Monday, October 31, 2005

Scared Spitless

In a little less than three hours Trunk & Treat will begin! I am excited, but I am also very anxious! I wish I had a seroquel...haven't wanted one of those in a very long time! :)

Please, God...let this go well for our neighborhood! Please let them see this as it is...a way for us to be involved in our neighborhood and let them know we care! And selfishly...please don't let me fall flat on my face!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Quick Post

I'll say more later...but my birthday royally had much in common with a vacuum cleaner.

Mel remembered, another friend remembered and sent me a really funny e-card...but no one at church remembered and I got to top off my birthday with my mom singing happy b-day to herself as I got my cake. Her birthday is in April.

I feel like I ate a giant grease ball because I didn't want pizza (see post below) and it's just like a glob of fat in my stomach.

I have not had a good birthday since 2000. Well...2002 cuz Billy sent me a rose plant and that was the highlight of that year...but I wish I could erase either me or the date off the calendar.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Perspective...I Am a Spoiled Brat!

I should be working on Trunk & Treat stuff...But I can't get yesterday's session out of my head.

It is very interesting how Rob and I view stuff. I also know that he is right and I am wrong and it is going to take some time to get my brain straightened out. I told him that my reactions to things are in a "default" mode. That at the first sign of feeling a "negative" emotion that my default action is to want to cut to get rid of it or express it that way. He then told me I can count on that happening for a long time, but that it will subside.

After everything with my birthday and telling him about it...I told him I sound like a spoiled brat who isn't getting her way. Okay, first I told him that I don't know why I bother to use my voice because my family refuses to hear it and what I say doesn't matter. But, as we continued to talk, I told him I felt I was sounding like a spoiled brat. He assured me I was not and that not being heard is a disappointing thing.

We also talked about my "default mode." I told him that I can't be afraid to feel "bad stuff" just because I want to cut when that happens. That's when he said it is important for us process this stuff so I won't want to cut.

Then I went to a movie. I went to see "Good Night and Good Luck." LOVED it!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

My Family Drives Me NUTS!!!!

My birthday is coming up this week. I'd rather skip it because it's not that big a deal and have no one to celebrate with anyway. family has their own ideas. I made it perfectly clear to my mother I do not want nor will I eat pizza. We did that for my grandfather and once in a month is good for me. It is still a hard food to eat and I have to be ready for it. The last time (before my grandpa's b-day) I had it was July. Now why they all get to choose what they want and/or where they go and I don't is beyond me. But, today I was told that was what they want so that is what we're doing.

Anyone want to adopt me this weekend?

Friday, October 21, 2005

Milestone II

Today it has been one year since the last time I self-harmed...basically, the last time I cut because that has always been my method of self harming. As I walked out of Rob's office yesterday, I took a deep breath and thought about how this year's session (meaning from the session a year ago) was so different from what happened last year. Last year I was called defiant and Rob was really, really, really mad because I had been cutting for a week and didn't tell him. It almost cost me a wonderful therapist. It took him three weeks to decide to not put me on any type of contract and at the time I totally disagreed with him. I wanted that "threat" hanging over me. He said he didn't want the cutting to stop because of a contract. Rob said that one day I will walk out those doors and not come back and that means no more contract. That could mean I could go back to cutting. I told him by the time that happens I shouldn't NEED the contract anymore...but he said no. I guess I thought it would bring me a weird sort of safety...but I think I'm glad he never did it.

I broke two food rules this week. I will not eat the myriad of goodies that often come into our office. I generally have no problems with it and there is a long list of "consequences" that normally occur if I break food rules. Tuesday was Nancy's 81st b-day and we had coffee and a pastry type goodie. I didn't say no. My anxiety level went through the roof the whole time...but I did it and obviously didn't die.

