Even Here.

Not only is it okay to be honest with where we are at, it might be the essence of any meaningful transformation in our lives.

I have at least one or two days a week where I feel like I’m sinking into the abyss. There’s usually a litany of causes, but I can never pinpoint the exact starting point for my downward spiraling. All I know is that, no matter my best intentions or well-practiced tactics, my tried and true methods of redeeming the day seem to fall short.

I cannot pull it together, and at some point, I give up trying. I rest in the grace of tomorrow’s gift- a new beginning.

I am unapologetic about letting myself feel for awhile. I sit bemoaning the present moment and let my senses come awake even here.   

Letting the negative scenarios, depressing thoughts, and hopeless feelings invade my space and run their course through my mind and body is my way of telling the truth to myself.

It’s a sacred paradox, I suppose, to stand firm in swirling sadness. But I do it anyways. I put down my sword, cease from fighting, and let the sunshine come back in its time.

Strength is so often associated with victory dances and powerful prayers. We often characterize the strong ones among us as having stable emotions in storms, smiling faces despite pain, and certainty in their convictions.  

But surrendering to the tears or the anger, or both, is my creative confession to the Creator of my soul- I’m struggling.

Stomping my feet against hard pavement as I walk alone down the street is my admittance of reality and a simultaneous return to my humanity. These steps are where I lay down my honest prayers, void of any religious jargon, they beat violently out of my heart.    

I search the puffy, nameless clouds for my one purpose on this earth, and hear only the wind whistling in my ears. I am looking for hints of who I am and how to escape the inevitable drowning. But on these days I hear- dreaded silence. I don’t hide my lament, the loathing of my current season or situation, or my harrowing mood, it’s all in the open air now.

Dormant most days, the more complicated, dark and confusing elements of our soul eventually shove themselves up to the top. They demand to be noticed, and I’ve found it’s best for me to simply clear the space and give them the stage or at the very least a seat. They want to be heard not stuffed down again.

The more familiar we get with the sound of their coming, the deep rumblings within, the quicker we can move aside and give them a proper welcome. Their presence is significant, a vital part of our becoming whole, not a sign that we are somehow still lacking, still broken, still weak.

When the sinking starts, I recognize it too is a form of thriving, albeit an often overlooked one. This breathing under water builds our strength and increases our capacity to move through life with all its twisted currents and jagged waves.  

We might feel like we’re drowning but maybe we’re only being baptized into a new beginning, a new life.

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