Shine Baby Shine

I’m going to share a little story from my spring break so far. I’ve had the privilege of babysitting 4 children who I’ve come to see as great kids. There are 2 girls and 2 boys. I’m going to give them code names because well, I care about their identity and adventurous souls, really. So for the sake of it, B is the oldest boy, J is the oldest girl, P is the younger girl and L is the younger boy.

I’ve had so much fun with these kids! I never had to worry about keeping them entertained; they sure know how to make something out of the simple things in life. Take Mac and cheese for example. Ok, it’s honesty hour.. I’ve never made stove top macaroni. Yikes. How embarrassing!! It was quite an experience with them. We got through it together and their house is still intact so yeah, rock on.

The youngest boy, L is likely to paint the town or heck, build a new town. He likes to invent stuff, all four of them do. If he ends up being a millionaire with his entrepreneurial skills, don’t panic.. I will give you his card! Ha!

There was one specific incident that really struck my heart… I’m one to see things from a completely different point of view than “normal” people. I am not your average teenager. 

B and L wondered off to the bathroom to wash up after playing in the mud for nearly 3 hours. Lawd have mercy. I was making my famous PB&J at the time.. Then suddenly I hear a door slam and L runs to the kitchen screaming his lungs out to the point where his face resembles a strawberry. I have never seen a face so red and a child so upset. Immediately, I put down the peanut-buttered knife and ran to see what the commotion was all about.. I asked L what happened as I hugged him ever so softly. Hugs can fix everything, right? L replied, “B turned the light off on me and shut the door.” As he said this he completely leaned on me as if I had superpowers to make him feel better. Maybe I did.. The hug might have done the trick. 

Five minutes later, his red face no longer appeared red. Whew! He was out and about; so eager to down his PB&J. Once everyone was served, I couldn’t help but think about L and how he was just so upset 5 minutes ago. It was still light outside which was beneficial at the time, but turning off the lights on someone is actually a bigger deal than expected. Especially when you trusted that person to be your light; to guide you and lead the way when life gets dark.

Unfortunately, people will hurt you and they will leave you in the darkness. It’s the sad truth. It’s important to find people worth hurting for but just please don’t settle or make yourself smaller for their own preferences. Be yourself and for the love of mac & cheese, create your own light. Personally, I have found light within myself which is awesome but my everlasting light is beyond this world. God provides my light. Allowing Him to be my guide and strength was the best things I’ve ever done. I believe if you “let go and let God” the darkness doesn’t seem so dark. He will provide strength for the day and light for the way. So when the sun is not shining, rely on the Son to take control. His light is far brighter than any light humans eyes have ever seen. I find comfort in that and I pray you do too. 

Thank you for reading today! I appreciate ya!!! And I just want you to know that you matter and you are enough, in case you didn’t know. Today is a new day and I’m just encouraging you to find the light or choose to be the light for someone else. It’s so worth it! YOU are worth it. Love ya & shine on. ❤️
Xoxo,
Jess

Twenty Fifteen

2015 was a year for the books. It’s one I won’t ever forget. I locked it inside my heart. That’s where its home is– right in the depths of my heart. It’s a year I hope to tell my future daughter about someday. 

2015 was going to state in powerlifting as a sophomore & getting 7th in the 97 weight class. I can’t forget to mention nearly dying from dehydration and lack of food. I was hangry… I cried. I also can’t forget my binge eating right after weigh in, which took nearly a century. I went to town on at least 7 cookies. That’s what suffering and pain do to you.

2015 was being inducted to NHS and hosting Sonora high school’s first “push ups for charity” event. Sick. All proceeds went to military families. It was fun! I personally do not like to “bench press the world” but if it’s a way of giving back, sign me up. Our military members and their families certainly do not get a fraction of the credit they deserve. I have so much respect for each and every one of them.

2015 was going to my first prom with my best friends David, Kamrie, and Jeremy. I had a blast! Although the decorations weren’t the best, the food was. In the end, that’s all that matters. Food is the key to happiness and a way to my heart. Don’t abuse it people. 😉

2015 was my first and biggest heart break so far… “Losing” so many special people. I’m not going to water it down. The big move for all these coaches and teachers who were basically family just plain rattled my world. My reaction to the terrible news was one I’ll never forget. You don’t know true heart break until you let your fresh pizza get cold while you cry and SCREAM into a pillow. Yes, I screamed. I was a mess. It was dramatic and a moment you would definitely see in a movie. I was so confused and lost. I didn’t know who to turn to.. I’m pretty sure I texted everyone in my contact list. I was helpless to help myself. I questioned God and now I realize that He was likely to be testing my faith. I failed.

