How Moving my Life to New Zealand for 3 years Changed Me

I came to change New Zealand. After 3 years, New Zealand changed me. Cliche I know, but this ended up being the truth.

This post has been written over the past 18 months. My thoughts, my observations, and my feelings have obviously morphed along the way, but let’s just start at the beginning.

With 50lbs of luggage, a working knowledge of left hand driving, and one solid contact, I packed up what I owned and moved my life to New Zealand. I kissed my parents, hugged my niece, wished my siblings well, and flew. In my luggage was an optimistic, slightly naive, monstrously unrealistic idea that I was going to get a job, in my field, in the first few months. With…one…solid…contact. Yeah. Right. Continue reading “How Moving my Life to New Zealand for 3 years Changed Me”

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Trust Explained

Today, we will be talking about Trust. Trust is a belief. Trust is an arrangement. Trust can be made. Trust can be broken. Google Search autocomplete says this about people who question trust.

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Funny how trusting a boyfriend is harder. I won’t deny the statistics. I find it interesting what people search on our most widely used search engine on the planet.

Continue reading “Trust Explained”

Purgatory of Failure: My Unbelievable United Airlines Saga

So the last time I wrote, I told you all how I felt about going home for the first time in a year and a half. And rather than tell you all how it went, I’ll just say it was GREAT! Some things just can’t be summed up in words, but I will hold the memories tight. What I will instead choose to direct my energy and writing towards is something that needs attention drawn to it. Welcome! To the blog post where I RAGE OUT towards an inferior airline and poor excuse of customer service. Sorry United Airlines, but you get my hatred tonight. Unknown Continue reading “Purgatory of Failure: My Unbelievable United Airlines Saga”

Allow Me to Pop Your Bubble

In case you were under the impression that I am living the good life over here, sipping cocktails, kicking my feet back in the warm, dwindling rays of the New Zealand sunset every week, allow me to pop your bubble. No I’m not donning a hobbit costume, herding sheep through the exquisite mountainside, going on wine tours, vacationing on the weekends, hitting the beach whenever I can, eating at highly rated establishments, or adopting a general “take it easy” mentality.

Let me take you on an eye opening journey through what my life looks like up here and what the reality of the situation looks like.

I wake up. I figure out how I am going to eat, pay for gas, and where I’m gong to live next week. I worry. Yeah, I worry a lot. I pray for continued reliance on God. I pray for peace amidst the chaos. I hope that tomorrow is the day I can stop worrying about finances. I swallow my pride (admission: this is my newest addition to the “things Eric loathes to do”) and asking for help when I can’t do it. I keep myself busy filling out job applications and watching tv shows, reading books, or writing because if I stop for one second, I will think about my family and how much I miss them. I constantly remind myself why I’m here, my calling, and what I sacrificed to get here.

Sound familiar? NZ is no different than any other part of the world when it comes to daily struggles. Pretty mountainsides and golden sunsets don’t buy you food, close a mortgage, resolve a fight with your spouse, keep kids off the street, end injustice, create equality, or stop a kid from putting a gun in his mouth.

imagescamgs1nzYou want to know the sad thing? I haven’t seen anything yet. I’m still VERY green to this country, and I will be shocked. Maybe not tomorrow, but soon. New Zealand is filled with sadness, pain, suffering, damage, grief, and wrongdoing…And if you thought I came here to escape the problems of America to go and live in a paradise…then you are so far outside of reality, that I can’t help you. It doesn’t matter if you live in Fiji, Hawaii, or Jamaica…brokenness will follow you, because there isn’t a place on this Earth that doesn’t have any.

I realize that I have perpetuated this in the past with only showing photos of the good thingsAmnestyInternationalfashion3 TBWA France I’ve been exposed to in this country. I have since stopped doing that on facebook, but the truth is I can’t even properly display in photo, video, or even text…as I am doing now…the true horrors I am exposed to in New Zealand. Nor would you want to hear about them. The truth exposes things and forces you to step out of what is comfortable. We like comfortability. We like it so much that we have fallen in love with “talking” about things that matter, yet rarely do anything of personal sacrifice. Rarely acting towards “otherness”, rarely REALLY believing in what we talk about.

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Still, even someone like myself, who left everything behind to live-out my calling, I found myself asking the important questions, “What am I doing for these people I came here for? How am I living in “otherness?” How am I actually living how Christ called us? Christ became a human being, talked to whores, touched lepers, broke the sabbath and had Sunday lunches with sinners. To live like Christ? This means: Otherness. Pay attention to “others” and love them. Actually DO those things.

