More Than Ships Passing In the Night

“If you won’t look down, then I won’t look back.”

Here’s to the people who get us hooked on music we can’t stop listening to, even after they’re gone.

And here’s to the ones who won’t settle for “it is what it is” as an explanation, a reason, a justification, or even an excuse, because they instead choose to live out the principle that “work is love made visible.”

I’ll wrestle the mountain lions all day to waltz a slow 6/8 with you around the house in the evening.

That’s a good day

Drafted on January 30, 2015:

I stopped by a professor’s office to return something to him, and in the middle of our conversation, I got completely distracted by what appeared to be a slinky trophy on his desk.


“…Is that a slinky?” I asked him.

The professor looked at me in shock. “Have we not….? Do we not know each other that well yet? Have we never talked about this?” He glanced significantly around his office.

I followed his gaze.

There were slinkies everywhere.

It was like they were materializing out of the wood-works as I looked around more closely.

We both started laughing.

“Okay, apparently I have blinders on when I come into your office!” I said. Which was true – I’d never noticed the extensive slinky collection permeating his office before.

“I really like slinkies,” the professor said, as if by way of explanation.

I wasn’t really sure how to respond. “I mean, who doesn’t?” I offered.

His face lit up – “RIGHT?! That’s exactly how I feel!”

So, then we were talking about slinkies and how he collects them, and has boxes and boxes of slinkies under his desk that he bought from eBay for $12.

And then he asked me if I wanted a slinky.

“Um, YES.”

So he started pulling out bags and opening drawers and showing me various slinkies and asking which ones interested me.

He ended up giving me a dolphin-shaped slinky – the last of its kind, he said. It was in a battered box and had seen some better days, and he observed that it might be permanently kinked.

I so badly wanted to make a joke about a kinky slinky.

I refrained.

But I liked the dolphin slinky because it was the only one of its kind that he had left and it seemed special because he said you couldn’t get those kind anymore and he kept coming back to it, and I felt like it just needed some TLC from someone who would love it and accept it in its broken, imperfect state.

And I totally wasn’t attaching any sort of meta symbolism to it or anything.

“Every day that I acquire a new slinky – that’s a good day for me,” the professor said. “It doesn’t matter what else happens that day, it’s a good day.”

“I could really use a good day right now,” I said, “Thank you.”

And I’ll be darned if that little plastic dolphin slinky didn’t just make my whole day a tiny bit brighter.

photo (16)

Rush-hour traffic: my insecurities are a hall of mirrors, but I found beauty in Gmail

Another draft, this time from November 2012:

I sat in traffic for an hour this morning. When the rush-hour traffic is average, it takes me 45 minutes to get to work. If traffic is good, it only takes 30. When traffic is bad, it takes an hour. It was raining today – not heavily, but steadily. And for some reason, traffic is always the worst on Thursdays. Crawling along at 5 mph, watching the rain cloud up the windshield, there is a sort of monotonous futility that sinks in. The gloomy sky bleeds into my own dull thoughts; the ever-present voice in my head holds me captive and it questions me and it mocks me and it haunts me. I find myself taking it in turns to be angry, and then bitter, and then sad. And sometimes I feel nothing at all.

I’ve been reflecting on my insecurities lately. You know, it’s funny – the things that make us doubt ourselves. And the things we look to as sources of validation. Or maybe we didn’t realize they were sources of validation until we perceived that validation to be denied to us. I recently experienced this under very silly circumstances: I caught myself feeling defensive of my own abilities in a given area after a friend complimented someone else on their abilities in that same area. It was a childish reaction, but it exposed a deeper insecurity. When I recognized the reaction for what it was, it triggered a chain reaction: the fact that I could be so insecure over such a basic, silly thing in turn made me feel even more insecure. I was insecure about my insecurities.

Have you ever been in a room where two mirrors reflect each other? In the master bedroom of our house, the mirror over the bathroom sink faces the mirrored closet doors. There is a wall cabinet that also has a mirrored door. If you open that door and angle it just right, the reflection of the two mirrors facing each other creates a “hall of mirrors” effect. I’m sure you’ve seen something similar before. As a child, I thought it was a fun optical illusion to make, and it was fascinating to see my own face reflected ad infinitum down the hallway of mirrors.

