This is lonely territory.
Sunday, August 31, 2014
People ask me all the time how I’m doing and I really want to just grasp the sides of their heads and do a Spock mind meld with them because there are just NO WORDS. Often what comes out is, “We’re doing okay.” …”We’re taking each day is it comes.” …”Living each day in, and by, the grace of God.” And while the 2nd two are true the first is generally an untruth, a pleasantry… it’s the lie some people like to hear when they ask. It’s the thing I say to avoid getting emotional. I truly want people to continue to ask and to be okay with whatever my answer is…even if it’s the lie because sometimes I can’t risk the emotions of it all. It’s too much. We are OKAY… in the grand scheme of things. God’s got this. He has US.
At night, in the dark, alone in my head I write beautiful things. Well, I write beautifully, anyway. I want so much to be able to share some of my journey, to open a window to my soul so you can take a glimpse and know me a little. However, when I sit down to write on paper it is not the flowing text I imagine in the night. It’s not in an order that creates the story I want to tell. It’s a shallow version of what I want to convey. It misses the mark EVERY time. In my head it’s like a symphony ~ the words evoke feeling and emotion, they are round and full, the sentences flow as if to music and each paragraph perfectly flows into the next, building the story, getting louder, stronger, deeper…enveloping the reader in the fullness of my heart and soul.
If only I could write the way I write in my head.
I was thinking last night about how convenient (and scary) the Spock mind meld would be. It’s what I long to be able to do so you can feel what I feel or at least understand me a little better, my heart, my motivation, my reasons for the things I do or don’t do…those things that cannot be conveyed through words and writing. The spoken and written language is not enough. It’s just not enough.
The other day I was out running an errand and ran into a woman who knows me from MOPS, one of the mentor moms. I knew her face and that of her friend, they were familiar but out of context for me because I’d only ever seen them at MOPS and had not had any real interaction with them, just the polite pleasantries in passing. They knew me. They knew our story. They had been praying for us. She stopped me, reminded me of her name and where I knew her from. She asked if she could hug me and I said, “Yes, of course” and she embraced me in a warm hug. She said she was praying for us and I thanked her and we went our separate ways. I got in my car and was flooded with emotions and tears, and sadness. I know it seems weird that I go about my days not thinking about how sad our situation really is. It would just be soul wrecking to think about it or dwell on it. I would be a mess all the time. Instead I go about life, day by day, grateful for each one and just powering through. I can’t remember what “normal” was like, what having a husband who gets up and goes to work each day feels like, what playing in the park and going on drives just for the sake of new scenery feels like…it’s all in a world long gone from my present reality. So yeah, I just get through one day at a time, pushing the pain & reality of our situation to the back corner of my mind
A couple of days ago I saw an old couple walking into the store, holding hands. I wanted to cry for what I wouldn’t likely have with my husband. All those times we talked about growing old together, watching our children grow up, get married, have babies…being old fuddy duddies together. All those future dreams and hopes that cancer seems to have taken away.
I mourn the loss of those dreams, that future we thought we’d have together.
It hurts to see happy old couples. I envy them. I know they have their own stories and some more painful than mine, but on the surface I wish for a future that looks like them.
This is lonely territory.
This is lonely territory.
When I’m confronted by someone who brings our reality up by asking how I’m doing, it rushes in and floods. I don’t know how to live in any other way, how to cope. I am appreciative of these brave people who love me with words, a hug, letting me know they are praying. I am deeply grateful to them because sometimes I feel numb to the emotional side of this and they make it raw and real for me again. They get me connected again to feeling, and that’s a GOOD thing. I feel less lonely when I’m feeling. It’s always surprising, always hard, but always good. I need to feel because when I’m in touch with my emotions it brings me back to God, to my need for Him every moment. He sustains me. He loves and cares for me and He often shows His love through the people I run into unexpectedly. I’m never truly prepared for these encounters. Even though they are hard, I welcome them.
My husband used to fill his free time working for FREEDOM, the 2nd Amendment, militia, prepping for possible future disaster and societal breakdown, committees of safety. He was passionate about those things, he was good at it.
Who knew that we didn’t need to fear guns, violence, societal breakdown, losing freedoms. Our battle was going to be much more personal, much closer to home. It was going to be IN our home and no amount of prepping, guns or gear, food storage, water supply, militia or committees would be able to help us or could protect us.
No, they are all useless in the face of stage 4 cancer. You can’t “PREP” for this. You can’t really defend yourself against this. There is no committee that can rally around and figure a way out of this. No militia or army that can combat this and save us from this.
Who knew that the freedom we’d be fighting for was of a totally different kind, one few win, one with inadequate weapons to fight back with (not discounting our mightiest weapon, PRAYER).
And all this always comes back to God, to JESUS and our dependence on Him, knowing that there is a hope beyond this life. There is a battle continually being fought in the spiritual realm (thank you for your prayers!!!). It’s a battle for our hearts and souls, OUR MIND, WILL, and EMOTIONS.
God sustains me. I am brought back again and again to dependency as if I were a suckling infant. I guess I am. I am THAT dependent on the love and nurturing of my Lord and Savior. I depend on Him to get through each day. My hope is in my future with Him. I may not get my earthly hopes and desires but I know where my eternity and true treasure lies. I know I’ll be one day reunited with those I’ve said good-bye to.
I can honestly say I’m looking forward to heaven. That seemed a scary thing somehow, not so long ago. We cling to this earthly life we know, but there is something more solid and eternal to cling to…a hope that will not let us down, a love that will not fail.
I struggle and strive; I can’t make sense of any of this… this suffering and pain, the grieving and loss. It always brings me back to Jesus. And that's a good place to come back to.
I wish I could open that window to my soul so you could truly see all I’m trying to convey…so you could hear the fullness of the symphony that the words of my heart sing. To know the hope I have.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
THOUGHTS for TODAY:
When, and if, you say your prayers, please pray for my husband, Mark. Ask God to relieve his relentless pain. Always ask for total healing but pain relief would be enough of a miracle to start with. I’d be so grateful and full of joy to see him not suffering, to have him back! A person suffering serious pain is consumed.
Also…BE BRAVE! Comfort those who are suffering. Be bold and go out of your own comfort zone to do it. It really does make a difference. It’s not easy for either party but it’s GOOD for both. I promise! ;-)