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The Silver Archer: Heart of Purpose


SkyGirl

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Ohhh, feeling so down on myself today ... after staying up literally all night to finish my giant case study paper (I did get a bit of sleep between 7:30AM and 10:30AM), I had to confess to my professor that I did not finish any of the small bit of work she gave me for the week; and she very gravely and with deep frustration told me that she is alarmed by my pattern of lateness and poor time management, and that if I do not master the "adult skill of managing [myself]", I will not only threaten my own academic success, but will also jeopardize her research funding, credibility, ability to get tenure, and future career and research accomplishments. In short, "it's not only about you."

 

I am very ashamed of myself ... but while I am determined to find ways to prioritize and get everything done that she asks this week, I am also feeling a bit frustrated and angry, because I worked very hard and barely slept all week, yet I still didn't get done what I needed to get done. I prioritized the writing competition over my paid work, and I shouldn't have done that. My abject exhaustion and despair are in vain.

 

I know the only thing to do is to try again tomorrow, but I get so tired of 'trying again tomorrow". My professor was right when she expressed frustration that I don't seem to be learning time management and boundaries and so on even though I've been working with her for almost a year. I'm frustrated too. I don't enjoy pulling all-nighters because my time has vanished to I know not where. I don't enjoy hanging my head and listening to lectures like a child. I don't enjoy staring at the to-do list that never seems to get any shorter and panicking because I know I won't get through it all in time. Yet nothing I try or change seems to stick. I feel doomed to spend my whole life running away from an angrily pursuing deadline, like Voyager constantly avoiding spatial rifts and anomalies, never a moment's rest.

 

Yes, that's my sleep deprivation talking, and hopefully things will look brighter tomorrow. But I know it won't be long before I'm struggling through a paper at 5AM with gritty eyes and puffy nose again, and that feels like a bigger mountain to climb than any I've faced on his hero's journey before.

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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I got up this morning, and I put my hair up and I donned my silver arrow necklace, and I looked at my purple, drooping eyes in the mirror, and I decided something.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I am a maker of worlds and a healer of wounds. I was bought out of slavery and created out of the dark void by the King of Light, Who made me pure, bright, righteous, holy, strong, and merciful. I was fitted with armor and weapons; I was given a mission that no flood can quench, no fire can sear, no mountain can hide, and no valley can obscure. My arms are strong and they will be stronger. My legs are resilient, and they will be tougher still. I am the wielder of the bow and sword; I will learn to master the wisps of time, to charm them, hold them, bring them under my control. 

 

I am the Silver Archer. I am not the halfling who shrinks from a challenge, on whose shoulders every strike of reproof falls like a mortal blow. I will taste the blood of my wounds and I will rise. I will transform. I will shed the mantle of the night warriors and seize the dawn and day. I will ruthlessly seek my weaknesses and strive to overcome them, becoming a warrior-scholar who is worthy of praise from those who know me best, not only from those who see my shadow passing at a distance.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I stand against the forces of darkness; I light the way for souls to come home; I touch, I give of myself, I pour the living waters into wounds and I heal. As God wills, I will stand on top of this mountain and let the light of the King Who overcomes shine through me like clear glass, so brightly that even my world-weary teacher will see it. 

 

I do not surrender. I do not accept defeat. I do not bow to weakness or shame.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I will overcome.

 

Was that a sane or normal thing for a sleep-deprived, 28-year-old grad student to whisper at herself in a smudged apartment mirror at 9:00 in the morning? No, it most likely was not. But I am committed to being mighty, to being revolutionary, to being a beacon and banner of hope that make others wonder what this brightness in me is all about; and this pep talk was helpful and much needed.

 

I will learn how to manage time if it's the last thing I do. I refuse to let my professor think of me as undisciplined, unreliable and inefficient. I am none of those things and I refuse to continue to act like I am.

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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13 minutes ago, SkyGirl said:

I got up this morning, and I put my hair up and I donned my silver arrow necklace, and I looked at my purple, drooping eyes in the mirror, and I decided something.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I am a maker of worlds and a healer of wounds. I was bought out of slavery and created out of the dark void by the King of Light, Who made me pure, bright, righteous, holy, strong, and merciful. I was fitted with armor and weapons; I was given a mission that no flood can quench, no fire can sear, no mountain can hide, and no valley can obscure. My arms are strong and they will be stronger. My legs are resilient, and they will be tougher still. I am the wielder of the bow and sword; I will learn to master the wisps of time, to charm them, hold them, bring them under my control. 

 

I am the Silver Archer. I am not the halfling who shrinks from a challenge, on whose shoulders every strike of reproof falls like a mortal blow. I will taste the blood of my wounds and I will rise. I will transform. I will shed the mantle of the night warriors and seize the dawn and day. I will ruthlessly seek my weaknesses and strive to overcome them, becoming a warrior-scholar who is worthy of praise from those who know me best, not only from those who see my shadow passing at a distance.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I stand against the forces of darkness; I light the way for souls to come home; I touch, I give of myself, I pour the living waters into wounds and I heal. As God wills, I will stand on top of this mountain and let the light of the King Who overcomes shine through me like clear glass, so brightly that even my world-weary teacher will see it. 

