Sunday, October 19, 2014

2 feet + 2 bone caps = Bad News

   Dear Jayna & friends in blogger land-



NOTE: This post is going to be about........drum roll.............Feet!! If that totally grosses you out, you might not want to read on. But don't worry; I wont be showing any pictures of toe nails coming off. ;)

 So you made it mast the gross introduction, ignored the fact that I haven't written in a month, and are sitting reading what I have to say. Thanks!


To begin my story:


  In April and May of this year I started having some pain in my calf/heel area. It wasn't bad, but it was obnoxious. It increased as my rehearsals got more and more intense, and was really painful after doing any foot movement. I wrote it of as achilles tendonitis from overuse, and that after the show in June it would be fine. Babying it outside of dance, and icing it fairly often was my plan. BUT, then summer came and went and it still wasn't totally better. Frustrating.


   
  Went to see a PT, PT sent me to orthopedic surgeon/ podiatrist and said it is a impingement in my heel. Basically, a little bone that sticks of my bone is rubbing a lot and is mad. It's supper inflamed and irritated. So now, I am completely benched, stuck applying cream every morning and every night, icing three times a day, and going to physical therapy three times a week. So no Nutcracker for me this year either. Agggggggggg. Can you just feel the peace oozing from me?





  So here we are with painful feet, no Nutcracker, and no physical activities. After I had auditioned, gotten cast, and learned my parts I was told no. Called into the dance center office and told no. No Nutcracker, and no dance. Hopefully it will just be for a month. But it still is obnoxious.


  So here we are sitting with Nutcracker withdrawal symptoms. Again.


But I am learning how to be at peace. Learning the importance of grace. Learning the dangers of jealousy.  I wish God could have just been like, "Hey Elissa, experience my peace, live with grace, and don't let jealousy come close to your heart. And I love you." But no, He didn't.


  But I will learn. Learn the importance of  having faith in something bigger then myself.
But that also means learning how to fully feel the not-so-peaceful things.


          Love,
                     Elissa


Question: What has God's grace looked like in your life lately?

Monday, September 8, 2014

February 14

            The following is a journal entry I wrote February 14, 2013:

God, this one goes to Jayna;
May her travels be smooth
May she be able to say goodbye peacefully and calmly
May she have a peaceful heart about where she is going
My you bless the house that they move into; will you fill it with joy, with laughter, warmness, hospitality, and a welcoming glow.
May it me a place where Jayna can grow in her independence
May the dance studio be filled with the love of dance
May it be a place were dreams are formed, and grown rather then cut down and shattered.
May it be a place of calmness, and a place where Jayna will be able to worship you with her dance.
May it be a place where Jayna can remove herself from the dramas and stresses of life, and be a place that she will feel your peace in.
May the teachers there see all of the talent you have given her, and may they see how hard she has worked these last few years.
May they enjoy having her in each class, and may she be a fresh breath of newness to the studio.
May the teachers help her grow in her dancing, rather then slowing her down.
May the teachers give her dreams and goals, and Lord, may the girls welcome her and treat her kindly.
May they help her figure things out in a way that is honoring to you.
May they enjoy there company and want to hang out with her.
Lord, may you help them see what a great friend she is.


              God, please hear my prayers. Please God.
__________________________________________________________________________


 Out of all the praying I did for you before you moved, this was one that I wrote out. I was scared for you; that everything would be a disaster, and Hawaii would be a horrible experience. I prayed and prayed about it, because I wanted God to protect you from anything bad that might happen.


But you know what? Hard stuff still happened.
Three dance studios, and a lot of tears latter, you made the decision to quit dance.
    I asked God why was this happening to you? Did he not hear my prayers? Was I wrong in asking for all this? Why were people so mean and discouraging to you?


At the time of your decision, I really supported that. It was the right thing to do.


  But why was God telling you to quit something that had given you so much joy? Was it to much of a idol, and taking your focus of Him? Was it controlling your emotions to much? Where you so post to be doing something else, or tough it out?


I don't think it was an idol, and I don't think it had much power over your emotions. Yet I don't think you were meant to be toughing it out either. So why was there all that drama, when my prayer was seaming to be met with a no?


This is why: http://letters-to-elissa.blogspot.com/2014/09/restored.html


  You needed to be restored. You had to experience hard, hard things in order to be restored.


When we talked on the phone after that first class, I was tearing up. Not just because I was so happy for you (which I was!), but because God said yes.


  He was doing what I asked Him to do over a year and a half ago. He was planning this before I asked; before you where born.


That prayer was written on Valentines day; a day about love. Valentines day is celebrated by showing love between people; but does God limit to showing His love just on Valentines day? Nope, nope, nope and no. God is the ultimate example of love, because God is love.  He is a loving God.


 He wasn't sitting up there looking forward to hard stuff coming your way; He was sitting up there with the knowledge that your life would be an example of His love. What a amazing thing to be.


