main Street) or they have been populated with only 7 students. My last period of the day? I’ll have 5.

I trusted God and I got rewarded. I’m starting to get this.

God is everything or he is nothing.

In closing, I chose the picture at the top of this post because I often feel like that house: I like adventure, but I want to stay warm and cozy on the inside. I want to dream my own dreams while people braver than me go out into the cold winter air and fight wolves.

But right before posting this blog a friend from the program wrote me. And, similar to my serendipities of late, her message had a different spin.

The Spiritual Takeaway?

When we can trust ourselves, and set boundaries (though difficult at first) we can experience so much more excitement than just playing it safe. And readers, we can do this with the God of our understanding.

God is everything or he is nothing.

And One More Takeaway for Good Measure

Even the nicest high school students don’t say “thank you” when they leave your classroom. They also think it’s okay to leave free cafeteria food on their desks and check their phones rather than do their math work. As a teacher, this must be frustrating. But for this writer, who is also a sub so IT’S NOT MY PROBLEM I’m learning that acceptance is the answer to all my problems today.

Throw in saying “No” to crap sub jobs and thermos of hot dark decaf and you can have yourself a pretty damn good day.

Happy weekend! I’ve sooooo enjoyed many of your blogs – old friends and new ones – and I’ll catch up with you Monday.

My book is available on Amazon. (Note: It’s a special ed journey… your kid doesn’t need to have Tourettes to relate!) Follow me on Twitter@AndreaFrazerWrites or on Facebook. )

faith, meditation, spirituality, Uncategorized

I Meditated. I Didn’t Kill Anyone or Myself.

I was much calmer today thanks to meditation. Because of my time spent in quiet stillness, first thing in the morning, my whole day passed without me being either suicidal or homicidal. #yayformeandmyfamily

All sarcasm aside, I’ve never wanted to kill anyone or myself, but when I’m wound really tight, I’m killing the joy in life. Starting my day with some still breathing, readings and prayer, helped me move from one task to the next with way more ease than yesterday.

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God Calling is the devotional I read. I love it because it’s just one scripture verse per page per day. Sometimes there is an old hymn verse thrown in for good measure.

I also read this every day.

ssss

It talks about acceptance. For this control freak, acceptance is everything. If I think I am running the show, I am basically saying that I know better than God. I do not know better than God. We are all God’s kids. Reading this reminds me to keep my trap shut and trust that if someone wants my opinion they will ask. (That concept, my friends, has been the absolute hardest thing for me to change. Lucky for this lady, when I pray and meditate each day, God does it for me.)

“Meditation Is Not For Me!”

One of my readers, The Bookworm, commented, “I’m sure meditating is good for the soul. I’ve never been able to do it myself, I feel like I have too much nervous energy but for me, it’s running. That’s my form of meditation.”

I say whatever you need to do to not be a lunatic you do that!

As I have mentioned before, I have no real structure or expectations to my meditation routine. I don’t sit up. I drink coffee. And the closest I’ve ever been to Nirvana is to be interrupted by an LAUSD automated system telling me my sub job for the day has been canceled and I can crawl back in the covers with the crazy pitbull mix and sleep in.

I will add that while intention in life means nothing without action to back it up, intention in meditation is different. For me, it simply means, “I don’t have all the answers. Here is some time to get still because God does. Period.”

ssss

Happily Ticked Off Tip #23: Meditation doesn’t have to involve an ashram and a yogi. It can be any time you set aside to allow someone other than you to break through your ego and run the show so you don’t have to. PS: Ego stands for “Edging God Out.” That’s good, huh?

My book is available on Amazon. (Note: It’s a special ed journey… your kid doesn’t need to have Tourettes to relate!) Follow me on Twitter@AndreaFrazerWrites or on Facebook. 

books

Uncategorized

You’re a Good Egg Mama, And That’s No Yolk

Okay, readers, all five of you that read here, hear this: I am NOT going to be doing my whole Deceptively Delicious approach to Taurine. Why? Because I’m not Jessica Seinfeld, Taurine is not veggies, and BECAUSE THAT’S INSANE.

