Overshadowed **DaniGee**

Source: Overshadowed **DaniGee**

Leave a comment

Overshadowed **DaniGee**

kendall.jpg

Self Doubt. Anger. Confusion. No Time. These past couple of months have been challenging, to the say the least. I was asked to take on another role at work, which I was such an honor and I was so happy to even be considered. What I didn’t immediately realize would come would be difficult work situations and extra responsibilities that doesn’t always end at 5 o’clock. During this time of transition, I’ve doubted myself, became stressed and anxious to the point where the only thing that got me out of bed was the fact that I knew I could hop back in as soon as I got back home. I hate that feeling but sometimes it felt like it was unavoidable. I was able to decompress with trusted coworkers and my best friends but I felt like I was hitting the same wall on a weekly basis. Is this what it looks like when you are given more responsibilities? If so, I was looking for the receipt and the package that it came in.

But God. He knows what I need even before I ask. He gave me April 16th. He gave me the holiday to celebrate his son’s resurrection. He gave me (US) his only son, the ultimate sacrifice. It was doing this day that it hit me that he sacrificed his life for me, not to live life in ever-anxious state but to LIVE. He wants all the praise. The life I live should be a joyful one, a one of thankfulness on our tongue.

Life can be daunting. It can be uncomfortable and scary. However, I believe in God. I believe that he has his best interests for me. It is a reason for me to be going through this. It is for preparation for something greater. God has made ME in his image and he makes no mistakes. He has given me the tools for my purpose in this world.

25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

27 “Yes, Lord,” she replied, “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.” -John 11 25-27

Still PUSHing,

DaniGee

, , , ,

Leave a comment

One Year Ago~Audrey

 

About this time last year, I made my first visit overseas. I joined my coworkers in a mission trip toIMG_9465 change the lives of the 1000,000 plus orphans in Ukraine, I had never been overseas. In fact, I had only flown one time. A few years ago I made a trip to DC. But that was nothing like the 12 plus hour trip I would make over the Atlantic Ocean. I was slightly nervosa as one might imagine.

 

Funnily enough, issues with planes and getting on were one of the only two things I was worried about. I had heard to many horror stories about people missing their flights or not being able to get on the plane. After a momentary issue when we got there and a potential panic attack, I was fine. I was able to move when I needed to (that was concern number 2; how I would manage my illnesses) and was perfectly comfortable and entrained during my travel.

 

I took this all as a good sign: a great start to a productive trip. I was excited to see a new culture, to work on the actual soil the orphans I had met with came from. I was excited for my experiences. But I never expected to be as moved or to be as comfortable as I was when I arrived in Ukraine.

 

We stayed at a transitional care facility in Korosten. A kind of foster home in case where kids were taken care of during the scary time of transition with great care and love, the children here were between IMG_9840.JPGfamilies and orphanages here. This was one of the nicer places BOF had been stationed, and I was very thankful because it was easier for me, a chronic illness warrior, to do my job with some comforts. I had respect for all those that came before and after who made do with a lot less and never stopped them.

 

We met the children briefly before everyone headed to a local park. Everyone but me. I stayed to rest. I was an exhausted from travel and wanted to be able to give the kids my all the first day of programming. I was resting up to deal with the life changing overview I was acquired.

 

The first day, we started by playing with the kids with our VBS programming planned for that night. We walked with them to their dance lessons, something rare for these kids and were touched by how art can make a difference. As a ex marching band member and music lover, I knew that music could change lives, but when you saw these kids come alive to dance to the music it took on a new depth. They escaped their pain and shook it off. It was amazing.IMG_9543

 

 In fact, these children came alive whenever they got some affection. I sat next to one child while they crafted and for the rest of the trip he was especially attached to me. I let one child wear my sunglasses and then we were best friends. Even just pushing a toy truck across the floor made me popular with the kids. Sure, they had great caregivers that worked with them, but new friends meant the world to them.

