looking into my future…

sometimes i find it really hard to sit back and think logically about the future. actually, a lot of times i find it hard to think logically. i am such a fantastic thinker (as in fantasy, not being awesome) that i forget to look at the realistic side of life and of the future.

i’ve officially said ‘no’ to the sioux falls mft program, which means that i’m hedging all my bets on getting into the bethel mft program. i’m really okay with that decision though, because i really feel like we’re being led in that direction. so right now, we’re patiently waiting for april 15th, which is the interview date. then, we get to patiently wait until sometime in may to hear for sure whether or not i’m accepted into the program. then it’s doing all the really hard stuff: where do we live? how do we pay for this? what are we going to have for a second car? how will we make this work financially? you know, sitting down and talking about all the logical parts. sometimes i have this romantic notion of how life is going to be – me sitting in some tiny little apartment, working diligently on my master’s, chatting with james via skype or something, and just being in the moment, loving it, learning about the material, about myself and about God when in reality, it most likely WON’T be like that.

it will be long nights alone, in tears, thinking about whether we’re doing the right thing, trying to convince myself that i’m not being selfish pursuing this dream of mine (as well as looking at future educational steps), trying to believe that everything will be okay in the end. it will be me being overwhelmed with all the work i have to do and the driving back and forth and how that will strain us emotionally AND financially. i’m not saying i won’t love it, but i lose sight of the realism of the situation. i lose sight of the truth.

there are some days when it is really hard to sit back and accept this as the true next step. to accept this as the direction i’m supposed to go. as the direction WE are supposed to go. sometimes it’s hard to forget that i’m NOT the one dictating this step, only following it. i’m NOT doing this for selfish ambition to make a million dollars – i’m doing this to help people, to help families, to further the kingdom of God. i’m doing this to utilize the gifts i’ve been given to do whatever i can to make the lives of others better because they’ve come in contact with me. it’s hard to accept that sometimes.

i have a bloggy friend who just went to turkey and realized that it wasn’t the place for her. sometimes i worry that this will be the same thing. i’ll be committed to a program and realize that it’s not for me, but i won’t know until i get there. it’s scary not knowing what the future will bring, especially when i’m not the only one it affects. sometimes i find myself thinking about all those old, ridiculous stereotypes and expectations and i realize that i’m NOT there. i don’t fit. for whatever reason, it stresses me out and i think that somehow i’ll be less good at what i need to do or i won’t be a good mom because i want a career or i’ll be an old lady by the time i start having kids – all of this ridiculous stuff.

i know in my head that everything will work out just the way that it’s supposed to. it’s believing it in my heart that trips me up sometimes.


on a completely unrelated note, i wanted to show you another pair of earrings i got from the sister (view her etsy shop here):



how far is the east from the west…

…and why can’t i seem to live in that gap distance as well?

i read other blogs and i get a glimpse into the lives of other people through this medium, and i honestly love it. i really do. the only problem is that this satan guy sure seems to have a heyday when i read posts that remind me of things i’ve done in the past that i regret. you know, those old painful memories that get dredged up and the only thing you can think is ‘what a terrible and disgusting person i am!’

i’ve prayed about these things, asked for forgiveness from God and from some of the people my decisions affected, i’ve tried to let them go. it is so hard, though, to forgive MYSELF. to allow the thought that i may, in fact, be human just like everyone else and i, in fact, make mistakes just like everyone else. i make poor decisions sometimes, i don’t look out into the future sometimes, i don’t follow God’s word sometimes, i do exactly what i know is wrong sometimes.

i know that God has forgiven me and forgotten all about my past, He’s let it go. it’s as far as the east is from the west to Him. for me, it seems like it’s as far as my heart is from my head. as far as lying lips are from my ears, my brain and my heart. why is it so easy to listen to the one that tells ONLY lies and so much harder to listen to the one that tells ONLY the truth? why is it so hard to forgive yourself for being human and making a few mistakes? why is it so easy to demean and devalue ourselves based on what a younger, dumber version of ourselves did? why is it so hard to believe that i’ve grown beyond that stage and allow myself to live in the now and enjoy the moments i get to share in someone else’s life?