  My friend, the word restored is a good word. A very, very good word. :)


     Love,
                 Elissa


Question: When was a time you felt like God wasn't being loving?

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Why long distance friendships are worth it....& other

NOTE: I am alive and breathing. This summer has been so relaxing, I am not ready to trade doing practically nothing for the whirl wind of the school year. I am sorry for the lack of posts....kind of. I have really enjoyed taking a break from my computer screen; but I come back ready!



   Well hello friends in blogger land! For my lame excuse as to why I haven't been blogging, see above. All my school supplies are siting in target bags on our stars, waiting for me to openly surrender to the fact the summer is pretty much over. Ah-hem. But anyways, I really am excited to be back in the rhythm and swing of things.

  I am about to begin my last week of summer dance, and I am miss, miss, missing my teachers that left. I am being rather hormonal about it. But seriously; it's been kind of hard. It has been hard to let go to such amazing people. And it has been hard for me to keep in touch with you, because I have been out of town a lot AND we are each running in a bunch of different directions.
It's rough.

   It's rough not knowing what your days look like, when we used to always know where the other person was. It's tempting to me at times, to just stop caring about stuff like that. It sure would be easier. It would be easier if the same amazing people lived right next to each other, and nothing ever changed.

  Long distance friendships are hard. They can be exhausting and extremely difficult  to maintain. And no form of communication is the same as just being together.

   But honestly? Friendships aren't so post to be easy. Humans were designed to fully and completely trust God; but when we rebelled against that, things changed. Now, we have to deal with ego's, broken trust, hurt, clinginess, lack of empathy, lack of understanding, zero sensitivity,  just to name a few.  That why this is hard and hurts; because of sin. And it doesn't just hurt us; it hurts God too. A lot.


   Friendships are hard, messy, beautiful, complicated things. They are a gift; a broken, yet beautiful gift. We are created to be loved, and to love. Just like we love our friends close to us, in many different ways, we can find ways to express that same love to our friends far away. It takes effort; a lot of effort. More work. But ultimately, isn't love felt deeper when the love that is expensive? When
the cost is higher? It is expensive to show love to anyone; but it the the effort it takes grows and grows.


 Today, I challenge you to chose to give that love away freely and deeply.


          1 John 4:7  Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.


  Question: When does it feel the hardest to love other people?

                                   M -Elissa    








Wednesday, June 11, 2014

saying goodbye


This week has had some sad goodbyes.
   A family who my sister and I often babysat for, and LOVED, moved.
Yesterday, was my last class with my favorite dance teacher. Tomorrow is my last class with another one of my dance teachers.
  
  Thank you card's are written, gifts are being bought, and goodbye parties are on the horizon. Nice words are said, as boxes are being packed. The lumps are swallowed, and an awkward laugh is forced up instead.
  But you wanna know a secret? Its still sad.


It's sad saying goodbye to people who you love, people that build you up, and people who think like you. It's not fun to let them go, and leave you. Long distance communication is hard. You know that, better then I do. And honestly, I hate saying goodbye.

    It is a confusing, torn-up, thing.


Yes, I am thankful for the time. The people I have met are some of the most amazing, interesting, and talented people I have ever met. And so saying goodbye is one of the hardest things.
I ask God why? Why has He allowed all these amazing people into my life, and then took them somewhere else? Why do I make these friends, just to let them go? Why do I have to walk around in the dark? All the not-knowing stuff drives me crazy, because I feel completely and utterly out of control.


  But God is good.
He is faithful, and trustworthy.
  And He tell us to love others.


  Soooo, it's not really about me; it's about HIM. It's not feeling completely out of control, but it certainly isn't meaningless. Nope, not even a tinny bit. And I'm going to rest in that.


                            Love,
                                         Elissa


For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Question: What feels the hardest about saying goodbye?

Saturday, May 24, 2014

ten things teenagers want you to know

 

 

 
 1. We aren't as lazy as we are made out to be. Sure, I'm currently in a relationship with Netflix, but I do other stuff then spend time with Netflix. Teenagers have a bad rep for sitting around and doing nothing with our lives; but do you want to know a secret? Sometimes, we do nothing we want to numb the pressure. Pressure? "But Elissa, I don't but pressure on               !" Well, maybe you don't mean to put pressure on us. But pressure is there; and sometimes we feel like we are suffocating in it. So, sometimes doing nothing is to rebel against that, or just to get away from it; to take a break. So please, don't tell me that Fruit Ninja isn't going to write the paper for me.  I know. Seriously, I do. Instead, ask me if I'm feeling tired. Or ask about what in whatever project, is setting me back. Or why I am procrastinating. Or do I even care? Why or why not? Make it a reasonable conversation; not an interrogation.