2015 was making this blog and writing love letters to strangers and having first penpals. The amount of writing I’ve done in the past year has surpassed any other amount ever!!! Writing has become one of my passions. I’ve opened up to new types of writing and have found myself pressing link after link just to read more blogs for improvement of my own.

2015 was seasons of growth and learning how to become better. I’ve learned so much. I’ve become so strong. I’m thankful for the circumstances and hardships that have formed me today. 

2015 was getting my drivers license and nearly totaling my car the day after I got it. Yall, don’t forget to yield when you’re going 75 and there’s oncoming traffic. The sun was totally in my eyes. That’s my excuse… I didn’t see the yield sign and plus I was in a daze… Probably day dreaming of donuts.

2015 was working at my first job. This one is one I am not authorized to talk about.. But I will say, having and earning your own money is awesome. If you don’t think so, then honey you’re looking up the wrong tree. 

2015 was going to Rock the Desert, having the time of my life with Dj Promote, Lecrae and Andy Mineo. It was quite an experience. I’ve never rocked out so hard. Praising Jesus and listening to truth is all it takes to set my path straight.
 
2015 was passing time with friends and this is what we did: we cruised around town, fought for the aux cord, cried on each other’s shoulder, had hard conversations, had our occasional (daily) “Sonic runs,” had sleepovers even on school nights, had movie nights, laughed so hard we just might have rock hard abs, supported each other through the good and bad, went to lunch together, rocked this small town life, watched Netflix for hours that eventually led into days, introduced each other to new things that forced us to think differently, told each other terrible jokes, we gave each other song recommendations and listened to those songs until we just couldn’t listen to them anymore. We just did stuff best friends do. I’ve never loved a group of girls so much. Stevie, Ster, Dummer, Ky, Bee and Aud… This one’s for you.

2015 was ridding myself of the fear that controlled my life for so long. I’ve fought head-on with fear for as long as I can remember. What’s the point of fear when you know God is on your side? I’ve embraced the term “Let go and let God” ever so gracefully. I found comfort it in. Faith has been my companion. I wouldn’t want it any other way.

2015 was risking my heart for a boy who carries it so well. It doesn’t take me long to fall in love with things. I fall in love with something new every single day. Whether it be places, people, moments, objects, words or pictures, find something you love about each day. It’s simple but it can change you drastically. It’ll make you better. Soon you’ll be seeking out and sorting through all the good in life. 2015 made me brave. 

2015 was inviting new friends into my life as if they belonged in it from the start. I was once told at FCA camp back in 2014, “show me your friends and I’ll show you your future.” Holy smokes. Those words hit me like a brick wall. They often ring in my mind. They have saved me from unhealthy friendships. It’s OKAY to let go of the negative people so you can welcome more of the positive. What I tell myself is to just do it with love and always be there for them when they need someone to talk to. It’s not always going to be easy, though.

 
Tomorrow will just be a change in date and I will feel the same, but I do look forward to the memories I will make with those I love most! I’m not making any resolutions simply because I don’t stick to them.. I’m just going to progress as needed. It’ll be a daily progression. Life is good but more importantly, God is good. I’m thinking of and praying for you all as we enter a new year! Go you!!! I’m cheering you on via this blog. Sending you a virtual hug. Xoxo

Love,

Jessica Marie

Jessica Marie Has Done It Again

Howdy there!

It’s been 101 days since I’ve posted my last blog. One hundred and one. Time has sure creeped by and I’m slacking. Forgive me. It is now Thanksgiving break. Finally! A week to get my life a little more situated and God willing, to be a little less stressed. School can be  extremely overwhelming. It’s only my junior year in high school. Admittedly, I’ve “wished my life away.” It’s as terrible as it sounds. I often wish I were a senior. It’s safe to say I’ve had senioritis since freshman year. We all want to be seniors but have we really stopped and lived in the moment? I look around and I see “has-beens” all around town. Gosh that word kills me.. Has-beens. Wow. That’s harsh.. Don’t you think? Anyhow, these “has-beens” *cringes* remind me to enjoy high school while I can. It’s kind of a cliche to me. People throw it around like they would in a game of dodgeball. Only, I feel like I’m the last man in. My team is counting on me. Yet being as human as I am, I continue to miss the targets and ignore the warning signs. I have improved within these three months, though. If you know me then you know I do NOT have it all together. Lately I have been caught deep in the valley. BUT I am going somewhere… Perhaps I am going up. All I know is that it starts with a mindset and a few baby steps here and there. As for my mindset, I’m through with the whole “going in circles” deal. I’m making a commitment right now to STOP going through the motions at school. At home. In life. I’m not a zombie and I’m going to stop acting like one. Keep me accountable for my words yall. Keep me in your prayers as well.