 

I do not surrender. I do not accept defeat. I do not bow to weakness or shame.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I will overcome.

 

Was that a sane or normal thing for a sleep-deprived, 28-year-old grad student to whisper at herself in a smudged apartment mirror at 9:00 in the morning? No, it most likely was not. But I am committed to being mighty, to being revolutionary, to being a beacon and banner of hope that make others wonder what this brightness in me is all about; and this pep talk was helpful and much needed.

 

I will learn how to manage time if it's the last thing I do. I refuse to let my professor think of me as undisciplined, unreliable and inefficient. I am none of those things and I refuse to continue to act like I am.

 

Huh.   I was reading it and thinking - man this sounds just like the morning affirmations I write daily, but it's more bad-ass.  I should put this fun new spin on it.    So in short.   Sane, normal, awesome.   Or, in other words, 'you do you,'.     We live in a world that pushes us against expectations and "society norms" that try and bend our will to fit in with the grind of the machine.   From an early age we're told what is right and proper for this, or for that.      I think it takes courage for you to share that pep talk- and also that it encourages others to step out from behind their masks, and learn to be themselves.

 

You have things you need to work on.  We all do.    You've established WHAT needs improvement, now comes the work order of figuring out what makes those improvements.    I've never looked into it, but are there people out there who do just that?  Like, those tv shows that help people organize the chaos of a cluttered home - but instead, it's with a disorganized time management schedule?

 

You're a wonderful, beautifully made woman.   You are capable of succeeding in this endeavor.   Just reach out and put your focus on fixing the thing that most needs fixing right now.  I know you've got this!

 

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Level 83 ~*~ Ranger

Deviant Art Gallery   ||  YouTube Channel

Current Challenge

"It is difficult.  All things worth keeping are."  Thane Krios - Mass Effect 2

"Maybe it's not as simple as you imagined, Seeker."  Varric Tethras Dragon Age 2

"Staying within your limits is no fun, Ryder."  Vetra Nyx - ME: Andromeda

Spoiler

 

::PAST CHALLENGES::

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 20 | 21 | 22

23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42

43 | 44 | NEIN | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48| 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61

62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77 | 77.5 | 78 | 79 | 80 | 81

82 | 83 | 84 | 85 | 86 | 87 | 88 | 89 | 90 | 91 | 92 | 93 | 94 | 95 | 96 | 97 | 98 | 99 | 100

 

 

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5 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

I am the Silver Archer. I am a maker of worlds and a healer of wounds. I was bought out of slavery and created out of the dark void by the King of Light, Who made me pure, bright, righteous, holy, strong, and merciful. I was fitted with armor and weapons; I was given a mission that no flood can quench, no fire can sear, no mountain can hide, and no valley can obscure. My arms are strong and they will be stronger. My legs are resilient, and they will be tougher still. I am the wielder of the bow and sword; I will learn to master the wisps of time, to charm them, hold them, bring them under my control. 

 

I am the Silver Archer. I am not the halfling who shrinks from a challenge, on whose shoulders every strike of reproof falls like a mortal blow. I will taste the blood of my wounds and I will rise. I will transform. I will shed the mantle of the night warriors and seize the dawn and day. I will ruthlessly seek my weaknesses and strive to overcome them, becoming a warrior-scholar who is worthy of praise from those who know me best, not only from those who see my shadow passing at a distance.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I stand against the forces of darkness; I light the way for souls to come home; I touch, I give of myself, I pour the living waters into wounds and I heal. As God wills, I will stand on top of this mountain and let the light of the King Who overcomes shine through me like clear glass, so brightly that even my world-weary teacher will see it. 

 

I do not surrender. I do not accept defeat. I do not bow to weakness or shame.

 

I am the Silver Archer. I will overcome.

 

These are the words of a strong and brave Ranger.

 

In my opinion, taking a good, hard look at ourselves is a painful but crucial part of progress. It can be hard to hear criticism, especially when we know we need to do better, but the way you've reacted to it shows your true strength. You haven't given up, or made excuses. You've owned up to your weaknesses and you've resolved to overcome them. I am proud of you. 

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“All You Have To Decide Is What To Do With The Time That Is Given To You.” - Gandalf

 

Current Challenge: A Bold New Year

 

 

Spoiler

Previous Challenges: 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13 1415|16|17|18|19|20|21|22|23|24|25|26|2728 29|30

The Chronicles of Rhovaniel, Dúnedain Ranger: Vol I, Vol IIVol III, Interim| Vol IV|Vol V 

 

 

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You've got this.

2 Peter 1:3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a Godly life through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.