The second rule was the next day. My Elder for Children's/Youth Ministry and I went to look at Bibles for the 4th graders. We chose one and got them. Cindy offered to take me to lunch so we went to Chili's. I have a general rule that when I am out like that, if what I order comes with fries, I get veggies instead of fries. Part of it is absolutely ED stuff...but I also LOVE broccoli! Anyway, I let it slide. This was a bad thing because I don't eat a lot of fat on a normal basis and the fries must have had more than I eat in a month because I was feeling really sick the rest of the day. But again, breaking the rule didn't kill me.

I have homework for the weekend. Rob rarely gives me homework...but he did. I am supposed to figure out why I feel anxious (and for someone who truly does not have a full range of emotions at the moment...this is HUGE...that I feel that and let myself do it) when I eat around other people. I hate it. I hate it at camp, I hate it at the office (Christmas lunch is TORTURE for me) and I even had a hard time when our team went out at NYWC. I know it's my issue and that I am just very self-conscious and I just need to allow myself to relax and enjoy the people and not sit there and try to calculate the calories of everything I put in my mouth.

As Rob and I were talking my the anxiety and how I dealt with breaking the rules (waiting hours and hours before allowing myself to eat again), he asked me if I could still cut over all of it. In the past, if I didn't purge I would cut long as I was physically punished I didn't care how. I think I surprised us both when I told him that no, I didn't think so. This coming from the person who could cut over something that happened WEEKS ago, let alone just a few days. So...progress.

As good as all this is...there is still a lot of work as far as emotions go as well as a few other issues. We both recognize that some of this milestone "stuff" has been pure will power from me and not always finding healthy coping mechanisms. I know I have the fear that as we delve into me allowing myself to FULLY experience anger, sadness and other not-so-fun emotions that I'll go back to a behavior. So, it will be a balance and possibly a lot of calls to Rob!

But, as I see some scars become fainter and others disappear is great incentive to NOT indulge myself in the familiar.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Young Life Capernaum Project has its national office here at our church. They rent office space from us and are now building their own office building/meeting space. This means they had to dismantle our playground (see the above pix) while they construct the building. It also means thaty rather than simply removing our equipment and storing pretty much has been destroyed. The upshot? We get a new playground...or at least part of one. I need to call the Project Manager and find out what they will do to rectify the situation!

I am waiting for one more catalog, but I have an idea to bring to my team. I'd like a small section for the 2-5 year old age range and then a larger structure for the K-5th graders. We'll see what happens!

Monday, October 17, 2005

Trunk & Treat II

I worry, I get a little miffed and then, as usual, people at church come through. Only two weeks before Halloween...but they came through! I just wish we didn't work on "WPC Time" for EVERYTHING!

The goal was 10 cars...that would represent 10 additional "houses," in our neighborhood...just all compacted into a smaller space! I made one last announcement after church and I think I have all 10...woo hoo!

Now I need to find judges. My mom is going to to do it and I am going to turn her car into a San Jose Shark! I think I am going to wear my Dorothy costume and decorate my car "Wizard of OZ" and make my trunk the Emerald City. I need to do publicity this week and work out the logistics. I am just happy it is going to be a GO!

Friday, October 14, 2005

"How Great is Our God"

I am sitting in the Nursery/Toddler Room having just done Major Cleaning Part II. As far as I know the rat still has not been caught, but I still had to prep. the other changing room and go on another toss the junk out spree! I ditched the old VCR (which I admit I should have done ages ago), dusted everything, cleaned everything, went through and tossed a bunch of stuff. We have no sort of pre-school so all this stuff in here does not need to be in here.

So, I am taking a short break and listening to some Tomlin. "How Great is Our God" comes on and I just pause and smile. In Sacramento I was taking Sue Thomas back to the Green Room so she could get settled before she spoke and to get her product table set up and Shane & Shane were on stage doing their sound check. They were singing the song and it was loud enough (and Sue being deaf...couldn't hear my awful voice) so I was singing when I passed another volunteer also singing and we just high fived each other as we passed each other doing our jobs. Not a big deal...but just one of those moments that were really cool.