Here are a few of my goals. I am inspired by the song Fix My Eyes // For KING & COUNTRY. Listen to it. Now. Just do it. You know you wanna. It’ll get you so hype.

“Love like I’m not scared

Give when it’s not fair

Live life for another

Take time for a brother

Fight for the weak ones

Speak out for freedom

Find faith in the battle

Stand tall but above it all

Fix my eyes on You”

Great song. I recommend it to all but especially those who need a redirection or a new route in their live. Fixing our eyes on the Lord is the most important thing we could ever do. One of the greatest ways to do so is to stay in His word! That’s exactly what I’m going to do NOW. I’m rooting myself in it NOW. If I were a plant in a spiritual garden.. I wouldn’t make it. That garden would fail miserably. But that is changing NOW. I need more than just a Sunday message and the weekly FCA/FCS lessons. We all do. That’s on us, though. God knows it’s not easy! We have all this extra baggage or at least I do… Why not get into the Word and leave the baggage right there on the page. That’s why it’s there. So we can learn and grow from it. It tells me what I need to hear rather than what I want to hear and that’s why I love it. It’s truth and it “spits fire” like the newest mixtape… Only on a hardcore spiritual level. Okay… I just made myself laugh. Just do it for the Jesus turn up I guess. Cha feel homie? LOL. I’m so grateful for God’s grace because I am a mess. You are a witness through my blog. Congrats.
Thank you for reading this far. You are a champ and you deserve an endless amount of cookies. I will personally make them for you because you are just so AWESOME. That’s saying a lot because I’m a powerlifter, and have to lose around 8 pounds by January.. The last thing I want to do is bake but I will. For you, sugar. 😉

 
P.S. There’s a boy now. He’s amazing and just typing this makes me smile SO BIG!!! I will post a blog about him in a few days. Cade Michael, get ready to be introduced to the world. It’s gonna get crazy. Muah. Xoxo.

Lots of love,
Jessica Marie

Rock the Desert 2015

Saturday night I got to check “Go to a Lecrae and Andy Mineo concert” off of my bucket list. Let it be known… It got CRAE! Both of them, along with DJ promote and the entire 116 clique have gotten me through some tough times. Especially through tough workouts. I finally found artists worth listening to. They speak truth and they don’t water it down. 

Here’s how I feel about 3 specific people I watched perform at Rock The Desert in Midland, Texas.

  

Lecrae

As an incoming freshman, I felt so lost. I think I was ashamed of not “fitting in” or maybe it was all the transitioning and feeling uncomfortable with what felt like being “alone” at the time.. Who knows. I was like a fish out of water. (Haha fish, freshman get it?) Nevertheless, it was only the beginning of the baby steps to becoming independent mentally and dependent on the Lord spiritually. Lecrae’s “Anomaly” album came out around the time when I was upset and it was exactly what I needed to hear. I am an anomaly and I’m unashamed of it now as a junior. Praise Jesus. Lecrae changed my view on myself throughout his music and the Lord gave Him the ability to do so. Of course, all credit goes to Him.

I waited to post this until I got a YouTube video up. You can watch it here. Lecrae at RTD 2015 It’s of Lecrae’s performance. I got carried away. Just so you know, I’m a horrible video maker. Not the best quality but it’ll work for now. Ha! 😜

Dj Promote

I also got to see the famous Dj Promote who grew up in San Angelo, TX. His skills are God-given. Best DJ I know. Seriously. It was live and I didn’t want it to end. He definitely knows what he’s doing. One of the loveliest English teachers to come through Sonora, Mrs. Gonzales, taught DJ Promote when he was just a young boy. You can read about that here. Mrs Gonzo’s post: Dj Promote Safe to say he’s awesome.

Andy Mineo

Andy was hilarious. He had the crowd cracking up. He’s undoubtedly my favorite Italian from NYC. His song “You Can’t Stop Me” from the album Never Land is a personal fav throughout my powerlifting meets. It gets me pumped. Nothing can stop me with the Lord in my heart. 
He’s coming out with a new album, “Uncomfortable” in September. You can preorder it on iTunes now. The song, Uncomfortable is available now and is great. My goal is to be comfortable with being uncomfortable.

