Hell Yea.

My card was denied at Meijer today.

It triggered that whole “you are not good enough” vibe.

Two people were waiting behind me.

The cashier had to call two managers over.

The baby was crying because she had just woken up after sleeping in the carrier most of the shopping trip.

I called my husband and we had a 30 second frustrating call about finances. This was HIS fault clearly. Not MINE for spending so much money.

I was spiraling out and down into a panic attack.

Right there in the middle of Meijer.

A stranger offered to help me carry things over to customer service.

The customer service cashier cracked a joke about also having her card declined and we all go through it.

I got checked out. It was their machine and not my card.

The lady behind me in line told me it didn’t take hers either.

THEN.

On my way out of Meijer pulling an overflowing cart with one hand behind me, a baby strapped to my front and carrying giant totes with the other hand, a woman whistled my direction.

“You go Momma! That’s impressive.”

She wasn’t even really talking to me. She was talking in my direction, but she seemed to be more commenting to herself.

She ended this praise with a passionate, “Hell YEA!”

Someone literally praised me, a stranger, with a, “Hell yea!”

The kind of “Hell Yea” you scream when your team scores the winning touchdown. The kind of “Hell Yea” when you find out you just won the lotto. The kind of “Hell Yea” you scream when your girlfriend accepts your proposal.The kind of “Hell Yea” you feel when your kid poops in the toilet all by himself.

That kind of “Hell Yea.”

My life is messy.

No. For real. We are walking through paths in my mobile home… O.K. Fine. It’s a single wide.

We moved from 2,400 sq ft. To 900. It’s either my OCD’s worst nightmare or organizational dream. I haven’t decided yet.

My kids are hyper vigilant after “the summer of stress.”

My husband’s whole identity has been thrown up in the air by an unfair and unexpected turn of events.

We’ve had SO much happen I have yet to process any of it and the yuck inside is starting to seep out my ears.

People keep looking at me saying, “Wow. You are handling this REALLY well.”

“Hell Yea” kind of good.

I am stressed. I am overwhelmed. I am tired. I am empty. I am sad. I am angry. I am lifeless.

But “HELL YEA” am I living this life.

Dear Satan,

Ever since I decided to write… Ever since I had 30+ people in one year tell me I should write a book… Ever since I spoke up about my mental illness… Ever since I spoke up about my kind of motherhood… Ever since I hit publish on “Hitchhiker’s Guide to Motherhood” …Ever since I decided this was my identity…

You have tried to silence me. You have thrown struggle after struggle at my family and even those around me ironically timed whenever I would say, “that is when I will start writing again.” You have pressed into my soul trying to crush it. You have challenged my very worst fears. You have brought to the surface the most heinous memory my mind had been stuffing down for 30+ years.

You have gone to battle against me and mine.

Today.

In the midst of the aftermath of the Summer of Stress.

I declare, “HELL YEA!”

I will live.

This summer has taught me over and over and over… with every wave that has slammed against my legs… I will persevere. I know now that there is nothing that will stop my God from me. I know all else could fall away around me and the worst pains could be felt…

But goodness is coming.

And that goodness starts with a keyboard, a pen, a podcast, a blog… I will scream out my truths loud enough over the waves for my tribe to find me and sail into safety because while you raged against me you forgot one thing the Lord created me to be…

I am the storm.

And my battle cry is, “HELL YEA.”

The red hair should have been your first clue.

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