I finally went to the Youth Worker network in our area and it was a three hour meeting...but a good one. It was awesome to hear this group be so Kingdom minded and not territorial. I'm basically going to take back info to Melia and the Maxwells...but I want to help where I can. As I said after NYWC I know where God is taking me in terms of youth ministry right now...just not sure how it will play out.

More than anything I would love to apply for the position at YS...but I know that's not in the cards right now. But I look at it each day and sigh...

My small group starts back up and I am excited about it! I have missed it a lot!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

One Down...

From the "OC Register:"

"Then again, they will be at the disadvantage of having the opportunity to sleep as much as they wanted Tuesday night. They won two in a row on scant and interrupted sleep. Both Orlando Cabrera and Rodriguez said they forgot to pack clothes in the time crunch at home Monday.

"I was home for like eight hours and everything was dirty," Rodriguez said.

The Angels were the first team in baseball postseason history to play three consecutive games in three cities."

Amazing. I won't be surprised if they drop tonight's game because all that sleep is sure to be somewhat of a letdown after the last few days! Last night I shut the front door so should any neighbors be outside they would not hear me shouting.

I am not sure when I became such a sports fan. Growing up, I hated football (though I would watch the Super Bowl) and wasn't all that fond of baseball. But, when I was in college I had a roomie who was a HUGE Seahawks fan (being from Renton, WA) and it was learn to like it or find something else to do Sundays.

When I was working in Day Care/Day Camps I found just a little sports knowledge went a long way with the boys. So, I started reading the Sports pages, going to Angel games and my inner sports fan came out!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

RATS! our Nursery. The used sticky rat traps...the rat didn't stick. Why do we have them??? Due to contsruction going on next door. The only good thing coming out of it is they had to demolish our playground for the time being and will replace it all! "I" get "my" new playground! God rocks! I also get to work with my vision team on knocking out walls and really redoing the Nursery! I am excited about that as we are having a kid explosion!


NYWC is over (for me) and for the second week it is back to the "grind." Actually, Sunday was a lot of fun. I helped on of my teachers with her class and I got to see what I pretty much already knew...Sara rocks! And, I got to see the 4th and 5th graders make part of a "movie trailer" about Isaiah and his prophesies regarding Jesus.

But, this also means that "play time" with Rob is over. This is not a bad thing...but I also know it's not an easy thing. All weekend I knew he was going to ask me to pick and area/issue and we'd start (again) there. The first thing I told him was that I knew he was going to say that and that I had been thinking about it. The problem was...I had no answer. So, I paused and thought about it and other than the lyrics of Chris Tomlin's "Unfailing Love" going through my head...the word "emotions" came up.

After almost three years of working with Rob it didn't totally surprise me to hear him say that was what he was also thinking. So this is the area we are going to dwell on and live with and struggle with, etc.

Here's the deal. Most of the time I have no clue what I am feeling. On top of that, I am afraid of feeling "negative" (I put that in quotes because emotions are neither good nor bad...they just are) emotions because I am afraid of losing control. In fact, a good 90% of the time I know what I "should" feel and so I react accordingly. I can and do feel something for another person. I can watch "Three Wishes," "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," or lately the news and tear up. I look at anything that could be painful for ME and I'm clueless.

We talked about the fact I am just days from being 13 months purge free and 10 days from being one year self-harm free. We also talked about how I have done a good job of cutting off my emotions at the first twinge of feeling anything because I don't want that to set me off. Rob thinks that is why I think I could turn back to the behaviors so easily...because I could get overwhelmed by feelings because I don't allow myself to feel them/deal with them.

Then I changed the subject to the 49er game. Okay, it was when we had about 5 minutes left and he laughed...but I guess I shouldn't have done that. So, I am to ponder all of this between now and Thursday and we'll jump in!


Monday, October 10, 2005

They WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Yankess go home (darn....hehehehehe) and the Angels go on to Chicago for Game One! I am soooo excited! I also realize I have no short sleeved Angel clothing...I may need to rectify that! Since moving away, both games I have been to have needed me to buy long sleeved clothing.

