“Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.
Remind me that my days are numbered—
how fleeting my life is.
You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand.
My entire lifetime is just a moment to you;
at best, each of us is but a breath.” – Psalm 39:4-5
I am officially back from vacation, and settled in back at home. It’s wonderful.
I appreciate all the prayers for us while we were away. They were felt and needed. We had a lovely time and made some great memories. It was pure joy watching the children enjoy things they’ve never seen or been able to do before.
With that said, I had to face some harsh realities, and I feel led to be honest with you here about those. Because surely there are others like me, who look so forward to getting away and then find that real life might not match up to their dreams.
Vacation with an illness and disability is mostly just a change of address. This epiphany became clear this week, and it hit me pretty hard. We did have a wonderful time, but I spent most of the time in the cabin and am pretty set back from the tiny bit I did do. I literally only left the cabin on 2 days, for 2 hours at a time. A 5 day vacation. Yeah.
It feels very much like I’m a bit of taffy, being pulled and stretched in different directions at once. Twisting between which way I should actually feel. Much too tired to actually be able to sort it all out.
I want my family to go and have fun without me, knowing that their joy will bring me joy. And then they are off and I am alone and trying not to feel left behind. I desire to push just a little harder, in hopes of extending my time out with them, or what I am able to do. And then I push, for just 15 more minutes, and my ear drum bursts and I spend the last 3 days in terrible pain. Worth it?
For those of us who face these vacation challenges, nothing is simple, is it? As a dear friend says, “We have to take our bodies with us on vacation.” Exactly, Lynn. Exactly.
So I’ve been on a bit of a roller coaster for the last couple of weeks, as I’ve tried to sort through my emotional ups and downs, at the same time wading through my physical issues.
I am so, so glad that we went on vacation. I recognize that even a month ago, I would have been unable to even get there. In that way, it feels like a victory. I would do it again in a heartbeat, and I will always cherish the memories. I hope we can do it again soon.
I am so, so sad at how far I have declined. You would think that after years of being homebound and doing nothing but reclining all day every day, I would be completely aware of how bad off I am. But you would be wrong. Somehow the vacation made things much clearer, in a much harsher way, and all at once. Constantly, I thought of how this would have been 6 years ago, or how I wished that it could be. The comparisons exhaust me.
And so I am right back at square one with the acceptance issue. I guess we never fully master that, do we? At least not this side of heaven.
But the Lord, oh, He’s been so good to me through this entire thing. I haven’t heard one sigh or seen one eye roll as I broach the same ground with Him that He has carried me through countless times before. He sits with me as I mull, nodding in all the right places. He keeps His arms securely round me. He picks me up and carries me as I cry on His shoulder.
He answers all of my same questions, over and over again. Sometimes with silence, but that’s still an answer, isn’t it?
He holds my hand, linking His fingers with mine so I won’t lose my grip. He gives my husband and children just the right words to say at just the right moments, breathing hope and love back into my weary heart. He reminds me of my importance and that I am enough. Even now. Just like this. I am enough.
I thought you might need to hear it, too.
Holy Father, Your faithfulness astounds me. Thank you for walking this ground with me once again. I’m sure we’ll be back here again, but I’m looking forward to a mountaintop view soon, instead of these shadowed valleys. In Jesus’ Name, Amen…
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May God Bless You,