I shouldn’t care this much. I know it should be small potatoes in the grand scheme of life.
Because in my heart of hearts I know I’m much more valuable than a few measly hairs and some extra pounds. But still…these days, when I look in the mirror I have to fight feeling sad. Sitting on the sofa and running my fingers through my ever thinning locks, I feel spots at the crown of my head that aren’t covered so well anymore. It makes my heart feel heavy.
Why, if it’s falling out, can’t it drop first from my legs? Or my underarms? Because those areas still see growth and require a ritual that I know my husband wishes I took part in more often. If only it’d fall first from the places that I hate to bother shaving.
But it isn’t. It’s still falling from my head.
And I can’t help but feel frustrated about it. I fight even wanting to be curious to find the good in it. It doesn’t come easy.
This past week I went to the rheumatologist again. More bloodwork, more medicines, still steriods. And those, the steriods… I’m trying to taper off of…they have made me blow up like a can of biscuits. The extra weight is sticking to me like feathers onto tar. I don’t even know where it’s coming from when I’ve been cutting out gluten and loading up on veggies. So there’s that “my pants don’t fit right now” thing going too. Uncontrollable weight gain is straight from the devil I’m sure.
A new girlfriend invited me to the beach this coming weekend. And I really want to go. To develop and nurture some recent friendships in my life that seem to hold neat promise. I can’t seem to figure out childcare (my hubs has some plans already.) But if I’m honest, there’s that nagging in the back of my head that worries my bathing suits from last year won’t fit now either. So there’s a piece of me that doesn’t want to keep trying so hard to figure out the logistics thing. If I’m honest…I wonder if my present frustration is standing in the way of some potential joy.
I won’t let it. I can’t let it. I know who I really am.
Today I stood filling a bowl of oatmeal with 2/3 a cup of water from the kitchen tap and looked out the window as the sun glinted off of the azaleas that are exploding pink in my back yard, and I thought to myself…this is where it’s at. These moments, this beauty, this is the stuff of life. And then, like he does every single morning, my 6 year old slammed the door from the den and went out to pee off the side of the deck into an apparently very hardy oak leaf hydrangea. The same sun highlighting the azaleas glinted off the top of his golden hair and I couldn’t help but smile.
These moments are the ones I hope I remember forever. The ones that don’t stand out but actually fill up a life.
There is something beautiful in the dailyness of life…in the silly rituals of our kids, the sunlight glinting every morning. I am finding that lately in the middle of the frustrations, the fast pace of travel and book launching, the disappointments with so much outside of my control, and just general life, I find myself longing to be hidden in the mundane.
Hidden in the mundane.
I’m finding quiet joy standing in front of a painting in my home that tells tales of my own memories as well as imagined stories of the scene itself. I spend time most days holding my kids’ new bunny just because she is soft and sweet and simple. Even folding laundry is becoming a quiet ritual that feels good. I want to feel life slow and intentional and beautiful again.
I stood making gluten free crepes at the stove for nearly an hour a couple of weeks ago and the lifting and turning of the pan to coat with the thin batter felt like a gift to my spirit. “Why are you making so many?” my husband asked. “I don’t know. It just feels good to stand here and keep doing it.”
Maybe all this repetition in life, even some of the repetition that bores and frustrates us because it’s never-ending, is meant to slow and come into a place that is simple and good. Maybe even the discouragement of things like hair loss and weight gain are meant to make us focus on seeing the other beauty all around us.
It’s all around.
Because no matter what’s happening on top of my head that is beyond my control, I do have access to what’s happening in the space between my ears. And the same eyes that judge tight pants on my doughy midsection can also instead choose to focus on art, and relationships, and the giant white hydrangea bush that makes me smile every day as I pass it heading home. This spirit can meditate on truth while I fold clothes and chop meat and veggies for dinner day after day and night after night and watch little boys sword fight and ride bikes through damp grass.
I can choose to speak truth over and over about who God says I am rather than listening to the lies that keep whispering “not good enough.”
I choose that. It is my choice.
Because what is good in days of prosperity is no less good in days that are hard. Likewise, if I can’t find the beauty in the seasons of difficulty, I wonder if I’ll even notice it in seasons of ease?
Choosing joy today. Choosing to be curious. Speaking truth against the lies…even if I have to do it over and over and over.
May the repetition of God’s truth over my life and identity become so defining that the number of hairs on my head are concern only to the one who numbered them in the first place.
Part of my heart and a topic we explore in my new book, Curious Faith, is how our seasons of wilderness and hardship can actually become times to give us focus and see the blessings of today more clearly. I’m totally in the trenches with you in all of this, but I believe that we have to learn how to put into practice the truth of God’s word over our lives.
I’d love to invite you into the journey of how a Curious Faith can not only change our perspective on today, but it can open possibility for tomorrow! Available at booksellers everywhere! And to view the FREE 8-week Curious Faith Study Guide videos go HERE!
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