Life has this incredibly insistent way of marching on, despite family trials or adjustments or work schedules or individual needs. It just keeps going. Every day I have to keep getting up, functioning, doing the things a mom, wife, writer, person does. Life feels relentless.
As I write this post, I am standing in my parent's kitchen in Utah. The front windows show me a view of my most favorite place in the world, The Wasatch Mountains. When I am away from them, I crave their silence, purity, brightness, and away-ness. The mountains fill me with a peace similar to the peace I hear about from friends who love the beach. I visit the mountains and breath the crisp mountain air and I am re-balanced. I can again open my eyes to see beauty and majesty.
My dad has a small cabin, a wonderful oasis of simplicity up one of the canyons near our house. Usually on the drive up the canyon, I love that moment when the dirty valley air is replaced by clean mountain air. It's the announcement of my arrival, that for a few hours I can put away the mutiny of demands of life and just be. To listen to the wind, to appreciate the log fire, to watch the birds, to stop at every interesting rock or animal print on the trail. There is a corner you turn when you rise up out of the valley and suddenly, brilliantly the world is bright. The colors are sharp and pronounced. In this fall season, the reds, oranges, and yellows blend with evergreen for the most magnificent quilt.
But on yesterday's drive up, I couldn't see the bright. Everything looked dull and gray. I kept looking out the window, trying to figure out why that could be, what's wrong with the day. As it turns out, the morning light was just filtering in a different way.
They gray-ness stuck with me. It seemed to reflect the way I feel about so many things. My life feels gray and drudging.
There are so many different moments in this life. Beautiful. Heart-wrenching. Encouraging. Exhausting.
Here are just a few:
- Josh, Katie & Olivia are brilliant and fantastic learners and one of God's greatest gifts this year is that they are learning well.
- Attachment is hard, grueling, every-day work. There is something essential that breaks in a child who is traumatized. There is a lot of healing taking place, but this is a deep wound.
- I am editing my novel for submission to an agent or two. It's wonderful, hard, and very different work.
- Every day I am already exhausted by 9 a.m. Some days I don't even want to get out of bed.
- Sometimes its a real struggle to keep going, to not quit or walk away.
- I am blessed to have enough friends who love me through all these kinds of days, often without me even having to tell them what my day was.
But at the end, I am still worn.
I'm going to end this with a song that I've heard a few times. Every time I try to sing the words, I choke on them. This song becomes a prayer for me, for Eric, for Mali, for the kids. For us as a family. I am frail and torn, broken and weak. Redemption will win, but still, until then, I'm worn.
Let me see redemption win
Let me know the struggle ends
That you can mend a heart
That’s frail and torn
I wanna know a song can rise
From the ashes of a broken life
And all that’s dead inside can be reborn
Cause I’m worn
--from "Worn" by Tenth Avenue North