My insecurities create a similar effect. They reflect each other like so many mirrors and I see my own reflection in an endless hall of mirrors: thousands of iterations of my own shortcomings staring back at me, sneering at me, glaring at me. I want to shatter all of the mirrors, but even if I broke them, the shards would still tell the story of a girl imprisoned by her own self-sabotaging fear. It is in these moments that the emotional claustrophobia kicks in. How can I separate myself from all of these reflections?

I don’t know the answer. But today, in the midst of my rain-soaked, ever-reflected insecurities, I found beauty. I was creating a Gmail account for work and I discovered the option of custom theme backgrounds. I was scrolling through the top-choice pictures that different users had submitted for background themes. In the middle of my drab, artificially lit office cubicle, I found myself staring at light and color. At beautiful photographs that captured something deeper than the mere image. You know that feeling you get when you are in the presence of something exquisitely and deeply beautiful? Like something is uncurling inside your chest – like a flower whose petals gently unfold in response to the sun?

Gmail is an unusual place to find such beauty. But today, I sat scrolling through their photographs. And somewhere in my chest, I felt the warmth of the sun. And it was reflected on the hall of mirrors, so that instead of seeing my insecurities a thousand times, I saw only light.


Drafted on June 12, 2014:

Yesterday, June 11, marked my two-year anniversary of working in my current job.

It seems like such a small number. But for me, it represents two-thirds of my post-college working life. Two years ago, on June 3, I made The Drive from Los Angeles to the Bay Area. The “I don’t know when I’ll be back” drive.

Okay, technically, that’s inaccurate because I was back in L.A. the following weekend to attend my college roommate’s bridal shower.

But you get what I mean. My life was packed into my little ’95 civic. We had to be out of our apartment the day before I drove home, so there was a night where I did not even have a place to go home to at the end of the day. I crashed on the couch of some friends from my church. The next day, I got on the road. Pulling into my parents’ driveway that night was such a bizarre experience. I remember turning off the car engine and sitting in silence, except for the ringing in my ears.

The next morning, I went to a job interview first thing. I met the people who would become my co-workers and boss for the first time. I interviewed with the senior assistant dean of administration and almost cried in my interview because everything was changing so quickly and I didn’t know where my life was going. This woman sitting across the table from me understood: she had a background in the arts, too. She understood the impact of taking an administrative position in an environment where I would no longer be surrounded by music.

A week later, I started my job. It was an intense day of training. So many things to remember. So many policies and procedures to learn. So many little details to absorb.

I cried when I got home from my first day of work. It was so overwhelming.

Everyone told me I should be grateful to have a job. There were people out there who would love to have my position. This job was a blessing. It was a good thing. “Bloom where you’re planted.”

I knew. And I felt guilty, because I knew.

But I had just moved home, back in with my parents and grandparents, after living on my own. I had just left behind a community that I loved. I had given up a job that I had come to find very fulfilling and enjoyable (and that was actually in my field of study) – because it wasn’t enough to pay my rent anymore, and I didn’t really have a choice. I had just begun to carve out a life for myself – to feel that sense of independence, to feel like I was becoming an adult, to feel satisfied and even happy with my life. And now I was starting all over again.

Change is difficult. And I will be the first to admit that I do not do well with change at all. I don’t like it, I don’t trust it, and I definitely don’t flow with it very well.

But it’s always interesting to look back and reflect, after a new situation has become the norm, on what has happened since that turning point. In honor of my two year workiversary, and in no particular order, I wanted to spend some time acknowledging the things that have happened in my life since the turning point of starting this job. So, I started making a list. But I quickly discovered that it was a very disjointed list, given that I consider items such as “Got to hear Beethoven’s 7th Symphony performed by the SF Symphony conducted by MTT…while sitting 10 rows away from the stage,” “Car got stolen,” “Watched all seven seasons of ‘The West Wing’,” and “Sworn in to serve on a jury for a three-week trial involving gang crimes and a stabbing,” to be all worth mentioning in the same list. The problem with such lists is that my workiversary celebration quickly turns into a bragathon (or bitchathon) about All of the Awesome/Exciting/Noteworthy/Terrible Things that either I have done or have happened to me over the past two years.

In reality, let’s recap:

I’m still in the same job that I was in two years ago, only with two years of experience under my belt now.

