Time Goes By

Time goes by…days go by and that is what is part of normal life. I love that and yet sometimes it is scary too….because each day lived in one day left to enough. There are so many things going on right now, so many thoughts and what-ifs to consider….the good thing is that I have a strong faith knowing that God has a plan for ALL things. For me, my journey is one full of pain…these past few days the suffering and pain has increased tremendously, making it oh so hard to stay positively focused. I find when my pain levels soar, I revert to being an introvert. Maybe it is just me but it is so hard to verbalize the pain…it is so hard to explain the pain..that I prefer to just not verbalize it to anyone. I stay quiet at home, usually lost in some TV show because that helps me not focus on the pain. I found a small nodule on my ring finger knuckle..I’m not 100% sure if this is the beginning of an RA nodule but it is very possible. However, in the grand scheme of things..when your pain level is 15/10 and nothing seems to change that…nodule’s aren’t the biggest thing to worry about. Still you know…I find strength to pull myself up and get with it. I manage to work (Praise the Lord for that strength!) and I manage to sit up in bed and work on my business as I can.

I can truly say, I never thought I would be a business owner, running a business that is entirely yours is a great thing. You get to make the rules, you get to determine the goals, you get to set the dreams. And no one can tell you that it might not work because as long as you work at it….the goals are possible. And I love the possibility. Growing something from nothing is a LOT of work..a lot of patience…and it takes a lot of determination. It isn’t going to happen if you are not willing to work it. It might not happen as fast as you want it to…it might not grow as fast as you want it to….and people might think you are crazy along the way. For some…all their friends and family support them 170% helping them move quickly…for others…friends/family might not help them 170%…don’t let it get you down…whatever category you find yourself in (I’m somewhere in the middle). Set a goal for yourself each month, work toward that goal, and if you get it then your jump for joy and celebrate…..if it does’t happen and you have given it your all…then still celebrate because you WORKED HARD! Just because the end goal completion date shifts…it doesn’t mean that your goals are not valid or important. Don’t ever let not making a goal stop you for working hard and pushing forward.

I things these things are some of the best things I have learned being a business owner, being a graduate students, and having a faith in the Lord. I don’t have all the answers (goodness who wants to have all the answers) but I love that I have the confidence to share my faith and my insight to those who are reading this blog. I look back over the past 12 years of my life (yes had to use a calculator to confirm it is has been 12 years since 2003)…and I realize my maturity, my growth, and my strength.

In 2003, I was a young 16 year old kid who moved here with nothing but two suitcases ready to find a dream that worked for her. Ready to make here life happen with these big dreams. The first few years here were so tough…so many bruises and bumps along the way. BUT I am happy I pushed through, I hope that is you are dealing with lots of bruises and bumps along the way that you keep pushing forward. And I say that especially if you have an invisible illness (like me, you might have more than one) and I know that the emotional journey as well as the physical journey is so tough. Stay strong, fight the fight, and keep moving. It is one day at a time! Don’t let go on your dreams…that is the bottom line!

XO J

Resting and Relaxing!

Too often I think we get too busy, we get too busy to be the friend we need to be. We get too busy to check on the friend down the street, or call someone we haven’t seen and grab coffee/lunch. There are many things we cannot guarantee in this world, but one thing that I am realizing that is so important…that is our friendships. When the world goes to crap (as we know it does often)…or when the pain is so tough and we cannot focus….we need our friends. I have found myself in a variety of times here recently where in tears I wonder…who can I call. I think back to last year…I didn’t really have names that jumped off the page of who I would call. That was because I was so busy with school and life that I wasn’t a friend to many people. I was a wife, a student, a worker and I wasn’t that much of a friend. NOW that I am Dr. T and done with school I have been determined to focus on building friendships. I am thankful one of the best ways to work on that has been my Mary Kay business. Truly I have made some amazing friendships in my unit, I have awesome clients who are becoming great friends, and I have two amazing team members that I am so thankful for. Friendships, the coffee dates, the lunch dates, the just coming over and talking, or for me playing with make up products/facials..those are the things that matter. There is so much we cannot control, especially with all our pain and fatigue…however I am determined that I will focus on the friends, the friendships, and the 3:00a.m. relationships!

Today I am resting and relaxing..I have been flaring pretty bad this week! So my thoughts tonight are short and sweet! Build your friendships! 🙂 #friendships

It’s been

It’s been a week since graduation! The last step finishing a 12 year dream and opening the door to the next dream. There are so many things going on but I will say I’m happy for one thing…and that is my faith. Someone asked me how in the world I’ve kept going through all my education and work….despite having so many health issues (that seem to continue to grow). And my response to her was my faith. My faith is this “God has a plan, that plan may not be anything close to what I expected (so far that has been the case) but that doesn’t matter..he never stops being in control.” I trust that the doors that open for me, will be the doors that God has in store for me.

