I’m sitting in my front room in the 1.5 seater lounge that my sister left at my place when she moved to Mozambique. We call it ‘Aunty Kath’s Couch’ and there are strict rules about it because we had hoped to return it to her in very good condition when she moved home. But it has been seven years and there’s no sign of them coming back permanently. How long does a lounge chair last anyway?
The sun is streaming in the window and I have a big mug of steaming tea. The dishwasher is doing its thing and I can hear my girls playing at the other end of the house. Leigh is watching the footy and things are peaceful.
I thought I’d just take a minute to write to you, the people who read the things I’ve posted here over the past few years. Thanks for that- for reading, that is. You’ve been such an encouragement to me. I haven’t written much lately. For various reasons but mostly because life got harder and I felt too wobbly to put words down.
The wobbliness started about nine months ago. I had lost my spark. I was full of self-doubt and negative thinking. I panicked at small things and tasks and responsibilities that previously came easily were overwhelming and felt impossible.
The feelings came and went. I’d feel like my normal happy self for a few weeks. During those weeks I could get up early, make plans, feel optimistic about projects and manage the kids well. But then I’d slip back into the fog of fatigue, tears, anxiety and doubt.
I’ve been back and forth to the doctor about it and finally landed on a diagnosis of PMDD. That fits very well with how I’ve been feeling and the medication to treat it has been effective so far.
Another reason I haven’t written lately is that I have had so many big faith questions that I didn’t want to bother you with. When I sat down and tried to write, the only thing that poured out of me was questions about how we read the Bible. My belief in God and His goodness is strong, and my certainty about Jesus and the Holy Spirit have not wavered, but my brain is so curious lately and my thoughts run on crazy trains that I can’t even catch.
I really would like to write more often but it might not be good writing. I’m in a phase of life that is unfamiliar to me. I’ve always been an intense and deep-thinking person, but previously it came with a lot of laughter and self-assurance. These days I’m worried about the critic in the corner, tut-tutting at everything I do and say. That’s the third reason I stopped writing, and if I’m being honest, it’s the most significant one.
I’ve been talking all these things over with my professional supervisor, a woman I respect a great deal. She has urged me not to be afraid of the people who do not approve of me. She says if I stop writing because I’m scared of what they think of me, I bury my gifts and they won’t grow.
So here I am, trying to overcome fear.
Thank you for reading. I really like you a lot!
Yes 🙂 Keep writing and take those who want to go on a journey of thinking and processing with you.
People need to see us in our uncertain moments as well as our times of clarity and conviction – otherwise we lack the believability that must be there for leadership to be effective.
I stop reading when people preach – but I read (and even comment occasionally) when someone just speaks from the heart.
I can relate to that – I like the ‘faith puzzles ‘ that seem to come our way and the challenges of new stages of faith that disorient and disturb us.
Faith is never linear and we need more people willing to lead with that knowledge!
Nice work 🙂
Thank you, Andrew. You make me feel brave. Knowing you’re out there being real, engaging in big conversations with humility and still leading strongly sets such a good example to me.
Hi Yvette, I love your writing and I appreciate your sisters, my colleagues, so please keep telling us your stories.
I’m going with Kath to visit Liz! I’ll write about that especially for you, Eliza!
Thank you for your honest writing.
I often find life has many different parts to it and often there are many difficult questions.
Thank you expressing all these different things and the hope and certainty we still have in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
Hope this doesn’t sound too light/way off the point – just had a lovely evening out at the movies with family ladies to see Aladdin. It was fun and provided quite a few chuckles.
Aladdin with your family ladies is what it’s all about! I am off to eat a massive chocolate cake with my sister this afternoon, and these are the things that God made to help us. 🙂 🙂
If I have learnt anything over the last 3 months, it’s that life is just too short to allow the potential opinions of others to dictate how we use our gifts & talents. Thank you for being brave & taking this first step into sharing your heart again. Big hugs & love to you ❤️
You are so brave. I’ve been playing our conversation on Friday back in my mind. You are incredible.
Don’t worry about the tut-tutters because they will always do it no matter what you do.
Your words speak truth about life and that is why they are afraid.
Coffee one day?
Coffee would be excellent, Jeannie. x
You have a lovely (gorgeous) way of putting pen to paper Yvette, makes interesting reading, you have a gift, you could be a novelist. 🙂
…..We all have those mornings where we lose our spark to jump out of bed and start our day with enthusiasm, I too had that feeling just not so long ago, I lost interest in the things I am most passionate about. I told myself it will roll away and thought maybe it’s just my body and mind telling me I need to slow down a gear, kick back a little. Sometimes we have those doubts about things in life but we have to take the positives and work on those rather than the negatives. that just weighs us down and others around us. Things level themselves out in time. Try not to anaylize things and try not to waste energy on doubting yourself as this is a waste of time. Believe in yourself, as we are stronger than we sometimes think. Love and Hugs XOXO ps and don’t panic or feel guilty or worry if you haven’t put pen to paper in a long while and most of all don’t worry about what others think.
Love you, Shelli. Thanks for the encouragement.
Yvette, I enjoy your writing and more important I love your passion for everything, you conviction in your beliefs, your ability to be real and your energy.
Too often we see the perfect life that people live on social media and it’s easy to forget that behind all of those smiles, behind all of the pomp and ceremony and behind all of the laughter is a balanced amount of sadness, loneliness, uncertainty and tears..
You sound like you are living a real life. Keep sharing the love and please keep telling your story.
Thank you, my friend.
Keep writing. We are your cheer squad and grateful recipients of your generous life.
Write when you are ready.
Write what you are ready/ almost ready to write.
We are reading.
I know that I shouldn’t care what people think, but what YOU think matters a great deal to me because you are brave, consistent, real and wise and a wonderful role model. 🙂
Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Yvette. I’ve been working through a lot of issues as well. (as you know) One book that has helped enormously is Falling Upward by Richard Rohr. It’s helped me to see a way through the questions and to pursue God. You’re on a quest and people appreciate you sharing your thoughts in the struggles. xxx