Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Reindeer Pajamas & Giant Lattes

I’m sitting here, hiding.  I’m in my husband’s reindeer Christmas pajama pants and a Grande Starbucks Vanilla Latte in my hands.  I woke up to kitchen counters piled high with yesterday’s dishes and a dining room still in-swept and un-mopped.  My daughter’s school projects invading the space of our kitchen table. 

I pick up my phone as I am wading through all of the early morning mess.  A text message lights up my phone, signifying that it has come through sometime during the night from a friend.

“Perhaps Jesus will return tonight. Gooood Laaaawd.  We have walked and bounced and driven and rocked and swayed and begged.  Four hours and counting.”

I read these words and sleepily shuffled my way back through the kitchen.  My eyes, once again scanning yesterday’s chaos.

And suddenly, it all just seems to be too much. 

In that moment, tears well up in my eyes.  My throat tightens and I begin to feel an almost frantic sense coming over me.  I need air. A space to breathe and think.  I grab my keys and sneak out the front door to my car.  The six o’clock morning sun is just beginning to rise east of the Denver skyline.  I begin to drive.

In my head, I am justifying my eclectic choice of clothing.

“What if you get pulled over, Brittany?  What if, God Forbid, you have to get out of the car?  You are wearing a baggy t-shirt, no bra and your husband’s red flannel Christmas pajamas.  With reindeer on them for heaven’s sake.  What if someone sees you?"

“Who are you kidding?  No one sees you.”

And there it is.  That sneaky little lie that I’ve been working so hard to fight against. 

No one sees you. 

No one sees you as you are packing lunches and taking care to make sure all the food groups are represented.

No one sees you as you are digging through that giant pile of socks, searching for the lost prodigal.  

No one sees you as you are on your knees scrubbing filth and the smell of urine from around the toilet from your potty training little man.    

No one sees you as are rocking your feverish, inconsolable babe at 3 a.m.

No one sees you while you are on the phone making dentist appointments and negotiating medical bills. 

No one sees as you are signing kids up for summer camp.

Buying flowers for teacher appreciation week.

Scouring the internet for the best prices on vitamins.

Cutting up veggies for dinner (that no one will likely eat).

Stripping bedsheets to be washed.

Feeding the bunnies. (Yes, we have three and I still don’t know why).

Boiling the family toothbrushes.

            Ransacking the home for the lost toy that caused the morning’s preschooler meltdown…

No one sees me holed up in my car, in an empty parking lot wearing goofy pajamas and inhaling coffee like an addict.

I’m sure you could add your own “No one sees me…” to this long list.  Am I right?

This bold faced lie.  It’s been one I’ve been challenging for some time now.  If I could stand face to face with Satan, I would spit in his face.  Because this lie is one that is pervading the hearts of women everywhere and he’s so darn proud of himself. 

This lie is what paralyzes us.  It makes us feel less than. 
While our husbands are out making an income (seemingly doing something more important), we spend our days negotiating with tiny humans over whether they should wear pants into the grocery store.  Yes, I have actually had this argument with my preschooler. 
But, I digress...

The truth is, this lie against our identity didn’t just start the second the lines on the stick turned pink.  This lie that tells us we aren’t seen, heard or really known isn’t actually a lie just for mommas.  It is a lie for all of humanity.

It started as a whisper when you were a child.  And the lie continued to grow.  You began to hide your flaws and shame while learning to overcompensate through perfectionism.  Now, even as an adult, this lie crosses the sacred boundaries of marriage, families and friendships. 

I single out mommas, because I believe that often times, it is motherhood that shines the light on the lies we’ve been believing our whole lives.  At least that is what it has done for me.

It is through our children that we often realize the inconsistencies and the healing that must take place for us to return to the whole and unbroken identity that God truly desires for us to find in Him.  We look at our children and we see a wholeness and a purity that hasn’t been marred yet.    

And then we bravely begin to dream that we can believe this truth for ourselves.

What is this truth?  God sees. 
It's so simple and yet so incredibly complicated.  Because God sees.  But we don't believe it.
If you want proof, go open your Bible to Genesis 16.  You'll read of Hagar who was Abram and Sarai's slave girl.  She has been essentially forced into an affair so that Sarai can finally have a child.  She's been abused for years.  To all who know her, Hagar's life is worthless and insignificant.  So she runs away and finds herself lost and desperate in the middle of a desert.  Then, the miracle happens.  When all looks hopeless and desolate, God shows up.  He meets her in the desert at a well of water and it is here that Hagar does something unprecedented. 
It is the only place in the Bible that anyone ever gives God a name. 

She names Him, "El Roi, the God who sees me."

Hagar, a lowly, Egyptian slave girl who is pregnant and essentially homeless, has the audacity to name the God of the Universe and to claim that He sees her. 

The first time I heard this story, I sobbed uncontrollably-- one of those embarrassing ugly cries that you really and truly do wish that no one else sees.  How is it possible that as a 30-year-old, I had never been told that God sees me? 

This same God who met Hagar in her most broken state, loves me in all of my shame and brokenness. 

He loves the little girl parts of Brittany that still hide behind insecurity.  He loves momma Brittany who hides in her pantry and devours chocolate and wine on the hardest days of parenting. 

And so, sweet friends, if you are still reading this post...

I want to share with you something that has been on my heart for the past year.  It's not something I have shared with many because sometimes I can still hardly believe it myself. 
I am writing a book.  I am writing a book!
And, I'm finally feeling brave enough to share this news with you.
The book is called "Seen" and it is about all of the truths God has been revealing about my identity since becoming a momma.  
"Seen" is based off of the passage from Genesis 16 and Hagar's story but it will delve into how God desires for each of us to recognize that we  are seen in more specific areas like our childhoods, friendships, marriages, motherhood and grief. 
Friends, I am so incredibly excited to share this news with you.  It's been something I've been keeping (mostly) to myself for the past year and I believe it's finally time for me to start sharing pieces of my story. 
This book began one day last year, while sitting in an empty parking lot, wearing my husband's reindeer Christmas pajamas.  And now, I'm finally ready to share some of the healing God has been doing in my life. 
I am daring to believe that He has healing in store for you too! I hope you will join me on this journey of learning to believe that you are know, loved and truly seen.
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  1. Amazing!! Such wonderful news....I cant wait to read it Brittany, you have the gift of words and God is going to do amazing things through this :) Love you friend!!

  2. Brittany you are such a beautiful writer! This is such exciting news!!

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