2 Corinthians 9:8 And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.

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Wisdom 22.5   Dexterity 13   Charisma 15   Strength 21  Constitution-13

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind' Luke 10; 27

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Very quick update before I head for bed - today was a better day, mostly because I realized that the only antidote to the shadow of worry and fear and impending disaster that hung around me for 24 hours was to write to my advisors and ask them for help. So I did. I emailed and let them know that I was feeling paralyzed by how huge a task my thesis looks from this end, and I needed them to help me break it down into concrete steps I can take starting today, because I am completely lost. So hopefully they can meet with me soon and talk me through what I need to be doing. 

 

Food was not good; because I was feeling stressed, I didn't eat anything but a granola bar all day until dinner; then I ate two grilled cheese sandwiches with mayonnaise and pesto (can you say fat??), a banana, steamed vegetables, and peanut butter ice cream for dinner. Like ... wow. Definitely looking forward to doing over tomorrow.

 

Tomorrow is gym day, and I'm going to try to crank up the cardio this time - maybe jogging outside, or doing the stair climber, or rowing. I haven't gotten my heart rate up for a couple of weeks now. Also thinking about starting a push-ups regimen to work on upper body strength, but that's just an idea floating around in my head.

 

Now to bed - before 1AM! I have to be up early to get a paper written and be ready to do my professor's work tomorrow.

 

Onward, comrades!!

 

oGkQD.gif 

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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2 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

mostly because I realized that the only antidote to the shadow of worry and fear and impending disaster that hung around me for 24 hours was to write to my advisors and ask them for help. So I did. I emailed and let them know that I was feeling paralyzed by how huge a task my thesis looks from this end, and I needed them to help me break it down into concrete steps I can take starting today, because I am completely lost. So hopefully they can meet with me soon and talk me through what I need to be doing. 

Yes! So proud of you for asking for help. Hopefully they can help you start to manage the workload better. 

 

I may not be a student anymore, but I understand that deadline pressure coming at you from all sides. You can do this, Sky!

 

 

“All You Have To Decide Is What To Do With The Time That Is Given To You.” - Gandalf

 

Current Challenge: A Bold New Year

 

 

Spoiler

Previous Challenges: 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13 1415|16|17|18|19|20|21|22|23|24|25|26|2728 29|30

The Chronicles of Rhovaniel, Dúnedain Ranger: Vol I, Vol IIVol III, Interim| Vol IV|Vol V 

 

 

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Good job on getting through "The day after" and for asking for help.     Remember to take their counsel with an open mind and be willing to follow the steps!      And yay, sleeps!

 

Level 83 ~*~ Ranger

Deviant Art Gallery   ||  YouTube Channel

Current Challenge

"It is difficult.  All things worth keeping are."  Thane Krios - Mass Effect 2

"Maybe it's not as simple as you imagined, Seeker."  Varric Tethras Dragon Age 2

"Staying within your limits is no fun, Ryder."  Vetra Nyx - ME: Andromeda

Spoiler

 

::PAST CHALLENGES::

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 20 | 21 | 22

23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42

43 | 44 | NEIN | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48| 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61

62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77 | 77.5 | 78 | 79 | 80 | 81

82 | 83 | 84 | 85 | 86 | 87 | 88 | 89 | 90 | 91 | 92 | 93 | 94 | 95 | 96 | 97 | 98 | 99 | 100

 

 

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23 hours ago, Rhovaniel said:

Yes! So proud of you for asking for help. Hopefully they can help you start to manage the workload better. 

 

I may not be a student anymore, but I understand that deadline pressure coming at you from all sides. You can do this, Sky!

 

 

 

Thank you, my friend! I heard back from both of them today, and one of them took time out of his schedule to meet with me just an hour after I emailed him - I was expecting him to give me those concrete steps I asked for and tell me to hurry up and get back on schedule, but actually, he was very calming and positive, and told me not to give up finding something that I am really passionate about and that is unique to my skills and interests. When I asked him if I was behind schedule, he said he didn't care whether I was or wasn't; he wanted to make sure I was going to find the research space that I was really happy in.  :)  So that made me feel SO much better and gave me some energy to keep tackling this thing.

 

And I know you are under plenty of deadline pressure yourself, so keep up the good work!! I don't always take time to comment on your thread, but your work sounds SO interesting and I'm glad you're still enjoying it! You rock!!

 

you-rock-gif-4.gif

 

15 hours ago, Starpuck said:

Good job on getting through "The day after" and for asking for help.     Remember to take their counsel with an open mind and be willing to follow the steps!      And yay, sleeps!

 

 

Thanks Starpuck!! The trick is going to be finding the middle ground between them - I have two main advisors, and one of them is always telling me to take my time, be open-minded, follow my dreams, and so on; and the other one is always telling me to just pick something, get it in writing, and hurry up and get it done and graduate. So it's going to be tough to make them both happy - I guess the answer is just to follow my dreams fast!!  ;) 

 

tenor.gif 

 

I don't know why I'm sure that unicorn is following his dreams, but ... he is. He is.

