To the Girl Who Feels Empty

I have been an empty person in the past.

I know that I can be an optimistic person, full of love and joy and seeking friendship… but it isn’t always like that. There have been times when life was hard. So hard. There were days that turned to weeks that turned to months that at one point even turned into a couple years where I felt numb to the core. Not because I desired to be that way, but because… well, I don’t really know why. I just know that at times there is such deep darkness that it feels impossible to imagine the light, let alone see it.

I keep journals, I always have. My journals are raw and embarrassing, and I don’t really like to share them with anyone.

So it’s hard for me to share this.

Sometimes sharing our past pains can help others, and even ourselves.

“I feel numb.

I can’t feel happiness or even sadness.

There’s nothing there. Not a care about anything. I’m just numb and empty.

I want help, but I don’t at the same time. I have gotten used to the loneliness that it somehow feels more like a friend than friends do.

Searching for things to fill the empty space in my chest… in my life. It’s just such a deep emptiness… can he fill it? Can this job? Can anything?

Praying to the empty sky for the numbness to ease into feeling, but to no avail.

Will I forever be empty and numb?”

Those words, those heartbreaking and somewhat tragic words are my own. At a time in my life when I was feeling so dark and alone, and I couldn’t seem to grasp onto anything. All the things I had or wanted were slipping by. For a while I tried to catch them all, but then I became used to the weird numbness that I felt.

I am sharing this with you today to let you know that I am a believer in Christ and I have suffered with emptiness. I have struggled with things you can’t imagine. Darkness and sadness and panic and fear and anger and so many things.

Life is not easy, and if anyone tells you that, they are lying.

But.

There is hope.

Even in the dark times when I couldn’t imagine love or light or even an emotion… There was hope for me. Even if I couldn’t feel that hope it was so there. I clung hard to that tiny, barely a sliver of hope. I clung so hard just waiting to make it to the end of the emptiness. Praying and waiting and hoping and clinging with every part of my being.

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Eventually the feeling did come back. Such a force of emotion I had not felt in so long washed over me and I felt compassion and love and joy and sadness. It took a couple of years, but it came.

And there it was.

The light. The hope shining brighter than ever. The grace and mercy I had longed for was there as it always had been in Jesus Christ.

We don’t always feel His love, but it is there in a major way.

It is there for you too. You who struggle with depression or whatever your darkness is now. That tiny speck of light that you try to see and cling to is there. Even if you don’t see it yet.

Life may get worse before it gets better, but there are bright days ahead; even if it doesn’t feel like there will be. I know this for a fact.

Much love. Much grace.

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Girls Like Me

I’m not like those other girls. 

I don’t like make-up or heels.

I don’t eat a salad to lose weight.

I eat cheeseburgers. I eat french fries. I like to eat sweets. Because….

I’m not like those other girls.

Those girls who cheer.

Those girls who have to be the most popular or perfect.

Those girls who are catty and mean.

The one’s who  contour or waist train. I’m not like that…

I’m not like those other girls.

Who don’t like sports.

Who don’t like comics.

Who don’t like video games. I can’t hide who I am, you guys…

I’m not like other girls.

I only make friends with guys because there is less drama.

I HATE drama.

I HATE when other girls judge me.

I would HATE to be like those other girls.

But what if… those other girls are actually just like me. 

Those other girls like the things I do, but don’t say so.

Those other girls feel judged by the make-up they wear or the games they play.

They only have friends who are boys because they don’t feel like they can be friends with girls…

Because they aren’t like other girls.

Other girls… like me.

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We aren’t that different after all. We are all trying to be special and unique, when all we really want is to be with each other. The more special we try to be, the more lonely we become. There are other girls like you, and like me. Let’s join forces and make a community, instead of convincing ourselves that other people aren’t like us.

Much love. Much grace.

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Let’s Talk About Women…

So here is the deal.

Women make up 50.8% of the United States population.

100% of those women have (or have had) periods. (gasp! WHAT? Yes, it’s true.)

Unfortunately, not all of these women have access to tampons. Or pads. Or any type of feminine hygiene product of any kind.

In fact, thousands of women in the United States live on the street. These women have to make choices about food, water, and shelter each day… and at times they don’t even get to make the choice between pad or tampon. These women go without feminine hygiene products; or worse. Sometimes these women only have the option to choose one item each month; which causes toxic shock syndrome or even death.

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This is a serious problem in our country and in our area. There are a number of organizations rising up to help with this issue (listed below). But there are ways that you can be involved too.

If you live in North Louisiana, you can donate to a ministry called The Hub. This outreach in Shreveport, Louisiana donates items, classes, and time to those on the street and one thing desperately needed is feminine hygiene donations.

