2014 Going On 2015

Hello, lovely.

I’m not ready for the new year. This one has gone by way too fast. So I think I’ll live in denial for a while and just take life a day at a time.

When I think about a whole year that I have to get through, it’s overwhelming. But when I focus on just a day at a time, it’s easier to think about. Is that the same for you?

I don’t set New Year’s Resolutions. Why make them if you know you won’t keep them? They’ll just bring you down in the end. Instead, I propose that we set a few goals – not “I’ll lose this much weight” or “I’ll exercise this much a week” but set some meaningful goals.

I will say something kind to a stranger.

I will try a new food once a month.

I will love myself.

Whatever. Just make it meaningful to you, because if it doesn’t mean enough, you won’t keep that resolution. Personalize it. Make a plan to follow through. And just take it a little bit at a time.

Here’s my list:

  • I will work harder at speech and debate.
  • I will be more proud of myself for the effort I put in than the outcome.
  • I will finish editing The Reset.
  • I will read the Bible more.
  • I will pray more.
  • I will create more art.

It’s not a lot, but it’s doable.

And I won’t think about that right now. I’m going to eat chocolate cake with tinted cream cheese frosting to cope with this new year.

2015 Cake 2015 Cake

And in this new year, I hope you overcome your struggles. I hope you strive for your goals. I hope you succeed – and when you fail, I hope you learn why and use that information to make yourself a better person.

Now, a certain cousin and little sister of mine are about to eat my cake. Excuse me and make this year the best year ever.

Love,

Rana

 

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Merry Christmas Message

Hello, darling and Merry Christmas!

I just want to say thank you. You are truly amazing and a wonderful gift to me. I have not much to give in return except my thoughts (for now). Thank you for listening. Thank you for encouraging me, loving me, supporting me.

I realize that this is not the most interesting blog to follow as I cannot respond to most comments; therefore, it’s not as interactive as the plethora of other blogs out there. But those of you who “like” and “follow” mean so much more. Your gift of time, I realize, is not merely a “you’re a friend, so I have to read what you write” sort of thing. The fact that you freely and willingly take the time to read what I have to say and then decide that it’s worthy of waiting to see what else I come up with means the world.

So, thank you, love. Thank you and Merry Christmas.

Bilbo

EPSON MFP image

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Thrandykins

Can you tell I made it to The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies? 😉 If you haven’t, I highly recommend it!

 

God bless!

Rana

P.S.

Writers, stay tuned! I have a late Christmas gift for you coming (hopefully) early next year.

End of the World

Good afternoon, darling!

I want to share with you something that had severe negative emotional effects and mild physical ones on yours truly. It’s going to make me a bit vulnerable, but the raw and painful experiences are the ones that we connect with or so I hear.

Without going into too much detail…

  • I made some decisions against my better judgement.
  • I lost a lot of friends (not through anything that was really my fault).
  • I heard something at a youth conference (of all places) that disturbed me for a long time.

All this combined led to a crazy amount of negative impacts which I think I won’t go into at this time.

But one of the things that stuck with me and is something that I’m still trying to shake is this fear that the world is going to end. If I look at it from a big picture perspective, it’s not so bad, right? It’s not that everything will be destroyed, but that everything will be made beautiful and perfect and glorious. But it also means that crap happens first. Things have to get really bad before they get really good.

And I would lie awake at night, wondering when it would happen, what would happen. But you know what? I have little to no reason to believe that this is going to happen any time soon. What have we got going? Wars, murder, the beheading of innocents, children getting shot in their schools, parents murdering their children, children murdering their parents.

This has all happened before. It’s nothing new.

History repeats itself. Where once children – babies – were burned alive to appease the pagan gods, we now murder them before they’re born and turn a blind eye.* Wars have been raging for forever. Murder: Cain and Able.

I have no valid reason to believe that the world is ending. 

Do you?

The thing is, even if it were, what’s the point in worrying about it?  We can’t change it. We can’t stop it. All we can do is make the world around us a good place to live. That’s what I kept trying to tell myself a year or two ago, but I couldn’t quite believe it for a long time. So if you’re there, it gets better. I promise. Just hold on.

Do you ever flip to a random passage in the Bible? I did the other night and stumbled upon this. It comforted me a lot and my prayer is that it helps you too.

Thessalonians 2:2-3

Anyway, this is something I felt I should write about. Maybe it will speak to you, maybe not. I hope this finds its way to whoever needs it. ❤

Love,

Rana

*Note: I do not judge those who have had an abortion. I love them and my heart goes out them. I realize that I cannot agree with their decision, but that does not mean I have to hate them. ❤ If you have had one and are hurting, seek counselling, love. ❤ You can get better.