I’m still living with my parents and grandparents, only I think I can say I’m slightly less obnoxious to have around than I was two years ago (I hope…)

I’m still going to the church in which I was raised, only now I’m the choir director.

I’m still single (again), only more emotionally bruised than before (but maybe wiser. Or more cynical. Hard to say.)

I still don’t know when I’ll be going back to L.A., only now I’m not trying to get back there.

(Okay, again, that’s technically false: I’m driving to L.A. tomorrow to visit my sister and brother-in-law for the weekend. But I was making plans to come back to L.A. on a more permanent basis – plans which no longer exist at present.)

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Taking stock: a weekend retrospective. Or, why the grass actually is greener. Or, the peculiarities of emotional flashbacks. Or, pancakes.

Drafted September 2012:

“So, what was your favorite part about the trip?” my co-worker asked me.

We had already spent a few minutes re-hashing the traffic I had encountered both on my way down to L.A. and back up again. As if it even mattered in comparison to the rest of the weekend. But I didn’t mind talking about it. It’s easy to talk about the traffic. It makes sense – anyone who has ever driven can relate to the underlying implications of the word “traffic.” When my co-worker started out by asking me how the drive was, I knew what to do with the question. I knew how to answer it. It was simple.

But when she asked me what my favorite part about the weekend was, I paused.

I didn’t know where to begin. I started seeing images from the past two days in no particular order, like a disorganized PowerPoint presentation or an iTunes playlist set on “shuffle.” I didn’t want to talk about it. Not because it was a bad weekend. It was the opposite of a bad weekend. But my favorite parts about it couldn’t be easily explained. Or they could be easily explained but a simple explanation would fail to capture why they were the best parts. Or maybe it was because each event of the weekend had flowed so seamlessly into the next; it would be difficult to take any part of it out of the overall context.

I mean, we’ve all heard the cliché “It’s the little things…” But, it really is the little things. And even though everyone knows that, does anyone really want to hear about the little things? When my co-worker asked me what my favorite part of the weekend was, I could have told her this:

It was standing on the sidewalk outside my host’s apartment, and seeing my ride pull out of the parking garage to pick me up.

It was a booth in IHOP, and ticking off on my fingers all the updates I wanted to hear about my friend’s life, and the subsequent stories, and a plate of pancakes between us.

It was a trip to Sprouts, and impulse buying Cheddar Bunnies, and picking out dessert wines based on the labels.

It was lessons in crowd navigation at Downtown Disney, and cocktails in the Grand Californian Hotel lounge.

It was an art show, and seeing dear friends gathered in one place, and the excitement of reunions.

It was sitting in a charming organic cafe called “Green Bliss” with a friend and drinking the best vanilla soy latte that I’ve ever had.

It was the experience of worshiping in silence, eyes closed, beautifully inundated by the sound of voices singing around me.

It was hearing Shostakovich’s 11th Symphony for the first time.

It was the good-bye hug that promised there would be another hug hello.

In which I made significant strides toward being a crazy old lady

An unpublished draft dated September 19, 2014:

Yesterday on my way home from work, I stopped at the gas station to fill up my car. As I pulled up to the pump, I could hear the thudding bass and shouted lyrics of someone’s hip-hop music turned up loud enough for the entire gas station’s enjoyment.

It was coming from the car at the pump in front of me.

On the other side of that pump, a man was putting gas in his truck. As I got out of the car, we exchanged glances and smiled at each other as if to say, “Yes, I think their music is obnoxious too.”

Not only was it unnecessarily loud, but it was also foul. The rapper was shouting out expletives, obscenities, and racial slurs with almost every other word it seemed. I cringed internally at the barrage.

As I was swiping my card, I noticed that there was a young girl in the back of the man’s truck – presumably his daughter. I’m terrible at guessing ages, but I’d say she looked about seven years old. She did not look happy. While the gas was pumping, her dad was leaning in the car doorway, apparently talking to her. I wondered if the music was bothering her. I wondered how the man felt about his young daughter being forced to hear words like f*** and n****r brazenly proclaimed 10 feet away.

So I walked over to the car in front of me and told them to turn their music down.

Only not quite as bold as that, because I don’t like confrontation.

