The Detox Diaries, Five Minute Friday Edition: Exhale

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Gentle Reader,

Five Minute (it will be in a few hours) Friday.

Linking up with Lisa-Jo.

Tonight we: exhale.

Go.

Inside the mind of the anxious, stream-of-consciousness style:

It’s so hot and I hate the heat and I wish we had central air. I’m worried about this barbecue that Chris is throwing tomorrow. It’s supposed to be so hot and there’s not shade at the park in our neighborhood and we don’t know how many people are going to come and what if we run out of food or don’t have enough to drink? I shouldn’t care but I do because…I don’t know why. Everything is too much right now. So busy. So overwhelming. Packed carts and shelves at work and stuff just keeps streaming in, stuff that people want right now. Is Benny doing okay? That dog attack on Saturday was so scary. I’m afraid to take the dogs for a walk by myself now. Chris is running some kind of saw in the garage and it just pierces straight into my brain and I want to throw something. I am annoyed. Seems like all the time. Not for any real reason. I know what is happening in my body and why I feel like I do but that doesn’t make it easier and how I long for Jesus to just take this from me! I am scared to ask not because I don’t think He can but because I think He won’t. This concerns me less for me and more for others; how will they interpret it if they pray and I am not released? Not healed? I think about making people happy. I want them to have a good time. That’s why I’m worried about this barbecue. I sensed the Spirit telling me to “choose to have fun” instead of stressing out, but I’m not even really sure what that would look like. Is it really so simple? Can you just choose to enjoy something and refuse to worry?

I feel like I am taking more and more in and just want so badly to exhale.

Stop.

Tell me, dear reader. Is it really that simple? The question is a deep one for me. I suspect that I can, in fact, choose…but I worry about the consequences of that choice. I see patterns. I see the interconnectedness of every decision. And right now, I feel darn near paralyzed.

Edited to Add: We’re not supposed to edit our Five Minute Friday entries, but we are supposed to visit as many of the other bloggers as we can and provide feedback. After entering this piece to the link-up, I read Hannah Boning’s entry and it was exactly what I needed. Please, go and check it out!

Another Edit: God is truly ministering to me through the words of all the fabulous, gorgeous and talented bloggers who are participating this week. He heard the desperate cry of my soul and sent the words that would soothe the pain. I am so, so grateful for these sisters (and some brothers!)

My journey to faith. (15)

To read all the posts in The Detox Diaries series, go here.

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37 thoughts on “The Detox Diaries, Five Minute Friday Edition: Exhale

  1. oh, girl. I can sympathize. choosing to enjoy something is so simple…and also so, so not. hoping for an exhale for you. (also, so honored you’re linking to my post. so glad it helped.)

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  2. “I am scared to ask not because I don’t think He can but because I think He won’t. ” I feel like you summed up my entire faith journey here. Powerful read. Thanks for sharing it with us – and now I’m going to be thinking of you tomorrow and hoping you don’t run out of food either 🙂

    Happy 4th!~Lisa-Jo

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    1. Good thing there’s a grocery store a few minutes up the road. 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by, Lisa-Jo. Trusting God can be pretty hard sometimes. I’m thankful that He knows that about us and loves us anyway!

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  3. Oh, dear sister … may He speak sweet, deep peace to your soul. May you find the healing you need … He loves you so. Please don’t be afraid to talk with a wise counselor, someone who can help you through this troubled time.

    Hugs.

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    1. Thank you, Linda. I appreciate that. I went through a little over a year of therapy so I’ve got the “tools.” It’s just difficult to implement them when my mind gets racing. That’s why I’m thankful for this week’s prompt and all the great entries! God is definitely ministering to me through all of you.

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  4. Choose to have fun. Yes! The word choose is so important. It’s often about putting one foot in front of the other and making a choice to move forward. I hope your day is lovely and that you take some time to exhale:).

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    1. There’s a song in some old claymation movie… “Put one foot in front of the other, and soon you’ll be walking ‘cross the floor! Put one foot in front of the other, and soon you’ll be walking out the door!” I’ll be thinking about that this weekend, and remembering that Jesus is with me.

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  5. I hesitate to share this, not sure how it will be received….but going to be brave for a minute, and say Yes, it is a choice, and it can be that simple. And yet, it doesn’t feel that simple as you are making the choice and living it out. The internal voices scream loudly….but if you choose Joy, you will see that things can change….it is an intentional choice.

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    1. Don’t be afraid to share, Deanna. Your words are correct and full of wisdom. Writing this post showed me (again) that I allow fear to rob me of my choice. I feel powerless so often. But! That is not who God made me to be. With Him, I can choose.

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  6. I love this community! Everything will be fine at the BBQ. If the food runs out–it’s for a reason–to build a community, to give you a chance to meet a challenge with joy–who know what God has planned. But never fear–HE IS in control and will be with you each step of the way.

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  7. Also forgot to mention….don’t worry about the other people. Pray what you need, submitting to His will for you. Don’t worry about how others will react, because that is not something that you can control. He may heal, and He may not, and it is ultimately up to Him and all you can do is ask and surrender. He is big enough to take care of the others if they find themselves disappointed.

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  8. I’ve had more anxiety attacks than I can count. I hate them. I’m helpless before them. My heart rate is off the charts and they last for over fourteen hours. I always think I’m going to die.

    I used to have them all the time. I haven’t had one in years. At the gym, I push my body on the aerobic machine with high intensity interval training. My heart rate has gone higher than 170 beats per minute in the sprints. But I’m not afraid of dying anymore. I’ll be sixty years old in less than three weeks.