Let’s get real: My kid is going to have enough to deal with in Junior High without his mother sneaking around him like the Pink Panther sprinkling amino acids in his hash browns.

Him: What’s this white stuff, Mama?

Me: Fairy, dust, kid. Gluten free fuck-it-all pixie fluff. Wait ’til you see how I hide it in your syrup!

I came to the above conclusion today, while standing in line with my husband at Costco. It was our big lunch out where we get to spend $1.82 each on a hot dog and soda. Only it had been such a horrible day of guilt for me, combined with some bad news from work and some friend drama, that I decided to ditch the dog for both the pizza combo slice AND the vanilla chocolate swirl. (I know, I’m a rebel.)

Standing in line, I had this awful sense of impending doom. Not guilt so much as ominous storm cloud harbingers of doom. What’s that stinky feeling called again? Oh yeah, a CONSCIENCE. And it goes something like this: “You can’t drug your child behind his back, dork.” My husband agreed. He loves our son as much as I do. We show it differently and I happen to show it better but in the end, we arrive at the same conclusion. We want the best for him always.

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I mean, what if my little scheme worked? What if the tics went away, but he took off for college, and suddenly they came back and he had no idea why. That would be awkward.

Me: “Oh, sweetie, those duck quacks are just cause you miss me. Come on home. I’ll serve you up some nice hash browns.”

What if there was a terrible reaction and he ended up in E.R. and I had to come clean with my husband. “Oh, that third testicle? It’s just from giving him Taurine. I didn’t tell you because I didn’t want you to be the voice of reason on my mad dash toward nutty thinking.”

No, the CRAZY making had to stop.

I don’t know about you, but I find that my most wonky thinking happens when my self-will is in direct opposition with God’s will. I want what I want, rather than accept what is. I don’t know why God allows tics, or why I can’t seem to drink one glass of red wine without wanting to down three glasses and pretend I’m sexier than a Cosmo model at Caesar’s palace when I’m really just alone on my couch, reading Outlander, wanting to have an affair with a fictional character.

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But the fact is, it’s not a good plan for me to drink – at least not now in my life. And, if I’m going to be honest about what I shouldn’t be ingesting, it’s likely not really a great idea about being dishonest about what my kid is ingesting.

hto blog

Before Costco today I was at Trader Joe’s… avoiding writing… scarfing samples… when the above egg container caught my attention. I had never noticed it before, so why it caught my eye today with my brain spinning more than the stories I tell Stink about amino acids, it just felt safe. “Place Broken Eggs Here” it read. There was no lying. No manipulation. Notice it didn’t read, “Nothing wrong here! Go on with your untarnished egg self!”

No, not only was it admitting to the world that sometimes stuff get cracked, it was offering a safe spot for them to land.

I find that safe place to be here at Happily Ticked Off. I find it with my book (that is truly almost done – third rewrite, folks.) I find it with my girlfriends and meetings and church and my kids and lately, with my spouse. We are really communicating beautifully and it’s lovely.

I know that I’m not always a perfect egg, but I’m loved even with my flaws. And that’s how I want my kids to feel. I want them to know that they have a safe container in their mama to rest. No perfection required.

Thanks for being here for me, people. I know this tics thing isn’t always easy, but I challenge every one of you, like I challenge myself, to remember the intention behind why we do what we do. Are we managing situations for our kids or for us? Sometimes we just don’t know. In my case today I knew it was management for me, because when I decided to put an end to The Sneaky Supplement Tour, 2015 I felt peace.

Plus I spoke to my sponsor. I believe her exact words when I told her about my grand plans were, “That’s crazy.”

Until next time,

May God grant you the serenity to accept the tics you cannot change, change the tics you can, and have the wisdom to know the difference.