My Ink Dance

Discovering Extraordinary Grace in an Ordinary Life

One of Those Days

I try very hard to make this space more than a journal of my emotional, raw meanderings. I walk a tightrope of being transparent and creating yet another voyeuristic space of venting. I am (often) emotional, (rarely) proper, and (always) honest. This tightrope has had good balance, but I’m feeling a little off today.

After all, I don’t usually post on Fridays. But I’m wondering if maybe you’ve been in this place too.

jack in the box

There are days when I feel like I’ve been doing (almost) everything right and then I look at the result and things just don’t measure up.

Like when you’ve been eating well, tracking your food, and you’re really proud of yourself. Until you get on the scale — and the number goes up. All I can think is how stupid I feel and how it’s for nothing and that maybe it really is time to relent and go get the next size jeans. I hate sizes. Or maybe I just hate mine.

Or when you think you’ve got all your relationship insecurities worked out, or at least in a neat little compartment. Until that one thing happens and it makes everything come right back. Yes, I see this as a jack-in-the-box (my least favorite toy).

I’ve taken everything and put it neatly in its place. Not so much stuffing it down, but putting it in its appropriate box. I like when things fit in their perfect place. But everyday I sit there unwittingly turning a dial on the side of that box and the music plays and life seems great, until it explodes.

I hate that.

Yes, I used the word hate — even though I tell my kids not to because it’s such a strong word and we don’t often mean it. But maybe here I do.

Because I wonder if I’ll ever stop turning that dial. I wonder if I can find a way that is better than compartmentalizing those feelings of inadequacy into their neat little box. I wonder if I’ll ever get over this.

At seven this morning I could already feel my day spiraling. I found myself sinking into an abyss I swore I’d never go back to. And I couldn’t find my bootstraps.

Then I remembered my word. Yeah, that one. The one that I am suddenly regretting because sinking into an abyss seems easier than changing my mindset.


I won’t even capitalize it because it feels like the tiniest whisper and I haven’t quite decided whether to fully grasp it.

But here I am on a different tightrope. And I realize I don’t need to decide the whole day. I just need to decide the next step. And even as I’m sinking I have a choice: whether to look up or look down.

So, I push the scale to the side and put on some clothes that are comfortable but I wouldn’t be embarrassed to be seen in. Looking up.

I think about whether to get the next size jeans. Looking down — But realize I don’t need to do that right now in this moment. Looking up.

I decide whether to make that call to ease (or feed) my insecurity. I put the phone down. Looking up.

I put on music that will fill the places in me I can’t reach right now. Looking up.

I open my Bible (not always the first place I turn). Looking up.

I let my mind wander to questions of the past…turning that jack-in-the-box dial. Looking down.

I pour out my heart here. Looking up (I think).

I realize that I will probably look down again. And that’s ok. Looking up.

what god sees

Not all the things that feel hard are big storms. Sometimes a single cloud can bring us to our knees. Sometimes the best place to look when we’re on our knees is up.

And those days are the days of grace upon grace.

About Becky Hastings

I am emotional and logical. I am strong and dependent. I am a juxtaposition of head and heart exploring it all through writing. And in all my mixed-up ways I am loved. I'm here to tell you that you are, too. Just the way you are.

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