I'm a Liability...

Do you ever listen to a song and relate to it so much that it makes you cry? Makes you feel so much yourself that you almost can't handle it?

I feel that way about one of Lorde's new songs, Liability. Musically, it's a simple song, with the same chords played repeatedly, but lyrically, it is magic for my soul. However, the fact that I can relate to it is both a blessing and a curse because of the content of the song. On one hand, I think to myself "I don't feel this way anymore. I've grown past this." But on the other hand, it feels as real as if I'd written the words with her.

So I guess I’ll go home
Into the arms of the girl that I love,
The only love I haven’t screwed up.
She’s so hard to please but she’s a forest fire...
— Liability by Lorde

Sometimes, I feel like I'm the only person who gets me, like I'm the only one who can handle all the mess I have going on. I find interpersonal relationships incredibly difficult (who doesn't?), but I understand my relationship with myself. I know what to do to take care of me. It's taking care of others, or maintaining my half of a relationship (any relationship) that's the real test. 

Many times, it feels like I'm a failure at every kind of relationship you can have. Daughter, sister, wife, mom, friend...
There are days when I don't feel l'm good at a single one of those roles.

They say, ‘You’re a little much for me
You’re a liability
You’re a little much for me’
So they pull back, make other plans
I understand, I’m a liability...
I’m a little much for everyone
— Liability by Lorde

It's funny how we can simultaneously feel like too much and not nearly enough. I feel like women struggle with this more than men, unless men do and they just don't talk about it. But often, I feel like I am too much for everyone I know, and they quit because I'm not worth it, or they secretly want to quit but they don't want to hurt me. 

At the same time, I feel like I'm never enough. I don't measure up. I can't do anything right. I'm a complete failure. I mean, this is the rhetoric that's on replay inside my mind at times. 

I come out feeling like, either way you slice it, I'm not worth the risk or the struggle. I'm a liability.

My wonderful husband tells me all the time that I'm "worth it," and I so appreciate him for that. But sometimes, I just can't shake the voice that says "Don't let them see everything! Cover up the messy stuff. Don't let them know you're struggling. Slap on a smile and keep it together!"

That voice is the same one that tells me I'm both too much and not enough. 

The hardest part is that, sometimes, I agree with it...

-LesLeigh J.

How to Celebrate the 4th of July When You're Not Proud to Be an American

Fourth of July

Before I dive into this post, I want to remind anyone reading of my comment policy. I always welcome constructive criticism, but please be kind.

I haven't felt much like celebrating America for a little over a year now. With all the things that have been happening in this country, it's made it difficult for me to feel proud to be an American. That's something that's hard to explain to some people because American pride is so ingrained in us from an early age. 

If you're like me and are a part of one of the marginalized people groups in this country, it can often feel like America isn't even home. But, this is where I was born, and it is my home, and instead feeling saddened all the time at the state of our country, I want to take some time to share how you can celebrate, even if you don't necessarily feel like there's much to be celebrated.

1. Be Thankful for Service Men and Women

I have many family members, friends, and former mentors who have served or currently are serving in the military, and I am so incredibly thankful to and for them. Serving in the military is a sacrifice, whether you die in action or not. Service men and women give up time with their own families and loved ones to protect our freedoms, so we can safely spend time with our loved ones, and I am so grateful to them for that sacrifice and bravery. So I will be thinking of all Service Men and Women on Tuesday

2. Be Grateful for the Freedoms We Have in America

I may not always be proud to be an American, but I'm grateful that I'm free to express that. I'm grateful that I have to freedom to say that I'm dissatisfied with, or even grieved at the state of my country. I'm grateful that I get to worship Jesus Christ freely and openly, and that it's not a crime. There are many countries in the world where certain religions are outlawed, and where questioning/criticizing the government could mean jail time or death. So I'm thankful for the rights and freedoms that I have as an American citizen.

3. Be Mindful of the Work Still to be Done

There is still a lot of work to be done in America so that everyone can truly feel safe here. The rights of many law-abiding citizens are still being threatened, and that's not okay. So much reform is needed, and there is a lot that's wrong. But instead of being weighed down by all that's bad and wrong, I've decided to remember what's right and to work towards what's right every day. Progress is slow, but it will happen.

4. Be Hopeful for the Next Generation

There is always, always, ALWAYS hope that the next generation will do better than the previous one. No generation ever has or ever will get life completely right because mankind is not perfect. No matter what religion, spirituality, or philosophy you subscribe to, I think we can all agree that no one is perfect. But we can always have hope that the next generation will learn from our mistakes, learn what worked and what didn't, and that they'll strive to be better than the ones that came before them. It's like hoping your kids will be better off and happier than you were. I hope that the generation after mine is incredible and that they do amazing things, not just in America, but all over the world.