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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Today was a good day ... very productive. I wrote to both of my advisors and they both replied, one very helpfully, one helpfully enough; I got a lot done for my major professor, and even though she still doesn't seem happy with me, at least I did get some stuff checked off her to-do list; I cranked out a five-page paper in three hours and it actually was marvelous; and I signed up to go to a three-day prayer retreat with a friend later this month. She's been very secretive about it and I'm a little nervous, but she promises that it will be a good experience, so I'm also curious and a bit excited.

 

I am still struggling to get out of my fitness funk - last week when things were so crazy busy, I only went to the gym once and I started eating more than usual; and I still haven't gotten those things back on track. Tonight I legitimately couldn't go because I had to write that paper, but I also did not have to buy frozen pizzas for dinner (seriously, Sky, there are healthier options that are just as fast). I did challenge my gym buddy to a rowing contest - whichever of us rows more minutes in the next 7 days has to buy the other one dinner - but she struggles with motivation too, so I'm not sure either of us is going to take the challenge very seriously.

 

Tomorrow I have no appointments besides a pumpkin-carving contest with my classmates, so I'm going to wear gym clothes all day and go to the gym right after I finish work for the day - no excuses. Maybe I need to invest in some new gym clothes that are nice enough to wear all day, so I don't have that I-don't-feel-like-changing excuse. That's a thought.

 

Anyway - some well-earned sleep tonight, pumpkins and friends tomorrow, and a busy weekend coming up. Thank you guys for being so supportive during my struggles the last few days. I'm so glad I have you in my life!!

  • Like 2

SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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31 minutes ago, SkyGirl said:

And I know you are under plenty of deadline pressure yourself, so keep up the good work!! I don't always take time to comment on your thread, but your work sounds SO interesting and I'm glad you're still enjoying it! You rock!!

Thanks! Yeah, it's odd having constant deadlines, but my supervisor and managers are great. They'd rather I took my time, and did my research thoroughly than rush it out. Even if it means it goes out a day or two later than planned. 

 

33 minutes ago, SkyGirl said:

I don't know why I'm sure that unicorn is following his dreams, but ... he is. He is.

Maybe ask him directions? :lol: 

 

 

I'm glad your advisors helped, even though it sounds like they have very different approaches to their work, which can be confusing for you. One thing my supervisor said when I was writing my undergrad dissertation was that with the amount of time you put into it, you have to make sure it interests you, or it'll reflect in your writing that your heart wasn't in it. How far have you got with your research? I'm not too sure how Grad School works in the US...

“All You Have To Decide Is What To Do With The Time That Is Given To You.” - Gandalf

 

Current Challenge: A Bold New Year

 

 

Spoiler

Previous Challenges: 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13 1415|16|17|18|19|20|21|22|23|24|25|26|2728 29|30

The Chronicles of Rhovaniel, Dúnedain Ranger: Vol I, Vol IIVol III, Interim| Vol IV|Vol V 

 

 

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7 hours ago, Rhovaniel said:

Thanks! Yeah, it's odd having constant deadlines, but my supervisor and managers are great. They'd rather I took my time, and did my research thoroughly than rush it out. Even if it means it goes out a day or two later than planned.

 

That's good. It's so good to have supervisors who are understanding!!

 

7 hours ago, Rhovaniel said:

I'm glad your advisors helped, even though it sounds like they have very different approaches to their work, which can be confusing for you. One thing my supervisor said when I was writing my undergrad dissertation was that with the amount of time you put into it, you have to make sure it interests you, or it'll reflect in your writing that your heart wasn't in it. How far have you got with your research? I'm not too sure how Grad School works in the US...

 

In a Master's degree program, you typically study in classes for one year, then start your project during the summer, and finish it during your second year while you take more classes. I started taking classes in this program last fall, but I wasn't considered officially transferred in until January, so in a wonky way, I'm still technically in my first year. One of my advisors pointed that out yesterday and it made me feel a bit better.

 

I knew when I was assigned to these two that trying to keep them both happy was going to be a big challenge ... they get along pretty well, but they have very different ways of approaching their research and their students. My male advisor knows me as a person much better than my female advisor does, so he's much more personalized, wanting me to research something that I'm interested in and that's a good fit for me; while my female advisor is very no-nonsense and goal-oriented and does not know me very well, so she's about efficiency, money, and timeliness. Like I said yesterday, I think the solution is just to find that good-fit project quickly enough to suit her - then they will both be happy, and so will I. ;) 

 

7 hours ago, Rhovaniel said:

Maybe ask him directions? :lol:

 

I think the unicorn's secrets lie in that rainbow-colored mane and his little leap ... how about I interpret that to color my hair a weird color again and take up dance classes? :D 

SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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Just coming down off my yoga high like:

 

giphy.webp

 

Today was an incredibly good day ... not productive on paper, but because we have a four-day break coming up, I have time to make up what I didn't accomplish today, and I enjoyed a slower day to just be and be with people.

 

I started the morning with a long, geeky discussion about culturally situated truth with three of my friends, which was awesome; then another friend and I painted pumpkins to enter in a charity pumpkin-decorating tournament. I tried to paint a beautiful swash of cherry blossoms diagonally across my white pumpkin, but I discovered silver paint and kind of went crazy slapping swirls and dots all over it ... so it ended up looking more like a third-grade craft project. :)  Still, I had fun.

