Chapters of life…More on the current chapter…

Green toe nails…big green eyeglasses & multicolor running shoes

green nails glasses multi running shoes

“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are”
e.e.cummings

My earlier post Chapters of Life is a synopsis of my life.  The current chapter is the one I am living in right now-the one that is being written.  You will see posts on this chapter as  I become of aware of what God is doing in my life.  I am pretty excited about this time because as the above quote by e.e. cummings says I feel like I finally have the courage to grow up and become who I really am. Like a butterfly emerging from it’s cocoon and stretching it wings to dry I am beginning to fly. To God be the glory I am no longer afraid to be myself.  I never realized how much I hid or kept myself in the background trying not to be noticed until now.  Wow how much I have missed because of that.  So let me tell you how this started…

Back in April of this year I went shopping with a gift card to look for something new to wear on our vacation in Florida.  I searched through the racks of clothing.  Nothing appealed to me until one more pass through a rack of capris and there it was.  A very pink pair of capris in my size!  They caught my eye but my mind immediately dismissed them because they were pink.  I don’t wear pink….pink doesn’t look good on me I tried to tell myself.  But I also couldn’t get the idea of buying them out of my head.  So I removed them from the rack and went to the fitting room.  That would be the proof that I shouldn’t wear these.  Well I put them on and they fit perfectly, they were very comfortable and I liked them.  I decided I would buy them but was feeling very self conscious as I approached the check out counter.  The young lady behind the counter exclaimed that she loved the color.  Ok I felt a little better then. I ended up not wearing them on vacation but I did wear them with a pink flowered top to a Ladies Hawaiian themed brunch at church.   I really put myself out there.  I was sure my friends would tell me pink wasn’t my color but no they exclaimed how nice I looked in pink.  “You need to wear more pink”, “You look so pretty in pink”  Oh my I was thrilled but also not comfortable with the attention.  After that day, though,  I began to feel a shift in my thinking about myself.  In my morning quiet time I felt the Lord nudging me to allow myself to be the person He created.  it was ok to be me, to be noticed, to wear what I want and to be who I am and be confident in it.

The next month I went for my eye exam and needed to get new eyeglasses. I went into the optical shop and my eyes were drawn immediately to a pair of big green frames.  I tried them on.  Quite a difference from my smaller nondescript wire frames.  The technician exclaimed how nice they looked on me but I figured he was just trying to make a sale.  I looked at other frames but kept coming back to the green ones.  So I bought the green ones.  Another step out of my comfort zone and in step with God.  I received many compliments on my glasses but more than anything I felt more comfortable with myself.

The next big step occurred when I went with my daughter-in-law to get a manicure and pedicure.  As we were looking over the bottles of nail polish to choose our colors I she handed me a green polish and said I should use that for my toe nails.  I already had a neutral color in my hand.  Here it was again another opportunity for me to step out of my comfort zone.  So I took the green polish for my toenails.  On a roll…

The most recent step (no pun intended or maybe it is) came at our local running store when I went in to sign up for a running group with complete strangers and buy new running shoes.  A little explanation here…I have been running by myself but really wanted people to run with for motivation and support. Signing up for this group is a major breakthrough.  I would never do anything like this by myself.  I would have to have a friend with me. So back to the original thought.  The owner of the store said she was wondering when I would join this.  She knew that I ran by myself.  That was confirmation! Normally the store doesn’t have my shoe size in stock and I have to order them.  But this time she came out from the back room with not one but 3 pairs of shoes for me to try.  One was a very conservative color which she said were similar to what I had been wearing. Two was black with colors swirled in. Three was multicolored and I immediately dismissed them.  But again I found myself nudged and I believe the Holy Spirit was again giving me that confirmation to continue on the path He was leading me on this summer.  So as you probably already know I chose the multicolored shoes.

Tonight I went out running with the group of “strangers” in my new multicolored running shoes.  No one else had my shoes.  I was unique and ok with it. Most of the women knew each other but I stepped out and engaged with them.  I came home feeling wonderful.  I’m liking myself.  I feel God smiling on me as He has been waiting for me to surrender myself enough to like the person He created.

Birds Eye view of My Weekend Runs

It is 6:30 am and I am starting out my run to begin my day. Such a peaceful time of day as I head into town down the just awakening streets. There is very little traffic so I can easily cross streets to head out to a quieter area.  The sound of traffic begins to dim and I am left with my thoughts punctuated periodically by the sound of a cawing crow and the twittering of little birds in the trees.  I hear the wind in my ears and see the sun peeking through the tree tops.  The air feels cool on my skin as my body begins to heat up.  I hear the patter of my feet hitting the pavement and the sound of my breath as I increase my speed.

As I continue in this rhythm I pray and I think and I create (always with the hope that my creations will come out on paper the way they did in my head)

Soon I am back home cooling down, stretching, hydrating and refueling. I feel great and prepared to begin my work day.

The next day it is 7:00 am and sunny with low humidity.  There has been so much rain lately I am loving this second day in a row to get out to run.  I marvel at God’s creation and the ability He has given me to run and enjoy it.  Ahead of me I see a mother duck and her ducklings crossing the street from a pond to a stream on the other side.  They stop when they see me so I stop to watch and allow them to cross safely to the other side.  A little further up I see 2 fawns grazing in a yard.  They look up at me and stand perfectly still warily watching as their mother watches from the other side of a bush.

Thank you God for this opportunity to experience your creations this morning.

Another Saturday and I am out at 6:30 am enjoying the cool of the day before it heats up. I can feel the stress of the week leave my body as I increase my pace.  I thank God  again that I have the health and ability to run.  It dispels depression and stress and I feel one with Him.  Today He allows me to see the same doe I saw last time but this time nursing her fawn.   Then turning a corner I  saw this beautiful vista and had to stop to take a picture with my phone and just breathe in the fresh morning air and praise God.

Morning run view

When morning gilds the skies, my heart awakening cries: May Jesus Christ be praised!