Bless this nest…

Today was one of our best …

One of the three was baptised.

Today was also briefly one of our worst …

Two chose not to come to the five baptisms held at our church today. Two arrived back bringing with them moods of black, shades of misery. They were given a choice stay here or return to their other home. They chose. They were sorely disappointed … again.

As I attempted to write, I shook, but the adrenaline rush has died down.

Why … because the man who was one who baptised my son today, has just been abused yet again for attempting to make his children’ voice heard; he’s attempted to grant a request that was going to cost him. He has once again showed them what a sacrificial parent looks like and he has been abused for it. The man who has been the best father these two could ever know, the man who is the best father my son has known, the man who spoke today in church about the stubbornness and stupidity of sheep has just been lectured and abused by two.

My husband, the best man I know, a man who daily becomes more Christlike was being abused by an individual whose defence mechanism is to swear, abuse and threaten violence.

If we could, we would shake this dust off – unfortunately we can’t. If we could remove these thorns in our flesh we would – unfortunately we can’t.

Instead, we find ourselves holding onto the Rock as we are buffeted, beaten and bruised.

I’m not sure if you have some comprehension of what it must be like for these two whose voices are, once again heard, yet ignored. I know I don’t – it’s not something I’ve ever experienced. We’ve all experienced rejection at some point in our lives… not too many of us have had to experience it like this.

Our prayer for these two, all three of ours actually, each day is that they will come to a true and lasting knowledge of the Heavenly Father as their own; the Parent whose love is utterly sacrificial, the One who gave His most precious possession for them, the One who loves like no other, the One who is Faithful, the One whose word is True, the One who keeps His promises, the One who IS Love, the One who brings Peace, the One who is Life, the One who is Light, the One who is all in all, the One whose desire for them is Freedom.

How wonderful it is to have a Father who loves us, a Father who waits to welcome us home. How amazing that these two, witness this fortnightly.

The storm has passed.

We’ve cried together, we’ve clung together.

Our hearts have broken a little with theirs.

We aim to be a home where God’s grace, His mercy and His love softens us, makes us malleable, a home that houses sometimes broken hearts, a home of second, third and fourth chances. These things do not come easy.

We are a home where there resides a generous man who models Christ for us all daily. A man with a heart the size of our home – who loves us all.

Let us never forget that those we live with and interact with are eternal beings.

There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations – these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit – immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.

C.S Lewis

These two are eternal souls.
They are peaceful again now.
They are happy again.
They know they are loved.
They are resting again.
But …
They need Him.
We all need Him.

We are once again reminded of the words of Ann Voskamp:

Bless this nest, Lord,

of fragile things,

encircling the breakable and broken

in grace,

in the ever warmth of Your wing,

in the sheltering shadow of Your face,

us the clinging ones,

You our clutch of hope,

singing to us the song

of home.

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The freedom of self forgetfulness …

I’m not sure how to do this, obviously, I just started with a personal pronoun.

Recently (last night) I shared at a ladies event at our church. It was something I’d been asked to do – it was something I’d said yes to, it was something I prepared for.
My testimony, that was my focus.

Now my testimony, the story of my conversion, is one that I’ve always found rather a dull one. Raised in a Christian family, I learned all the Sunday School choruses, recited all the memory verses… and one day I realised I needed a Saviour .. Don’t get me wrong I am very happy about the fact that this is my story, but it’s not really one of those edge of your seat, what happened next kind of tale, that leads people to God.

So I decided to focus on my testimony of the past decade, having just turned 40, what better time to take a good look back at what I’ve left behind and where I’ve been? Now that’s more of an edge of your seat kind of story!

I prepared … I stressed … I worried … I fretted … I scolded myself for not starting my preparation sooner… as a teacher would scold her procrastinating students, (yes, I see the irony.)

Personal pronoun count = 27  for those of you playing along at home! 