 

This afternoon, I spent some time visiting with one of my dear mentor-friends whom I mentioned is going through a hard time this last while, and heard some new things I want to pray about for him and his wife; then I worked at my desk for a couple of hours and ended the day by talking for almost an hour with a young man whom I have wanted to get to know better for a little while. :)  He was waiting out a rainstorm and had no objection to hanging out at my desk to chat, it seems. I had no objection either. 

 

Food was meh today ... I was close to my calorie target, but everything I ate was super high in sugar, so that's not awesome. Also, I was supposed to go to the gym, but the timing worked out such that I would have had to wait a long time for the next bus and go home in the dark if I went, so I wimped out and came home. I did do my favorite Zen Yoga video and felt amazing afterward, and I'm planning to go tomorrow.

 

I still want to sign up for a yoga class at the gym, but I'm a little worried because of my latest scrape of not getting my prof's work done and her telling me to manage my time ... I'm afraid to add one more thing to my schedule, to be honest. So I may keep doing my own thing for the rest of this semester and structure it in from the beginning, starting in January. That doesn't make me happy, but I'm trying to be responsible. :P  

 

Hoping for another great day tomorrow - I'm headed for bed, to get that off to a good start!!

 

tenor.gif 

  • Like 3

SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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Sounds like a great day and like you did what you needed to do from a mental health point too.   I love that just be part!    I need to do more of those.  

 

Hope you have a great weekend!

Level 83 ~*~ Ranger

Deviant Art Gallery   ||  YouTube Channel

Current Challenge

"It is difficult.  All things worth keeping are."  Thane Krios - Mass Effect 2

"Maybe it's not as simple as you imagined, Seeker."  Varric Tethras Dragon Age 2

"Staying within your limits is no fun, Ryder."  Vetra Nyx - ME: Andromeda

Spoiler

 

::PAST CHALLENGES::

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 20 | 21 | 22

23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42

43 | 44 | NEIN | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48| 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61

62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77 | 77.5 | 78 | 79 | 80 | 81

82 | 83 | 84 | 85 | 86 | 87 | 88 | 89 | 90 | 91 | 92 | 93 | 94 | 95 | 96 | 97 | 98 | 99 | 100

 

 

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I strained against Mistral's hand as I peered into the dim evening, just after sunset in Middle Earth. I could not see behind me, only ahead; and all the sounds were muffled and distorted, as if my head were underwater. But I could see clearly enough to tell that I was just at the edge of the forests near the Guildhall, and my heart beat faster to see my home after such a long time.

 

As my eyes grew accustomed to the gray light, I became aware of shadows moving just inside the trees - moving quickly, and toward each other. Far off to the left, I saw two shapes, two archers, running toward the clearing; but I gasped in horror as a band of the black elves burst from the trees and angled rapidly across to cut off the first group, weapons drawn and death-silence surrounding them.

 

The two archers emerged at a dead run, desperately trying to outrun the elves - and it was Ayre and Aki, just like in my dream. Their weapons were not drawn; they just ran, sprinting over the ground toward whatever was behind me; but they knew they could not outrun the black elves skimming across their path and ready to intercept them. As I watched in horror, all of the elves drew and fired - directly into Ayre's stomach. His scream ripped the air like a jagged knife blade. As he started to fall, Aki threw herself in front of him, and two more arrows struck her in the arm and shoulder.

 

I wrenched against Mistral's hand with a cry of anger and horror. "No!" Mistral grabbed me with both hands and a grip that felt like it would break every bone in my wrist. "Don't you let go! Don't you do it! Sky! Don't you let go of my hand!"

 

But with a mighty scream, I tore loose and fell through the portal, striking the ground with a bone-rattling thud.

 

I did not look back as I pushed up from the ground and ran full-tilt toward the melee, drawing out three arrows and fitting them to my bow. "Get away," I screamed, and the elves turned to look at me with their death-eyes startled. "Get away! I will destroy every one of you!" Without giving them a chance to react, I fired three arrows and they struck the tallest elf, engulfing him in a shower of blue light and hissing heat as he staggered back and fell silently to the ground.

 

"Get away," I repeated, firing again and again, striking each one once, twice, three times, every vein in my body filled with white-hot rage as I watched them writhe and stumble away, consumed by the arrows' power, crawling along the ground as they tried to retreat to the forest. Finally even the arrows weren't enough to satisfy me - I threw my bow over my shoulder and held my hands out in front of me, and before I could even summon a conscious thought, my arms were electrified by a blast of energy exploding from my hands. The shockwave struck the forms huddled on the ground with an impact that knocked me backward; and when I scrambled back to my feet, they were gone, just liquid-mercury puddles shimmering silently in the gray evening light.

