Saturday, February 9, 2013

Real Gurl Goes to College-Second Term: Can I Really Do This?

The beginning of the second or winter term happened to coincide with the sudden need to move.  It was a stressful time to move and start another semester.  My very wonderful family, friends and life group came through and helped me get packed, moved and settled.  As I started the first week of the term under the clouds of pressure, I got scared.

The old voice loves to chime in at these times. 

"See?  First term was just a fluke.  You knew you couldn't do this.  Who did you think you were anyway?  Maybe you should just get out now."

I battled through the first week and then came my resolve:  I would drop Algebra II, the class that needs most of my attention, and replace it with something less homework driven.  I would pick up the math again in the spring.  That seemed right to me.  I immediately felt better.  Speech, Women's Health and Psychology 202 would be fine.  Just replace the math.

So I look through the courses that I am lacking, trying to find a good replacement for math.  I must hurry because I have already missed the first week.  I needed a history class and saw religion and Old Testament as an option.  I was thinking how hard can it be?  I grew up hearing about this stuff every week in Sunday School.  We will read about the beginning, Noah and the Ark, Moses and the Ten Commandments....I would really like that!

My first day of class found me waiting outside of Room 1610 with about 20 other students.  This teacher is precise and doesn't show up until just at 9 a.m.  As he approaches, pulling his rolly cart behind him, I smile.  He is a tall, lean, elder man.  He has white hair that I have noticed always seems to fly away, glasses, a bushy white mustache and best of all....about 15 pens/pencils in his shirt pocket!  I had a sudden dose of "what did I do" and then decided to make the best of it.  By the end of the first class, I really liked him and found myself very engrossed in the lesson.  He is very serious about the Old Testament.

That said, this is the class that I am struggling in the most.  I enjoy reading and talking about the issues and storylines.  I like hearing about the history of the battles and how the Old Testament, Hebrew Bible and Roman Catholic Bible compare.

It's the tests!  I just can't seem to conquer the material when it comes to answering the questions.  I am halfway through the term and I am struggling to have a Cminus!  So this Tuesday, at his invitation, I am meeting with him to get tips on how to study.  Honestly, I am surprised that I am having so much trouble in a class I am enjoying.  But this is where I need to override old shortcomings and get a different outcome. 

I always tell my women's groups:  If you don't like something, change it.  I need to take my own advice.

I CAN really do this.  I can, I Can, I CAN!

Friday, February 8, 2013

The Road to Affirmation

Self Affirmation by Laura Holzbach
~I may be alone but I am not lonely.
~I am not proclaiming Dr. Phil status but trying to do my best in a world suffering from a chronic case of PTSD.

~I am far from perfect and can provide numerous witnesses to attest to this.  It is futile to pursue perfection, as it does not exist anyway.

~I am not holy but I am forgiven with the most loving grace and mercy ever known.
~I am not crazy but I am squirrelly, which is to say that I am forgetful and easily confused, causing frustration.  And I get skittish sometimes.

~I am not hard.  On the contrary, I am sensitive, soft-hearted, kind, accepting and can only hope for the response in return.  Of course, imperfection can cause any of these traits to disappear on a moment’s notice creating a need for me to ask forgiveness.
~I have known loss in great magnitude and yet can still feel blessed beyond measure.

~My life, once broken by my own hand and shattered into a million pieces, is beginning to take shape.  It has taken a lot of pain and work but now the hand of God in all my life I see.

~Where nightmares and weeping were once frequent, unwelcomed visitors, I can now enjoy the pleasure of having dreams and the power to see them to fruition.
~The road ahead used to seem dark, scary and and I longed for it to end.  Now the signs are for a fulfilling future ahead.

~I am an encourager, an optimist, a possibilitarian.  I just can't help it.  And these traits have helped me through my darkest hours.  I give points, stars, hugs and smiles.  In my world there are prizes.  Even lollipops.  This is my joy.

~I believe in unconditional love.  In fact, that is the only kind of love I choose to believe in.  I will love you in spite of anything that separates us.
~And this is my favorite part about me:  If I love you, I love you always.  Love is not a faucet to be turned on and off at will, but a supernatural spring of healing emotion placed in us by God, who is Love himself.

~Because I am loved, I can love.