Rain pelted the windshield as I drove in the darkness of night. Tears streamed down my face, blurring a clear understanding of the road. Perhaps the unwritten metaphor of my current existence. I was overwhelmed by the hardships of life. Aching in pain from grief, and from the pain that rippled through my own body.
As if I set to sail in the ocean trying to reach the mountain, but all I have encountered are waves continually pushing me over, and over, and over again. How many more times will I be pushed over before I can stand up again? How many more times. But there was never promise of life being easy.
While sitting in waiting rooms, I often write all my anxious thoughts and can be startled out of my own thinking as the technician calls my name. I look up in response and acknowledge the fact as I walk through the next door, I will be poked and prodded once more. All for the sake of an answer that somehow will lead to a cure. But sometimes there is no answer, just a shrug of uncertainty. I respond in kind, holding the tears in with questions left continually unanswered. Perhaps there isn’t an answer. Perhaps this is just how life will be.
In those dark moments I curl up in a tight ball on the floor in absolute defeat. In surrender. A mess of what life has thrown at me. Eyes swollen from crying that doesn’t seem to cease. But it is in those still moments of pain, confusion, disappointment, frustration, and depression are where some of the most beautiful moments come to the surface. I often feel an ugly mess of tears and bad circumstance in this season, with only the hope the next season will bring beauty. But a dear friend reminded me, “You already are beautiful in this season”. In my own pain I forgot to see the beauty even in the sadness. I failed to see the rainbows revealing themselves through sheets of rain and was doing a disservice to my journey by sitting in defeat. I cripple myself if I choose to stay in the feeling of weakness.
“You are a warrior Bethany, you’re surviving this”. After spending the day before curled up in misery from being sufficiently violated by western forms of testing, I needed to hear that. My eyes suddenly looked up in strength. With so many tests I had somehow lost my voice. I was accepting forms of testing that were less than ideal, until one technician looked at me as tears started slipping down my cheeks, “You can say no, you don’t have to do this”. With eyes blurred from tears of pain, I responded weakly, “I don’t want to do this”. Testing suddenly was not worth a supposed answer.
In every season, there are choices to make. Whether it is the simplicity of choosing what you want for dinner, or making a decision to get a tumor removed, life requires you to show up for yourself. Somedays I want to hide away and bury my head in my pillow, and somedays that is okay. Other days I have to show up for myself and lay out on my yoga mat, accepting life as it is. Accepting all that I am. All I am becoming. Tomorrow I have to show up for myself and walk into a surgical center to get a fibroadenoma tumor removed. Fragmented pieces of me are frightened, but the other pieces are shining light. With the promise of spring I can walk boldly into the pain of winter that will fade to mere memory as the flowers bloom. There was never a promise that life would be easy. But there is promise in showing up for myself, and seeing the beauty even in the hard things.
For my prayer warriors: Surgery is at 2pm on Thursday, March 3rd. Thank you to those who have uplifted me when my spirit falls. You mean more than you possibly know. ❤