 

Our VBS program was filled with music and dancing and crafts and fun. We shared stories of Jesus and the bible. Each team member shared testimonies of their life. I, of course, shared my story of chronic illness and how I was on broken but that God gave me strength to persevere and gave me doctors and medicines to make me better. This was especially important to me because I had made friends with a young girl with brittle bone disease. When we went outside to play, she had to be extra careful and didn’t get to do as much as the other kids. I hung out with her and helped kept her occupied. I hope one day she remembers that story. When the word seems hard and you can’t do everything you want because of your body, I hope she remembers she met someone who had hope: in herself, in medicine, and in God.

 

IMG_9615The week was amazing and on the last day with the child, I went with them one walk around the neighborhood. Just me, the kids, and their caregivers. No other team member or translator. And I was perfectly comfortable with this. I had no problem walking around an area I didn’t know with people who didn’t know my language. In fact, I had been comfortable the entire time. When I arrived, I was tired not afraid. I was never afraid. Was I frustrated that I couldn’t communicate like I wanted? Sure, but that nevermore I feel like I didn’t belong. On that walk, I had fun with the kids. We had made up a fake language that had crossed barriers and broke the ice. And on this particular walk, a few of eh kids and I practiced our skills of English and Russian, teaching each other new words in both languages by what we saw around us. I will always remember learning the word for fish at the market that day. Thanks Daniel!

 

But that walk brought more to my attention than just a few words. I really got to see the big picture. Walking around this town in Ukraine, I notice the differences but I also noticed the similarities. Housing was different but I could see the tell tale signs of those with not enough money. I saw people just trying to survive. The trapping may have been different but the people were the same. Working to support their families. Here they had markets on the street and back home they are cashiers at Walmart. I looked into the faces of these children and saw the same kind of spirit I saw in the kids I grew up with: dreams and aspirations trying to overcome what life threw at them. I saw souls light up: I saw God.

 

One of the criticisms of our work is that we work with children in a different county and don’t focus on IMG_9762.JPGkids in Alabama. As someone who worked in Alabama improving the lives of those with children and adults with disabilities for ten years, I can tell you I’ve done that and I can assure you there are big hearted, god driven people already doing that.  But the thing is, God’s people aren’t limited to Alabama–they aren’t even limited to the United States. That I day I truly saw what He was trying to show me! I felt so comfortable because I was among his people! My brothers and sister may have spoken a different language but that didn’t change what we had in common. God was in Ukraine and He loved his children there. He has called me to be part of a team of American and Ukraine who wanted to change these kids life for the better!

 

I am truly honored. I always wanted to make a difference and never though He’d called me for something as big as international missionary work.  I remember their faces so clearly and it’s almost like they haunt me.  These children, along with the ones that come to camp, are my touch stone. They remind me that love their neighbor doesn’t mean the person next to you or the person next door; it means that we you love each of your brothers and sister regardless of distance.

If you would like to find out more about Bridges of Faith please visits: http://www.bridgesoffaith.com/

 

And if you are interested in making a tax-deductible donation to BOF in my name to continue my domestic ministry work , please contact audrey@bridgesoffaith.com, donate on-line (mention my name) or send checks to 302 County Road 383, Billingsley, AL 36006. Thank you for your support!

 

1 Comment

It Ain’t No Rainbow~Audrey

It’s time for a “half year” check in (more or less; I’m always late these days). I’m having a tough time in my life right now but I am trying. Here’s where I stand.

 

“Just Let Me Know”

 

I have worked hard on connecting with friends. I wrote two very heartfelt letters to friends I thought of as “wayward.” Not that they are bad, but they have a life that has helped them close up and not reach out. So I tried to reach out but no response. But I feel better about my stance with them. I also posted a birthday post on a friend who my only contact is on Facebook. We were very close in high school but she’s changed and while I understand we grow, I wish we weren’t complying separate.  I didn’t expect her to reply; she didn’t; but I tried.

