sometimes it’s not about you–it probably rare is

I am a personality test junkie. I am always seeking to understand what makes me tick and what explains the crazy behavior performed by other people. I will admit that I don’t err on the side of mercy, so I will attribute things to character flaws much faster than presupposing that there is some subconscious reasons for relational gaffes. I’m learning, what can I say?

This post is motivated by my frustrations with communication and the lack their of in relationships. It is my small way of working through the truth that sometimes, responses to my person have absolutely nothing to do with me.

My gross anatomy professor in medical school had a saying when we were having a difficult time identifying some obscure muscle or nerve in cadaver lab after agonizing for a long time: “take a deep breath, walk away from it, pray about it, then return.”

I find this to be true with people as well. Sometimes, we are just too close to a situation and we need to take a step away to get perspective and not act like a crazy person or take up offense so readily.

And even when there is a legitimate reason to be hurt or disappointed, it gives us space to understand that in this life, people just fall short. I will (at some point) fall short as well. You cannot force reciprocal vulnerability, you cannot force conversation. So my ENFJ nature of controlling must be checked and I have to live in that reality. Hopefully this results in less ulcers and resentment, and more compassion and understanding.


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Believing and Black and Woman amongst other things

So I have to write. I just noticed when I realized I had forgotten my password, that I last wrote a little over a year ago. Before moving to Austin. Before starting an attending job. So I suck at this, but you love me anyway.

I feel compelled to write because something is bothering me. This whole thing about identity–gender and ethnicity–the cultural wars around them both and the need to validate the pain and struggle and violence rendered to people of my demographic, and the desire to be loved and valued and appreciated because we are also Imago Dei.

Beyonce’s Formation and now Lemonade are being lauded as places where this is happening.

I have to stand up and say this is FALSE.

This is not Gospel, folks. This is apostate and occult and sinister and insidious and ANTICHRIST.

We do not have “power within us” we are not “enough on our own and with our sisters” we do not dole out vengeance or heal or forgive on our own.

It is NOT through our blood or our creative force that this is possible.

It is the through the redeeming blood of Christ that this is possible. God who is neither male nor female. who loves and submits in triune Unity.

THAT is where this happens. When we look to Christ for fulfillment and value.

I am extremely disheartened at the lack of discernment in fellow Believing women and the drinking of the kool-aid of this cultural phenomenon.

This is scary stuff folks. God will not be mocked—combining Christian imagery with ancestor worship and mother earth and sensuality is witchcraft and nothing else.

Christ before my gender. Christ before my ethnicity. Christ before every other part of my person.

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absence makes the heart grow fonder

Gee, I really cannot be bothered to check in on a regular basis can I?

Well, as per usual there is much change afoot.

Finishing up fellowship in the Big Apple in a little less than 8 weeks, and moving to Austin to start my first real job.

Away from the eastern seaboard.

Back to the South.

But in a new city I’ve never lived and have only visited once.

This is extremely exciting. I will admit that the level of bittersweet fluctuates with my emotional state here in Manhattan. On the days I feel alone or tired of the rat race, or frustrated with work, or skeeved out by the dirtiness of the city, I can look ahead to greener lands (literally), where the sweet tea flows, people two-step, Y’all is an acceptable pronoun, and yet it is a new adventure.

Today, I would say I am very excited. Community is elusive in New York. Everyone goes their own way, has their own agenda or plan, as boyfriends, girlfriends, work, school, success, children, public transit, or just flakiness/lack of dependability often derail lots of good intentions to keep in touch. It is difficult to have super airtight relationships with people at work, as that just seems to not be done. Other times, people don’t really like to open their lives to you, so you can try but at some point, you doing all of the texting, inviting, organizing is just moot. what’s the point. it shouldn’t be that hard.

I am glad to be starting afresh.

I am also nervous. But that’s okay.

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Wise Up or Slow down Daisy

Hi again. 

I haven’t written since November right? oops.

I am going to say that is because of my lack of discipline as opposed to the fact that life has just not made this a priority. although I guess that would also be true.

where to start….

Music has a funny way of making me look in a mirror and face myself and my plans and my fears and my thoughts and shortcomings. it seems to articulate a lot of things i can not always find the words for. One particular band that has done this for me is The Arcade Fire. The last album Reflektor has a couple of songs that have been playing over and over in my head.

This year has been full of new babies and new marriages and deaths. and moves. and new jobs. more so than usual. I feel a bit overwhelmed with life and its incessant intent on moving forward. I realize I’m almost a year down in my fellowship. which this time last year was supposed to be just a year long (i’m really glad that is not the case now). 

