Saturday, November 26, 2011

Today it has been confirmed that I am a contact wearer abuser, Corey and I always secretly knew I was because for the past few months I have been living off of the ones in my eyes, an expired prescription, and a pair of glasses with only one leg. (sadly to say this is not the first time) Then if you can believe it I woke up Friday morning to a ripped contact, optometrist's offices that were closed and the feeling that I had really screwed myself this time.

Then low and behold I meet the vision man of my dreams....I walk in today to a Dr. that says hey, I know your kind, you wear them way to long, you never come in to see us and you take too many chances with your eyes, but let me tell you some secrets that will help an abuser like you get the most out of those contacts you won't throw away. Let me say I left that office smiling, with two new contacts and a plan in my head to see how long these will last.

All this to say that yesterday as I was visionally impaired, Corey had to be my driver and even with one eye closed and the other one viewing the chaos of Black Friday, I decided then and there that this Christmas season will not be stressful for our family.

It has the potential to be a hectic and stressful month, not only because of Christmas but because Corey starts a new job at the beginning of December. I have a tendency to worry and stress out about change, about different schedules, unexpected moments, deciding on insurance plans and HSA amounts, how much to invest and how much to keep, and all those things that go along with new jobs. We are excited and have hopes that this job will keep Corey home more, be better for our family and exciting for him but still the unknown leaves possibilities for disaster and being a prepared sort of person...that stresses me out a bit.

Not this year though, I am preparing myself for family moments, of cookie baking, fudge preparing, craft making, small gifts, and thoughtful moments. I am hoping I can carry this through, not responding with the ever favorite phrase of many, "Man, this month flew by," or "Boy, was I busy." Just lots of Christmas singing and joy making.

We are reading about missionary friends in Africa, about there day to day lives, and even through their hard moments, the trials they are going through, their lack of, I find myself envying the simplicity of their lives, their giving hearts, and this beauty I am seeing through their eyes of the African people. I have a longing inside me, one I have never felt before, a longing only God gives, and I feel this change occurring in my life, one I am not sure of, not sure what it is or where it is going but I am comforted with the promise that God gives me, that He knows the plans for my life. So I am simply living, trying to go with this new change of simplicity, enjoying moments and time and not stressing about the "Anne Marie" wants of the everyday. A verse hit me hard this week as I was listening to the radio, John 3:30, He must increase, so I must decrease. As I repeated those seven words over and over, I was wowed by the everyday moments of...what I feel, what I desire, what I need, what aggravates and excites me, with the realization that this life is not about me but so much more, if I take my eyes off of myself and look to what God desires of me, my life can be fuller, filled, with excitement and experiences that I can't possibly imagine. Less of me and more of Him.

Photos taken by Emily Allen

So this Christmas season, I hope I can begin a new tradition of less, less spending, less busy and and a tradition of more fun, more merry, and more care about the people around me.

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