I presented the tale of the past ten years.. I think I talked too long. I tried not to go into all the gory details of the end of my first marriage.. I think I mentioned enough for everyone to see the edge of your seat potential. I finished and some very supportive people said it had gone well. I thanked them – wondering what was wrong with them. As this blog’s title suggests I do have some issues with compliments, praise and the concept of “good enough” or having done anything well.

We all had a lovely evening – I got home and headed off to bed … at which point the slight anxiety I’d been feeling, began to grow.

Had I said enough? Enough about you – sure!!
Had I said too much or not enough? Yep, probably – and it’s out there now, wherever “there” is!
Had I accidentally insulted anyone? Let’s assume the answer is yes.
Had I pointed to God? Not nearly enough – you focused on you as though everyone had been drawn there to hear all about you..
Had I recognised HIs part in this? Yeah, you tried, but you weren’t very eloquent, it probably wasn’t clear. Remember no one else knew what you were planning on saying – they just heard what came out of your mouth … you probably did your usual thing where you think you’ve told a complete story but you’ve only told half of it, the rest is still in your head.
Had I embarrassed Him? Well, He’s God so He won’t be embarrassed by you.
Had I embarrassed myself? Well, yes of course – don’t you always?
Did anyone go away more confused about the life of a Christian than they had started out? Probably, they probably wont ever come back to church now because of the unclear, confusing speaker they heard that one time. I’m referring to you …

Personal pronoun count = 27 + 36ish maths isn’t my strong suit.

That was really only the beginning – I woke up multiple times during the night with a feeling that I’d done something wrong. The questions became statements and I was a goner. I was, in the middle of the night, standing in the courtroom, being cross examined by the accuser.
You looked like a complete fraud, a fake.
Such a quick look at your life – you came out looking like Pollyanna, no one wants Pollyanna Christianity.
You didn’t spend much time talking about God – did you? It was mostly about yourself. Is that what your testimony is about? You?
In fact I think people would look at your life and wonder why on earth become a Christian if I’m going to turn out like you…

I did drift in and out of sleep – the morning came and the wonderful man at my side read our devotional and prayed and I felt much better once again. In the cold light of day after some prayer things are always better.

Then we headed off to church – where it was luncheon – I didn’t manage to get it together to bring food – again! But we stayed anyway – baby steps! People were positive about the previous evening and even I had to recognise that it had been a lovely evening.

The problem with all of this is that I have felt as though I’ve failed…everyone. I ask myself what success would have looked like – I have no answer. I think it’s a bit of the imposter syndrome, the perfectionism, the act of thinking so little of yourself that it becomes false humility, the introverted personality all combined.

The thing I need to learn is “The freedom of self forgetfulness”…

I’ve heard about it a few times now… I think it’s something I need to look into.

Was the evening a disaster – no. Did I say anything heretical, or downright wrong – no, it would seem not. Did my story help anyone – yes it did apparently encourage one or two.
What more could I want?
Well underneath it all – I’m not sure, sadly, all the second guessing and I don’t even know what I would have been happy with. I think I really want to not worry. I want to forget me. I want to not worry about what people think of me. I want to not worry about what I think of me. I want to be so immersed in Christ that He is all.

I want to be able to say as my husband often encourages me to, when I’m being far too reflective for his, or anyone else’s liking…

(Personal pronoun count = 27 + 36 + 44)

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So tonight this is heading out without regret, second guessing or worry.

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It’s time to read, and live in, The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness.(read  or listen )

 

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It’s that time of year again…

Early mornings, copious cups of tea, selection of the perfect marking and reporting soundtrack, tiredness, spoonerisms, wordnesia, the blog and perfectionism go on hold in order to make it through… 

Even the chill zone is all about work.

Peering through the haze I can see there’s a light at the end of the tunnel – it’s time to jump on board and ride that train. 

2 and a half weeks til holidays !!! 

