(This is a keyed copy of the very last entry to my Autumn, 2010 journal. It will be followed by additional “footnotes;” ie, details and recounts that I couldn’t fit into, or didn’t take time to write out for, the hard copy.) -AA
I’m at the
bank–scratch that, Credit Union. Today is my first day handling transactions, personally.. and I’m waiting for Sha to give me my “drawer,” or what I would call, “cash box.”
Chris had to go in to work at 5 this morning; this new catering job (which is definitely a blessing) is very demanding on his time.. and I’m so glad, because he’s EXCITED about it. He’s happy with it. (I couldn’t handle getting up that early).
Chris and I wrote two songs together this past week; it was a Saturday evening, and we were at the church for the Christmas social. Somehow, maybe an hour into the fellowship evening, I meandered off on my own, desiring solitude and a chance to play — an opportunity rarely extended, recently. As I was playing on those pale ivory keys, dimly lit by reason of only one light flickering in the Sanctuary, I heard Chris’s voice. He came over to where I was, lugging Abby with him (Abby is his guitar, you recall). I shared what I had composed (based off of a progression he had put together weeks previous), and he loved both the words and the melody I had added. He played along, fingerpicking the bass line, and we enjoyed an evening of sharing and creating music together. It was like “old times.”
I was able to sleep in until 7:45 this morning, and by 7:53 I was successfully out from underneath the warm covers, braving the cold apartment air. (Chris and I “run” the heat for roughly 25 minutes a day; 10 minutes when we first wake up and 15 minutes at the end of the day, when we’re just getting into bed. At that time, I fully immerse myself into the bed, lying on it’s cold sheets, and Chris races from the little hallway to our bedroom once he’s turned the heat off.) However, when Chris isn’t home, I don’t bother. I just undress and dress quickly, move around a lot, and keep my mind busy, so that for the short space of time I’m home I won’t notice how icy my hands and feet are, how many goosebumps are covering my arms and legs.
But my heart is always warm.. warm enough, atleast, though the rest of my body varies between extreme temperatures. I wonder how hot your heart is during a heart attack? I hope I never know.
Anyways, the food I ate yesterday was really crappy, so I started today off with a hearty bowl of oatmeal and a side cup of “no sugar added” granny smith apple sauce. Just to give you a glimpse into how awful yesterday’s “Rose’s diet” chart reads, I’ll recount some happenings.
I came into work early — around 8:15, because an affiliate of ours (Enterprise – a car company) was stopping by to train and feed us (train us: how to market their new “buy-a-car” promotion; fed us: Chik Fil A and Shipley’s donuts). Being the vegetarian of the group, I felt justified, morally, to take just ONE glazed donut.
So I did.
And iffff I would have stopped there, I wouldn’t have experienced, later on in the day, “eater’s remorse.”
But no. The rest of my crap-fast consisted of Hershey kisses and bite-sized Snickers (gifts from a recent member who donated a shipload of candy to us tellers at Eco after a drive-through consultation), along with a handful (just one handful–very full) of bold party Chex Mix (the adjective perfectly descriptive of my eating pursuits).
And then, feeling lousy and unnourished but somehow full, I went on my 12 o clock lunch break. A co-worker, Melissa, had announced that she was heading off to Starbucks. Before leaving the building she called out, “Rose, do you want anything?” Being new, I thought to myself, This is the perfect opportunity to get to know her better and, maybe, kindle a friendship! Not wanting to reject such a christian obligation or to deny this human-connection opportunity here, now presenting itself, I quickly responded that I could just follow her there. And so, after clocking out, my car trailed hers the three miles to the Starbucks on 31. We both got out of our cars and rushed inside, out of the gusty weather, the chilly winds. Once inside, Melissa mentioned that she was heading straight back to Eco after making her purchase — that she had promised to buy a frappacino for one of our co-workers. Perfectly composed, I responded that that was fine – that I was “drinking in” and would “see her later;” and so, she left, and I defaulted to the back of the building and found myself sitting at an isolated, 2-person table, reading a book – quietly, silently – sipping on a cold, soy-based frappacino that made me shiver and that I didn’t really even want in the first place.
And THEN, that evening, Chris and I went out. First, we stopped by the church (for prayer meeting), and directly afterwards we drove to Burger King (as I had won a $10 gift card to the said restaraunt during a playful quiz issued by our friends from Enterprise). There, Chris and I enjoyed greasy, fat little french fries and split a medium chocolate shake. So yeah; yesterday sucked (my blood) and killed (my internal digestive organs).. like a vampire.
Anyways, wow. This is the last page of my 2010 journal and how.. not meaningful.. were these last 2 pages. I don’t know how to close this work; Melissa Jean still hasn’t written me back, or contacted me in any way whatsoever; I’m hoping, now, that my deferred “visit the fam in January” plans will materialize, somehow, this summer; Chris and I both work steady day-jobs now that we enjoy.. what an answer to prayer!; our church has supported and loved us both in ways that we could never repay; I’ve grown as a person — out of my tattoos, past my self-mutilation scars, through my heartache, beyond the calorie charts, and despite rejection, disappointment and censure.. I’ve grown through the blood and love of Christ, the love and friendship of Christopher, and the friendship and devotion of my mother –
So yeah! Last journal entry.. I guess I’ll be starting on my next one soon (within a week or two). I’ve stocked up 3 journals at the apartment – all untouched, brand new.. the only work is to decide which one is to follow the closed work and, what pen do I use. I’ve never really been particular about my writing instruments, so, that was more metaphorically significant than anything.
Some more details about “recent life..”
