all things new

it has been a long time since i have had it in me to sit down and blogvent all my deep, dark feelings.  the truth is that i have been in a really bad place.  i am not even going to pretend that i don't have a TON of great things going on in my life.  i mean, i always have a life full of great gifts and blessings, but there are all sorts of new things happening... i will list some of these exciting developments here, because i am selfish and i want the reminder.

  • we are waiting to adopt another baby, which means i am pregnant on paper.
  • i recently started a (soon-to-be-wildly-successful) business with a great friend. (i will tell that story soon enough, but the micro-version is that i pretended to have a business, and to make good on that claim, i actually had to start one.  it just felt like lying otherwise. because it was lying, a little. okay, mostly it was lying.)
  • i am starting a 6 week trial serving with the children's ministry at my church.  this is perfect for me because i looooove my church, i love the people i will be working with, i love kids, i love Jesus, and i love my family... with whom i will get to serve.  *in case you are concerned about me working with children after my confession about all the lying, please understand that i didn't mean to lie, i just got excited and i made good on the claim that i had a business, by starting said business.  so, it was really like a prophesy that had not yet been fulfilled.  so i am less like a liar, and more like a false prophet.  which is still shameful and you are right, i should not work with children.  i will resign immediately. (lie.)
  • we have decided on the dates for the Third Annual Capuano Tour de USA.  the region of the continental US has yet to be determined, but the decision is made and dates are set!  *i was going to hyperlink something to my first and second cross-country road trip... but there are way too many to choose from, so if you don't know what i am talking about and are absolutely DESPERATE to know more, then just go back and read my blog from the beginning.  you won't be sorry, our trips are full of danger, adventure, action, humor, folly aaannnnnd... feats of strength.
so, even with all that great news... things have been rough in other, more personal ways.  it has been a time where i have had to really do some hard work in figuring out who i am vs. who God wants me to be.  and that is never pretty, especially when the raw material being examined is my haggard heart.  i have realized that i have zero boundaries.  well, that is actually completely untrue.  i have some pretty solid boundaries, i just let them be violated by anyone who pushes.  i don't know what happened to me, but somewhere along the road i developed a guilt-complex that has somehow convinced me that i can never say "no" to people.  even when i really want to, or when my boundaries have been completely violated... i just can't hold firm.  i have always been pretty sassy and strong and full of gumption... but when it comes to somebody i love pushing back on a boundary, i cave every time.  ugh.  i'm a total embarrassment of a jellyfish.

this is not just with one person, but several people, it just takes on different forms.  so, it stops here and now. i needed to get to a point where i had been stretched so thin from allowing this to happen in my relationships, that i would get my gumption back.  well, here it is ladies and gentlemen!  i am done.  i have way too many kids to get sucked dry by other people in my life!  i have become so depleted that i feel like i barely have enough of myself to give to my family.  i am so thankful for each relationship in my life, and i am even thankful for the particularly challenging ones... because God has used them to bring the impurities out of my heart, and whenever you see the crap rise to the surface... it doesn't look too pretty, but when the junk is cleared away, what remains is always a purer thing.  and that purer heart is overflowing with many great blessings, namely Jesus and my family.  so, that is where i am starting.  back to the basic middle-school youth group lesson on priorities... God first, family second, everything else comes after that.

i am feeling scared and relieved and guilty for what this "season of redefining" will mean for my current relationships, but i am also feeling excited to allow God to strengthen me and refine me and make me new.  i am looking forward to being on the other end of this season and being able to have normal relationships with people, where i can preserve my boundaries and better protect my time and energy level, so that my best always goes to God first, family second.  and for the first time in a long time, everything else will come after that.

for some time my friend sam has been peer-pressuring me into getting tattoos. again.  her invitation to literally write a reminder where i can see it at all times came at the perfect time.  so, i did it.  i wrote myself a little reminder that this is a new season, and that God requires me to be a new person.  in my own handwriting, in a place i can see it at all times... i wrote myself a little note to remind myself of 2 corinthians 5:17, where God promises that "if anyone is in Christ, they are a new creation" where "the old is gone, and the new has come."  one translation says "behold! all things become new!"  that. is. it.

all things new.  

new relationships, new energy level, new boundaries, new hope, new patience, new grace, new discipline, new life.  talk about your makeover... yes. please.