2. In case you forgot, Acne sucks. Buy me some concealer and face wash, please. And beyond that? Let it go. Something else; if you have children that have not yet hit puberty, let them in on a secret. Tell them that when they get older, their body will change. One of these changes is that they could get zits. You don't need to go into any detail; just let them know what acne is, and it's no big deal. I can not tell you how many times I have been around kids, when they look at my, or my friends, faces and ask, "What are those red dots?" So please. Help out our confidence.
We need it:)





3. Drama. Is one of the most dramatic things I have ever experienced. This is the most dramatic time of my life I have ever experienced. I have never, ever, experienced this before. What can you do about this? Please don't shelter us from your personal drama. No, we need to see that we aren't alone in this; why don't you show us how to have perspective, by example? Don't burry it, just be healthy about your personal drama. And when it comes to us? Step in when you need to, but just listen. Honestly, listening without judgment is one of the greatest gifts you could ever give a teenager.



4. Being a teenager is awkward. We're awkward. There, I said it. We're not supper good at interacting with people, not because we are drowning in social media, but because this is an awkward time. Social media might play a part, but I don't think that is the key issue. This is just a weird time!!! There are the boys who are still playing with action dudes, then there are the creepy dudes. There are the kids twist everything in a twisted direction. There are girls that more two faced then you could ever imagine. And when we are all together......what do you thinks gonna happen?!? It's just awkward. It's the way it is. So what can you do about it? Include everyone in conversation, or whatever your doing. And be cool. That helps too.





5. We have experienced some of this big and scary world. Maybe not all of it; but enough of it. So please, please, don't try to shelter us too much. And don't act like we know nothing. I know my friend was raped by her dad (who is no longer in the picture) when she was seven years old. I know a girl who has an extremely active eating disorder. ADD, ADHD, PTSD, and so many more surround us daily.  Boyfriends/girlfriends are interring the picture.  We see and experience pain, just like anyone else in this world. We haven't lived on our own; we don't know every thing. But we are alive and breathing in a broken world. *Cough-cough-justlikeyou-cough-cough*





6. Don't try to shelter us, or put us in a bubble. It just. Doesn't. Work. You begin to make choices about of fear. And we begin to make choices out of rebellion. So please ladies and gentlemen, don't do it! You will end up in a place you don't want to be, and everyone will have a whole lot of baggage. SIDE NOTE: Something that really helps with this, is critical thinking. Asking really hard questions about what WE think, and WHY.  Questioning is extremely beneficial. So do your homework.  





7.You aren't the only person with requirements that need to be met. High expectations surround us. It seams like everyone thinks 'their thing' is the 'most important thing'. We don't have all the time in the world. We have school. Sports. Music. Other stuff. And everyone seams to think their activity is the only one, and you have all the time in the world. And what happens if we don't do anything you ask us to do? If we aren't turning in homework? If we aren't trying at soccer? It could have do with a lot of things, but, the things I work my absolute hardest in are the things that will get me where I want to be. I am still not %100 sure about what I want to do with my life, but I have an idea. Sometimes, we need something we are passionate about. And sleep.





8. Spending time with friends is important. So yeah, we may constantly be texting/talking/shoping/facebooking/twittering/instgraming/ect. with our hommies. This is important. But spending time with family is also important, you say. Yes, it is. But remember; friends are family that you get to pick.





9. It is a big deal; so don't tell me about 'the big picture'. Please, please, please; don't tell me that it isn't a big deal. It is. I don't need perspective. I don't need to know, that in 20 years, I won't remember this. Even if you believe any of those things to be true, don't say so. Just keep it to yourself, and let us be upset. Because like I said before; Listening without judgment is one of the greatest gifts you can give a teenager.





10. We like to have fun. Enough said. Oh, and coffee is good too.

 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Stupid

   When we were little, we weren't allowed to use the word stupid. Or dumb. Or idiot.


But Jayna, some idiots are making some stupid decisions, that make me feel dumb, and it really sucks.
 Oh yeah, lets not forget 'sucks'.


I don't write that to rebel, but sometimes strong language is the only thing is describe strong emotion. I am mad.
Mad because people are making decisions for the wrong reasons.
Mad because it just isn't fair.
Mad because I have so much to do, and not feeling motivated enough to do it.
Mad because people don't see integrity. I'm not saying that I have loads of it; I'm just saying it feels unappreciated.
I am mad because sometimes, life can feel stupid. And dumb. And it just isn't very fun. (okay, I made a rhyme, because I'm just that cool)


But yeah. It's frustrating.


             

Saturday, May 17, 2014

My exact thoughts on Oral Reports

Dear Jayna,

  Yes, I understand public speaking is a lot of people's greatest fear.....
Not mine, friends.

    So prepare yourself to have a moment in my brain, courtesy of Baby Blues

 
 

              
                    Yes, I thought it was funny too:-)