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Sunday, September 27, 2020

The Abrupt Shift

 


Today we’re grieving. 

 No. There has not been a death, but there is a deep sense of loss. 

 An abrupt shift. A hard left. An unexpected change of plans. 

 In August, I sat intently with a group of my people at IF:LEAD as Dr. Anita Phillips walked us through this trauma we are all experiencing called a “pandemic”. I related to her guidance then-not because I myself had experienced said “pandemic”, but because the world I knew had changed and shifted into something I hardly recognized. 

 I realized even more through her the importance of being gentle with myself and gentle with others. To give grace even when it was hard to do so. To show compassion even if it meant just lingering for a second more. 

 I felt her words deep in my soul, because while I had not suffered great loss through this pandemic such as the loss of a loved one, a job loss, or canceled major life events; my grief and hurt over this world pandemic was still justified. Still palpable. Still very real. 

 Then fast forward to this week.

 Over the last two days both my husband and I have tested positive for COVID-19. 

 And while we don’t truly know how we got here or how we finally became a statistic, what we do know is that as of 24 hours ago our life has changed.

 We are experiencing the abrupt shift. 

 The hard left.

 The unexpected change of plans. 

 So, today we are openly grieving. 

 We are grieving the cancelled plans of a kid free trip that we have been counting down the days too and that honestly we desperately needed. 

 We are grieving the cancelled dinner plans with friends we hardly ever get to see. 

 We are grieving that we won’t get to see our dear friends new baby. The one we have been dying to meet since July. 

 We are grieving loss of valuable hours that we both need right now at our desks in our places of work.

 We are grieving the loss of family connection that we are now forced to go without for the time being. 

 We are grieving the people we have come into contact with recently-the ones we could have made sick without meaning to make sick. The ones who won’t be blessed with mild symptoms like we are. 

 But, my deepest grief-probably the most painful, life altering part of all of this-is the fact that I have to go even longer without seeing my oldest daughter. 

 It will officially be the longest we’ve ever been apart, and I get teary every time I think of it. 

 Yes. I know she’s safer there. 

 Yes. I know this is for the best. 

 But in many ways it’s almost inhumane for a mama to have to go three full weeks or longer without having direct contact with one of her babies. 

 For me-it’s the hardest loss of all. 

 The one I never even considered in the middle of this mess. 

 But yet here we are.

 I feel like I have seasonal allergies and I can’t hug or kiss my baby because of it! 

 And if we’re being honest: it sucks. Big time.

 I give this a half star.  

I don’t recommend being subjected to the effects of a pandemic when you are co-parenting. 

 Yes. There is FaceTime. 

 Yes. There are ways to stay “connected”.

 Yes. There are silver linings. 

 And yes. God is STILL good. 

 100%.

 Even in this mess.

 Exodus 16:4 teaches me that even in this season when I am in the desert of a pandemic, I know that my portion is secure. He is going to provide just enough for me in this place. He has not forgotten me, and He will not forsaken me. 

 I know I am blessed. 

 I am blessed that my husband and I have jobs that allow us to work from home. There will be no lost paychecks here. No food insecurity or housing loss. 

 I am blessed that for the most part both of my children seem healthy. 

 I am blessed that I am young and so is my husband, and that statistically, more likely than not, we will walk out on the other side of this healed and whole with no residual effects. 

 Trust me, these things have not been lost on me.

 But, I think sometimes in the Christian walk we get SO fixated on trying to find the good, or the blessing, or the silver lining, and we forget that part of getting to that place is the grief.

 We have to allow ourselves to sit in it and go through it, and we have to know that part is really okay.

 We don’t love Jesus less because we’re sad or mad or not a fan of the current situation. 

 We’re human.

 Beautifully broken humans. 

 And it really is okay for our hearts to hurt sometimes. 

 And it’s okay if our hurting hearts leave us reeling and searching the morning mist for answers while we sip cold coffee that we forgot to drink and nurse our wounds.

 It’s okay, friend, to feel loss in this season. 

 Whatever your loss may look like. 

 It’s okay to be angry or sad or both. 

 Just because your loss isn’t as tragic as someone else’s-doesn’t mean that it can’t hurt just as deeply.

 It’s not a competition. 

 It’s the hard reality for all of us. Regardless of our present situation. 

 So warm your coffee up, friend. 

 Take a deep breath.

 Cry if you must. 

 This season isn’t going to last forever. 

 I promise.

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