So instead I walked up and said, “Excuse me…. would you mind turning your music down? The guy next to you has a really young daughter…”

And they said sure.

And sort of turned it down. For a few minutes.

There was a momentary blessed silence.

And then the next track came on. And it was the same thing all over again. But by then, the man and his daughter were driving away, and I was done filling up my car and shaking badly thanks to a chaser shot of adrenaline, and if they didn’t get the message the first time, it didn’t seem worth it to argue the point.

Fear Factor: Social Anxiety Edition

Double draft – September 4, 2014, trying to finish a post from last summer:

“I was browsing through my drafts for unfinished posts and came across this one that I started writing on July 14, 2014. I gave it the above title at the time. I don’t know why.

Now, believe it or not, I have no memory of what the context was for inspiring the train of thought in that half-begun post. I really can’t remember what I was doing on July 14, where my mind was at, where my emotions were at, any of that fun stuff. Given my tendency toward introspection about relationships in general, I really could have produced something like this at any give time. I don’t know that it was necessarily triggered by A Specific Event. In any case, I can’t remember A Specific Event from that time period that would seem like a probable cause. Then again, I’ve blocked out much of the summer prior to August. So, there was probably something. Does it matter anymore? Not really.

So, then. Here’s what I had to say back in July about one of the many charming facets of my social anxiety:

“I’ve recently been faced with a disturbing reality about the way I relate to people. It’s entirely possible that what I’m experiencing is actually a normal phenomenon, but it was nevertheless a sobering realization.

I kind of knew this about myself already, but I think I’m just now realizing how broadly it applies to my relating style in general:

All of my interactions with people close to me are based on fear. In fact, the closer someone becomes in my life and/or the more I care about someone, the greater the fear factor. The fear itself is a fear of losing the other person, specifically losing them because I failed to be “good enough” for them, and losing them because of a mistake or failure to live up to their expectations – especially a mistake that I’ve made without realizing it until it’s too late.”

That’s as far as I got at the time, but I’m really curious to know where I was going with that. Maybe I was just feeling insecure? Who knows! Upon re-reading it, I rolled my eyes a little bit: “Yes, dear. That is a normal phenomenon. Everyone feels that way about the people for whom they care. The closer you are to someone, the more painful it is to lose them. Way to state the obvious while trying to sound insightful.”

I have a very blunt inner critic.

I can postulate this much: on some level, I was referring to the way I felt after my ex broke up with me. But I was extrapolating a general principle from that – an element of my social anxiety that I recognized as being especially reinforced by that particular event. Why I was talking about it in July specifically is hard to say. Just part of the process, I guess.

However, the fundamental principle still holds true. As much as I long for intimacy, I’m also afraid of it. And I’m referring to intimacy in the sense of any relationship, not a significant other, per se.

To risk being known is to risk being rejected.

But to not take that risk means standing outside and looking in. If you never give anyone the chance to reject you, then you never give anyone the chance to really know you, or the chance to actually accept you.

We cannot control one another, or force people to stay in our lives, or always discern what motivates another person’s actions. Relating to other people is like this colossal guessing game and you just sort of cross your fingers and hope the other person is being honest and up front with you and that they won’t change their mind and reject you (or turn on you) later on. And you try to do them the same courtesy in return. You just never know what will happen with all of these infinitely unique individuals out in the world, bringing their unique, individual perspectives to life, and each one of us trying to figure out each other (and ourselves) even while we’re all just kind of making it up as we go.

I don’t even know if that made any sense.”


Warning: I’m going on a kick of publishing drafts that I never finished.

I have published 94 posts on this blog (95 if you include this one), since I started it back in July 2012.

Ironically, I currently have 59 unfinished posts sitting in my drafts folder.

Recently, I was looking through my drafts and I rather liked some of the things that I had written. Some of the drafts were even completely finished posts that I apparently just didn’t get around to publishing at the time, for one reason or another. The advantage of going back and publishing an old post like that is that the context of the old post is now in the past. Sharing the post now is about remembering where I was at in life back then, rather than making a commentary about something that was currently happening.

Plus, I’m just feeling terribly sentimental right now and this seems like a cathartic way to deal with my saudade.

That being said, I have at least 5 drafts scheduled to publish over this coming week. So when you start seeing a little qualifier in italics at the beginning of each post, marking when the draft was actually written, and you notice that the content seems enormously incongruous with the present tense — that’s why.