11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

Psalm 103:11-12

15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

Romans 7:15-20


so trying to do a tough workout after i’ve had the plague for a week – not such a great idea. as in, things definitely did not go the way i had planned. i tried a new run on the treadmill (since we got a foot of snow yesterday and thus, i’m banished to running on a treadmill again for a while) and this was a hill workout, i only got about halfway through before i wanted to die. as in, almost lightheadedy stuff. not something you want to mess with. then, i tried to do some strengthy stuff and it was definitely not as structured as it usually is. *sigh* i know, it’s okay, i just like to try to be really good about my workouts and do what i need to do so that come may and the half marathon, 1) i don’t get injured and 2) i can walk when we decide to go to new york a week later.


during my workout today, i got to, once again, listen to that ridiculous cheater show that i ranted about 2 or 3 posts ago. so, this time, they’ve been dating for 4 months and he hasn’t introduced her as girlfriend. so instead of just ASKING him about it, she accuses him of being a cheater. i mean, come ON people!


also on the radio this morning, i heard a song that i’d never heard before by avril. i’d assume off her new cd or something. i’d wondered where she’d gone, and honestly,  i was EXTREMELY disappointed. i really liked her early stuff, but since ‘best damn thing’ i just have no respect for her anymore. or pretty much anyone on pop stations. i don’t understand the appeal of listening to garbage music! the music is boring, the singing is terrible and boring and the LYRICS don’t even make SENSE! they’re just nonsense lyrics – like, i need to rhyme with something, or i need a phrase here so i’ll just stick in something ridiculous that doesn’t make sense. yeah. oye. where is music going?


speaking of ridiculous music, i have YET to listen to anything by justin beiber or that rebecca black song. i definitely have no intention of remedying that either.


i got new shoes and they are TRIPPY! wear them with gray pants and they look a little brown, wear them with black pants and they look black. put them on the floor and they look brown, set them next to a black belt and they look black. best $12 EVER! also, i bought some new running stuff from target that i’m pretty much in love with. also, some new sweaters. pretty sweet if i do say so myself.


my sister is getting into making jewelry and stuff (you can check it out at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/heathernichols) and i have to admit, i’m a fan of it.

the first earrings i got from her. they’re little eiffel towers! so cute! also, i’m (hopefully) mailing out some of my old been-sitting-in-the-bathroom-for-3-years jewelry to her so that maybe she can repurpose some of it into new jewelry. and i’m getting some sweet new stuff too! all i have to do is edit her etsy page and make sure she doesn’t sound like a moron. i’m totally down with that. also, the purple sweater i’m wearing is one of my new sweaters. yay! (no vikings jokes, yellow is the ONLY color shirt i had that would match. can you believe i do not own a WHITE t-shirt?!? yeah, me neither)


i’m starting my final paper in my seminar class and the paper is on humor through the romantic relationship lifespan. i think it should be really interesting. i haven’t started reading stuff yet. i’m pretty sure that i’m just going to have kill yet even MORE trees and print off all my articles because i just CANNOT read staring at this screen. also, i can’t highlight and write on the pdfs. yeah. go go gadget paper wasting psychology classes!


going back to the jewelry thing, going through all my old earrings and stuff brought me to my necklaces that i NEVER wear but TOTALLY love. so finally getting rid of the stuff that i don’t wear to my sister has made room for me to see the stuff that i WILL wear. i’m totally wearing one of them today, too. it’s exciting. i have found that i, in fact, DO like jewelry, it just has to fit my style. unfortunately, i don’t really KNOW my style, but i’m definitely figuring it out.

as promised a long time ago…

so here’s the scoop on school:

sioux falls: i interviewed with sioux falls last wednesday and it went really well. they accepted me into the program. however, i have until march 30th to make a decision. my interview with bethel (assuming i get invited to the interview) is not until april 15th. yeah.

bethel: i called bethel, laid out the situation, explained that i was willing to take the gamble of saying no to sioux falls to have the chance to interview and get accepted into bethel. they are supposed to get back to me soon about whether or not i’ve been invited to the interview.

