Friday, October 2, 2020

Holding On

[via]


the leaves were trembling, barely hanging on. 
their bright colors the same as my heart
the air was cold and biting 
as i wondered how its beauty faded.
lost in the pain of the moment. 

my hands were shaking, trembling with pain
as the autumn rain tried to cleanse this day
i traced the etches of the flood down the window pane
and watched my breath disappear in the air
drowning in the memories and dreams.

my heart beat on despite the pain
even after i thought my tears 
would wash it all away. 
when you fake a smile but your heart is breaking
just like the colorful leaves before they fall. 

and like the leaves being tossed about
and pulled from every direction, 
i made a wish that You would find
beauty amidst my ashes. 
beauty amidst my ashes. 

"Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words." Romans 8:26

"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." Psalms 34:18


Saturday, July 11, 2020

Promises, Promises



the windows shuddered, like my soul
at the angry, beating wind.
the world was drowning in the torrent
of the tears of God falling on us.
the rain was beating on the roof,
thunder echoing through my soul.
as the trees swayed down under the burden.
i watched the water etch paths in the glass,
and listened to the complaining thunder,
as the sun hid in dismay
and all the grass drown under
the never ending flood.
then all at once, the tempest was over
and the world gasped a sigh of relief
as God renewed His promises.
as God renewed His promises.

Friday, July 3, 2020

Blessings & Blessings Disguised


God always has a plan; and He always works what man means for evil, into good for His kingdom. 

I have to get this off my chest, as it's been weighing on me for awhile. So here's a journal entry and a little more raw glimpse into my feelings.

Blessings: 
About 3 years ago, God provided me with one of the biggest blessings of my life so far. I met my future husband. The small portion of the journey we have covered so far has included some of the biggest joys and biggest heartbreaks of my life. God has challenged my faith, and strengthened it beyond what I ever dreamed!

Neel has given me a picture of true love. I remember the first time he saw me sad. He noticed right away and cared about what was causing it. No one had ever noticed if I was sad before. No family member, friend or coworker - I thought I was excellent at hiding it. But he noticed. And not only noticed, but cared. The first time he saw me cry, he also got tears in his eyes. I don't remember anyone crying with me before. If I'm having a rough day, he's always soft. If someone hurt me, he can get tough :) He thanks me for pointing out things he can improve on and helps me cook dinner even after a long day working. His entire perspective is so much different than anything I grew up with and it never ceases to amaze me. I have also loved the "masala" (Hindi word for spice) that Indian culture adds to our lives. We get to celebrate twice the amount of holidays, and cook twice the variety of foods, and speak twice the amount of languages compared to families with the same culture.

Of course, we've had our adjustments as a married couple, but truly, I feel that God has revealed so much of His love to me through Neel. One of the most poignant pictures of God's love has been adjusting to sleeping beside someone else... I am not a touchy person - I didn't grow up giving or receiving hugs or any type of physical touch. However, Neel's favorite way to sleep is with his arm around me - all night long. lol. I thought that was romantic for about the first 5 minutes. And then I couldn't get to sleep and he was sound asleep 😂 The first few nights, I would try to sneakily roll over to the edge of the bed once I thought he was asleep, but he would always adjust so that his arm was still around me. I did eventually learn to sleep like that and it makes me feel so safe and protected. The other day I was thinking of how much that is like God's love. We may try to rebel or run away, but He's always there to gently protect us. Even if we get annoyed at God or try to sneak away, He's always there for us. And His plan will always bring the best for us.

Blessings Disguised: 
Despite all the joy of the last couple years, there have been some trials. It was very hard for my family to accept someone from another country. There are so many stereotypes and I have heard them all. I was completely shocked to find out exactly how racist my family was. It took my immediate family over a year to accept the fact that I was dating Neel and even up until the day of my wedding, I was receiving pressure to leave him. I grew up in a very conservative cult. I say cult although I never thought of it as a cult until this past year. Even after I left to find a more Biblical church, I didn't see it. (A cult is by definition: a small, isolated religious group with extreme beliefs)

Within this small, isolated group, I grew up very close to a large extended family - literally hundreds of cousins, uncles, aunts, etc. I attended all of their weddings - I helped serve, stood up with them, cleaned up, or helped however they asked. When it came time for my wedding, not a single one attended. Not a single cousin showed up. No aunts or uncles. Not even my own brother. The only family that attended my wedding were my parents (after much protest), my sister, and my grandma. The only one that never questioned coming to my wedding was my grandma. Even my parents and sister took a long time to agree to attend. Each of them had their own "reasons" which basically boiled down to a common thread that my marriage, to my loving, kind husband - went against their "beliefs." My love and my commitment - somehow affected their beliefs. Instead of a day to celebrate love and support me, they somehow twisted it into a day focused on themselves.