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The week ahead …

Today he’s heading into hospital for 5 days, and I’ve been struggling to do the supportive wife act … why? I’m really not keen on him going away at all.
I’m looking at the week ahead and feeling a little overwhelmed.
If you are reading this now and you know all about the trip to the hypertension unit, then we all know you’ve offered to help us in some way. And we all know that I’ve been my usual “I don’t know how you can help” (because I’m stupidly independent) self. The truth is I have consciously avoided giving it too much headspace, because I knew I’d find myself feeling overwhelmed, resistant and maybe a little teary.

We (him and me) don’t spend time apart as a rule – not in a weird you can’t breathe unless I’m there with you way – but as he said the other night, “I’ve spent 37 years without you that’s enough, I don’t want to spend any more time apart than that.”
And I feel the same way – there’s something bittersweet about meeting your soul mate when you’ve both already spent far too much time with people who weren’t. You may even have had children with them and that is quite a complication. The children you have in your home aren’t yours and they have significant genetic material from people who have shown you disdain, contempt and occasionally hatred. (If you’re reading “Some days it’s not a picnic” – well done.)
Now because you have become a couple after children you have missed out on the pre-kids days, the just you and him days/months/years – really missed out on them. So any time that you can have as a couple; without someone asking constant questions or someone screeching like a rosella, or someone thumping around the house in a tantrum, is blissful. We have two nights and one day a fortnight that classifies as this. But this week – it’s hospital time. This week, our quiet no kids time – is taking place in the form of his adventure into the hospital to get his blood pressure sorted out.
So I guess at the end of the week I’ll go in for mine?

If I’m going to be truthful I’ll have to come clean about this, I’ve been a bit resentful and selfish as I think about my week ahead. I’ll work for the day, drive to the hospital, return home, probably have time to do a few things, go to bed, get up, work for the day …  x 4.
Honestly, I’ve been dreading it.
Honestly, I’ve spent too much time wondering about how it is that I’m going to do it all.
I’ve spent far too much time focusing on my to do list rather than my “what I know to be true” list. I’ve spent a little too long avoiding the renewing of my mind in favour of overcrowding it.

I’m once again confronted by my God and His promises to me, the ones that I more often than not, fail to lay hold of until I feel myself in a position when I feel like I can’t cope, and that I’m going under. It doesn’t cease to amaze me how quickly I can recognise this when I stop focusing on how I feel and start thinking. (INFJ people – fortunately we have these two (feeling and thinking) operating in close connection with one another – my Feeling preference over Thinking is less than 10%)
As I lay in bed this morning I felt that I was there again. It was one of those moments when I was so wrapped up in myself and how I felt after some especially vivid dreams, that I lost sight of God and at that point the enemy rushed in. As I lay there I was reminded of sins from the past – long forgiven, long forgotten (I thought), no sooner would I remind myself that it was done and dealt with but another would pop up – things I’d forgotten long ago, I went through the process of surrendering the rusty rod again and I quite quickly (for me) came to realise that this week is a chance for me to rely on God in ways that I haven’t done before.
So my decision for the week ahead is to focus on the things I know to be true, rather than the things I have to do.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me … even things I don’t want to do …
When I am weak then I am strong … even though I don’t like acknowledging that I am weak…ever.
Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed
So this week – let’s not meander through paths of worry or fall into the slough of despond, become lost wandering around in worry land, or halt at the foot of the hill of difficulty.

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Pilgrim’s Progress – The Hill of Difficulty   Source:unknown. 

I’m keenly aware that more than a few of you reading this have a long week ahead of you. Some of you have long months both behind you and ahead of you. I am acutely aware that my small struggles of this week are something you would gladly exchange when compared to your own.

You know who you are – I know who you are.
But know that what I write is just as true for you as it is for me. The verses I claim for myself this week are true for each and every one of us, no matter how light or crushing our burdens may be.

So, for him it’s five days of tests … and for me it’s a five day test.

And yes, Mum and Dad I will think about what you can do to help. The truth is I’m very blessed to have people like you poised to help, and if we are honest, if anyone is to blame for my overly independent attitude and behaviour … well, it might just be you two. 😉

And to him, I’m being like this because I don’t want to do 5 days without you … I think we both know how much I will miss you.