    I don’t think I’ll have a heart attack anymore. It’s not just that I’ve been to the doctor’s and been checked out. It’s that I trust God that if I will die, then I will die by His will.

    And if I will live, it’s because He has a reason for me to live. It’s not that I don’t get scared anymore. It’s just that I know that no matter how I feel or what I think is happening to me, God is with me. What else could I ask for?

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  9. Marie – Your fears, your pleading echoes what so many of us feel! Thank you for being real and may your exhale leave ample room for God to wiggle in and provide you with His peace. Blessings, my friend!

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  10. This is a whole lot of raw truth, I love it. Your anxiety about the BBQ sounds “normal”. I don’t know how people can host big parties and do the things they do on the fly, I am spontaneous but I like things to be right, I like, no I NEED reassurance for my mind to be at rest, BUT when I am IN THE MOMENT all of that stress falls off of me and melts away. I am sure people will bring their own drinks and their own extra snacks because people are awesome like that when it comes to fun events. If you need extra you can always bring a big ole jug of water or sweet tea or whatever you can access easily! Don’t focus on trying to have fun, don’t focus on trying to be perfect, just focus on trusting that God has this, because He does!

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    1. I was just telling my husband that I have a hard time being in the moment. Thank you for this. All I need to do is focus on God, even if I have to remind myself of that every, oh, you know, five seconds. 🙂 That’s all that matters.

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  11. I liked the stream of consciousness style as you worked through some of the anxious thoughts on you heart and in your mind. I pray that your gathering goes well and that you are indeed able to just have fun and let things work themselves out. I’m sure that people will have a good time and memories will be made. Praying for peace as far as your body is concerned…and the dog attack sounds scary. I was once in the middle of one and it was awful. I’ll pray that one day you’ll be able to go out with the dog without fear.
    Thank you for sharing this exhale.

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  12. Again, I marvel at your ability to put words on paper (so to speak) that clarify for me what you are feeling internally. I share your “anxiety” about the BBQ (not yours, ours) because Uncle John and I went shopping earlier this week and I “think” we got everything we need but won’t bet on it. However, another way to look at it is this: we have what we have, no one is going to go hungry! Peace and comfort be with you sweet Marie and I will be praying for the Lord to speak to your body and calm the storm inside of it. If not, maybe He will calm HIS CHILD!

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  13. I feel like you miss the point of a deep breath – an “exhale”. Breathe. Take life in and spew out death. Slow down. Take another breath – take in peace and grace and breathe out anxiety and the poisonous need to make everyone happy. Thanks for your candid, unedited, and authentic post from the heart though. Our hearts aren’t always “put together” or ready for “going out”, but they’re there, and a force to be reckoned with. Praying for you, dear sister.

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  14. Oh Marie I will be thinking of you and praying for you today! We usually host a party every 4th. Over 100 people in our small home and half acre yard. It’s a lot of fun but draining. Last year, we did it one month after returning to our home with 11 people. Still unpacking. Still overly stressed. With our five foster kiddos leaving the next day. I couldn’t do it this year and we are having a quiet day today. I don’t remember the last time the 4th was like this. If ever. But I am grateful for the past and for today. May your celebrations be filled with His mercy. His grace shows up. You are a woman who loves the Lord and your beautiful spirit is a gift.

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    1. I can imagine the stress of that party, Jolene. And I also imagine that maybe you are feeling sad today, remembering your foster kiddos. I pray that the Lord will pour extra measures of love into your heart. Hugs.

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  15. I am so in love with this community… I love that you are brave enough to write real and honest here and I love that there is safety and prayers and me, too’s and oh my goodness, this is a powerful little corner on the internet! It feels holy. He is here. Praying He shows up big for you in all the little ways today… reminding you that the choice is yours and yes – it’s easy and no – it’s not… but choosing joy… choosing to be in the moment and present and grateful for what is right there, right then… you won’t regret that choice!

    As far as the praying for healing… I get it. I think we have all prayed for healing and sometimes we see it and sometimes we don’t. But all is grace and no matter the outcome, I believe we are called to pray. How it turns out doesn’t change that. He is the one that heals… but we get the honor or partnering with Him and I am planning on doing just that for you today, friend!

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  16. Oh, I can so relate to this frenzy of the mind and heart!

    And though it is easy to say “Slow Down!”, it is a Mt. Everest to do.

    Some days, I have to just say “From 8 to 8:30, it is my time to …..” whatever feels like something that would nurture and encourage me. It can vary from a walk, reading, playing piano, sewing, talking to a friend, etc.

    As a child, I thought grown-ups had it made. Now in my fifth decade, I’ve finally learned that I am the only one that can give myself “time off.”

    One step at a time to a place of inner calm.

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  17. Someone very wise once told me that I should think Objectively about things that were troubling me. He also said to remember this sentence when troubled by “thoughts”; “It is only a thought.”

    What one worries about the most at any given time is truly, ONLY a thought. I found that If I did this, it saved a lot of wear and tear on my mind. It stopped runaway, loop thinking that isn’t ever very constructive, and let me get back on the track of actually solving a problem. Hope that this helps you, too.

    Remember, It’s only a thought.

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  18. Marie, I am new to five minute friday. I loved what you wrote. Sometimes to shut down my brain when anxiety is ruling me, I have to EXHALE. E-encourage someone else who is struggling, takes my mind of me. X ‘xclaim who I am in Christ. HE DID NOT give me a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7. H-hope My hope is built on Jesus and nothing else. A-adore God with my praises, his grace, his mercy, his faithfulness. L- live, laugh, love, and let go. E-Enter His presense in prayer.

    Blessings. Diana

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