sioux falls (+): great community, very fargo-like; the ability to live down there for free, as in with people connected in some way to the seminary if i end up being a commuter student; hands on therapy experience my very first semester; small class sizes; flexibility in class scheduling so i can be there between 3 and 4 days a week and home the rest of the time; graduates are lauded as being incredibly prepared for therapy once schooling is completed; full-time faculty are clinicians in the community psychology center in the bottom floor of seminary; one-building campus

sioux falls (-): not ‘person of the therapist’ oriented, very patient oriented; doesn’t have the ‘feel’ of a seminary; only 2 full-time faculty so several adjuncts which means less flexibility in scheduling meetings and whatnot; no research of any kind; the longest 3.5 hour drive of my life; i don’t necessarily agree with the seminary’s therapy philosophy; share a library with augustana across the street; one-building campus; subscribes to applied clinician model

bethel (+): very ‘person of the therapist’ oriented, believes strongly in developing healthy therapists; feels like a seminary and a community; flexibility in scheduling; i agree with the seminary’s therapy philosophy; plenty of places to try to find volunteer or job experience (very heavily MFT in the cities because of bethel and u of m programs); able to do research with faculty; each faculty member is an active clinician; small class sizes, but larger than sioux falls; insight oriented as far as therapist (as in, they teach the therapist to recognize changes in self because of a certain client or subject matter); beautiful campus; separate seminary library; subscribes to scientist-practitioner model

bethel (-): probably have to pay for part-time living; i am uncomfortable in the cities; sometimes hard to get a hold of or to get a response from; more expensive lifestyle than in sioux falls; not as much intentional supervised clinical experience (at least not during all coursework like in sioux falls

i’m trying to make a rational decision, but if anyone knows me AT ALL, i don’t really do rational decisions. i make gut decisions, so….



absolute ridiculousness…

so, on thursdays when i work out, i’m forced to listen to our ridiculous hit music station. i mean, my choice is either to listen to y-94 or don’t stretch. aaaaand after a workout, not stretching is kind of a bad idea.

so, today, on this station, they were doing this thing they do called ‘catch a cheater’. basically, people call in, accuse their significant other of cheating, the radio station calls the SO under the pretense of something else to dig out the truth. SO THEY CALL THIS PERSON LIVE, ACCUSE THEM OF CHEATING AND EMBARRASS THEM LIVE ON AIR.

something about that does NOT sit right with me. as in, i frequently cut thursday’s stretching short because i can’t handle the stupidity. it makes me wonder, is this REALLY what this world is coming to? we are in a relationship and can’t trust the other person and we’re not big enough (or strong enough, i guess) to come out and ask them? we have to go behind their backs, tell EVERYONE listening what the problem is, HOPE AND PRAY that this person ISN’T listening at the moment and doesn’t figure things out, and then put them in a position where they never should be.

it makes me really think about the field that i am pursuing. this is what i’m signing up to deal with. not the whole embarrassing people on the radio thing, but dealing with complicated relationships. dealing with things in relationships that have no business BEING in relationships. teaching people how to talk to each other and to LISTEN to each other. how to stand up to each other to ask the hard questions. how to build a relationship such that the hard questions don’t really even need to be asked.

i wish i could call the radio station and get that show canceled. i wish i could make them understand that what they are doing is SO wrong. i wish i could get them to agree with me that these people deserve respect just as much as their partner, even if they ARE cheating. they ‘try’ to be somewhat anonymous when they talk about these people, not using last names or anything, but anyone who KNOWS these people KNOWS it’s them. they KNOW they have a couple friend by those names and boy, they sure sound familiar on the radio too.

we live in an age of airing our dirty laundry to as MANY people as possible. look at facebook, look at the radio, look at twitter. i’m not saying that any of these are inherently bad, but it blows my mind the things that people put out on the internet about themselves without even TRYING to be anonymous about it. they don’t MIND being linked to complete stupidity and ignorance. it’s almost a badge of honor. i don’t understand these people.

do you?


a humorous little story…

once upon a time, there was a girl named Josie* who was training for a half-marathon in her city. one day, she went to the gym nice and early to do her workout. When she finished her workout, she realized that while she packed 3 pairs of socks to wear, she forgot to pack her undapants and was thus condemned to go commando all day. the end.

in an unrelated story, no, you are not crazy or typing it wrong – ‘letters’ has a different password. ask if you want it. 🙂


*names have been changed to protect the idiotic innocent