The other day a conversation about the upcoming holidays devolved into a confrontation.
What I was trying to communicate came out wrong and one thing led to another until I fled- a crying, trembling mess.
I am trying so hard to manage this life I have left.
I work out plans in my head to navigate what I know will be challenging events or days or gatherings. I execute the plan as best I can and when I feel overwhelmed I try to escape to a quiet corner or a bathroom or outside for a moment to regather my composure.
But it doesn’t always work.
There are so many variables-people, lack of sleep, random added stressors, physical pain, grief triggers, and even low blood sugar-any one of which, or a combination of which, can sabotage the carefully constructed plan I’ve made.
I feel like there are no easy days. I feel like there are no moments when I don’t have to be on alert. I feel like I am constantly doing battle.
I stop by the store and meet someone I haven’t seen in awhile. They ask, “How are you?”
So I go down the line of my living children and give a description of what they are doing-leaving out how they are feeling. I don’t mention me. The person never notices but I’m reminded again of the disconnect between what others see and what I know to be true.
Sunday’s sermon is taken from a text that could be interpreted to mean that God protects His faithful people from physical harm. I’m hemmed in by someone on the end of the pew but I want to get up and run from the sanctuary.
Is my son’s death judgement on my unfaithfulness or on his?
It takes every ounce of self-control I can muster to remain in place. No one is even aware of the battle raging inside.
I walk through each day pushing down the pain, shoving aside the rising tide of tears.
I measure my words, measure my reactions, measure my emotions-trying so very hard to keep it in.
I wish I could crawl in bed, cover my head with the blanket and just stay there until this all went away.
But I can’t.
So I muddle through the best I can-hoping that one day I will figure it out.
Probably not today.