Washing away stress and anxiety : Lauren's Take

Have you ever felt your body go into autopilot? You know you're alive but not fully present? That's how I felt on my wedding day. 

Let's backtrack: 

Hi I'm Lauren! Cooler, younger sister of the ever talented Brittany Rebecca Hayward. I'm a avid baker, show tune fanatic and wanna be yogi/rockette (it varies from day to day). I'm hopelessly and utterly mad for my husband (whom I married two half years ago). Together we're trying to figure out life and what God wants for us in this crazy busy life. 

Now that we have the formal introductions out of the way, let's move on to the memoir. This will be brief and maybe if you (and the boss/Britty likes my writing) I'll join you all for a part 2 (or 3!). Let's not get carried away though.

I met my future husband (for the sake of the story let's call him O) ice skating at downtown Windsor. Sounds super romantic right? Well it was! Honestly when I think of our relationship, there were many cute rom com moments. Our first date was to see a replaying of "singing in the rain" in a high school gymnasium. We road our bikes everywhere, made jam and danced in the kitchen constantly. 
We dated for a year, we had talked marriage before so when O popped the question I wasn't surprised. We planned a longer engagement so I could graduate first. July 6th 2014 was the date, I was 21, he was 22. 

Then the autopilot comes in. When planning the wedding, all I wanted was just for O and I to be together. I wanted the planning to be over. I'm a pretty disciplined person so planning wasn't difficult, it was difficult trying to please everyone, so many compromises were made. 

Finally the wedding day, which I look back on now and smile, it truly was wonderful, my regret is that I wasn't fully present on that day. My anxiety and stress from the past year of planning had finally taken its toll and I was barely keeping it together. I remember thinking "just remember your vows" over and over again. 

After the wedding rush was over, O and I settled into a normal day to day. Well maybe he did, but for myself I couldn't figure out what a "normal" routine was. The anxiety and stress I carried trying to graduate, planning a wedding, moving out of my parents house for the first time finally took its toll, and I broke down hard. I hit a bottom, I felt spent, so so tired (physically and emotionally) and poor O, he encouraged as much as he could, but I knew it was something I had to deal with between God and me. 

Somehow in the midst of planning everything under the sun, I had forgotten the biggest and best part of my life. The reason I loved O, my relationship, our relationship being rooted in Christ. I had forgotten what I was like to journal and pray, to spent time with my creator. It's like a shoved him in a drawer like a pair of mismatched socks and told myself I'd figure out that problem later (which let's be honest, the mismatched sock problem is never worked out) WHERE THE HELL DO THE SOCKS GO? 

Back to Jesus though, have you shoved him in a little drawer in your heart? In this busy life we so easily forget the reason for our existence, to love God and love others. We are called to be the light in a very dark world, and the world now is safe to say, is very dark, and is in desperate need of some love. 

In this busy life we so easily forget the reason for our existence, to love God and love others.

Jesus is waiting, bring him out, let his peace, comfort and love wash over you, wash over your anxiety and stress. This is the biggest lesson I've learned in my short years of being married is that the relationship doesn't exists unless both parties are untied in growing with God. He is the vine we are the branches. 
We are to produce good fruit, in ourselves and one another. 

That's all I have today lovely readers, a large messy collection of memories and advice. Maybe if Britt let's me write again I'll give you the recipe that O calls the "pie that made me want to marry you" sounds like a recipe to have in your arsenal yes? 

All the hugs and love from me! Thanks for having me Britty

- Lauren

soul, spiritual, lifeBrittany Hayward