I am Catwoman.


We have a cat now, I’ve mentioned this before but I’m going public with it.  We have a cat named Alfred.  We named him this after Batman’s butler, because we’re a little nerdy like that.

Also I consider him my assistant, his role being to help me entertain the kids and greet guests at the door.  If he could hang up people’s coats (if it ever gets cold again) that would be great as well.

For a long time I was afraid to go public with our cat decision, fearing that people would think us foolish for adding a cat to the crazy mix here at the casa.

For a long time I was afraid to tell people I’m a writer and blogger when they asked “what do you do” because I was afraid that they would think it was all a silly pipe dream.

Some days I worry what people think of my mini van, with its dented back fender.

I’m afraid people think our house is too small or I worry they’re judging my non name brand purse.

I’m afraid to utter the words: “We have to budget or save for that”  or “I don’t have much in the food envelope until payday.

I worry people are judging my family and our ministry, in fact I am pretty sure that they are.

But I’d like to take this moment to formally announce something.

We have a cat and I like him, he makes us happy.

And guess what?  I’m a writer and I love that too.

Our mini van travels a lot and carries us safely to adventures and family far away, I’m grateful for it.  It was bound to get a road trip war wound or two.

I love our little house, and the lawn looks like that because my husband puts ministry before lawn maintenance.

My purse has a story, it was made by a brave friend Natalie who is living with a new heart thanks to God’s goodness.

I’m staying at home with my kids and we are living on our daily bread, sometimes we have just enough to get by.  It keeps me humble.

For some reason it took a strange little black and white cat to tip me over the edge.  Alfred made me a little braver, and somehow gave me the ability to be more fearless about being my God-given self.

I also attribute this to being 30 now.  If I could tell you how turning 30 felt to me I would say this: “It made me feel braver, more ballsy, a little more bad a*# with authority.”

So there you have it.  I’m a 30 year old, ballsy catwoman writer type person who drives a middle aged mini van.

Maybe I’ll get a leather whip or some tight black pants (ha ha ha, NO) to remind myself how brave I am inside.

Or maybe I’ll just stick with the cat.

the stickiest seat in the house.

Is there something in your life that tipped you over the edge of bravery?  That freed you to be all the way out there?  To own yourself and your life?

If not, I’ll be praying that you find it.  Truly.

I’d let you borrow Alfred, but I now feel as though he’s my secret source of power.  And if he left who would bite my feet and try to steal my coffee as I write?  That’s an important role people.

  • staceydaze

    Ah, for me it was the loss of much, and wisdom gained. I remember turning 30 and feeling the same way, but I slipped back. You stay strong!!

    • http://leannepenny.wordpress.com leannepenny

      I’ll do my best. Thanks for sharing your heart Stacy!

  • Lisa K

    Yay, Alfred!

    • http://leannepenny.wordpress.com leannepenny

      He’s shaking thing up around here!

  • amy

    That ”brave” moment, in my case, happened after I was utterly burned out from working 65-75 hours/week for a year and a half. After my hair starting falling out in clumps. After I couldn’t sleep, couldn’t remember things, couldn’t eat because my stomach was in horrible pain, and had no hold over my emotions. After I realized that all those times I said ”yes” when I desperately wanted, no, NEEDED to say ”NO” boiled down to me living an inauthentic life.

    ”What JOY for those who live their lives in complete honesty.” (Psalm 32:2 NLT) ”The fear of man lays a snare but those who trust in the Lord are safe.” (Proverbs 29:25) I was a people pleaser…and the stress from it all was literally eating away at me from the inside out. The Lord showed me that living my life in complete honesty does not include saying ”I’m fine” or ”that’s fine” just to seem amenable when I’m not fine and/or it’s not fine. Living honestly doesn’t include working myself to death so I don’t look like a failure. Living honestly doesn’t include a total lack of boundaries so as not to offend or inconvenience others. Living honestly doesn’t include putting dinners and outings with friends on my credit card because I was too embarrassed to say I didn’t have the money.

    Dishonesty isn’t just about the commission of a lie – it’s also the omission of the truth. All the things I wasn’t saying out of fear led to many, many years of bondage, turmoil and stress (thus all the physical symptoms). I would spend hours on an email to make sure what I was saying would absolutely come across the right way. I would practice over and over what I would say to people so I wouldn’t offend, all the while resenting myself for feeling like I couldn’t just say what I needed to say and move the heck on. It is an AWFUL way to live. Not only was I robbing myself of peace, I was robbing others (and myself!) of the person GOD created me to be…and who He made me (and YOU) to be IS GOOD! That’s what happens when fear of man has a stronghold in your life. In essence, I was trying to become what was pleasing to others and in turn saying, ”God, the way You made me isn’t good enough.” WHAT A REVELATION! The truth is, you will never make everyone happy – you will never be able to please people all the time. The snare/trap is that you keep trying anyway.

    My ”cat” was my hair falling out. In clumps. Like a cancer patient. And I praise God for it because as I looked in the mirror horrified at what was happening to my hair, I was also looking into the mirror of my heart and motives, which was equally horrifying. It forced me to come to terms with what I had become on the inside – how inauthentic of a life I was living. As a result of this revelation combined with God’s gentle conviction and grace to speak the truth, my life has utterly changed. And I am FREE.

    ”And you shall KNOW the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)

    • http://leannepenny.wordpress.com leannepenny

      Amen!!! I am so glad that you came to a breaking point with all that was on your plate.

      My heart is breathing easier for you after reading all that you went through!