 

Silence. Silence fell and returned as quickly as it had left. They were gone. They were completely destroyed - and I had destroyed them. A deep, cold hollowness filled me, and I slowly sank to my knees. Deep beneath my ribcage, a dull pain started to twist and grow there, filling me with a chilled stillness and diffuse, sick pain. The shard. I had reacted in anger and hatred, not justice and mercy; and for the first time, I felt its point twisting into my spirit like the edge of a blunt knife. It was not pain, and it was not cold; but I weakly wrapped my arms around my stomach and bowed low to the ground, coughing, shuddering, retching.

 

It only lasted for a few moments. Your heart is pure, little one. A voice, or an impression? I was not sure; but something soft and sweet overlaid the pain from the shard and it began to melt away, giving me strength to lift my head and look up at the sky. My King was here. Even in this place, my King's eyes were upon me.

 

As the sensations mingled and passed away, I snapped my gaze back to Ayre and Aki, who were hunched on the ground - I could hear Ayre's trembling moans of mortal pain. I scrambled to my feet and ran to them - fell down beside them, caught them in my arms. They were real. This was no dream. Blood and sweat splashed onto my skin; I could smell the days of travel clinging to their skin and clothes, and when I pressed my face to theirs, their tears were hot.

 

"Sky." Ayre's voice was broken, rasping. He tried to reach up and touch my face, but blood was pouring out of his body and his arm fell back weakly. "Sky, you shouldn't be here. What are you doing here? You should be in training. You're in danger here."

 

"Your hearts called me," I whispered back, pressing my forehead against Aki's and reaching to hold Ayre's hand. "I knew you were in trouble. I had to come."

 

The arrows that the black elves used were heavy, with massive heads that caused deep damage. I tried to pull one from Ayre's stomach, but the bleeding intensified and I hesitated. "I'm only going to make this worse," I said slowly.

 

"We're near the Guildhall." Aki had pulled the arrows from her arm and was wrapping a makeshift bandage around it. "Let's take him back there and look for a doctor."

 

I examined the ragged wounds in Ayre's stomach - they were wide and deep, so deep I could see his organs quivering beneath his flesh. I had never tried to heal wounds like this, and something told me that even my powers would not repair all the damage. Still, he could not be moved in this condition. I reached into my belt and took the gleaming vial of the King's waters, and carefully uncorking it, splashed a drop on each hand. Then I placed my hands on either side of the arrows protruding from his body - "Don't, Sky, don't get all that blood on you," he protested weakly; and I replied "When have I been afraid to touch the blood of my friends?" - and let my healing powers flow down my arms and into his body. The bleeding slowed; his breathing became more regular. 

 

"Sky," he murmured with heavy eyes as Aki carefully lifted his shoulders from the ground and propped his body on her knees, "I'll tell you more about what started all this ... when I can ... but I need you to touch my head with your powers too. The Dark Elf's men have done a lot of damage in the months you've been gone."

 

When I placed my hand on his forehead, I could sense the darkness and torment in his mind, black thoughts and feelings that bore the unmistakable imprint of the Dark Elf's touch; and tears of empathy and pain rose to my eyes. Oh my Father, let all Your power flow through me, I prayed, holding Aki's hand with my other hand. Make me like the smooth riverbed that channels the strength of the river - take away anything in my heart or my mind that would slow the force of Your healing and light. Make me clear like glass, strong like a diamond, gentle like the winds of summer. Oh my King, I will fight for these precious souls. I will use every bit of power You have given me to destroy the dark forces pursuing them - I will take no thought for my own life, shy away from no risk, spare no mile, no effort, no sleepless night if You will use me to break the Dark Elf's power over their spirits. If I am only to bring them to a waypoint and another is to take them home, then let it be so, and speed my journey in taking them where You would have them go. But give me power over the Dark Elf's hate and wisdom greater than his tricks and secrets, and do not let me fall under his power again until I have completed this mission You have given me. 

 

"I can almost hear your prayer," Ayre murmured. "Some of the darkness is going away." He opened his eyes and slowly focused them on mine, and a trace of his old smile flickered across his face. "Mistral is going to take your head off when you get back ... but I have missed you greatly, my friend. I'm so very glad you're here."

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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I need a 'love' button! You are such a talented writer, Sky!

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“All You Have To Decide Is What To Do With The Time That Is Given To You.” - Gandalf

 

Current Challenge: A Bold New Year

 

 

Spoiler

Previous Challenges: 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13 1415|16|17|18|19|20|21|22|23|24|25|26|2728 29|30

The Chronicles of Rhovaniel, Dúnedain Ranger: Vol I, Vol IIVol III, Interim| Vol IV|Vol V 

 

 

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1 minute ago, Rhovaniel said:

I need a 'love' button! You are such a talented writer, Sky!

 

THANK YOU so much, my friend!! This has been fermenting in my mind for more than a week, and it was such a relief to finally get it written! :D 

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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I'm sitting in my chair, trying to read an article I'm supposed to summarize for my professor, playing really loud music to drown out the sweet siren song of the pumpkin spice Cheerios sitting primly on top of my refrigerator.

