Because life happened. You know, those daily things that begin to seem overwhelming in the midst of everything else.
Over the last few weeks, we’ve experienced one problem after another around our household and heard one piece of bad news after the next.
Worries like raccoon feces on the roof and hornets repeatedly getting into the house. A jammed garbage disposal, stopped up bathroom sink, and computer software that won’t install top the list.
All this in the midst of trying to figure out yet another health issue for my sweet husband. Another appointment with another kind of “ologist.”
Additionally, we were supposed to go to Holiday World last Thursday (a nearby amusement park). My youngest got sick the night before. We thought we would try for Friday. My husband starting getting sick Thursday night. My oldest woke up not feeling the greatest Sunday morning. So, Sunday afternoon I was done. I crawled in bed and didn’t want to come out. Erratic hormone levels weren’t making things any easier, and I wanted to pretend the world didn’t exist for awhile. Do you ever wish you could just press a pause button for a bit, just until you can get a grip again? Wouldn’t that be awesome?
Finally, I gained enough gumption to get to the grocery store. This took effort, let me tell you. When I got home I walked smack into another mini crisis. One of the boys had just dumped salsa and nacho cheese all over the carpet in a path marked with a clear trajectory. I proceeded to clean it up as my husband unloaded the groceries.
After finishing the clean-up, I took the dishes upstairs and started to rinse them off. The garbage disposal jammed for a second time in a month. My temper flared. “Enough, already!” I wanted to scream. The culprit? A Lego gem. And I thought stepping on them was the biggest menace they could create. The good news was it took way less time to get it un-jammed since I knew what I was doing from my previous garbage disposal fiasco.
Luckily, I had scheduled some time with my friend, Keri, Sunday evening. Keri is the one person outside of my family who understands my life like no other person on the planet. When I tell her my worries and she says she understands, she isn’t just placating me. She really understands. She’s lived a lot of what I’m living and much more. Between both cancer and hearing loss in her family, among other items, our stories are eerily similar.
As we talked, the pressure of my burdens started to lift. Sometimes just speaking your troubles out loud frees you up a bit. She didn’t have answers for me, and she knew it, but she listened, nodded, and encouraged me.
One thing she said stuck out to me. She reminded me that unfortunately God often doesn’t take our problems away, but he can give us the support we need to get through them.
I went home feeling lighter. We were going to try to make it to Holiday World again the next day, and I felt re-energized for the trip.
We had a great time, right? Nope. We made it a few miles down the road and Joshua complained of a terrible headache. My husband stopped at CVS and we got some Tylenol. A couple more miles down the road he said his stomach didn’t feel good, and the look on his face said trouble was going to make an appearance. We turned around to head home, because who wants to ride roller coasters all day with an upset belly? A minute later we were pulled over at the side of Highway 37 with two boys retching in the back seat – one because he was legitimately sick and the other because he couldn’t stand the sight/sound of his brother getting sick. Fun times.
Now, you might think I went home and headed back under the covers. Not this time. After cleaning up the mess in the car I washed my hands. The soap was given to me by Keri the night before. As I pressed on the pump, I smiled and thanked God for Keri and her presence in my life. My difficulties may be ongoing, but at least I have good people to keep me from pulling the blanket over my head and staying there.
If you have any struggles right now, reach out. Our stories can keep one another going in a forward motion. Each of us possesses different threads of a story tapestry that when woven together produces a beautiful picture. The final product is much stronger than each individual thread on its own.
“A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.” Ecclesisastes 4:12
Photo from unsplash.com.