Friday, March 23, 2012

digging in my heels

{this picture has nothing to do with my post, i just love these 2 little girls}

i have a boatload of things to do right now, but i'm too wound up to do any of it.  i keep wandering around the house, feeling twisted and frustrated and a little helpless.  so?  i will write.

no analogies here today, folks.  no deep metaphors or making a big story out of nothing.  let's just straight talk.

since the beginning of ben's school in 2008, it has felt like it has been a constant fight for finding success. to just accomplish the requirements ben is asked, it feels like we are constantly swimming upstream in a deep ocean full of small, choppy waves, and then switching to big kahuna waves.  

oh shoot, there's an analogy/metaphor.  i just can't turn it off, i guess.  

continuing on.

we have come to crossroads several times in these 4 years of attempting a degree in higher education.  places where we have literally found ourselves on our knees, praying for a miracle.  praying for patience.  praying to hand our will over to God's, praying for faith to know there is a plan for us.  and our prayers are always answered, once we let go and surrender.  and recognize just how they have been answered, because they always are.

we have accepted consequences for mistakes, and have tried to keep our heads high and just accept the outcomes of choices made by others who hold our fate and future in their hands.

but darn it all, sometimes i just get so tired of it.  when we are doing all that we can, both of us, sacrificing so much.  sleep, time, money, freedoms that only those in grad school can understand.  because we believe that it in the end, these sacrifices will pay off.  a better life, more freedoms than we were experiencing before we made the jump into school.  allowing ben a career that not only he is good at, but that he enjoys and feels fulfillment.  it is big for both of us, that in some small way, we can make the world a better place.  that was and continues to be our intention for this decision. going into the mental health field is not because the career is going to be a piece of cake, you know?

we have watched our friends achieve this, and i am so happy for them, truly.  but to continually watch those pass us by while we feel so stuck.  there are days it can be hard.  

today is one of those days.  ben has worked his tail off on the defense of his proposal for his dissertation, and was asked by certain people to do more than what is required of his peers, because this place requires more, and is allowed such a short time to do it.  so he does it.  we do it, because it is actually both of us working together.

he turns it in on time, completed.  all that is asked.  we wait to hear back from this place, for the approval that is required to move forward.  and wait, and wait, and wait. 

on tuesday is ben's one chance to defend this proposal, and if he doesn't, then we are set back for an entire year.  everything is finished, his classes, his practicum.  we will still be here, stuck.  

but we're waiting on the approval, and were just informed that they have not even looked at his proposal yet.  not even looked at it!  he turned it in 6 weeks ago!  he asks if they can look at it and approve it by tuesday.  "not likely, we would have needed more notice..." is the response he is given.

which is when i want to show up on their doorstep and yell, HOW MUCH MORE NOTICE DID YOU NEED?  9 YEARS???

it's probably a good thing this place is in texas, because i would be fighting the urge to seriously walk my 4 foot 11 1/2 inch self to take them on.  i know, i'm so intimidating!  

i realize there are much bigger things going on in the world.  that on the richter scale of life and catastrophic things, it's minor.  but today it feels big.  and sometimes i just exhausted from the fight, you know?  

i keep an eye on the prize, i visualize that day that ben walks down the aisle of his graduation, receives his certificate, and i know i will be a ball of racking sobs.  because these last few years of school have really taken their toll.  on ben, on myself.  we were just talking a week or so ago about how we feel like we are shadows of our former selves.  and dang it all, i just want us back.  

i know once school is over, it leaves our future still uncertain.  there will be big decisions facing us, and making big decisions is not our forte, so it's not like it will be all smooth sailing once he graduates.  but those are the trials and challenges that i am ready for.  

these trials?  where all that we've worked toward can be set back for another year of more debt while we're just twiddling our thumbs because someone else is too lazy to pick up a report, read it and approve it?

okay, vent session over.

i know that God is a God of miracles.  i know it!  we have witnessed it so many times.  we have a son who not only survived a 35 minute seizure, but survived it without any brain damage, even though his brain was deprived of oxygen during that time, and we were told it would be almost impossible for him to not be affected by it.  and that's just one personal example.  

our life is in His hands, and he knows who we are and what we need.  we have been blessed so many times throughout these 4 years, and we will continue to be blessed.  

now that i've vented my frustration, i can take a deep breath and surrender.  however it works out, will be for our benefit.

i have faith, i believe, i accept His plan.  

we'll keep fighting, digging our heels in with faith that He knows us better than we know ourselves.  we'll continue to swim, even if our muscles are aching and tired.  we'll hang on through it, even if it means we add on another year.  i can make it through another arizona summer.

icanmakeitthroughanotherarizonasummer.  icanmakeitthroughanotherarizonasummer. 

My motto for the past year is needed again:

"Be of good cheer.  The future is as bright as your faith."  --Thomas S. Monson


Anonymous said...

we can certainly empathize with you guys!! we are a full year (plus) starting private practice than when we should have been. part of that was almost 9 months of waiting for his application for licensure to go through! so frustrating when coworkers would turn in their apps and be done in 3 months. i feel the same way...the road has been longer, harder, and more frustrating than others in his cohort. i guess we (not you) needed more faith building trials in our lives :) just have to remember it is in God's hands and let go...

Rachel Chick said...

I am praying for you both, Lyns.

Nana said...

I was given an "awe ha" moment once with Jamie. I was feeling the same as you when we lived in Fruit Heights. Frustrated and dumbfounded with the question of why....and my sister said to me....(very wise, I might add) "maybe she has to go through this to prepare her for the future. Maybe you and she need to be tested for what the future might hold."
I never thought of it that way...and honestly, I can see that it was truly the case. Jamie has been tested beyond what she ever thought she could stand. But what happened 10 years ago prepared her for what she could handle. That's not to say that the trials are over. I don't think that for a minute. But also remember...things worth having...are worth sacrificing for! YOU CAN DO IT! And at least you have each other to do it with. You will be blessed! Sending much love your way!

ohmylanta said...

Oh Lyns.

I can't say I feel your pain.
I kinda feel your pain. And you know what?...... I did march my angry butt into the right office to yell at someone about the extention of my hubby's schooling. I didn't waste an opportunity to vent ALL the details of our 10 wave swimming years.

I got MY way.

Sobbing buckets of tears on graduation day? YES

That day will come for you.

But you are right. Regardless, life is full of uncertainty. And as I look around, it seems as though THE BEST, The STRONG and The Faithful are tested extra. I have been trying to talk myself out of looking around at other families and asking...Where are their trials? Yet. I have done it.

I figure that we will experience anything necessary for God to teach us patience, humility and deep faith. Our experiences refine us into compassionate individuals that have given up the fight for perfection, assuming we can actually achieve it.

Everything I have trudged through reminds me that MY idea of the perfect me, MY idea of the perfect marriage, MY idea of the perfect life are nothing but illusions.

I am sorry you are carrying the burden of feeling like your near future rests in the hands of someone that doesn't even know you. I hate it when things are just hanging in the balance!! You guys are amazing. And Ben will be an amazing Doctor. I will pray for you this week.

ps. I know how you can detox from your years in Arizona..... Move to Minnesota. :)