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Being a 40 year old INFJ …

We had our school fete today, to be more accurate, we are having our school fete today – it is still on. It’s a big event, there are a large number of people who attend.

This is not my native environment, the noise, the people, the accidental/incidental contact with strangers who repeatedly violate my personal space. I briefly considered decking myself out in the personal space dress (yes it exists!!) in order to cope better …

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At any rate these kind of events are not my happy place. Now don’t misunderstand me – it’s not that I don’t like people. Some of my favourite people are people. There are a fairly large number of people who I love… In fact, apparently if there is an introverted type that is likely to be mistaken for being an extrovert it’s the good ol’ INFJ – because we do love people.

Side note: I did the Myers Briggs again this week (just in case something’s changed). The result: INFJ – my preference for introversion was 75% — it was called “distinct“. I guess they try not to use words like extreme …?

This year we did our volunteer time at the fete early and wandered around for a while and then, before the crowd became too large, got outta there!
As we were leaving, my son’s other family were arriving, with my permission he happily leapt out of the car to join them for several more hours of rides, noise, people. He’s an enigma to me, he loves his own space and quiet, yet also loves people, action and places — ambivert? Who knows?!
On the way home in the car I tried to work through how I was feeling. The overwhelming feeling was one of guilt. My inner dialogue was scathing: What is wrong with you that you don’t want to stay? Why aren’t you prepared to stay longer? Why can’t you be more like those other people who’ve been excited about this and talking it up for weeks?
My inner dialogue was really simply synthesising and repeating a number of things many introverts would be familiar with, these are things we’ve been told for most of our lives:
You need to be more outgoing
You need to speak up.
Why are you so quiet? You should talk more.
You need to get out more.
You should smile more often.
You need to learn how to have fun.
You need to lighten up.
You need to be less serious.
You’ll have fun when you get there.
It’s just something you have to get over.

The general feeling that an introvert ends up with is that for some reason you are less because you are different, or worse that there is something wrong with you.
Quiet  (read it) – has helped me massively in this quest to be at ease with myself.
As a student, my report card comments would mention how quiet I was .. I’m not sure this was always meant as a positive thing. When I write it on student’s report card, I mean it as a positive thing. At the end of year 12 I received an award entitled “Still waters run deep.” At the time I was offended, of course! Now I’m quite happy about what it said about me.

I’ll be honest, things like fetes/shows/theme parks/even prolonged shopping trips, hurt me after a while. You’ll be able to tell when I’m nearing the end of my tolerance – apparently my eyes grow larger – I will sometimes begin to go pale and I am likely to be zoning out of the conversation, if I am having one. I will be trying very hard to focus on what you are saying to me … which contributes to the wide eyed look. There is a point at which I can hear everything going on around me and I am totally overwhelmed. I’m not loving it and I need to get away. I know it is going to be like this for me as I head into the event – which is why I might just be dreading it while everyone else is getting excited and hyped up about it.

Someone once said to me about a particular social event that was approaching that I was dreading — “Oh come on, it won’t kill you!” And yes it’s true. I thought but didn’t say — “Well no, it won’t, but neither would being quiet for a while, or thinking before you speak, kill you. Yet you seem to be able to avoid doing that!”

My two 1/2 hours at the fete were tiring though not exhausting – any longer and I might have been in strife. After a week of working with people, all of different personality types, I need to recharge.

The truth is, an extrovert arrives home after a big day out energised  – I’m not an extrovert. An introvert arrives home totally drained of energy. I may even need a nap in order to recover. I will certainly need to find a quiet spot to sit, preferably outside, preferably with a pet who has a similar approach to life,IMG_7819 (1).jpgand maybe have the opportunity to reflect and recharge.

I turned 40 this week, and it was wonderful, mainly because for about the past 30 years I’ve felt as though I was 40 years old – now I’m finally there – I’m home! We had a quiet-ish gathering at our lovely little spot and at the end of it all, I was not exhausted.