If you are in this area, please take the time to consider giving physical boxes of feminine hygiene products or monetary donations that go directly to this cause. If you have some boxes you would like to donate but don’t know where to go or cannot make the drive, I will be donating all the boxes I can on March 4th. You may contact me if you wish to drop off your donations. Please join me in serving the women in our area. By donating these items, pads and tampons are no longer a luxury, but a right to hygienic living and dignity for these women.

Much love. Much grace.

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Organizations Specific to Feminine Hygiene:

Distributing Dignity

Camions of Care

Feel free to fill out the contact form if you have questions about dropping off donations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, This Feminist Thing…

I’ve noticed that there has been a bit of tension online. I mean, obviously with campaigning for the Presidency, the election itself, and then the inauguration, there was bound to be tension.

However, the tension really seemed to erupt on my social media outlets the day of the Woman’s March. Many people were supportive, yet there were many who were bashing the women marching. I read posts people wrote about how marching was a waste of time because women have everything we could ever need or want here in the United States. I even saw a very popular post stating that feminism itself was a waste of time because women already have everything they need.

Feminism is a term that is considered negative and full of distain for men. Many men and women view Feminism as a “down with men” movement and a hatred towards the opposite gender. Feminism is mostly seen through the 1970s lens of bra-burning and man-hating.

This type of Feminism is NOT today’s Feminism.

Currently, the United States is going through what is called the “third wave” of Feminism. Wave #1 was when women were marching for the right to vote. Wave #2 was when women marched in the 1970s with a focus on careers. Wave #3 is the time we are in now.

Women are fighting for equality.

Not just equality of genders, but equality across racial lines. So that men and women of any skin color can make equal pay. So that men and women of all colors can feel safe in work environments. So that equal pay and safety are no longer privileges, but a societal right.

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Yes; I know many women in other parts of the world don’t have the rights we do here in the US. However, the USA is a developed country. We are supposed to be the “Leader of the Free World”, and yet women are not paid the same as their male counterparts.

How is this equality?

I’ll give you a hint: It’s not.

So sure, you don’t have to be a feminist; but to be a feminist is to want equality. Feminism is not a bad word, it is a hopeful one.

If you want equal pay, you are a Feminist.

If you want your daughter to have the same academic opportunities as your son, you are a Feminist.

If you want your daughter to not have to worry about sexual harassment at work, school, or on the street, you are a Feminist.

I believe all these things and want to see these things happen in my country. You know what? That makes me a Feminist… and that is not a gross thing to be.

So, let us come together in hope of a changing world; for our sons, daughters, and ourselves. Let us work towards a brighter future by embracing what Feminism actually is… not what we are scared it might be.

To those who actively marched: thank you. For change is not brought about by one person in an important chair, but by the groups of loud voices calling for change.

Much love. Much grace.

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Married Christmas

I am loving this Christmas season! I mean I do every year, so that isn’t much of a surprise. I just really love the holidays. I love the decorations, the food, and all the joy. Around Thanksgiving and Christmas, I feel like the joy is just contagious and people can’t help but to feel a bit of happiness.

This Christmas marks Mr. Yell and I’s second holiday season as a family and it has already been such fun! Yes; the holidays are always stressful trying to figure out whose house to go to and what times we need to see everyone; but this year has still been wonderful. This year we decided to dive into the Christmas spirit by making some new Yell family traditions. Making these traditions has been one of my favorite parts of being a “newlywed”. By making these fun little things to do each year, we feel like we are becoming more like our own little family and it literally makes me giggle with excitement!

It’s been an interesting process trying to find things we want to carry over from our own families into our new one. My family has several traditions that I have enjoyed putting into Mr. Yell and mine’s holidays; and Zach has some new ones he has invented for us to do.

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Decorating for Christmas

Mr. Yell and I started decorating the Saturday right after Thanksgiving. We put up Christmas lights, decorated our (live!) Christmas tree, and decorated the kitchen with cute little towels and other little Christmas things. It has been such fun getting to decorate together in our new home and it looks so cozy now! We even managed to get Mru, our cat, a little stocking for Christmas this year. Too cute, right? 😉

12 Dates of Christmas

This year we each created 6 different dates and put them into envelopes. Each day that we open an envelope, we get a surprise date that is Christmas themed. It has been such fun so far! Some of our dates have included: driving to see Christmas lights, getting hot chocolate from Starbucks, and …

Christmas Party

For the past couple of years Mr. Yell and I have hosted a small Christmas party in our home. It is a fun time of sharing Christmas cheer and just spending time with friends before the holidays. It also helps me get some good practice on making Christmas goodies and deserts!

I hope this Christmas season fills you with warmth and love and joy.

Much love. Much grace.

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