I felt utterly and completely abandoned. My entire extended family shunned me, after I grew up being told that "shunning is a sin and we do not do it." I struggled for months feeling that I was an unworthy bride, that somehow I wasn't good enough for others to love me. I wasn't loveable. I spent so many nights crying. Instead of trusting me (who they have known all their life), they hated someone that they had never even met so much that they chose to not be there on the most important day of my life. Instead of loving and supporting me, they chose to turn their back on me when I needed them. I went through every stage of grief and bitterness. I had never experienced such deep hurt in all my life. In fact, I was so naive that I didn't even know this kind of pain existed. Or that others could be so cruel and cold. Never before had I struggled with forgiveness, but this time I was. I would read my Bible every night and then cry to God to please help me forgive them, when all I wanted to do was hate. I wanted them to feel my pain. But God slowly began to show me that even if they never realize what they did to me, it's okay. Jesus suffered and died on the cross for the sins of people who will never realize what they did wrong. But still - He loved them.

And slowly, a new, deeper faith grew in my life. Today, I finally have peace when I think about it. I still feel hurt, and I still cry. But I no longer feel bitter or angry. I no longer feel hate. And although I doubt I will ever be able to have a true relationship with the people that I grew up with, I don't have ill feelings for them, or wish them any pain.

My wedding day was truly beautiful. I don't think it could have turned out more beautiful, even if there had been 20x the amount of people. I was so happy, and felt so loved by the friends that showed up for me. And looking back, I wouldn't change a thing. God has a way of purifying and removing the dross in your life. And sometimes, it's going to be a painful process. But the end result is so worth it. 💗

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

I Woke from the Nightmare

[via]


i woke from the nightmare
the rain was filled with my fear
and the storm had overtaken me
i always loved the rain before.
i always loved the storms.
but these were heavy storms,
and too much for me to carry.
and as i let the rain wash over me,
too numb to lift my face,
a silent cry stifled in my soul
to rescue me from this fate.

i woke from the nightmare
to feel the sun smiling again
and the leaves whispering their praises
the light was brighter than before.
the trees even happier.
and i saw everyone who loved me,
standing right there beside me.
because silent prayers were heard,
and God provided before i needed.

i woke from the nightmare
to everyone that i care about.
to all my needs provided.
to all my fears subsided.
and love racing in the breeze.
and a better life than i had dreamed,
gifted to me from heaven.

i woke from the nightmare. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Short Breath

[via]

i caught a glimpse of the tangerine sunshine
peeking shyly through the clouds
the clouds that shrouded the city lying scared below
in a dreary winter haze.
shades of coral, turquoise and amber
hidden from the ground beneath
as the earth shivered from the caress.
we woke up today
to thoughts unknown
to experiences unheard
to feelings unfelt.
the world changed in a moment
and we took it for granted.
and as i pondered these inklings
with the winter shroud above
my fingers twirling a delicate flower
reminded of the short breath
that is called this life.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

New Adventures

So I mostly post poetry-type stuff (if you can call it that lol) on here... Occasionally, however, I do post a glimpse into more than just my thoughts/feelings and share what is happening in my life. I feel like it's been awhile since I did that - partly because life was busy and I was only blogging sporadically. However, I have a little more time currently so I'm trying to get back into it a little.

I think the last time I posted a personal update was when I became a dietitian (What's Going On) and then when my cousin died (In Memory of Brookie). Both of those happened almost 5 years ago (seriously?!) and a lot has happened since then! :)

God is always so, so good. I can't emphasize that enough. I am so grateful for His leading in my life, and for all the good, wonderful things He has provided. Time and time again I am reminded that He always provides. In the end, there truly is nothing to fear or worry about, because He always provides for every single need we have.

So for the past 5 years, I've been working as a dietitian - I started out with my dream job as a retail dietitian which was such a great experience and I loved the creativity that I could have. My coworkers were amazing - like a huge, supportive family. Which was the perfect place that God wanted me to be as He led me to leave the community that I grew up in and follow Him more closely. I grew up in a conservative church and there were a lot of good things that I learned and experienced, but as I grew in my walk with God, I felt His leading to find a different church. This was one of the hardest things I ever did - stepping completely outside of anything I had ever known and learning basically an entire new way of living.

[a few Hy-Vee coworkers that came to my wedding]

[over 2.5 years working at Hy-Vee]

After that, God started leading me in a new direction in my career. I took a job as a clinical dietitian at a hospital, and moved across the state to a place where I had never met anyone. It was such a growing experience - and again my coworkers have been phenomenal and a huge support to me. Besides changing directions in my career, I felt God leading me to change careers completely. I love my job as a dietitian. I absolutely love it. And after a year at my current place, they promoted me to lead dietitian which has been another amazing, humbling, growing experience. However, I still feel God leading me out of my comfort zone as a dietitian and making a huge leap of faith by going back to school. (hopefully more details on that in the future ;) )

[friends and moving crew]