 

I failed at staying in touch with current friends. I’ve been so focused on my specific problems that I haven’t been much of the “reach out and touch someone” person I had been. Maybe I can fix that this week.

 

“And, God knows, It’s the Only Way to Heal Now”

I’m losing this battle in the war of my health. I stope exercising and sometimes just stopped caring. I’m stuck in rut. I’ve been busy and very stressed which chokes my body. My chores don’t get done but I am so tired of not feeling good. My fatigue level is high. I am upset because I worked so hard to get out of this rut and here I am again. I am trying to deal with the idea that these periods will happen because it is a CHRONIC illness. But it’s hard to adjust

 

“In the Heart of the Free World”

I thought about giving up the other day. I was tired and I had gotten a lot of flak for my opinions on pop culture (of all things!). This song played in my head and I remembered I wasn’t trapped in Russia like some people. I could choose as I always have to ignore people who are mean because they don’t like the minority opinion. I am me and I don’t have to like what everyone else does.

 

“Spinning like a Gravitron When I was just a kid”

With all that is going on in my life, I am stuck in one of depressive spirals. It’s not as bad as some instances but my fatigue isn’t making it better. In some sense I am happy but have too much stress. It’s clear when you look at my habits when I’m in a depressive mood; I get obsessive. At this point, it’s reading (especially all the Rick Riordan novels) and Final Fantasy XV. They keep my mind of the bad stuff and one glace at my Facebook and you can see the obsessiveness. Lol

 

“I’ve Forgiven It All”

I’m not mad at my exes. But I am working on wishing them a happy life. I know I can check off all but one of them (but that’s another story}.

What I have realized is that I don’t like the idea that my exes think I might care. Interestingly, I was commenting on a mutual friend’s Facebook where she was paired with Captain America. She was talking about how he was too goody goody for her. My ex then comes in and says something about him being a Nazi (that is Being erased this May and it never happened so ha!). To any other person I would have replied “shut your dirty filthy mouth” but since he was an ex I wondered if he thought I was angry at him still as opposed to the Nazi. I decided not to post but that’s when it occurred to me, that I wish them well but I don’t want them to think I actually care about them. Is that a paradox?

 

“I Refuse to Look Back Thinking Days Were Better Just Because They’re Younger Days”

So I was in the shower the other night and having an objective look at my past. For every great memory, there is a cringe worthy moment. I truly realize that things were never perfect, just different. I am not enjoying now enough because it is different. So the focus going forward is to celebrate the different.

 

“We Can Never Go Back”

 

Nothing can be the same, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be better.

 

,

Leave a comment

Excuse the Excuses-Renee’

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.-X

My 20s are gone, I spent a lot of this time making excuses for why I shouldn’t, couldn’t or wouldn’t do something.

Time, I mean who really has it?

Money? 😂😂

How? How would I get x,y or z done.

Or worse yet, I’d cheerlead another’s dream while choking on my own. But why? Why would I not do my best? Or take more chances? What in the world stops (or stopped me from moving forward?).

Truth is, I never saw myself as a leading lady, if I were in Destiny’s Child, I’d been Kelly. Id be Ringo, had I been a Beatle. Why? Because I’ve always put myself second(sometimes third or fourth). My pain, my dreams…I always felt weren’t as important as someone else’s and …gosh I dont have it that bad.

I’ve learned to shrink back while others push forward. It’s self taught and I don’t really know when that flip switched for me. As a child and teenager (although yes I had some awkward stages), I always, always believed in myself. Believed that I could and dang it would make a difference…but somewhere after I crossed the stage after graduation….reality and self-doubt smacked me in my face. I don’t think I saw the change in myself and thoughts until recently. Until I stopped blogging for Rad7even(because what radical thing am I actually doing) or for HER (what advice could I possibly give) or stopped attending church…or fellowshiping with my girls. Maybe it was moving to Birmingham and finding out how hard it was to connect to another living person that i wasn’t married to..and heck..trying to figure out how to connect with my new husband.