I was a little afraid of what might happen when they took Colon out...but he hasn't been my favorite pitcher this season anyway. I really wish the game was pushed back one day because of the rainout in NY...but Byrd will be fairly fresh and I am sure there will be some rest on the plane...not a lot...but hopefully enough.

It is times like this where I really miss OC...but by the same token I also know that this is where God wants me. So, for now I will have to be content watching this all from afar!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Most of the Gane

I put this up here because I want you to see and pray for the aweome people I worked with at NYWC. This is some of the staff (rats) and one beached whale...but I'll let that go for this time only!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Two Down...

You can take the girl out of the "OC," but you can't take the "OC" out of the girl! One more game! One more game and they move on! I am sooooo excited and hate that I am here instead of there. Okay, they are playing in NY and even if I still lived in Orange County I wouldn't be ging to a game...but there would be the ESPN Zone!

I told Rob yesterday I was glad the Angels had clinched before NYWC started so I could keep track. I think if it had been a game or so later, I might not have known until I finally looked at Sunday.

I would love to see then back in the Series this year! No Yankees! I also want them to play against a team other than San Diego!!!

More NYWC Pix

I wish I had a lot more pix...but I really didn't have time. I am wearing my T-shirt from PDCM this morning and as I was thinking about it on my way to the church, a thought came to me. PDCM gave me confidence in what I am doing in my job as Director of Children's Ministry. Even with all the summer trauma drama...I knew that what we are doing here is right and on the right track for us at this time. The drama just helped me flesh it out better and helped me see that this is truly where God wants me right now.

Even though I caught only bits and pieces of NYWC the whole experience helped to show me who I am as a child of God. I haven't had a chance to process it out much more than that and express exactly what I mean...but it's a good thing!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Other Stuff Than NYWC

I just need to get this out becauase all of a sudden it is bugging me!

We are looking at companies to do our background checks. One of them links us to Megan's Law. I couldn't resist. I had to look up the man who molested me to see how far we are see if he moved back to the Bay Area. He didn't. He lives in Merced County. The picture...well...didn't look anything like I remember...but I was 12 and his face is fuzzy anyway...just not the rest of it! He's 65 now and did not age well.

I am guessing it is him. I mean the name fits, the charge fits...

I need to tell Rob what I did. I was fine about it until about a 1/2 hour ago.

Me and my "bright" ideas...

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

HQ...Just Ask Us...

Yesterday at breakfast, Tic was sharing observations from each area. He talked about how we at HQ could answer a question when it was only 1/2 way asked. It was true. But then there were questions such as, "We are looking for vegetables." That took me a second. Then, and I mean NO offense, I saw they were from the south and said, "I take you mean fried veggies?" They smiled at said, "Yup." I then said, "Welcome to won't happen in this part of town." So we talked options and I sent them on their merry way to PF Chang's.

There is also the group who are forever in my debt because I could send them to an Old Spaghetti Factory just a few blocks from the convention center. Meal times were a very big thing and knowing where to send them and listening to places others fund and liked was important.

It also plays to read the "Jump" notebook. Those that know me know I will take every map, piece of paper, and emails received about volunteering and memorize all of it as best I can. Someone came up and asked who to speak to about being a seminar speaker. Immediately someone said, "Michelle." I said no, that is on site...but there is another contact from YS because I just read it in the notebook. She told me it was so Michelle. So, I pulled out a notebook and sure was Alex Roller. As I told someone else in HQ...before I started college I pretty much memorized out college catalog and it is a practice that serves me well...I hate giving wrong information!

There really weren't too many nutty questions. The convention center was odd. It has three floors...but you cannot get from 1st to 3rd as in get into an elevator and got from 1 to 2 to 3. To get to the 2nd floor you had to either enter from the west lobby and up the stairs or from the J Street lobby go up the escalators, down the hall, down the stairs and down two ramps. To get from the first to third floor you either took the escalators/elevator from the J St. lobby or start from the west lobby and reverse the 3rd to 2nd floor directions. We learned it was faster to tell people to go out the doors and to the left to get to the Sheraton, but to go back to the west lobby to get to the Hyatt.

