Monday, October 29, 2012

What do I want to be when I grow up?

Excerpt from the book 'Holes In My Gas Tank'

It’s funny how you know at a very young age what you should become when you grow up. Does God instill that passion, or is it part of our DNA make-up?
 I loved getting dressed up in costume and putting on plays or ‘Shows’ for my parents and their friends at dinner parties. The rest of the cast (kids) and I would arrange a story to tell; get dressed in mom and dads old clothes then act out our story on a make believe stage.
 Grade school was similar, my friends and classmates and I would write out plays, practice and then act them out in front of the class. I loved going to school because of this, until second grade.
 A horrible thing happened to me and the incident became the downfall of my acting career. I know, grade two may seem a little young to think about a career change, or a career for that matter, but in the course of a few months, a deep sense of shame was thrust upon me that second year of grade school, and my first reaction was to run. I ran and gave up on my dream.
 I portrayed the head of the household, a.k.a. father, in our little play at school and my friend was the family dog. Our Teacher loved the play so much that she asked us to perform it on the Big Stage for the rest of the school at the next assembly.
 Tensions were high among my fellow actors; nerves were drawn tight that fateful morning of our début.
 “What was my line again?” the dog asked.
 “You don’t have any, stupid! You’re the DOG!” my fellow patriot in the arts cried out. She was practicing and getting into ‘character’ for her maternal portrayal of the lady pack leader and mother.
 It was organized chaos behind the curtain before our first scene. A hush fell among the artists as the curtain slowly opened. There was a momentary pause and then the scene began. The first half of the show went well. We all knew it. A pride set in. Perhaps we got a little cocky? That’s why the second act went awry. We got sloppy.
 Scene 2, second act; the dog had to jump up onto the pack leader. That happened to be me. I wasn’t paying attention. I was looking out into the crowd. Looking for the familiar faces of my friends. Looking for approval.
I saw her, the dog, come at me from the corner of my eye. I saw her too late! She couldn’t slow down. I was supposed to catch her. She lost her footing. She was about to fall off the stage when she grabbed me. She took a hold of my stretchy 1972 polyester elasticized pants when she went down.  There was no belt to hold up my pants. There were no suspenders to keep them up. The dog fell, so did my pants, in front of the whole school. I never acted again, until recently, 30 years later.
 There’s a movie called ‘The Bucket List’. I made myself a list like that after my Uncle died a few years ago. On this list was to take an Acting class. I did and I LOVED IT. It felt as if I were finally doing what God created me to do.  This was who I was, what I was meant to do all along. Write and Act. It was a revelation. How does an accounts receivables technician for the past 13 years just drop everything and take up this passion? It’s illogical to drop all and hit the thespian road. I couldn’t do it. Not yet. Money Honey. It’s what pays the bills and puts food on the table.
 “Sometimes you need to leap,” Krista, my friend advised, “You need to show God You are willing to move towards being obedient to him.”
“I can’t,” I replied, “Don’t throw away the old pair of shoes before you buy a new pair.” My parents instilled this into my being.
“I can’t just quit my job and start writing.   It’s absurd!”
 “You’ve got to trust.”
 “I don’t even know for sure it’s what God wants. What if it’s just what I want?” I knew that statement wasn’t true. Deep in my heart I knew God wanted me to write and inspire other women and help children.
 I was at a Women of Faith Conference in Vancouver when God told me what he wanted of me. I gave my life, again, to Christ there. In the midst of these hundreds of women praying and loving, unconditionally, I found Him again. And as I watched Nicole Johnson, doing a skit on stage, Gods told me, “That is what I want you to do.”
 What I told my friend and sister in Christ was a lie, I did know what God wanted of me but I was stalling. Fear held me captive; she knew it too.
 “Jump Anuschka, He will catch you.”
 “I can’t.”

This was written a few years ago and although, I haven't jumped off the edge, I have put on a harness and I am now hanging off the edge, slowly belaying my way. I'm not a blind jumper. I've come to realize that this is the way I am. I'm a slow mover, researching every aspect of something before I ease my way into it. Since I wrote those words 4 years ago, I have acted in 2 Mary and Martha plays with my friend Krista at 2 woman's retreats and I have spoken a few times at Celebrate Recovery. Sometimes, it's a slow process and I've come to realize that this is OK. It's given me time to grow and learn and it's given me time to get to know the Dream Giver a little better.

I have stopped saying, "I can't." It's changed to words like, "Maybe not now, but soon." Or, "I still need to learn a few more things before God will open up that door." And I really do, still need to learn a lot, because just the other day I slipped a bit. I took a survey. A survey on Facebook that was based on the date of my birthday and it would tell me what jobs I would be good at and what I was born to do. 
- Housekeeper (LOL!)
- Nurse
- Caregiver
- Home Decorator/Interior Designer (LOL!)
- Healer
- Nanny
Although, some items on this list are not far off from what is instinctual for me and I could see myself doing this job, I am still shaking my head as to why I took that survey in the first place. Instead of trusting God, I looked to the world to tell me what my Creator had in mind for me to do, and for just a moment (actually a few moments), I second guessed the dream. I got confused again and I wondered, "is this really what God wants me to do? Because maybe... just maybe... He really wanted me to be a Interior Designer?" 

(You can stop laughing now, Krista, Betty and Tamara! - the D4N's ladies who have had coffee at my house - they know the truth). 

Sometimes change is fast and furious,
Sometimes change takes time.

Prepare your mind for action,
Prepare your will for self-control.
Set your hope on the grace been given to you,
and be holy in all you do. (Paraphrase 1 Peter 1:13-16)

“We have not yet been shown what we will be in the future…. But… we will be like Him.” (1John 3:2).

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