Numb with Whatnot

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I am very glad for what changes have happened in our lives since we’ve moved to Chattanooga. But today, right now, that joy has a big dark cloud over it. It’s paralyzing me from being able to function and think normal thoughts like, “Man what a beautiful day it is today” or “Yeah! I sold another pod!” All I feel is this overwhelming numbness that I have been so foolish, so irresponsible. And my future is full of questions. I can’t look past the goodness, but the faults of mine make me feel like I’ve dug a hole that I can’t crawl out of. I am saddened that I am scraping as much work as I can and still be a Mama that takes care of her kids. Joel and I have felt run over by our bills. The amount of money we have sunk into our Marietta house is just unmovable. It doesn’t matter how many birds I sell, the money is already spent and I think about taking Josiah out of his $35 a month Pre-K because minimum payments are tight these days. I cringe when I get the mail. I check my email obsessively for any distraction or the hope of an art sale. There is so many projects that have been put on my plate, so many opportunities that I have to better the world, but oh Lord, when, when will we see the light. I have this sick anger in my stomach because BCBST pays Joel peanuts!!! Nothing makes me more angry than my husband not being appreciated for what he can do. I mean, it’s our choice to go with BCBST, and the benefits are very very good, but the weeks and weeks of painful boring training is driving me crazy and I’m not even the one going through it. Joel is a trooper, but he has nothing but mediocre things to say about his trainers. My husband is so talented, so charming, he can bring people together and he has the great ability to see the most efficient and people friendly ways to do things. When, when Oh Lord will my husband find that favor? I have caught yet another scratchy throat bug, an I’m beginning to think that its just the stress that sickens me again and again. Our new house is such a blessing but I am full of fear. Home ownership is hard, my advice to anyone buying their first home is to approach it with great great awareness. The root of the word “mortgage” is death.
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Needless to say I am feeling very humbled and a little panicked. All the things I have learned about money are coming to a head and I feel so weakened by it all. I know lots of people don’t share their deep dark secrets on their blogs and I’m sure that I will regret posting these thoughts, but I can’t just NOT talk about this. It’s affecting everything around me these days. I pray that I have the patience to get up at 3am for my daughter, work til midnight on art (birds at least), have gentle conversation with my husband (who is so strong), and have patience to hear others worries and thoughts. I pray to have the clarity to teach my two students and have lesson plans for them, and to be a team player while working at AVA and not be a distracted putz. And I want to apologize in advance if you happen to talk to me an I seem distant, it’s not you, it’s my very lame coping mechanism.
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I need the Holy Spirit to wash over me and relieve my doubts. I need Him to remind me that I will always be taken care of. That life is not ending and He will give me great things. That in the midst of all this debt I have had more art sell and more offers for teaching and portraits than I ever thought possible. I feel I am that pilgrim with a huge bundle on my back (and holding little babies’ hands) as I walk a very steep trail. The trail is rough because of my making, but the trail is not what I created. God has set this trail in my life path to show me He is good, and strong, and that He is a Provider. He wants me to let go of the jewels and fine things and set my eyes on the necessities. Necessities like worship, partnership, parenthood, relationships (new and old), study, rest, and oddly enough every form of creativity. For one is not just creative because they can sew, paint, knit, sketch, or take awesome pictures. You are truly creative when all you think you need is far away and your God given creativity kicks in to make your every day joyful. Thanks for reading through this journey. I feel your love,
Kate

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10 thoughts on “Numb with Whatnot

  1. Hey,
    I’m glad you’ve had the guts to post this. We’ve been going through crap, and I just haven’t been able to bring myself to post. When there are days of no-posting in a row, it’s what I Would’ve Said.
    I don’t know what to say. I feel numb, too. Tired of fighting. Tired of failing. Hey, at least we qualified for welfare. That helps: my disabled child pays rent and groceries.
    Keep pressing on to Heaven!

  2. ((hugs)) and prayers from PA.
    I know the woes of financial burden and wondering how we pay for everything AND keep our heads above water… not to mention as the kids get older it gets a little harder when they see all the “stuff” their friends have and it’s heartbreaking to tell them we don’t have the extra money for a vacation to DisneyWorld or designer sneakers.
    I always had this vision of what being a “grown-up” would look like. It turns out that vision is the “good times” when everything is going well, there’s extra money, everyone feels fulfilled, etc. The thing I wasn’t prepared for was the valley.
    Your imagery shows you on the right path. Burdened but eyes heavenward and on the upward path. You will make it.

