So in some of my posts you have read about me finding the courage to make a change of pace and place. You have read about my intentions to do something positive for myself and others. You have read about how I have been in a state of hope and happiness.
The months leading up to my trip to Spain, everything that happened I felt was because of God. No matter what got in the way, I NEVER doubted that He would come thru. While my visa was a long and annoying process, I never doubted that I would get it on time. While I had to accept the fact that I would be leaving my family and friends for a period of time, I never doubted that God would lead me to a “new” family (i.e. the people I would meet and have the opportunity of not only just knowing, but getting to know them truly).
When I made this decision to change. It was not for the sake of needing to get away for a little vacation. I established some life-changing goals that would expect hard work and diligence. With intentions to get a Master’s degree, learn new languages, experience different cultures, and hopefully one day be able to contribute to or establish my own non-profit organization…I knew that this change would be no easy triumph. I knew I would have to give all of myself.
So here is why the devil is a lie…
Week 1: After what it seemed like 24 hours of traveling. Once I touched down in Spain, my feet decided to swell up in a major way. This had never happened to me when I had traveled in the past so I didn’t even think to consider precautions when embarking on long trips. It took me about 5 days of swimming and icing my feet to get them back to a state of not being excessively swollen or in pain. But honestly, due to all of the walking that occurs here in Spain, I think they are in a constant state of the swells. But at least there is no pain. (1st week of no exciting activities during the weekend).
Week 2: I came down with a cold that I caught from one of the children who live with me. I got exactly what she did, including a fever. Fortunately, my will to get better sooner than I could get worse worked, and I was without a fever soon and able to get back to my everyday activities. (2nd week of no exciting activities during the weekend).
Week 3: Food poisoning and diarrhea!! Probably the worst because I also had a small scale fever. Going from hot to cold every couple of hours, and not being able to keep my bathroom visits limited. Then to top it all off, I was suffering from some womanly issues AND also pulled a muscle (I guess my body felt it needed to teach me a lesson for walking to much and not stretching beforehand) in my thigh which took 50 hours to heal.
And ever since, it has been an on-going thought of “am I getting sick” with constant episodes of getting that tickle in my throat when one of the kids cough or I forget to put on slippers when walking around the house.
So, on top of handling school (which is no breeze) AND handling a new job with a new boss (sometimes I am not even sure if they realized how difficult things were for me initially, with being sick, considering I always tried to push through and do the best I could, with no complaints) and their high (yet understandable) expectations and responsibilities that I had never been acquainted with…
As you would imagine, there were several moments through this all that I began to feel discouraged. I began to question my choices and the decision to take on such huge responsibilities. I began to doubt myself and my capabilities to accomplish so many things. I was feeling as though my ‘journey’ was all a mistake and I began to ponder other alternatives to relieving some of my stress and maintaining my sanity, even going as far to consider that I might be forced to quit my job or return home altogether.
Then I had to snap back to reality. Have you ever heard something similar to ‘when you are on a path to righteousness the devil will try to trick you up’. My mother would remind me of this often, especially throughout this period of my life. Especially before I began my journey. She told me that if things seemed to go wrong or take unexpected turns, don’t think that they too are signs from God that it is time to turn away and end your journey. She told me, when you are trying to do something great and beautiful, the devil will try to deceive you and make you think that you are not meant to do such things.
2 Corinthians 11:3 — But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.
I made the decision right then and there to do my best to find balance in my life. Something that I promised I’d continue to do once I reached my foreign destination (but seemed to have been thrown off track from all the chaos that is ‘new transitioning’). Soon thereafter, I had a gym membership which offered a swimming pool, yoga, and massage therapy. I also went out and bought me some candles so I could do my own little personal yoga sessions from home to the sound of my favorite and inspirational tunes. And don’t forget not forgetting to take my daily vitamins, and drinking plenty of water and hot teas for antioxidants. I also promised myself that I would do my best to keep my business and personal lives as separate as possible.
Yes, a major part of this process was allowing for myself to fully be immersed in the culture, which meant becoming acquainted with families and residents in Spain (or wherever I traveled to), so that I could gain insight and understanding into their way of life. And thus, this made it a business situation as I was gaining knowledge and doing “research”. But I was also spending quality time with these adults and children, and sharing deep and sincere parts of myself as well. And I found that trying to balance the business and personal all at once was becoming stressful (on top of everything else I had on my plate), because when things weren’t always so easy, it was difficult for me to keep from taking things personally considering I had established such personal relationships with some of these individuals.
It is nothing wrong with finding a balance and keeping parts of yourself to yourself…making sure that certain days and times are specifically set aside for you and your spirit(ual growth). Not allowing business and pleasure to become one… a blur.
Don’t let the wolf (devil or devil’s advocate) in sheep’s clothing trick you up. That is his objective in life. To keep you from fulfilling something great and beautiful. To keep you from believing in yourself. To keep you from following your stars… the life and good deeds you were pre-determinedly meant to sow. It is crazy how quickly he creeps up on you and into your thoughts. The devil is a LIE. The more you realize and accept this, the easier it will be for you to push through the hard situations. When has the devil ever tried to trick you up. Do Tell Nicola….