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Shaking muscles mean change is happening.

January 07, 2014

it all – we all share a little bit of anxiety that we never really talk about. And since I’m pretty good at oversharing, I think we should talk about it. :) I wrote a post about how hard 2013 was. When all the hard things we went through last year (losing my father in law, losing our sweet pup, dealing with infertility for a second year in a row) compounded, I started to melt a little bit. I let life win for a few months. I endured instead of enjoyed all the blessings that were circling me. So many blessings. But I couldn’t see the forest for the trees.

I’m sharing just this little part of my story because it was laid on my heart tonight that maybe one of you needs to read this. I had a really good friend reach out to me when I was going through this and she gave me a new perspective and told me I wasn’t alone. You aren’t either.

A sadness over the loss of loved ones and the mourning of the fact that Bryan and I will never be able to be have children easily took root in my heart. And with it came a blistering, bitter fear that something was lurking – another shoe about to drop. God was going to give me one more thing that I couldn’t handle and my back was going to break. And my heart.

I didn’t really share how I was feeling other than a few nondescript Instagram posts because I was ashamed that something was winning over me. I’d hear the fears and worries come out of my mouth to trusted friends and family and I realized how weird they sounded. In an effort to pull myself out of this strange hole that felt so unfamiliar and so permanent, I tried to treat myself to things that would lighten my spirits and went one day for a massage. I didn’t realize how much it would change me. Stay with me here, I know this sounds odd.

I learned that sometimes we have to get out of our own heads. I’d spent too much time convincing myself what was wrong and mulling over the sad details and writing my own what-if-this-happens “choose your own adventure” book. Something about the physical nature of feeling my blood moving brought me back to normal. It was an expensive month, but I started getting massages every week for about four weeks. I went home to Pensacola during this time and all I wanted to do was lay in the grass in my parents big backyard and close my eyes and feel the sun on my face. I felt connected and centered there.

Most, if not all, of that anxiety from last year is gone. I threw myself into books and made myself MOVE and go for walks outside when I had mountains of work to do. I started to learn that my body is as important as my mind and each feeds off the other. I put one foot in front of the other and made it through one of the most difficult periods of my life.

I write all this now because I have to. I think God put this on my heart because at points in our lives, we all feel this way. Sometimes the perfect storm of circumstances, no matter how WONDERFUL the rest of life is, will pull us into a place we feel like we can’t climb out of.

Before Christmas, I started taking Pure Barre classes. A dancer for many, many years, I assumed I’d have this in the bag. I was feeling better and making much more time for myself. I started back on Monday and spent sixty minutes carefully planning the words I’d use when I cancelled my membership on my way out because it was WAY too hard for me. My muscles shook and quivered and WHAT. ON. EARTH. is that!? How embarrassing!

The instructor said to all six of us during the last few minutes of the class (as now all of our muscles were shaking), “Keep going. Shaking muscles mean change is happening.” Isn’t it true, friends? When we feel our weakest… that’s when God is doing the most work on us. And sometimes, He’s giving us our weaknesses so that we can lean on Him instead of our own muscles.

I was writing out my entire life story (all thirty years of it! :)) for Lara the other day, for the book she’s writing, and I started to piece together how many times in my life God has done just this with me. He’s made me so weak so that He can make me so strong in Him. He’s knocked my feet out from under me, quite literally, forcing me to ask Him to help me up.

I’ll go back to Pure Barre on Thursday. And this time, when my leg muscles start to shake because I just cannot do one more tuck and bend, I’ll smile and remember all the change that’s happening inside.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

And hey… you. You are worthy. You deserve a ten minute walk outside. Heck, you deserve a massage. It’s ok to feel the way you do right now. Cry it out and rejoice because you might be sad and afraid but you are never, ever, ever alone. This too shall pass. Put one foot in front of the other. Move your body and get your blood flowing. Get up and get moving. Run. Lay in the grass. Sing. Seek God. SLEEP. Do something about it. I love you, I mean it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

xo,

Emily

copyright 2018 emily ley