 

VeQAp_s-200x150.gif

 

I bought them in a moment of weakness ... and I could totally have some, if it weren't for the fantabulously enormous enchilada dinner I had earlier, which was finished off with my sister's homemade pineapple upside-down cake, and which was preceded by a lunch of my sister's homemade fish pie. I've eaten enough today. You shall not overpower me, pumpkin spice Cheerios!!

 

*cough cough*  Anyway, today was a good day. I went to church with a friend this morning, then spent the day running errands with my family - helping my little brothers shop for a new hamster, buying some organizing supplies for my office, and of course, buying my fabulous Batgirl costume:

22279503_732301446967694_842313039136423

 

I'm running a 5K later this month to benefit a crisis center that specializes in helping domestic violence victims, and my friends and I are dressing up as our favorite female superheroes. I mostly chose Batgirl because the costume was easy to find; but I have always loved Batgirl because her dual identity is a bit like mine - she's a quiet, unassuming librarian and book nerd during the day, but when trouble comes, she assumes her secret identity and becomes Batgirl, saving Batman and Robin with her feminine intuition and strategic fighting abilities. I'm not really that cool, but I hope I will be when I reach my Level 50.  :)  And if I get pictures from the 5K, I will definitely post them! 

 

I did finally make it to the gym yesterday and had a nice workout - I rowed for 10 minutes, then did some dumbbell work (including doing rows with a 15-pound weight for what I think was the first time) that left me nice and sore today. It was good to push myself a little bit. I read some threads on here earlier tonight that really challenged me to stop going easy on myself, and to reclaim the sweat, the pain, the shaking muscles, and the gasping for breath. That's why I am a Ranger - not to do slow, easy rowing and lift little 7-pound dumbbells, but to jog in the rain, row like the Dark Elf is after me, and struggle to lift the heaviest things I can manage. I am a Ranger because I want to be ready for whatever comes. Going easy on myself will not get me ready - not physically, and not mentally.

 

Tomorrow I will be following up on an internship that I want very badly, so I would welcome prayers that God would arrange it for me if He wants me to have it ... it's a science writing internship that would give me just the experience I need to get a good job after graduation. I'm also going to do a photo shoot, cook up some batches of burritos and bagged ground beef for a friend/neighbor who just brought home her brand-new baby, and try to buckle down and catch up on my professor's work so she doesn't get mad at me again. And tonight, I'm going to finish one last article and make a mad dash for bed before those wretched Cheerios catch up with me.

 

Oyasumi.

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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*creeps back in to unburden heavy thoughts*

 

Spoiler

 

I guess there is one other thing I wanted to ... sort of get off my chest, I guess, in the manner of James 5:16, only because it's been niggling at me all day and getting it out would be helpful. The friend and his wife whom I've been praying for is actually my editor and Mrs. Editor. While things are much better and I have gotten a lot of my boundary issues with them resolved, I still get worried that maybe I'm sharing too much with them, and investing too much of my time and emotional energy into them, like my parents feared I would. My editor has recently been diagnosed with severe panic attacks, quite probably related to the horrible things that have happened in his life over the last year. Several of his and his wife's closest friends, including me, have come in during this time to offer support and friendship in whatever way we can - some have filled in for him at work, some have helped Mrs. Editor to care for him during his attacks; I have mostly ministered through daily Facebook conversations (only in a group chat with the three of us; no more one-on-one messaging), providing stories, Scripture, music, practical tips, updates on my days, and reassurances of my love, my belief that God has great plans for them, and my intention to stay with them until they get through this season of their lives.

 

The thing that scares me is, I've only gotten this close with a very small handful of people in my life, and all of them have been younger women whom I have become a "big sister" to. My instinct is to take on that same protective role for this hurting couple, but the age and experience difference (and the fact that one of them is a man) make me sometimes feel like I've overstepped my boundaries, or gotten out of my depth. When I have walked through dark times with friends before, I have never hesitated to say things like "I love you deeply and I will always, always be there for you"; but when I have said that to these friends, I have worried that I'm being inappropriate, or presumptuous, or committing myself to going with them into deeper waters than I'm equipped to handle. I don't know anything about how to process the things that they have been through this year. In my heart, the best way to describe how I feel about them is as if they were the older brother and sister-in-law I always wanted, and never had - but I don't know if that's how they feel about me. They assure me that they are grateful for my friendship, that they love me, and that they really do want to hear what I have to say about Christ and my faith; but my own doubts and concerns remain.

 

More than anything, I do not want to act, feel, think, or speak in any way that could insert me between them and Christ. They are the reason I wrote that story segment about Ayre and Aki and Sky's vow to protect them until they reach home - because that is the vow I have taken for them. To use an old-fashioned expression, I "covet their souls" for Christ. And so from time to time, I panic and try to scrutinize everything I've said or written over the past 48 hours to make sure it was appropriate, that I'm not venturing anywhere near the mistakes I made with them initially, and that everything I've said has aligned with Scripture and pointed toward Christ.