It's also amazing how much time the YS Staff needs to spend getting ready for Pittsburgh (which makes sense) and Nashville and at the same time keep Sacramento running well. They are amazing people! Between running hither and yon and being "Nexteled" every two minutes and answering stuff we couldn'! Keep them in prayer as they do a quick turnaround and get ready for Pittsburgh!

Home Again...

Where do I start? I had great intentions of going into work today...not gonna happen. I am exhausted...a GOOD exhausted...but exhausted just the same. The kicker? I would go to Pittsburgh or Nashville in a second of they nedded me! It's worth every 15 hour day, worth every pound of product I lifted, carried, packed and arranged. Worth hearing, "Where is the Hyatt?" "Where is the Sheraton?" "Where is the soda machine?" (behind you), etc. It is worth me doing something to my knee while packing up yesterday and lugging stuff through the pain, it is worth missing 99% of the convention (hey...getting 1:1 time with SCC and having Chris Tomlin rock me in the comfy chair in the Green Room and getting to see Les Christie on a daily basis did more for me than I have CDs to listen to at anytime!).

One of my fellow HQ volunteers asked me if it was hard being here and not currently being in YM. I think I was a little surprised at how easy it was. I had told my SP before I left that I really felt that God has been leading (at least for now) me to be an encouragement to youth workers. I think I can be a great resource in the areas of EDs and SI (started listening to Marv's seminar...but then I pulled up at home) and I love hearing their stories, etc. That is why HQ was the perfect place for me! I didn't have that gut wrenching pain in my heart that I feared could happen when I applied to volunteer. I feel as if I got confirmation for this pahse of my life. I have no clue how God is going to use me to encourage other Youth Workers, bus as I went through the Labryinth and spent time in the Prayer Chapel...I have no doubt it's going to happen one way or another.

There are some cool perks being a volunteer...and, well...some of the talk I heard from some others disturbed me...but with the exception of the housing...I would do it without all the other perks because it is my time to serve, my time to encourage and my time to give back for all the encouragement I have received over the years. Not just from YS (thought that has been HUGE)...but from mentors and peers as well.

The hardest part about being home is being a situation where there was no smoke, no "colorful" language (that I heard at HQ at any rate) and being with people who got it. Now I am home and all the above is already part of my life again. Oddly, it isn't bugging me...yet.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Only 27 More Shopping Days...

My b-day is in 27 of my fellow HQ volunteers thought I was 10 years younger than I am...woo hoo!

I think the only reason I thought about my b-day was because I had a few minutes of uninterrupted time with Steven Curtis Chapman in the Green Room. My friend Anna and I used to take each other to concerts for our B-days and he was one of my b-day concerts. He has such a heart for youth workers and I wanted to tell him how much that has meant to it was cool. I felt a little like a dork and wasn't going to go back...but a YS staffer told me I should go back and talk to I did.

Tonight I had from 7 PM on off...and I took it! :) I went to most of the General Session...sat in the Green Room and had my chair rocked by Chris Tomlin...and did what Tic encouarged us to do...look out at the hall from the stage was awesome and had me in tears. Right before the speaker I left and spent about a 1/2 hour or so in the Prayer Chapel...if you are reading this...please pray for me. There is something I want to do...but still have my tone sitting there for now! I then went out to dinner (I ate THREE meals today...I am still hungry though...ugh) and get a late day tomorrow! I am going through the Labryinth at 8:10 tomorrow morning.

I cannot believe tomorrow is the last full day. Thank God (literally) we don't have to change shirts tomorrow...we get to stay in the same one all day! DCB will lead worship for the rest of NYWC and I am looking forward to that.

Oh...for all of you going to Pitt. and Nashvegas...make sure you make time to go see the One Life Experience!!