Friday, April 26, 2013

The way

 I have been feeling like I have had 24 fires going and every time I stop to take care of one, the others get out of control.

Days feel like a thousand years, mostly.

Jackson recently overcame a really bad bacterial infection he caught from a hotel jet tub. Dave has been endlessly absent, occupied with finishing the Baja car he has been building. Our three kids are growing up twice as fast, with all the extra oxygen my parenting has been giving off. I'm on a vehicle-free diet and a famine of conversational interactions has left me feeling pretty isolated. I thought that I had reached the end.

The end of me being able to hold on.

I felt unable to move my desperately worn and seemingly defeated self out of the way of life's endless beatings.
I kept feeling the crumbling. My husband's been working on building a car for months. (He reeks of daring living). My kids are becoming restless superheroes who turn on each other. My knee has a meniscus tear. Dave graduates in a few weeks. We are going to an SAE competition to race the car, clear across the US, in just a few days, and we move in a couple weeks.

And this day… this day started out as my enemy.

The morning showed itself with one of the puppies soiling my diaper bag. Ruined.

Not long after, my daughter managed to cut her tongue open in a mysterious way. She was standing beside me at the kitchen table with one foot on the ground and one on the chair. She happily played around at my side, until the blood and screaming ignited. From where, I thought? How? Stitches? I've never been good at solving mysteries.

About fifteen minutes later she managed to lock herself in the bathroom. Alone. She called my name over and over. Over and over. The only way in besides breaking the door was to go outside and lift my 72 lb seven year old through the shower window. With a bad knee, and for the neighbors to see. Options like this don't seem like options. But it was one.

As this was all happening, right at this moment that felt like 'yes, it's all falling apart,' I thought what if my day wasn't falling apart? What if everything isn't falling apart? What made me so certain it was? Did I expect it to look different than days like this? Why?

I got daring.

What if my day could be falling apart? What if it really, really, could - not was, but could? What if this moment mattered, and what followed made a difference? I thought how everything kept feeling like a disaster and how much I felt like the sick man at the pool where Jesus went, unable to make it to the water. I felt as if I might go into a mental coma. But this new thought. This thought came dressed in hope.

Could this day form together for good? I'm confident that I don't know what it would take to make a day, a good day. Jesus does. I don't. Even when there seemed to be no way, there was. And there is. Even today.

This…this is normally where I stop and throw a fit. Where my emotional reflection reveals a drop out. Where I insist that the day has fallen apart, and at that spot where I mark it 'fallen apart', I try to erase the pen lines. I often end up swimming numbly in an emotional trap. And I don't realize it, but I choose not to grow.
Lately though I've been unimpressed with the emotional road. It's a cold thief. The interpretation I had been telling myself of this day and this life, was only a low ditch swarming with festering mind mosquitoes that sucked my thoughts into irritable, red, restlessness.
So right smack in the corner of my day, I realized today was actually going fine.

I got excited.

I heard Christian tell Jackson to soothe Sayla and "keep telling her she was going to be ok. Don't let her feel she can't be rescued." Jackson worked hard to open the door with a screwdriver. In between tries and banging on the door, I heard him calm Sayla with his voice. Christian volunteered to go through the 6 foot off the ground window. Through the window, and over the wires, we got her out.

And during it all, my kids were showing me that it hasn't been falling apart. I saw a few of the pieces they have picked up. Pieces they are now carrying through life. Pieces of love. Pieces of solid faith. Pieces of hopeful whispers that tell the beautiful story, 'don't feel you can't be rescued'.

There is going to be a way through. I believe it. Because Jesus is that. The way. The way through, the way to. When doors are locked, and pain causes us to stand in the mystery of our heart's kitchen and scream, and our tongues are swollen and bleeding, uncertain of how we even came by our hurts and our pains… we need to remember the Rescue story.

I had convinced myself I was past the breaking point, when in all reality I was outgrowing old shells. I am growing. And it feels scary. And it often seems like I am not. It mostly feels uncertain. In my life there has been a way made from no way - Jesus.

And growing has shown that the fires are contained.

The burdens temporary.

The aloneness a lie.