  3. We know that sometimes what we want to do and what we need to do are different directions and that with responsibility comes regrets. Thank you for your words of encouragment. (hey my ten year old was up last night barfin’. she’s o.k.)

  4. Thanks for being real Katie. I don’t think you should regret that because you get it off your chest and those of us who are also struggling don’t feel so alone. I like looking through the crafty blogs that always look and sound perfect sometimes. But they also make me feel kind of desperate, like I can never be that kind of Mother. I have to remind myself that they’re not posting the bad days. I like your honesty. We all have a lot to learn from each other.

  5. Our pastor, Tri, was preaching a few weeks ago on how Jesus called the disciples. I was struck for the first time by the complete irresponsibility of the disciples. They freakin’ physically dropped all their gear and physically followed the guy with nowhere to lay his head. I’ve been thinking a lot about my lack of faith and how that robs me of healing and gifts God wants to bestow. In thinking this you know my mind’s turned over and over to you & Joel. Y’all have been such examples of faith for me not b/c you’re perfect but b/c you’re willing to step blindly out on that limb knowing God really is all-powerful and miraculously active daily in our lives. I pray for you daily. May your faith be renewed and may you perceive again that new thing He is doing. I love you, Katie.

  6. Our pastor, Tri, was preaching a few weeks ago on how Jesus called the disciples. I was struck for the first time by the complete irresponsibility of the disciples. They freakin’ physically dropped all their gear and physically followed the guy with nowhere to lay his head. I’ve been thinking a lot about my lack of faith and how that robs me of healing and gifts God wants to bestow. In thinking this you know my mind’s turned over and over to you & Joel. Y’all have been such examples of faith for me not b/c you’re perfect but b/c you’re willing to step blindly out on that limb knowing God really is all-powerful and miraculously active daily in our lives. I pray for you daily. May your faith be renewed and may you perceive again that new thing He is doing. I love you, Katie.

  7. It’s no wonder why so many divorces are based on money. Where we spend our money tells alot about our value systems. Fortunately you two have the same value system.
    Luke 14:28-30 speaks some about financial and spiritual planning. There is God calling us to do bold things and act on faith, but there is also counting the cost of that.
    [28] “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? [29] For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, [30] saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’
    Financial woes do not go away with more money. Lynn and I are learning that quickly. They only go away when we learn to tell our money what to do, not let our money tell us what to do. You know we’ve done the cash envelope budget for a while and that has helped control our impulse buying some. But that has not gone so well since our income has gone up and we have felt financially freer. But the truth is that we are not any more free than when we were poor. We don’t have control over where our money goes because of our impulses and lack of real financial planning. We are finally learning how to tell our money what to do thanks to a class we are taking at the Vineyard-Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace, as Joy mentioned in her comment. A zero balance budget is the key-even with an artist’s sporadic income. It’ll take 3-4 months for us to get the hang of it, but already there is reality check and renewal planning on how to spend our money and not let it spend us.
    Anyways, you are not alone in stress and encouragement. We love you guys.

  8. It’s no wonder why so many divorces are based on money. Where we spend our money tells alot about our value systems. Fortunately you two have the same value system.
    Luke 14:28-30 speaks some about financial and spiritual planning. There is God calling us to do bold things and act on faith, but there is also counting the cost of that.
    [28] “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? [29] For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, [30] saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’
    Financial woes do not go away with more money. Lynn and I are learning that quickly. They only go away when we learn to tell our money what to do, not let our money tell us what to do. You know we’ve done the cash envelope budget for a while and that has helped control our impulse buying some. But that has not gone so well since our income has gone up and we have felt financially freer. But the truth is that we are not any more free than when we were poor. We don’t have control over where our money goes because of our impulses and lack of real financial planning. We are finally learning how to tell our money what to do thanks to a class we are taking at the Vineyard-Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace, as Joy mentioned in her comment. A zero balance budget is the key-even with an artist’s sporadic income. It’ll take 3-4 months for us to get the hang of it, but already there is reality check and renewal planning on how to spend our money and not let it spend us.
    Anyways, you are not alone in stress and encouragement. We love you guys.

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