I realized on one of worst days of life that I have been running on fumes. For nearly a year, I have been attempting to either ‘balance” it all or stuff it all down until I can get to it. And let’s just say that my go to method of dealing with life is to stuff them down………. and make time to reflect in order to think through ideas, emotions, the broken heart, the lost relationship, thoughts, careers, consequences of choices made, words spoken, my dad’s illness, possibility of moving, writing more, dedicating myself to developing my businesses, developing and growing in my writing, being intentional about having relationships, being an active participant in those relationships, navigating being mom to an adult son, sister to my brothers and sisters, aunt to my niece, and so much more. Yes, so much more.
As I left the nursing home where my dad is now a resident, I got a message from the pharmacy that one of medication that I transferred from Charlotte to Charleston was ready for pick up, and the other was unavailable; so, I called the pharmacy. As I got the information I needed, I moved about my day exhausted and feeling a strange need to breath. Not just breath, but to take deep breaths. I wanted to exhale. I pulled the car over, found a parking space away from traffic, and began to take deep breaths. Breathe in. Breathe out. Slow and deep breaths in. Slow and deep breaths out. This was not working. I was starting to feel more anxious. The feeling of dread or drowning was near me. As I went to touch the controls to start listening to my book again, the phone rang. The flash of my friend’s name came across my car and telephone screen system.
I answered the call with as cheery a voice I could muster. After the routine niceties, she began to tell me all her life news. And I was genuinely ecstatic for her; however, I could not stop thinking about my dad entering hospice. I could not stop thinking about the possibility of not having my dad around. I could not stop thinking about the need to be strong, and busy myself with the other demands of life. But I couldn’t. I could not take or make another step. So, when my friend stopped talking, and then asked, “what’s been going on with you?” ……with that one question, that one friend, that one moment, that one deep breath, I decided I would …” Let” …her. Let her in.
There are those that have been designed for us. To walk with us through this sometimes-messy life. Good life. Difficult life. Happy life. Hurtful life. Hurried life. To laugh with us. To grow with us. To cry with us. To dream with us. To love us. To celebrate with us. To love us. To pray with us. To pray for us. To grieve with us. To celebrate with us. To laugh til we cry, and then cry til we laugh. These very special people are intended for us to live in community. Just because you are breathing, does not mean you are living. Per Dictionary.Com, to live means "to be capable of vital functions". The words “capable” and “functions” does this definition well. You are fully able to engage and work within a group of people that desires the very best for you. This group of people were created for you, and you for them. We each perform a special function, however, when done the right way there is a beautiful balance of life. A balance of she talks and you listen, you listen while she cries. You cook while she talks. You walk while you run. She eats, while you put away dishes. She shops, while you help her look for another pair of shoes. She climbs while you push, and other times, she will push while you climb. And in some moments, while the world is being the world; There will be moments when you both will rest together.
Before you can rest together, push each other, laugh together, walk or run together, there is one thing you have to do. You must let them in. Pray for those that are to be in your community, and open the door that is your life. Let them in! We are called to live in community!
Let them love you, and you love them.
Let them cheer for you, and you cheer for them.
Let them cry with you, and you cry with them.
Let them be with you, and you be with them.
Let them laugh with you, and you laugh with them.