I’m so glad I could go to my very first Rock the Desert this year. It was the “highlight of my summer” as I said on Instagram. I usually turn up when I’m just jammin in my room but this was on a different level. Being around so many Christians who could nearly rap the whole concert as I could was just breathtaking. Yes, I can rap. (Hidden talent) 😉 I might sound like a child, but it’s okay. Sometimes the song still needs to be heard. 

My first RTD experience was unforgettable. God willing I’ll be able to go back next year. It was superb, Midland, Texas. Thanks for rockin my world.

Until next time,

Jess

God’s Game Plan

Truth
I am not always happy. Right now, I’m going through some tough stuff. I’ve lost faith at times… I’ve let my guard down. Humans do that. I am off of my mermaid duty as of right now so yes, I think I’m a human. I want to be crystal clear with you. I am not as perfect as I may seem to some. I want you to see the good things as well as the bad. Something that’s really cool about me is that one minute I may be somewhere down in the dumps but if you just give me a brief moment, I’ll be a whole different person. A positive person. I don’t like to drown in sadness. Though, I do so quite often. I just want you to see that I don’t have it all together but the Lord has a game plan for me and you, too! 

Our Heavenly Coach

The Lord is our Coach. He knows everything about us. He has us lined up to be a starter of life’s biggest games. We fall, We make mistakes, we sometimes question our Coach. We beg Him to sit us out, yet He doesn’t. Why? Well, there’s this thing called strength. He’s using our exhaustion, whining, blood, sweat & tears to make us stronger. So whenever we’re thinking, “Coach, if I could just stop here and give up, maybe I’ll be better off.” He’s over there cracking up as if we had said the funniest joke ever. He’d say, “Oh no my child. I know the outcome. You have my guidance, my instruction and my game plan right in front of your face. Be still, I am here.” Let your confidence be all in Him. His game plan is the greater plan.

My strength, your strength. Our strength is in Jesus.

I hope that you can be still during your struggles. Our Coach is alive and well, waiting for you. There are no halftimes or timeouts in life. So when you’re carrying a lot of weight and you’re thinking of dropping it, hold on a little tighter. You can’t stop now. One of my favorite phrases to say is “God’s got you.” It’s true. Trust Him and you will feel that weight be lifted off of your shoulders. God will never leave you. No matter how bad you think you messed up. You’re the MVP in His eyes. Isn’t that crazy.. It’s all just mind-blowing to me.

“When I didn’t care to know His name, He cared to know mine.”

That simple quote is so powerful it could change lives. Jesus loves us when the world hates us. He knows how we feel. He was hated too. We get dropped so much that we try to fit in, in the most disgusting way— by changing ourselves to meet others’ standards. By trying to live up to their terms of what life should be. Make your own definition and if someone can measure up to it, invite them over sometime. Just please… Don’t settle. That’s one of the worst things you can do for yourself. 

**Reader**
Life can be tough sometimes but guess what? You’re tougher. You way seem “weak at the moment” but that’s the devil talking. Silence him. Show him and your weaknesses that you’re on team JC. You’re undefeated in Christ.

•And If you’re trying to figure it all out. Stop. It’s a trap– a never ending war. Let go and let God take over.

•When you start to get lonely, I can assure you that you are never alone. Not only am I here, but so is the God who breathed you into life.

Screams of Encouragement 

I am rooting for you. You can get through anything life decides to throw at you. And there’s someone out there who’s rooting for you, too. Perhaps someone younger. They’re probably on their toes and at the edge of their seat, anxious for you to prove them how strong they think you are. Don’t let them down. We believe in YOU. It’s not always going to be easy but please do not surrender. Instead, cover up your burdens with strength. You’ve made it this far. Until today. Right now. Awesome. This very moment is an opportunity to do anything that makes you want to jump out of bed every morning, if you put your heart into it. I believe in you. You can do this. Have a wonderful day and pour out some love to others! They might embrace it like I do when I smell rain in West Texas.

Lots of smiles & truthfulness,

Jess

Dear Future Husband

Dear You,

I hope you are prepared for what is yet to come..

First and most importantly, I want you to know that I’m not easily impressed. My standards are higher than ever before. You can thank my former coaches for that. (Kirchhoff, Baugh, Tutle) I will not compare you to them. I’ll just hope you’ll have a few of their greatest qualities; a sense of humor, strength (not as in the total number of pounds you can lift in the weight room) but strength to defend what you believe in and strength to love me even when I’m being difficult. I also search for selflessness and a great personality. Appearance isn’t the most important thing, but I do hope that you’re kinda cute. I don’t want to keep my eyes closed for the rest of my life. 😉 haha!