I look back on the past decade of my life and I see the paths that I have chosen ( and where those ended up) and the paths of where God has led me. 10/10 times..the paths where God leads me…those paths always turn out better. Do those paths always make sense….hardly ever. Do those paths always bring an easy time of things….usually not. Usually those paths are the tough paths, the paths of tears/anger/frustration/etc. BUT when I look back at those paths, those paths are the paths that have truly molded my strength, determination, fighting spirit, motivation, and empathy. So if I had not gone through those paths, some of the best things about me ….wouldn’t have happened. Funny how that goes right!

I’ve spent the past 24hrs in such physical suffering that there are truly no words to explain it. Having an allergy to pain medication means when the pain comes, the pain comes. There is not much I can do about but push through, the night was one of the most miserable nights I’ve had in a long time. The pain was nauseating it was so bad, mostly I blame the darn weather! 😛 Through night like last night, I find myself grateful for the sun shine. I’m still in bed, I’m still hurting terribly but I am grateful that it is sunny because that helps in a small way. Suffering in the silence and quiet of night…makes the world seem so much lonlier. I hope that if you were suffering like me last night, that you didn’t feel as lonely as I did.

I don’t understand why I ( and many more like me) have to have bodies that attack every joint and muscle that we have…because let me tell you that pain is worse than any words can describe. I def. hope that this pain eases soon, I need to get some rest before the work week begins. Off to rest, thanks again everyone for all your comments, posts, and messages! You def. make me smile!

P.s. HAPPINESS triggers — anticipate JOY/HAPPINESS and SMILE! Smile when you hurt, smile when you want to cry, smile when the world feels like it is falling apart. And whisper “Lord find me.” Those three things have helped me this week!

XO J

It is almost that time

Yup it is almost that time! That time, that moment, that day that has kept me going for the past 10 or so years. That moment I have imagined over and over in my head. A moment that has kept me encouraged and fighting toward the end goal. I always laughed and said that I would frame and hang my dissertation on the wall..and each time I said it it was like hah yah years from now.  The funny part is my copy should be here any day…..will I frame it and hang it on the wall?

Friday, the day I have been waiting for! Friday I get to enjoy walking the stage one more time as I celebrate the official completion of a degree well done. I look back over the past 12 years…so much has happened these past 12 years. Some of those things include

1. I moved a country

2. I traveled to India

3. I traveled to Central Europe

4. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree

5. I lost my Dad

6. I started graduate school

7. I got engaged

8. I started feeling sick, and no one knew why?

9. I got married

10. I moved cities

11. I started multiple new jobs

12. I was diagnozed with Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Sjogrens, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (over the past 5 years)

13. I graduated with my master’s degree

14. I started thinking about my future and where God will take me

15. I defened my dissertation on 02/18/2015 and I walk on May 8, 2015

MUCH MUCH MUCH has changed! I have started a business that I love, I have to consider my future and where God will take me. I suffere intense pain almost every day….and yet I am still here fighting for a better future for myself and my family! I ordered my Red Jacket tonight, which for those of you not in Mary Kay…it means that I am moving forward in my business. It means I’m growing my business. NOT because of me, but because I have amazing friends who support me, I have amazing customers who have become true gems to me, and I have found someting I love. I am truly excited to see what life will be like post-graduation. It is scary to think of all that will change, but yes I promise you changes are coming! MANY changes are coming. Some of those changes as you can read…have been tough! But EACH change grown me to the woman, the doctor, the servant-leader that I am today. And for those changes, trials, and challenges, I am ever so grateful!

To the many of you who have followed my journey for the past several years, I am thankful for YOU!. For the hundreds that follow my Facebook page, I am thankful for your words of wisdom. I have met some pretty incredible friends hrough these venue. I am so glad that you found me and I had the courage to take the FIRST step.

If you find yourself tonight, at a crossroads…unsure of the first step…all I can tell you is to take it! It is a risk, it is terrifying..but if I had not done that MANY years ago my life would not be where it is today. I am ever so grateful for the few who have walked this journey with me.

To my dad that will watch me graduate from above, I miss you! I always dreamed that Friday would be a day you would get to see. I did it! I did it and I hope you are proud of the daughter that you raised. You will never get to hold my dissertation, you will never see the dedication page I wrote to you. But I  am ever so thankful for the many life lessons that you taught me. On Friday, I will carry you in my heart!

To the future that God provide!

XO
J