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Insanity

"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results" - A. Einstein:

“It is something I have been struggling with for a while…” I hear myself say in a tone of voice that betrays me as it conveys an energy and upbeat nature I haven’t truly been in some time. “I haven’t really figured it out yet except for one small insight: I reach a point and I just have to crash for a day.”  I end with a convincing smile and turn the conversation towards the women in the car with me.
‘I don’t actually catch up.’ I think to myself. ‘The crash just prevents the huge fall that would happen if I didn’t – a more catastrophic fall.’ I hear my thoughts working overtime to justify my fears.

Albert Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Well, I guess I have been insane for a while…. though I am working towards sanity – or what I used to know as sanity. A ‘sane for me’ let’s call it.

Let me explain what ‘sane for me’ used to look like:
Waking in the early morning
Having prayer time before climbing out of bed
Walking the dog before giving him ‘breakfast’
Drive to the park, run, drive home.
Shower, prepare breakfast & lunch, have a bible study while eating breakfast.
If I found I had extra time or a full evening planned, I’d be sure to do a house chore or two before I left for the office.
ALL OF THIS BEFORE WORK!!
That was ‘sane’ for me.
I could share so many other examples… 
Let me just tell you one more: if my work day had been very stationary or a ‘desk day’ as I called it, I’d leave the office and drive to the gym (because of course I always have a gym bag with me).
I loved this routine! I loved morning walks with my dog and morning
‘me time’ – after experiences ‘morning runs’ in college softball I could never affectionately refer to my wonderful, energizing, AND relaxing run in the park as a ‘morning run’.

Now, I am no longer a morning person. My husband actually calls me a ‘bear’. 
My hubby always loved bears… and he is a HUGE Cubs fan so there is a certain affection to this name… but it began as ‘grizzly bear’ in reference to me on my hard mornings… which have become almost every morning.
I work out maybe 3x’s a week –maybe. Some days when I walk a mile – WALK! ONE mile! with my dog I reach a level of fatigue that is hard to describe. My body feels heavy all over. Often, I’m tired through the next day!
I struggle to accomplish house chores. Honestly, I rarely accomplish very many outside of my job.
For several months I was sleeping during my lunch in my car just so I could function enough to last the rest of the work day and cook dinner that night.

One morning after a particularly terrible fight with my husband which resulted in a hole in the wall I thought – I have lost it. I am insane. This is not me. I don’t recognize myself.
After some prayer and reflection and a lot of grace from my husband (who had patched the hole I'd made in the wall before I came home that evening), I realized: 'No I am not ‘insane’, but if I am struggling so much that I literally do not feel like ‘me’ anymore I need real help.'

So, I began counseling – with a professional. The professional part was key for me. I have always had a hard time accepting help, and I knew my issues needed more attention that just consulting with a friend, family members, or even my husband and/or the church. I’d prayed often, and the hole in the wall is what God used to convince me to seek external help instead of fighting my demons alone.

I’m still in therapy with a professional who shares my Christian faith and works primarily with children, adolescents, and young adult women. This in and of itself was a God thing. I don’t think I would have stuck with it this long, but the therapist whose couch I ended up on has strengthens in areas that applied to me. What a gift from the Lord.
Somewhere along the way I’d forgotten that God can truly provide other people to walk with us on this journey. I’d spent so much time walking with others. I had forgotten to walk with myself. Praise God for the ability of others to help remind us how. Nothing can replace praying and asking God for His counsel. Still, a season that requires professional, Christian counsel is okay.
“Without counsel plans go wrong: but in the multitude of counselors they are established.” Proverbs 15:22
I hope this is an encouragement to someone. I think we are all a little crazy - in a good way! In a way that makes us us! But if you’re discouraged or don’t recognize yourself or behaving or thinking in a way that negatively impacts ONE person – yourself included – consider allowing help to come. You will probably have to seek it out. It will be hard. You may want to quit more than once. Pray for God to sustain you - because He will!

Holly Gerth at Coffee for You Heart has linked up lots of encouraging voices. Click here to have a listen....

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