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Living in New Zealand is not easy, let me make that very clear, and I hope I have. This was not an easy decision to move here, and life here is not glamorous. Let me also make clear that I do not hate living here. The reason I don’t hate living here is that I truly believe in this country and I believe in making a change here. I have committed to New Zealand, and I’m not giving up on her. And though it’s not comfortable, I will continue to force myself to consider the “other” and to love them in my work. This is seeking the kingdom of God. (Matt 6:33), and if anyone does this, God will take care of the rest.

This I needed you to know.

Headaches Explained and How To Fix Them

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If you follow my blog and what I sometimes like to write about, well…then this post is a little more like this one I wrote, or this one, or this one. So strap in for some knowledge. Here we GO!

Over the past 4 days, I have been experiencing some serious headaches. In the past, I experienced them all. The underlying ones, the ones that pinch, sting, zap, or slice. The ones that take away your ability to see. The ones that are sensitive to light, movement, sound, or pressure. Self caused, or naturally occurring, I feel that I have experienced the small, medium, and migraine. This headache spree that I am going through right now is, what I think, a sinus headache. I can feel the liquid moving around in my head whenever I stretch my intense-headache2face, or move my eyes side-to-side. A proper headache can debilitate you and render you helpless. These were doing just that.

But sometimes it’s hard to know exactly which kind you have. Is it really a sinus headache?, or is it a similar headache with similar symptoms? Medications are the most common remedy for the sledgehammer in your head, but if you don’t know what you have, how can you best fight it? Well, compiled below, for your viewing pleasure and further knowings, is a list of the common types of headaches Doctors see.

Some common types of headaches are (with added help from Dr. Goadsby, director of the Headache Center at the University of California, San Francisco., and Dr. Flippen, associate professor of neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.):

Rebound Headaches- Much like overuse of nasal decongestants can lead to a perpetually stuffy nose, rebound headaches are chronic headaches caused by medication overuse.

Tension Headaches- This is the most common type of headache, which usually feels like a constant aching or pressure – rather than throbbing – on both sides of the head or at the back of the head and neck. Otherwise known as the “Stress Headache.”

Dental Headaches- There are dental-related conditions that can trigger headaches or face pain, such as bruxism and temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).

Cluster Headaches- These one-sided headaches are short-lived (15 minutes to 3 hours), but excruciating. These are so painful they’re sometimes called the suicide headache.vertigo

Migraine Headaches- Migraines are severe headaches that are three times as common in women as men. The cause isn’t clear, but genes do play a role, and brain cell activity may affect blood vessel and nerve cell function.

Caffeine Headaches- You love your coffee, but it can be a cruel companion. For example, if you have two cups of coffee every day at 9 a.m., and then miss those cups when you oversleep on Saturday – boom! – you can end up with a caffeine withdrawal headache.

Orgasm Headaches- Orgasm-induced headaches are caused by, well, having an orgasm. You learn something new everyday.

Early Morning Headaches- If you’re waking up in pain, there are several possible culprits. Migraines are more likely to happen in the morning, or medication may be waning in your body as you sleep, which causes a rebound headache, Dr. Goadsby says.

Ice Cream Headaches- Brain freeze! Most people have experienced the shooting head pain that can occur while enjoying a icy cold drink or treat on a hot day. People with migraines may be especially prone to them.

Chronic Daily Headaches- If you have a headache at least 15 days per month for more than three months you’re considered to have chronic daily headaches, says Dr. Goadsby.

Menstrual Headaches- As if PMS wasn’t bad enough, the sudden drop in estrogen right before your period can sometimes trigger migraines, Dr. Flippen says.

Sinus Headaches- These types of headaches win the gold medal for overdiagnosis, according to Dr. Goadsby. People with migraines often mistake them for sinus headaches. (One study found that 88 percent of people with a history of sinus headaches probably had migraines instead.) Symptoms like sinus pressure, nasal congestion, and watery eyes can happen in both types. Who knows, maybe this was my problem, ha.

Emergency Headaches- Most headaches aren’t an emergency, but there are a few symptoms that warrant rapid attention, says Dr. Flippen. One is a sudden onset headache that is quickly “explosive.” Another is when a headache comes with a fever or extreme rise in blood pressure, or if it occurs after a blow to the head or exertion.

With this exhaustive list of different kinds of headaches, you can start to see why some people would just chalk a headache up to…tension, sinuses, or just call them all migraines.  But that is why I am here. With this list, you can know exactly whats going on in your head, and how to fix it. (see below for resources on different methods to fix headaches) Now, I’m gonna stop typing and go take a nap, cause this headache is killing me.

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RESOURCES:

http://www.cbsnews.com/8334-504763_162-57441218-10391704/14-kinds-of-headaches-and-how-to-treat-them/

http://www.happynews.com/living/headache/rid-headache-without-medicine.htm

http://www.health.com/health/condition-article/0,,20594100,00.html