In the decade ahead I’m giving myself permission to be me and spend less time trying to explain to others why this is the way I am. I don’t require the same explanation from them – this is just me. I’m quiet – don’t confuse quiet with boring, or stupid, or slow, or think that I am somehow less than you are simply because I am happy to be on my own sometimes, and sometimes I prefer to think rather than speak.

In the words of Paul Simon (Simon and Garfunkel):

I’d rather be a forest than a street.

 

But if you’d rather be a street, then be a street, just let this forest be a forest.

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My personal trainer …

One of my favourite things about the book of Psalms and the life of David is that through it we see that the time the wicked have to afflict the children of God is limited — by God. It ends. 

There comes a point when enough is enough. No matter how “clever” the plotting and planning, no matter how deep the deceitfulness – it ends.   

So my saboteur,  you can only ever go as far as my God permits. 

Today this is what I’m trying to remember. 

You may plot, you may plan, you may disrupt, and you do but without my God’s permission you would be able to do nothing. He’s allowing you to do this because in His plan for my day today – this disturbance was written in – to work for my good. 

So thank you for another chance to exercise my faith muscles. 

Today I’m going with Psalm 37 as my text. 

  

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To quote Tolkien … 

  

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To my single friends …

 

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Image: an Anne original. You can tell because it is unfinished. 

 

Dear Ruth,

That’s not really your name, but she might be the character from the Bible you relate to the most.

You know who she is; the loyal, God-fearing, hardworking, outsider. The woman who is alone, but for the friendship of a woman who has renamed herself “bitterness”.
I think if you could ask Ruth at the beginning of Ruth if she feels like she’s been forgotten – she’d probably say, “Yes, I think I’ve been forgotten.”

I know there was a time in my life when she was the character for whom I had the greatest understanding and affinity. Maybe I still do. I’ve never been an Esther – a woman chosen to be queen because of her beauty. I’ve never been a Rachel – the favoured, beautiful one, the one a man would serve 14 years for.
I have been a Ruth – the main character in a book of the Bible that shows us how God can work through the worst situations in our lives to fulfil His purposes. A woman who felt that as a result of life’s twists and turns, events and incidents, she’d been forgotten. That’s what you feel isn’t it ? Forgotten.

The truth is you are not forgotten.

You feel as though you are. You live in a world where the Rachels and Esthers are paraded in front of you – youth and beauty are on their side and they don’t have the baggage you have. You look at them and you wonder why anyone would ever choose you over them.

While I’ve always felt this affinity for Ruth, the first few years after my marriage ended, I was perhaps more of a Naomi than a Ruth. I felt that I had been left empty. I felt that I had followed where I was meant to go and in the end I had been discarded, abandoned far from where I’d started out and left to return home with my head down, feeling small and useless.
At that time I believed that I was one of those women who was better off alone, a woman who’d been spent, a woman who would not be of any value or worth to a man ever again. A woman who now had even more reasons that qualified me to be passed over for others. And to tell you the truth I was happy about that for a few years. People asked me if I thought I’d ever get married again and I’d tell them “I’d be too much work for anyone.” The truth was I knew that I’d lost my ability to trust others, to see the best in people, so I’d go on to say … “I’m too busy with work and raising my son. I wouldn’t wish myself on anyone.”

Over the years God healed my heart, He gradually placed friends, family, my counsellor, people in my life who spoke into it in ways that encouraged me to heal, to learn to trust and consider that maybe God had more for me. Through their questions and challenges I eventually reached the point that most of us reach — we have been designed for more than we think. I felt that I was closer to God than I had been in my life and yet there was something more for me — maybe I was, as people had suggested, designed to be a helpmeet.
And that, my dear Ruth, is the part of you that isn’t going to be fulfilled by your friendships, your hobbies, your work. Once this realisation had been awakened in me — I then struggled for some time. Who’s to say wasn’t I meant to be alone? But if I was meant to be alone then surely I would know? Would that be the desire of my heart? Wouldn’t that be thing that I would want? I prayed over and over that a desire for anything other than what God wanted for me would be removed from my heart.
I had good friends – a number of them. Some were married friends, some were single, some had never married, some had married but were now separated or divorced. I wondered why having all of these friends, wasn’t enough. I kept busy – but under it all was this desire being woken up – for more. I know because it took me a while to realise that. When I did, I looked at myself and I started to weigh it all up – I looked at the complications and baggage I had accrued and I felt quite certain that no one would sign up for life with an almost middle-aged woman, who was someone else’s cast off, and life with someone else’s child. Not really a catch right?