[the awesome dietitians I get to work with everyday now]
During all of this, I also started dating... After a couple months of dating, my (now husband) had his work visa renewal rejected which started a 2-year-long LONG distance (8,000 miles) relationship. Despite the struggles, God blessed us with being able to travel to 5 countries together; which I highly recommend if you ever have the chance - as traveling truly is a growing experience as you find out that the whole world does not necessarily fit into your neat little box ;) We got married in September and I am now living in India for a few months with my darling husband as we wait on a spouse visa.

a few wedding photos: 
[my family]

[my sweetheart]

[my besties]

[the ring + henna]

[guestbook]

[the best mother in the world]

[my mom MADE all the decorations - she is the BOMB]

[our adorable flower girl]

[wedding party]

A few photos from India :) 

[the view from our flat's gallery]

[our first guests at our home - a fellow "masala sister" which is what I learned that foreigners married to Indians are called lol]
[nothing like stopping your car on the roadside to get a fresh coconut]

Goodness, I think I am getting old.... but life is an amazing adventure and I absolutely cannot wait to see where God takes us next :) 

God Made You

[via]

it was a quiet feeling,
the kind that just sneaks up on you.
the kind that you never expect.
it was a lovely feeling,
different than what you pictured.
different than you had imagined.
and i didn't know how to describe it;
the way you loved me,
or the space you held for me.
it was like opening a new door,
one that i'd never noticed before.
and behind that door,
was a new world.
a breath of fresh air.
a precious gift from God.
and when He crumbled the old world
     in front of my eyes;
He fashioned you to hold me.
He made you to fit me in a perfect way.
and to show me what true love is. 

Nothing Will Ever Be the Same

[via]

nothing will ever be the same.
yet, still i remember those moments
the walls of my heart painted with nostalgia
happy moments turned into sadness
wistful longing for stories that never unfolded.
but i hold these memories in my mind
opening them and closing them a million times.
and smiling at the way you laughed;
the connection we had, if only for a moment.
and you may forget me,
a hundred years from now;
but, darling, i'll never forget our moments,
our memories,
our split second of connection in this journey of life.
and as i close the box of my heart,
i whisper a prayer, that some day,
i'll run into you again...
in a crowded store or abandoned hallway.
and that our eyes will meet like old times,
even though it is a thousand miles away.
and i'll say your name, and you'll say mine.
for a moment, the memories will be with us again,
my dear friend,
and the memories will be sweet again
instead of bittersweet.
nothing will ever be the same. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Flavor of Your Love


i let the flavor of your love
sink onto my tongue; 
a million thoughts 
     dancing on my taste buds. 

and every day is something new
something new to love;
so many things to learn,
     so many memories to make. 

these flavors are exotic
in endless combinations; 
and as i take another bite
     it's anything but ordinary. 


Self Righteous

[Hyderabad, India]

the sun is setting out my window
a gentle breeze dancing with the curtains
as i breathe this summer air
noises from the ground below
still echo in my ears
and i watch the traffic doodles
     and swirling neon lights
outlining the roads below
my mind is full with pleasant thoughts
happy memories
hopeful dreams
but i often wonder at the difference
that a world can make
my day is over and they are just starting
even time seems different,
in the chaos there is still peace.
in the hustle, there is still calm.
and i wonder what God thinks,
as He looks down from above.
with the whole world judging each other
and withholding love,
when He created so much variety,
and all we want is for them to fit in our little box.
and we choose our beliefs over loving,
instead of letting the Holy Spirit convict.
because we think we have all the answers,
and maybe we just need
to walk a mile in their shoes.
and remember that Jesus
condemned the pharisees for their judgmental beliefs.

the world isn't a box.
God made it bigger.
His imagination is not limited
by culture or religious expectations.
and there is so much beauty that we miss
when blinded by pride and self righteousness. 

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Ordinary

[via]

it was a normal day
the sun was shining, but not too bright.
the birds were singing, but not too loud.
my heart was beating, but not too fast.
the kind of day that you never notice.
it doesn't catch your eye or change your breath.
and if you let it, it will make you comfortable.
too comfortable; complacent.
but that's the kind of day it is.
nothing more or nothing less.
always steady, always constant.
with the sun shining, and the birds singing,
and my heart beating; beat by beat.
never stopping, never tiring.
but sometimes, love,
ordinary is the best kind of love.

Cleansed

[via]

the storm surrounded me
like the darkness you created
cold, heavy rain took away my breath 
and lightning pierced my soul.
it's what you wanted, right, love?
you wanted me to feel the pain. 
you wanted me to know i wasn't worthy. 
undeserving of your love. 
you wanted me to know i was wrong.
isn't that why you threw those stones? 
but, love, don't you know...
you aren't god.
you don't see my heart or hear my prayers. 
my decision doesn't affect your self righteousness. 
the rain fell down, and it almost drown me, 
but love, i thank God for it 
i thank Him over and over
because instead of drowning, it cleansed me 
illuminating the dross and removing it. 
and i thought i would miss you 
once the pieces fell, 
but all i feel is peace. 
Jesus has the storm.