Somewhere between the move and the marriage the miscarriage and new babies…I dropped something. The past four years I’ve learned a great deal..but I lost myself.

I’ve made excuses for the past four years, I’ve supported other people’s dreams while purposely sabotaging my own……but why??

I honestly dont know, but I’m refusing to let my 30s be another lost path on this journey.

1 Comment

Link in the Chain~Audrey

 

Author’s Note: This was written in January but other pressing concerns caused this blog to be posted out of order.

 

 

 

I sit here, a week after the kids have left. A lot has happened since they left. We got a new president, the world came together to march for the rights of women. And I learned a new lesson.

 

I have a habit of being a rescuer. I want to help other get better and meet their potential. I want to be the one that helps them rise up and be the personal God meant them to be. This is all well and good. It’s noble and it gives me self-satisfaction. But I have to remember I am just a cog in the huge wheel. While the kids were here, I realized I couldn’t be everything someone needed.

 

img_8853We had 10 kids in our December group. This was a pretty good group and they had the youth exsuburance that comes with a group of kids. I noticed one girl who didn’t flock to this energy. She instead liked to chill and would often sit off by herself just watching everything. As someone who needs some time to sit and rest, I would sit next to her and talk to her. This was all she needed: someone to come up to her, to care for her.  It was just a simple action, sitting next to her, but it meant the world to her.

 

It was easy to connect with Sasha. I’m an introvert.  I like to chill. We used Google Translate and talked about our lives. If we had brothers and sisters. What we like to do. Who our favorite authors were. We spent a lot of time together but I was happy when she went off with her friends or other volunteers. In fact, about a week before she left, she told me I was her only true friend. It brought tears to my eyes.

 

This was a huge reveal that was supposed to make me happy. And in some way it did, but it made me sad. I wanted her to have many friends and, loved ones. So I went about getting her to talk to other and expanding friends while still being a stable pat of her life. I wasn’t going to disappear and she seemed afraid of hat when making new friends. I had to explain we can share friendship.

 

The day Sasha left hurt. She was very calm and handled everything maturely like she did the entire img_8177month. I only saw her cry once. We had made boxes as a craft and I gave her mine I made with our picture in it. Even then she didn’t want me to see her cry.

 

I talk to her some on Facebook but it is hard connect. I have told her that I miss her and still love her even though she was far away. She shared a picture on Facebook of us and I know that she still loves me.

 

My job is full of these moments. Where I get to share with the kids and help them understand they are loved. I miss Sasha so much. I have been praying for people to step up in her life. She needs more than just me to become the woman I know she can be. But at least I could plant a seed and be part of a chain that will help her potential.

 

 

 

If you would like to find out more about Bridges of Faith please visits: http://www.bridgesoffaith.com/

 

And if you are interested in making a tax-deductible donation to BOF in my name to continue my domestic ministry work , please contact audrey@bridgesoffaith.com, donate on-line (mention my name) or send checks to 302 County Road 383, Billingsley, AL 36006. Thank you for your support!

 

 

 

,

1 Comment

L-O-V-E ***DaniGee***

Love. This four lettered word can bring on palpations, giggles, blushed cheeks and daydreaming. It can also cause anger, doubt, and tears. I decided for this post to define what love looks like to me.

Love is French fries with Heinz ketchup and not gaining any weight.

Love is having my Godbabies run up to me and give me hugs.

Love is not always hearing what I want to hear but what I need to hear.

Love is watching the original CSI: Crime Scene Investigation with my favorite person.

Love is having my mom buy my favorite chips even when she knows I’m on a diet.

Love is having multiple conversations with my best friend on several social media simultaneously.

Love is looking in the mirror and smiling at who I see.

Love is when someone lets you know that they have been listening.

Love is random gifts in the mail.

Love is the sun on my face on a beautiful spring day.

Love is completing the perfect squat.

 

Love is….

love-verse

What does Love looks like to you??

 

Keep Pushing,

DaniGee

,

Leave a comment