I am reminded that my life is just rolling right along. relationships are growing and dying. people are moving along or not. money is spent (not so much saved, thanks new york). goals are made and then checked off. 

no one ever tells you being an adult is this feeling of….not dread, not of tapping your fingers on the desk, but still this acute awareness that the clock is running down. and this need, this compulsion to make the moments count is so visceral, you almost  want to scream. 

and i’m not even old. hah! i don’t even have a marriage or children yet. 

So there is something shaping up at the moment. I don’t know what it means in the big scheme of my life (most likely something of value despite the outcome), but I’ll play coy and we will all just rest on our laurels and see. 


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the hand of time

so this post has been a long time coming, but the gap gives me more to document. also the second half might be a bit morose. sorry in advance.

So things I have done since arriving to NYC:

–explored the Morgan Library, the Whitney, the MOMA, the Brooklyn Museum, went on a Banksy art pilgrimage, and stood in the cold outside of the David Zwirner gallery to see the Yayoi Kusama exhibit. 

— listened to Chrvches, 2 door cinema club, st. lucia. Kacey Musgraves, and a guy who wrote a song about Ovid’s metamorphoses and played the viol.

— been invited and attended the VH1 YOK concert to see beloved friends (and Lorde, the Lumineers, Haim, and Emeli Sande) play a show, watched a polo tournament,went to a speakeasy in the backroom of a tattoo parlor.

— ate numerous tasty things.

— drank numerous tasty things.

— found some silence and clarity at the Cloisters and at a VESPERS service.

— had visits from good friends and family.

— readjusted to living with someone, and enjoy it.

— actually started volunteering with the elderly.

well that is a perfect segue to the next point.

I think dementia is crueler than death. 

My dad’s mother is one of the best women I know. She happened to also be my ride home from school everyday from the ages of 12-18. We would rehash my day, she would give me advice on boys. taught me how to make caramel icing and her cornbread (so good), and sang like an angel. The latter is not hyperbole, back in the day she was scouted out to sing opera, but felt she would be overwhelmed by the big city and didn’t do it. my life (if I had been born) would’ve been very different, methinks. 

This woman’s kitchen was an oasis. you sat at the island in the middle on a barstool and she would give all sorts of wisdom. When I left for college, I always thought that Mama would be ever present. sharp as a tack, ready to pray for anything from my general protection and future, to doing well on the next physics exam. 

When I left Nashville after medical school, I moved to Philadelphia, and left her a little frailer, but overall still very much the same. 

but then my brother left for college, and her routine abruptly stopped and I think that the “thief” started to catch up with her. 

There is something really devastating about realizing that a pillar of your life is slowly crumbling away from you. It is extremely hard to adjust to. I am not home anymore, so I only get snippets, but my heart hurts and is wistful about not picking her brain more years ago or recording her singing. I didn’t think you could mourn for someone you can still touch. 

until now. 

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ask, seek, knock

The apostle says that this wisdom is revealed by the Holy Spirit. If you ask how such things can occur; seek the answer in God’s grace, not in doctrine, in the longing of the will, not in understanding. in the sighs of prayer, not in research. seek the bridegroom, not the teacher. God and not man.

-Saint Bonadventure

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Where dreams are made

that is what new york claims to be. a place that if one can “make it here, you can make it anywhere.” but what does that even mean?

I’m sitting in my office at work, waiting to see a new patient coming in roughly 30 or so minutes, listening to Andrew Belle and wondering– what does it mean to make it?

There are lots of things I like. I mean, I like my job. But there are so many other things I want to do– cook and bake more, make more music mixes and share them, visit with little old people in nursing homes, travel, read, learn a language, write more letters, make more jewelry. sigh.

And then there are things like new york fashion week and galas and being interviewed by vogue and going to “outstanding in the field” dinners, and going to the cape or the vineyard or nantucket. that i’m looking at from way outside. i guess that is discontent? (ignorance is indeed bliss).

I talked with mary gardiner’s mother last night about how the “other half” lives. and how it must be something.

I was watching an interview with Hannah Bronfman and I was struck by the fact that this beautiful and clearly intelligent socialite woman felt the need to name drop over 7 celebrities in a 5 minute interview. I mean, she has NOTHING to improve. but yet, there it was. I didn’t get it. no one cares about your mom being friends with josephine baker’s daughter or who your dad would have over to the house. You don’t need to qualify anything. you’ve done some really cool things.

oh well. apparently no matter where you are you feel the need to validate it. maybe that is humanity?

this is very stream of consciousness. i’m going to stop now.

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