 

I am more aware of and comfortable with my own boundaries now than I used to be, and I'm doing pretty well at knowing when I need some time to back away and recharge or focus on work, when I need to insist that Mrs. Editor is always a part of everything, and so on. The things I continue to struggle with are an occasional resistance to asking older mentors for help (why does our inner toddler always want to "do it myself"?), making sure I don't say anything I wouldn't show my mother (I am a very warm and expressive person who uses the phrase "I love you" a lot, but that's a phrase that needs to be used carefully and wisely), and maintaining the perspective that God is the One Who is in charge of them and leading them, not me (which both relieves me of too heavy a burden and rebukes me for getting too self-important).

 

I have no idea what anyone who reads this can do with any of it besides shake their head and wonder how I get myself into these situations, but I knew that talking through it would help me identify some of the things I am doing well, and some of the things I need to keep watching out for. Also, I am currently in the obsessive-thinking stage of this situation, and I'm hoping that passes soon - I remember the last time I was called on to walk with a friend through a time of hardship, I dreamed about her every night for what felt like a long time, and that frazzles the nerves. The good thing is that these worries have driven me to greater prayer, Scripture-searching, meditation, and practicing trust and depending on God than I have experienced for a long time, and so I believe that He will continue to guide me and help me make the right choices, as long as I slow down and consult with Him constantly - and I also hope that trust will soon outweigh my anxiety and fear of doing the wrong thing.

 

 

*creeps back out feeling slightly better*

SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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I think in order to really know what is going on with the spoiler I'd need to know more about your background. Something in you compels you to be a caregiver, and there might be some co-dependency issues there. That kind of thing doesn't develop in a vacuum; there might be something in your background that led you to that place. It might also be that taking care of others is how you compensate for not feeling good about yourself. In other words you don't believe you are worthy so you try to earn that worthiness by taking care of others. This would be consistent with your struggles to take care of yourself. You don't think you deserve to be taken care of so you try and "earn" some self care by caring for others. There may be other factors at work as well.

Current Challenge

"By the Most-Righteous-and-Blessed Beard of Sir Tanktimus the Encourager!" - Jarl Rurik Harrgath

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1 hour ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

I think in order to really know what is going on with the spoiler I'd need to know more about your background. Something in you compels you to be a caregiver, and there might be some co-dependency issues there. That kind of thing doesn't develop in a vacuum; there might be something in your background that led you to that place. It might also be that taking care of others is how you compensate for not feeling good about yourself. In other words you don't believe you are worthy so you try to earn that worthiness by taking care of others. This would be consistent with your struggles to take care of yourself. You don't think you deserve to be taken care of so you try and "earn" some self care by caring for others. There may be other factors at work as well.

 

I trust your instincts and have given this some thought before ... I know I carry a deep fear of being a "failure," whatever that means - my transition into college and my transition into grad school were both on the rough side, and a lot of people whom I care about expressed a lot of disappointment in me; and even when people tell me I'm doing well and gifted and all that, I still am more fueled by a terror of "failing" than I am by a positive desire to succeed. Two of the worst things ever said to me were "I don't understand what happened; we thought you were such a bright student" and "I think you failed [out of my first graduate program] because you weren't trying hard enough and you played too much". People whom I loved and trusted said both of those things.

 

I looked up co-dependency on Wikipedia, and while not everything fit me to a T, there a few phrases that kind of hit me in the stomach like "oh ...":  "the excessive need to be taken care of, leading to submissive and clinging behavior and fear of separation"; "One of the distinctions is that healthy empathy and caregiving is motivated by conscious choice; whereas for codependents, their actions are compulsive, and they usually aren't able to weigh in the consequences of them or their own needs that they're sacrificing"; and "Some codependents often find themselves in relationships where their primary role is that of rescuer, supporter, and confidante. These helper types are often dependent on the other person's poor functioning to satisfy their own emotional needs". I was hoping not to find anything that sounded like me, but ... yeah, those sound like me.  :P 

 

I'm going to look for resources on what causes co-dependency and how to overcome it - if I really am enabling people to not reach their full potential, that's exactly the opposite of what I really want to do, so it behooves me for their sake and mine to find out what's really going on.

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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Holy cow, @Tanktimus the Encourager, this is me ... this is all me:  https://psychcentral.com/lib/symptoms-of-codependency/ 

 

This is why I have trouble asking my siblings to pay their share of the rent, or why I worry so much about my sister when she's more able to take care of herself than I am, or why I stay up all night talking through problems with friends when I know it's going to hurt my work. I want to feel needed. I want to feel wise and strong and like people depend on me.

 

Now I'm feeling like I'VE BEEN HARMING EVERYONE ALL THIS TIME WHEN I THOUGHT I WAS HELPING AND MY WHOLE LIFE IS A LIE

 

disney-elsa-frozen-gif-Favim.com-1826162  

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SKY ELVENWORD NOBLEHEART

The Silver Archer, Ranger Level 53

Jesus-follower | Writer | Encourager | Resident Myers-Briggs and Enneagram Geek 

"Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." - Fred Rogers

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