This might seem a bit crazy, but I am confident of your existence. You’re out there somewhere and I can’t wait to meet you. Brace yourself for the insane questions and the numerous cookies we will consume. I wholeheartedly want to know everything about you. I want to know what gives you butterflies and makes your heart melt. When your eyes light up, I want to know the reason. I want to know what infuriates you. (So I can try not to set you off, no promises though) I’d love to talk about your goals– the ones you’ve accomplished and your current ones, too. I want to know about all of your fears and when time gets rough, I want to know if you’ll ring the bell or never give up on me.

Although I get upset and occasionally cry, I am tough. I can stand my ground and could possibly kick a dude’s butt. (Not really, I couldn’t hurt a fly) but I absolutely will not try to argue with you. (Unless you eat the last Krispy Kreme Doughnut.. that’s where I’ll draw the line) It is my goal to not argue with you. We will simply have discussions. Why? Because if I win the argument and I always will, then that means my soulmate, my best friend and my prince loses. I dont want to win if that means you lose. 

You’re going to be incredible. I pray for you every night and I can’t wait to love you with everything I have. Please keep your heart secured, guarded and protected until you give it to me. Proverbs 4:23. ❤️

Remember: we share the same moon, stars and skies. I love them all because I know you’re somewhere underneath them, too. Xoxo

Love,

Jess.

First ER Visit

For a while now I’ve been getting dizzy spells.. I have several health problems but I’m not here so y’all can pity me. All I really need is prayers.. 

My Family Trip
Yesterday I went to Bandera to watch my cousins perform at their rodeo. (They attended a horse camp there for a week… It was a long, boring week.) I was feeling fine until we got to the mall in Kerrville. Once again, the dizzy spells took over, only worse this time. I had trouble focusing.. I felt like the world was spinning around me. I tried to cry but it wouldn’t come out. I was stuck in a moment and my sister didn’t try to help me. She sat there and ignored me. (What a great sister I have…) My mom wouldn’t answer her phone and my cousins were in Bath and Body Works. My heart was beating out of my chest and in an abnormal way. I wanted to scream… I struggled to breathe and didn’t feel comfortable walking a few steps. I thought I was going to collapse. Worst feeling ever. I don’t wish it upon anyone.

Next stop: Emergency Room
If you know me, then you know I want nothing to do with hospitals, needles, blood or anything of that matter. I was feeling so low and so sick that I willingly begged my mom to take me in. That’s how bad it was… When we got to the hospital, the wait to be checked in seemed like I waited for days. I was anxious, nervous and shaking so badly. It was horrible. Then I started to look up and realize that the wait was only more praying time. I prayed my heart out.

(My family hogged up about half of the waiting room. I didn’t mind it. They made me feel more comfortable there.)

Finally. At last. The 1st wait is over.
A tall man finally walked through the doors and called out my name. I was sent to a room where several nurses asked me questions. Then they moved me across the hall to see the ER doctor. He ordered an EKG, body fluids through an IV, and labs. The doctor wanted to check my blood for clotting.. Blood clots. Yikes..

I didn’t end up getting an EKG. The labs weren’t too scary. They only took out 4 tubes of blood. No biggy. We waited for about an hour and 30 minutes, then a nurse came by and put the IV in. She was kind of rude.. She said I was the last patient for her shift and basically that she just wanted to go home.. I prayed for her. I prayed for everything. I prayed a lot. A whole lot.

[I was in desperate need of Jesus. Still am and always will be.]

Waiting. Waiting… More waiting 

Jordan finally kicked into care mode. Better late than never, right? She came to my room multiple times. She even took a selfie with me. Not cool. FYI, she and my family stayed there nearly the whole time until I pleaded with them to go have fun somewhere else. About 2 hours later the doctor came back. I tested negative for blood clots. Feel free to put your hands together. Praise the Lord! I just about jumped out of my hospital bed. I was discharged. We went to the Empty Cross. (Google “The Empty Cross in Kerrville, Tx”) I prayed some more, wrote a prayer on a prayer rock, left a donation and took some sweet pics. I’d say that’s the best way to end a crazy day.

To keep you posted
I am okay. Always okay. God is with me. I have to see my pediatrician soon. Prayers are appreciated and if you pray for me, I’m sending you a bear hug via WordPress. Thank you for the time you spent to read this. I’ve learned that its more precious than a puppy. You rock. I love you. I hope your day was right on. God bless you. Xoxo

-Jess