Dancing warriors: this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

I think Valentine’s Day is odd and I have conflicted feelings about it, but it does give me an excuse to talk about my favorite subject  – nurturing healthy relationships! – so I’m going with it.

As if needing an excuse has ever stopped me before.

Also, I’m on a Sarah Bessey kick right now because a friend loaned me Jesus Feminist and this book keeps speaking to my soul. So, instead of me talking about relationships, I’m going to share some words from Sarah, taken from chapter 5, ‘Dancing Warriors.’ It’s a long passage, but it’s good. Sit with it – it will be worth your time:

“If a woman is held back, minimized, pushed down, or downplayed, she is not walking in the fullness God intended for her as his image bearer, as his ezer warrior. If we minimize our gifts, hush our voice, and stay small in a misguided attempt to fit a weak and culturally conditioned standard of femininity, we cannot give our brothers the partner they require in God’s mission for the world.

The kind of help a man needs demands full deployment of all we are as women – no holding back. Men are most truly ‘helped’ when women give our best. As Carolyn Custis James points out, ‘His life will change for the better because of what she contributes to his life. Together they will daily prove in countless and surprising ways that two is always better than one.’

And men, what a gift for you! What a revelation! […] Let’s praise God together for his truth. Sons, brothers, husbands, friends, can you imagine? God knew that it was not good for you to be alone, and he gave you your best ally. You were never intended to do the work of God – in your home, in church, in a lost and dying world – alone. You were given allies, partners, warriors, and lovers in the form of women. Throughout Scripture and world history, we see the richness of partnership between men and women as God intended when he created them together: man and woman he created them.

Jesus ushered in a crazy upside-down Kingdom of voluntary submission and love, a Kingdom where the least is the most honored and the one who gives everything is the one who gains it all. This is the Kingdom of love, a Kingdom without a score-sheet tally or grabs for power. This is a Kingdom without envy and bitterness, and in our relationships with one another, we strive to have ‘the same mindset as Christ Jesus…’

[….] And if our marriages can give some small and imperfect glimpse of the Kingdom of God in action, warriors fighting in distinct unity, then we need to dance, in and around and with each other in intimacy and mutual submission. Theologians throughout church history have used the term perichoresis, a Greek word meaning ‘an indwelling,’ to describe the relationship of and between the Trinity. Perichoresis is far past fellowship; it’s the center of intimacy, a cleaving together born of friendship and love. Mystical and divine, it’s an imperfect metaphor, yet there is no hierarchy, only more love; there is a breathing after one another and a making room for the other. The Trinity ‘works’ by never-ending giving to each other and the receiving of the other out of each other. It’s a procession of togetherness in a blur of oneness.

When Paul likened marriage to the relationship between Christ and the Church in Ephesians 5:23-28, it was not an exhortation to hierarchy and power structures. Christ’s relationship with us as the Church is characterized by his crazy love and sacrificial giving, not power grabbing. Paul’s words remind us that Christ gave himself up for the Church, cleansed her, and loved her.

[…] If wives submit to their husbands as the Church submits to Christ, and if husbands love their wives as Christ loved the Church and gave himself up for her, and if both husbands and wives submit to one another as commanded, we enter a never-ending, life-giving circle of mutual submission and love.

We are able to offer our ‘You first, darling,’ as an overflow of the completeness we enjoy in Jesus. The submission of Christ is gospel centered, aligned with God’s purpose, a pouring out of himself to rescue a lost humanity. Submission in a healthy marriage between two people walking together in the Way follows that same trajectory: it requires tenacity, strength, and courage of the bravest sort.

[…] Marriage within the Kingdom of God isn’t an exercise in authority and headship – let alone a laundry list of roles and rules and responsibilities and chore divisions or the profanity of abuse and subjection. Marriage is a beautiful example of oneness and cooperation, an image of the dance of the Trinity in perfect unity.

So even though we are terrible dancers, Brian and I decided in the early days to learn to hold on and dance our way through our marriage.

He leads, and I lead. We are both following the music of the Ancient One; there is no hierarchy between us. We move together, one body, all for intimacy and beauty. We are in the vast middle of our love story still; we know every curve of each other, but we are leaning into the unknown parts with full trust.