P.S.

This Christmas season, we’ll see a lot of Salvation Army red buckets and hear them jingling bells. The SA has admitted to believing that it’s fine to have an abortion under certain circumstances on its website. If you believe abortion is wrong under //all// circumstances, you might want to find some other organization to contribute to. (And there has never been an instance where an unborn baby needed to die to save the mother. Sometimes, the mother needs surgery and the baby dies in the process, but these two situations are completely different. One has the intent to kill, the other has the intent to save.) #tangentover

A Pessimist’s Take On The Holidays

Hello, lovely!

I have a question: What does Christmas mean to you and how do you feel during the holiday season?

While you’re thinking about that, let me go off on a little tangent and answer that myself.

What does Christmas mean to you?

We’d all like to say that the meaning of Christmas is about:

  • the birth of Jesus (if you’re Christian)
  • being with family
  • giving
  • being kinder to people

But none of that is really true to the fullest extent, is it? Nah. No. A more honest answer would be:

  • trying to get through the anxiety of finding stuff for people at the last minute
  • struggling through the already-obnoxious Christmas music
  • impatiently waiting to figure out what people got us
  • wondering why the heck we signed up to help with all those Christmas-themed happenings

The mentality, of course, should be more along the lines of the first list, but if we look at it through the lenses of reality, that’s not really what the holiday season is about as we celebrate it.

  • Thanksgiving is about the food. Without the foot, we probably wouldn’t look forward to Thanksgiving.holidays
  • Christmas is about the gifts. Without the presents, we probably wouldn’t look forward to Christmas.

New Years is about getting dressed up, partying ’till the morning, and setting unrealistic expectations for ourselves. Without the traditions, we probably wouldn’t celebrate anything.

Thanksgiving should be about reminding ourselves of where we came from and remembering what the kindness (of people who were not like us) did. Without them, many of us probably wouldn’t be alive today.

Christmas is about Jesus; remembering what He did for us – humbling Himself to be like us in everything but sin to save our pathetic lives. He cried, He got hungry, He felt pain, He knew heartache on a more massive scale than we can imagine. Christmas is when we remember what He did for us and we should humble ourselves.

I heard from a mom that her daughter’s school play was going over every other religion’s meaning for Christmas except the Christian one. Like, what? You afraid to offend someone by including the reason for the season? Well, I’m offended by your not doing so. I’m totally cool with you including other religious traditions, but can we stop with the anti-Christ “Christ”mases? I’m sick of it.

I’m sick of this materialistic, superficial tradition that’s shoving the real reason why we do anything this time of the year out of the picture.

The New Year is supposed to give us a fresh start or something. But what’s the difference if we’re not going to follow through with our resolutions. Key word: resolution. We’re resolving some aspect of our lives. If you’re not totally committed, don’t even say you’re going to do something. Seriously. You’re setting yourself up for failure.

What do you feel during the holiday season?

To be honest, I feel quite lonely, tense, self-conscious (more so than usual), irritable. Everyone else seems to be really anxious or really happy. Obnoxiously so in either case. I’m already sick of Christmas music. So help me if I hear another “kissing under the mistletoe” line. I’m having a hard time not mentally murdering the people I like.

I think the biggest reason why I feel the way I do during the holiday seasons is because, everywhere I look, people are smiling and being kind, and I feel next to nothing. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it’s not fun. It’s like watching all your friends get into relationships and you’re just not even interested in people in general. It’s like being at a birthday party for someone everyone likes, but you don’t. Know what I mean?

Everywhere, people are feeling things and I’m not. It’s like I’m missing out on some bigger picture thing.

Another factor, I think, that contributes to this problem o’ mine is the fact that maybe I am seeing the bigger picture, and I’m constantly remembering why we’re celebrating and it just seems like no one else is. They’re all caught up in the moment, in the gifts, in the pretty paper, and ribbons.

The fact that people are kinder during this season is also pet peeve of mine. Why only around Christmas time are you a good person? Please be consistent. If you’re usually a kind person, stick with it! You’re awesome! If you’re usually a jerk, acknowledge the fact. We can work with that. But don’t put on a mask during the holiday season.

You can fake a smile, but people remember the way you made them feel throughout the rest of the year. Don’t be a faker. This is life, not a masquerade party.

I also detest the fact that no one says “Merry Christmas” anymore. It’s all “happy holidays.” Can we not?

I suppose if we got back to the real, raw meaning of our celebrations and made that the first reason we do anything, then the rest would follow more easily. Our decisions would be based, not on what is expected of us, but what we should be doing instead.

Now it’s your turn, darling. What does Christmas really mean to you and how do you feel during the holiday season?

Love,

Rana