Monday night, is “radio-show-night.” It’s always Monday night at 7 that Pastor Karl, Christopher, TJ, Kirstan (when she’s not at school), Zeke (associate pastor) and myself (when I’m not working) get together and record a 30-minute Bible study segment (question/ answer format) for the 11 o clock program that airs every Saturday. Anyways, this PAST Monday, Christopher and I were in our apartment, readying ourselves for the evening, when a knock came at the door. Chris went to inspect and the eyehole was being covered by someone outside! How terrifying!
“Who is there?” He demanded authoritatively.
It was Pastor Karl.
We let him in and he sat down on our “new” couch and chatted with us for awhile.. it turns out, recording was cancelled for the evening, as our associate pastor needed to complete a homework assignment and couldn’t join us (I couldn’t see why we couldn’t just record without him this once, or how the 12 hours of daylight preceding 7 o clock didn’t afford enough time to “get it done..” but). For a long while he and Chris discussed a book Chris had recently purchased (or been given), and then, suddenly, Pastor Karl inquired, “Have you eaten dinner yet?”
“Well I’m just about to go cook dinner now!” I responded. “What would you like..”
“No–have you eaten dinner yet?”
Chris and I looked at eachother. “Well, no..”
“Where do you want to go?” He smiled.
We ended up going to a chinese buffet right down the street. It was so much fun; we both love spending time with Pastor Karl. After the evening was over and we drove him back to our apartment and he pulled away in his car, we talked about him for atleast 10-20 minutes.. how fun, loving, and beautiful he and his wife are. I failed to mention – he gave us 2 Walmart gift cards as “end of the year” (Christmas!) gifts! Chris and I went to the aforestated store immediately after his departure and with those gift cards we purchased some things we had needed for awhile: a vaccum, a broom, a dustpan, a towel, and more. Chris needed socks, so we got those.. I needed socks, too (tall ones — our apartment, is freeeeezing), so I also got socks. That was our Christmas present to eachother. 🙂
Neither of us really celebrate the holiday, but we still want to surprise eachother with something “special.” Unfortunately, it’s not very do-able.. but regardless, Chris’s wishlist reads something like this: a tv. Mine boldly asks for: a Siberian Husky puppy or a German Shepherd dog. Both of us want (and need) haircuts. Christmas will just have to carry on for a couple of months and maybe, during that period of time, we’ll accumulate the funds necessary to grant those desires.. or atleast one or two of them.
Anyways, I’m finishing this entry today – this morning. It’s Friday. Chris wasn’t scheduled to work, so he’s at home – vaccuming, doing laundary, washing dishes, making the bed, and, possibly, attending a funeral. Darren’s mother’s funeral. It came as a shock to me (Darren is a church friend of ours; his last name need not be given). It amazed me, Wednesday night.. it was 2 nights after the incident, and Darren came to the prayer meeting held at our church. He was dressed nicely (a young man, maybe 25..), wearing a smile, laughing with us, making eye contact, giving hugs.. not crying at all. God has definitely given him a peace that passes understanding – a comfort and consolation few allow themselves to experience.. I know that Chris’s presence at the funeral will be a support to him – a comfort, and a consolation. As followers of Christ, we must always, always remember – that we are His hands, and feet — we are His lips, His words, His light. The way we conduct ourselves, the way we speak, the way we live, is all a reflection of the character of the one we “love” and “serve.” We can be messengers of peace, light and love – or agents of cold harshness, stern justice, and awful darkness.. our influence can be that which tends to good, or can be a poor example.. our atmosphere may be infused with life-giving energy, optimism and positiveness – or it can be contaminated, poisoned, with selfishness, irritability and insensitivity. Taking time – to reflect, to pray, to entreat, to repent — this is the life blood of our spirits.
And while Chris is at home, working, I’m at the Credit Union, wearing two bandaids – one on my right wrist, one on my left forearm – handling transactions, balancing, filing..
Tonight we’ll be going to FNF, tomorrow we’ll be attending church, tomorrow afternoon we’ll be driving over to the Lopez’ house for the monthly Bible study (led out by Pastor Karl), and tomorrow evening, we’ll be sitting in the audience watching a Christmas play that Chris’s little sister, Leah, is a performer in..
and then Sunday, at 8 am, I’ll be serving.
And the rest of the week – I’ll be working.. until, once again, the blessed Sabbath rest arrives.
I was reading, yesterday, a quote – which I will now elaborate on. It comes from The Great Controversy – a book written by Ellen White in the 1800s.
“There have ever been two classes among (did you catch that? among) those who profess (def: to declare openly; announce or affirm; avow or acknowledge) to be followers of Christ. While one class study the Saviour’s life and earnestly (not half-heartedly or in an offhanded sort of way) seek to correct their defects and conform to the Pattern, the other class shun the plain (putting the truth to shame, making confusing that which is simple, complicating what is totally clear), practical truths which expose their errors. Even in her best (def: of the highest quality, excellence, or standing; most advantageous, suitable, or desirable) estate the church was not composed wholly (completely, entirely) of the true, pure, and sincere. Our Saviour taught that those who willfully indulge in sin are not to be received into the church; yet He connected with Himself men who were faulty in character, and granted them the benefits of His teachings and example, that they might have an opportunity to see their errors and (-beyond SEEING them,) correct them.”
Really.. never mind. That says it all.
As a final footnote: I went home during my lunch break to warm up some soup aaaaand to my surprise, Christopher had not only cleaned the house immaculately, but had also written me a sweet “love letter” and baked a full-tin of cookies. 🙂 It made my day.. it made me smile.. it made me feel loved. 🙂 Just thought I’d share that – how awesome and superior to ALLLL other husbands my Christopher is.
“And it gets easier with the course of time
And less hard for me to realize
(that) I’ve lost everything I used to hold inside
And I’ve given it away
a dozen for a dime” -Rose and Chris