I hope this has been helpful or inspiring to someone out there. Please know that I am in no way saying that America is the worst country out there. No country gets it perfect because, again, humanity is not perfect. But I just wanted to say that, even with so many terrible things happening in the world, there is always something to be positive about and something good to hope for.

Have a Blessed Fourth of July!

Cheers,
LesLeigh J.

Let's Be Honest: I'm Lonely

Loneliness. It comes when you least expect it, wraps its cold fingers around you and grips you in that icy way that makes you feel like you've never known love your entire life long.

Via

It's that season for me. I come home from work or get out of class, and I go back to my room and I sit, alone, and remember...

Loneliness should not be confused with feeling alone. You see, I've felt both in my lifetime, often more alone than lonely. Feeling alone is worse. You feel like there's no one in the world who cares if you live or die, no one who understands your circumstances. Loneliness is a much different bird altogether.

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 Via

I know that I have friends and family. I know that there are people who care about me, and that knowledge is wonderful, but it doesn't keep the loneliness at bay. 

I'll go back to my room, and I remember what it's like to feel someone's hand in mine. I'll remember what it's like to have strong arms around my waist, eyes that smile into mine, lips anxiously waiting to greet my own. ..

But the memories are fading as I get further from those experiences. I can remember holding hands, but I can't really remember the warm feel of someone's hand in mine, as if it always belonged there. The memories are fading...

I try to fill my time with friends, and I'm trying to get back on track in my spiritual life, and it's great and necessary, but those things don't fill the void that's obviously taking up space in my life. 

Via

Friends can't fill the void. The thing about friends is that they have their own lives, their own dreams, their own goals that they're working towards. They shouldn't be responsible for curbing my loneliness.

God, won't fill it. Although I can always use more Jesus in my life, God created us to be in community with one another. He created us so that we would not be alone, and that was at the beginning of time. This isn't a "God-shaped hole," it's just a hole. 

Via

The thing about having someone is that their life includes you. They think of the future with you in mind and you do the same with them. Their goals and plans include you. And while they're planning their life and looking outward, they're also looking at you, seeing you, wanting you. 

I'm lonely for that, that beautiful, complicated form of togetherness. I want someone that cares how my day is going and tells me I'm beautiful (pretty, hot, cute, etc.). Friends can do that and mine do and it's wonderful, but it's not the same. 

I need romance, and kisses, and sweet texts, and petty fights about where to spend the holidays. I need date nights, and understanding, and affection. I need the blind, honeymoon-phase bliss, and then the slow comfort that comes after. 

I want it all, and I don't know when it's coming, or if it's coming, so I'm standing here on a platform, waiting for the train that I'm not sure I've missed. 

I'm lonely, and I guess I will have to be until I'm not anymore... 

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On My Heart...

There are times when I'm alone and thinking about life, and my heart becomes extremely full and I feel as though I need to share, relieve some of the pressure. Those times happen often, but I become fearful of writing it down here because of what people might say. 

Or I'll get nervous because I may not be able to find pictures to go with the post, and perfect bloggers must always have pictures. Or I'll think to myself "this is not one of my normal, scheduled blogging days!" 

But as I sit here, at 5 in the morning, I don't care about the rules. I don't care about a perfect picture, or a normal schedule. Right now, I care about sharing what's on my heart because, after all, that's really what I created this space for... 

VIA  

VIA 

I dream of, one day, being a mother.  

I don't know if it's because of age, or maturity (yeah, right), or the birth control that's messing with my hormones, but the longing to have/raise a baby/child has been really strong as of late. 

I have always wanted children. I've always thought that one day I'd be a mother. It used to be that I just assumed I would, like it was just another item on my to-do list. But now, it's different. Now, it's something I dream about. It's something I long for. 

It may sound ridiculous, but I daydream about being pregnant. I know that pregnancy isn't all fun and games, but I still dream about it. I dream about holding my baby's hands as she walks barefoot through the grass.  

I dream about singing my children to sleep, and I wonder how I'll teach them about Jesus. I dream about teaching my kids to work with their hands, grow food from the earth, and love animals. I think about braiding my daughter's hair, or saving snippets from my son's first haircut...

 

VIA

I probably sound completely mad. I am nowhere close to having a baby right now. Like...I am down the street and around the corner from the ballpark of having a baby, and I'm still waiting on a parking space. That's how far off this is. Yet, I can't stop thinking about it. 

I think one of the greatest things a person can do in this life is love a child. Every child deserves to grow up feeling safe and knowing without a doubt that they are loved. I cannot imagine never loving a child. I literally feel like I would be missing out on one of the most beautiful relationships ever created if I never became a mother. 

The ball-busting career woman inside of me is screaming right now, but she can hush up. It's on my heart to be a mother someday, and that's one goal I'm going to try my absolute hardest to achieve. 

Goodnight (or morning), world!

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