Then I stumbled upon the “Redeeming Ruth” series by Mark Driscoll.

Mark Driscoll’s name isn’t one that is always mentioned in context with the useful things he has done. However I can’t talk about Ruth without referring people to the “Redeeming Ruth” series – elements of this six part series were incredibly helpful to me. I began to understand that there were men out there who perhaps are worthwhile – there were men like Boaz out there. There were men out there who would be prepared to redeem a Ruth. Men who weren’t out and about consuming all that the world has to offer. This is still true today, there are also men who don’t yet know they are meant to be a Boaz.

So Ruth, your Boaz maybe doesn’t know who he is yet. Pray for him…even without knowing who he is.
Ruth, keep doing what makes you Ruth, your loyalty, your hard work and your heart will be what wins him over in the end. Don’t change yourself to attract anything other than a Boaz.
I even had a friend or two telling me to “get out there”, to “widen my circle”, to “broaden my horizons”, people were offering to set me up with this person or that person .. I politely (mostly) refused all offers, because in my heart, I had the story of Ruth locked in. She just got on with her life and her path took her to the field of her kinsman redeemer. A man who noticed her, kept an eye out for her, prayed for her, provided for her and eventually redeemed her – the man became the answer to his own prayers for her. (I like that bit 🙂 )

As I was going through this rather arduous journey, it was emotional, some nights I prayed/cried myself to sleep asking God to help me feel fulfilled with all that I had. I prayed to have that breakthrough feeling that “this is it – this is the way I’m meant to be, I can do this alone”. In the middle of all of this a good friend showed me this powerful  performance of a poem I will wait for you, it hit the spot. I think that it summed it all up for me. I wrote it out and locked it away in my heart, with the story of Ruth. About a year later that friend was not only my best friend, but also my husband. It turns out he was my Boaz.
Take heart though Ruth my friend, my Boaz was not looking for a Ruth. Yours might not be either, yet, but one day he will – and you still need to be you then.

I’m not going to lie to you – there are elements of the Ruth story I don’t quite get. The threshing floor? What on earth was she doing there? What was that about? I’m not sure. The fact remains however that was part of the story and it seems a necessary part too … though I’m still not sure what I think about it.

The thing we need to remember about Ruth after all of this, is her place in the genealogy of the Saviour of the world. She was crucial. While she might have felt that she was forgotten and overlooked — she was not. She was overlooked by the ones who would have interfered with the future God had prepared for her, and that’s a good thing as far as I can tell!

You, my friend are not forgotten, as I’ve said to a few of my friends over the years, maybe your Boaz isn’t quite ready yet, or maybe you aren’t quite ready for him yet. You don’t want to rush ahead of God. Keep doing what you are doing – be loyal to those God has placed in your life, work where He has placed you. You never know you might be doing all of this in the vicinity of a man who has a lonely heart, and he is waiting to redeem your lonely heart … he’s just not sure who you are yet.

While you wait for an earthly Boaz remember to entrust your heart to and fill your heart with your heavenly Boaz – the One who has already redeemed you. the one who loves more than any earthly Boaz can or will.
The One who already knows your value, the One who knows your worth.
And Ruth, if He has a Boaz for you – wait for Him to bring him along.

You have not been forgotten.


 

If you watched the I will wait for you clip. Please take the time to watch the follow up I waited for you  (You will need about 10  minutes, and a few tissues.)