[…] So Brian follows me when I step out into a new place. And I know just when to slide into my turn as the shadow; but we’ve stomped on each other’s toes a time or two, been horribly out of step – oh yes. Sometimes he leads; sometimes I lead. It changes because our relationship is alive and organic, still developing – but it’s always us, trusting each other’s heart, trusting we hear the same music from that old piano. We’re still learning to move seamlessly together. If we can’t move together, then we wait, holding on, in the pause between steps.

[…] If marriage truly is a glimpse of grace drawing near, then may it be a glimpse of mutuality, giving, love, and intimacy. And if all we ever accomplish with our marriage is the loving of each other down through the years, that’s enough, and it’s a real marriage.”

(Emphases added)

Before I got to that chapter, I was originally intending to share the following poem on Valentine’s Day instead. It’s simple, and sweet, and quirky, and a little strange. Then I read that chapter, and I knew that I had to share those words, those images of dancing warriors. And I wondered if it would seem out of place to include the poem. But as I was typing out the paragraph above that talks about perichoresis, I got chills along my arms. Because the poem below, in its own simple and offbeat way, a little bit speaks to this idea of perichoresis – this “imperfect metaphor” of “breathing after one another” and “never-ending giving to each other and the receiving of the other out of each other”; this “procession of togetherness.”

So, then:

[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]

E. E. Cummings

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)

i fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)


Bessey, Sarah. Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women. New York: Howard Books, 2013. 51-52.

“[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]” Copyright 1952, © 1980, 1991 by the Trustees for the E. E. Cummings Trust, from Complete Poems: 1904-1962 by E. E. Cummings, edited by George J. Firmage. Used by permission of Liveright Publishing Corporation.

Source: Poetry (June 1952).

Kayla Mueller: “I have a lot of fight left inside of me”

Kayla Mueller’s incredible letter:

“Everyone, If you are receiving this letter it means I am still detained but my cell mates (starting from 11/2/2014) have been released. I have asked them to contact you + send you this letter. It’s hard to know what to say. Please know that I am in a safe location, completely unharmed + healthy (put on weight in fact); I have been treated w/ the utmost respect + kindness.

I wanted to write you all a well thought out letter (but I didn’t know if my cell mates would be leaving in the coming days or the coming months restricting my time but primarily) I could only but write the letter a paragraph at a time, just the thought of you all sends me into a fit of tears.

If you could say I have “suffered” at all throughout this whole experience it is only in knowing how much suffering I have put you all through; I will never ask you to forgive me as I do not deserve forgiveness.

I remember mom always telling me that all in all in the end the only one you really have is God. I have come to a place in experience where, in every sense of the word, I have surrendered myself to our creator b/c literally there was no else…. + by God + by your prayers I have felt tenderly cradled in freefall.

I have been shown in darkness, light + have learned that even in prison, one can be free. I am grateful. I have come to see that there is good in every situation, sometimes we just have to look for it. I pray each each day that if nothing else, you have felt a certain closeness + surrender to God as well + have formed a bond of love + support amongst one another…

I miss you all as if it has been a decade of forced separation. I have had many a long hour to think, to think of all the things I will do w/ Lex, our first family camping trip, the first meeting @ the airport. I have had many hours to think how only in your absence have I finally @ 25 years old come to realize your place in my life. The gift that is each one of you + the person I could + could not be if you were not a part of my life, my family, my support.

I DO NOT want the negotiations for my release to be your duty, if there is any other option take it, even if it takes more time. This should never have become your burden. I have asked these women to support you; please seek their advice. If you have not done so already, [REDACTED] can contact [REDACTED] who may have a certain level of experience with these people.

None of us could have known it would be this long but know I am also fighting from my side in the ways I am able + I have a lot of fight left inside of me. I am not breaking down + I will not give in no matter how long it takes. I wrote a song some months ago that says, “The part of me that pains the most also gets me out of bed, w/out your hope there would be nothing left…” aka-The thought of your pain is the source of my own, simultaneously the hope of our reunion is the source of my strength.

Please be patient, give your pain to God. I know you would want me to remain strong. That is exactly what I am doing. Do not fear for me, continue to pray as will I + by God’s will we will be together soon.

All my everything, Kayla”


Source: NBC News