sad songs

I'm not sure why I've posted two unflattering photos of myself this week. Well, the first one was an attempt to make my Mom laugh. She said that blog entry did cheer her up, especially the thought of another episode of Johnny's Dance Party (see the comments from this day). Only she and I have seen previous live episodes, and let me just say, as funny as my husband is (he's a nut), Johnny's Dance Party is his best material. He pretends as if we're having a little dance get-together in our living room, turns on some Hot Chocolate, shakes his thang, talks to imaginary guests (our friends), and trust me, it's hysterical. It's funnier if you understand that Johnny and I would never go out dancing. We don't get it. Maybe, just maybe, he'll make a little video, or at least let me take his picture.

Anyway, today's unflattering photo is mere honesty. I took it several months ago (via my MacBook), I think at the beginning of my yeast-killing endeavors. My hair was long. And well, that facial expression still greets me in the mirror each recent morning. I don't want to be depressing, but it would be a lie to say that I bounce around the house, giddy and happy. I do find surprising joy and peace quite often, but if you're sick for several months, it's just hard. I don't think there's a blasted way to get through it without the mercy of God. As y'all know, we're reading Peace Like a River over on books for calvin. I'm probably gonna mention the following quote in my post this week (hopefully tomorrow) on Friday:

"The weak must bank on mercy - without which, after all, I wouldn't have lasted fifteen minutes."
[page 56]

Amen, brother. I've told a few people that the irony of my health predicament is God knew full well the major wimp that I am (many can attest to this fact), yet even so, He decided this was for my good. I needed to learn something - how about, "when I am weak, then I am strong?" I have a low tolerance for pain (childbirth will be interesting), but here I am, willingly swallowing medicine that kills the overpopulation of yeast in my body, but also makes me feel like crap.

Today has been very blah. Gray skies and similar scenery in my soul. Yesterday was blah, too - not even sunlight helped. However, that unexpected peace edged its way into the mirror this morning. My prayers have been sparse; the best I can do. And still, the peace. I read a morning Psalm:

"But deal Thou with me, O Lord God, according unto Thy Name: for sweet is Thy mercy. O deliver me, for I am helpless and poor: and my heart is wounded within me. I go hence like the shadow that departeth: and am driven away as the grasshopper. My knees are weak through fasting: my flesh is dried up for want of fatness."
[Psalm 109:20-23]

My husband is working on a blog entry about the Psalms. I have many thoughts, too, as I am drawn to those songs like a magnet. One comfort I find in such verses is honesty. The Psalm-writers did not sugarcoat their situations. Whether depressed, scared, confused, or even happy, they laid it all out on the table before God. I believe they decided, who else is it really worth telling it all to? What's the best use of our emotional energy, but to tell God what is wrenching our hearts, for better or for worse?

.... Other good, peaceful events included:
-Reading a letter from Laura before turning on the MacBook. The slow pace of a letter was a relief. I might start writing letters to my friends & family in other cities and states. Would y'all like that? Would you write back?
-A kind organic tea company e-mailed me, offering to ship a free sample box of their newest flavor to review here on my blog.
What, do they think I like tea or something?
-I had the gumption to clear off most of the clutter (magazines) around me on the couch.
-I curled up under a blanket and watched The Cult of Sincerity, right on my laptop. It was great! Intellectual, quirky, and really, very funny.
-As I watched the credits roll, I heard a lovely folk song. As the credits kept rolling, I noticed "Johnny Cash" was written by Kelley McRae. So, I hopped on over to Amie Street and purchased that song. I don't know why, but on somber days like today, such a sweet, sad song helps immensely. I hope Kelley McRae won't mind me saying, if I could write a song, it would go a little something like this:

"I hear Johnny Cash died of a broken heart
A love like that, the thing just tears you apart
I don't think that I have even come close
To love like that
well, I think that you just know

Mama smoked cigarettes on the porch each night
Said it was the only thing helped her feel alright
And Daddy went off nobody would say where
I want a love like Johnny Cash had for her

There's a lot of people in this big old world
There's a lot of boys and there's a lot of girls
I don't think the lonely really ever goes away
But maybe you can find somebody help you pass the day

Grandma put on her best every Sunday morn
Went off to Church to praise the Lord in all His glory
Grandpa died sometime back and far away
Grandma listened to Johnny Cash almost every day

I hear Johnny Cash died of a broken heart
A love like that, the thing just tears you apart
And I ain't expect too much from this beat up world
But oh, to have a love like Johnny Cash had for her
Oh, to have a love like Johnny Cash had for her

[hi, aunt Denise. Kelley's song also reminded me of your impeccable taste in music (which runs in my veins). We should see her in Austin, 'k? xoxo.]


Christine said...

I will be one of your pen pals, Jenni! I've been looking for an excuse to get some cute stationary. Have you seen

Kimberly said...

We are praying for you Jenni. An incredible post today. I hate that you're going through all of this but it's comforting to know there's someone else who understands how I've felt at times. I've learned that when you don't feel well sometimes you have to be more diligent in looking for peace and the blessings that surround you. Hang in there. This too shall pass.

Lauren said...

oh, i loooove that song! maybe i can watch the film if i get miss E down for a nap today ;) and i would be honored to be a pen pal, if you need another!

jenni said...

Fun, Christine! You just buy some of that cute stationery and write me, 'k? :)

Kimberly - we are praying for your household, too. Thank you.

And Lauren, you're on. Pen pals we are!

robyn a. jones said...

i will also be a pen pal...:) i've let go of a lot that was on my plate... life has slowed down a lot! let's write! you know i won't be as accomplished a writer as you or stine though:)

jenni said...

Excellent, Robyn! I await your letter. And I need your current address - please to e-mail.


Aunt Denise said...

Hi right back at you, niece Jenni.

After reading those lyrics, I LOVE her and also want a "love like Johnny Cash had for her." I will have that or I will have nothing. I don't think there is an in between.

Yes, of course, we'll go see her in Austin. When?

Love you,

jenni said...

I knew you'd love Kelley McRae! I joined her mailing list to see when she visits Texas.