 

Disclaimer: If your name is Rachel or Esther – no hard feelings. We do love you too! 🙂

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Image: a colour version of the unfinished original, also unfinished. 

 

 

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Imposter alert …

It’s been a while, hey?

Sunday afternoon is kind of my writing time unless some other burning thought must be expressed sooner. The past three weeks I’ve had an assessment task due each Sunday … none this week. Now that’s not to say that I have nothing else to do – it’s just that nothing has a deadline looming close.

I read an interesting article this week on the topic of The Imposter Syndrome (read it here) and it would be remiss of me not to mention my most recent incident with this. It was about 3 hours ago.

As part of the subject I am doing, a compulsory writing task had to be completed by last Sunday. I avoided it for a few weeks. The idea of having to write an essay answering an unseen question filled me with fear, dread and a deep seated suspicion that I was about to be found out. The degree to which I was going to be found out would not only affect my hopes of studying but also my present career. Yes, Anne, the English teacher, was about to be revealed as a person, nay, an English teacher who expects more from her students than she can do herself, she can’t even answer a simple question in written form. Well, at least,  that’s what was being yelled at me as I was removed from my teaching job … my imagination is a little melodramatic.

Then today I remembered (yes I’d forgotten about it) that it might have been marked by now – true enough it had. So the piece is compulsory and the result doesn’t count towards anything other than whether or not I was going to be allowed to keep studying and/or keep my job (imaginary scenario).
So I logged on to find I had achieved a 1, “Oh, my prophetic soul!” – as my friend Hamlet would say. Now what??!! Well, now I guess they ask me to leave the course because I’m a fraud and a little bit too stupid to be studying psychology at my age (you know brain function deteriorating and all). Which then of course leads to my job – I’ll be jobless – after all, who wants an English teacher who gets a 1 in a 30 minute writing task that has a minimum of 150 words. How did I manage to fail that?!
These “you’re a fake and a failure” thoughts tend to visit me quite regularly. Most often just after I hit the publish button on this little blog here.

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 6.55.16 pmSo as I gazed at the number 1 on my screen – I noticed a little button

It helps to have more information if you are really going to freak out in grand style. So I clicked on it – only to discover that a 1 is what you want. So… I guess I’ll be able to keep studying and it’s unlikely that I’ll lose my job (this week) … which means I should probably get that holiday marking done!

So it’s interesting that I’d be reading up on Imposter Syndrome – I think it is a train of thought that I have followed from, time to time, in my entire life without knowing it. I’m still waiting for my husband to see who I am and decide he’s made a huge mistake – but then he got glasses last week – and didn’t shriek in horror, turn tail and run…though they are only reading glasses. 😉

I figure below, is what he’s going to see one day. After all, all good imposters wear glasses and have a moustache or a beard – that’s how they can fool everyone for so long.

 

I’ve done a little research (watched some TedTalks) and feel somewhat more enlightened – or relieved perhaps that, once again, I’m not alone.

I think that Imposter Syndrome manifests itself in many different ways and many different forms.

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image source: brightside.me

I’d love to see the results of a study that examined how many people who suffer from imposter syndrome are introverted people – I’d suggest that the correlation might be quite high (first year Psychology language 😉 ).

It’s a bit of a ramble tonight – but that’s where my thinking is, at the moment.
I guess the take home/take to heart thought is that:

  1. We should encourage each other more.
  2.  Sometimes it is good to acknowledge people for what they do well. The best way to drown out the gremlins that Maryam Pasha speaks of might be simply to have more voices speaking the truth into each others’ lives, ears and hearts.
  3. Don’t dismiss the encouragement and compliments of others.

 

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Apologies to Edvard Munch


Dear Mr Munch,

I never was a big fan of your artwork. I didn’t think Expressionism was my thing. The Scream and its message eluded me.

So now, I feel I must apologise. I now know that in order to capture that moment you must have been …

  1. A high school teacher.
  2. A parent of teens, or almost teens.
  3. Both of the above.

Apologies Mr Munch — you were some kind of genius, I underestimated you.

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