When the world first started tipping a bit, I wanted to avoid giving the subject that has overtaken our normalcy any of my words. As it has continued to gain momentum I began to feel compelled to express my feelings about it — perhaps as a way to get it all out, but also because I think that someday it will be important that I wrote it down. Folks are using their gifts more loudly these days. I see virtual choirs, ukuleles, mask-seamstresses, living room worship concerts, artwork. These are things I didn’t know I had been missing before. There’s a vulnerability that has exposed itself in us as we all collectively share in a new awareness of our fragility and cut out all of the extraneous things we used to take the most for granted.
I think we all feel forced into a situation we never could have imagined in our darkest thoughts. I have said for awhile that I don’t think anyone likes to be forced into anything. It’s very frustrating. No one likes to be shushed. No one likes to be stuck. No one likes their freedom taken from them. This kinda hits those buttons, doesn’t it?
I am the most aware that there are people actually suffering terribly through this. I try every day to set down my own self-pity that tries to creep in and think more compassionately. My current reality is pretty cushy even though it challenges me daily. I have a house full of six of my family members and we have been sequestering for more days than most in preparation for the arrival of my mother-in-law. We very much wanted to create a safe place for her. We are desperately missing the four other remaining members of our family who are sequestering at their own home. We are unable to safely combine for the time being. In order to see them, my sweet man and I had a snack-break in camp chairs on one side of the gate in the driveway while my grandbabies and very pregnant daughter remained on the other side. We brought some games and puzzles from our game closet and some chocolate treats and visited without touching. Sweet agony, that. As my precious littlest granddaughter stretched her little arms through the holes in the fence, silently begging Mimi to hold her and touch her, I felt my heart struggle in a way I can’t quite put into words.
But we’re all healthy and provided for. SO much to be thankful for.
Cooking for six is a daily challenge. My sweet man got me an Instant Pot to try to help speed up some of the processes. I use it daily, both thankful and eye roll-y that I gave in to the fad. I admit it’s helping. I try to ration as much as I’m able without leaving anyone hungry. Is anyone else wondering how long their food will hold out?
I fight some personality flaws that creep like dark shadows into my mind. As a lover of well-supplied food sources (also known as a food hoarder), and a person that used hand-sanitizer more than the average bear LONG before all this ever happened (also known as a germaphobe), and a person who can deal with some things that act a lot like anxiety, this situation pushes my buttons — or perhaps I’ve studied my whole life for this. Ha! I’m well aware this is a good time to work through and put the worst of these to rest the best I can — applying coping mechanisms at full strength. I play my heart out on the piano. I take mornings to myself. I keep my worship music on to keep the bad stuff at bay. I am practicing speaking up for myself and what I need in amongst needing to please lots of people. Gosh, I need work. Help me, Jesus.
That was pretty honest, right? I know there are positive ways to spin all of this. I understand we will grow and be stronger. I know all the right things, but this is still hard. I’m willing to admit it. I would love to hear if any of you are struggling and how you find ways to cope. What things are you missing? What awarenesses are you having about yourself — lessons you’re learning? Would you comment and share? Could we join hands and hearts in a real way? Please join me with your thoughts and feelings.