I don't usually write in a non-poetry format on this blog, but today I feel like sharing my heart in this way, so please bear with me. If you've only come here for poetry and are not interested in reading my long and drawn-out prose, I completely understand. :)
I won't lie. I have been bathing in a pool of self-pity over the last week-and-a-half. It has certainly not been pretty! My husband is training to be a police officer at an academy four hours away. He is gone all week long and will be for the next ten weeks. I miss him terribly and the stress of that lonliness mixed with the everyday weariness that comes with motherhood and teaching and keeping up with life had started to take its toll by yesterday. I was tired and anxious and I could feel a heaviness in my heart that could not have been more real if there had been a brick sitting on my chest. I hit my breaking point, and after a good cry and some genuine hyperventilating, my compassionate boss (who has been down the exact same road before) told me to go home and rest. Sleep has been difficult to come by since my husband has been gone. So I did, and after a refreshing nap and a much needed six hours of sleep last night, I found myself feeling much better today...a little more ready to face the world and my life with all of its little challenges.
Today, with the new-found clarity that rest does bring, I noticed that God seemed to be sending me little messages throughout the day. Not messages of "poor Kristin", but instead ones of "pull yourself up and look around...it's not all that bad". The first one came via the internet. I received one of those email forwards that often go overlooked in my inbox. For some reason, I took the time to really look at this one. It was a picture of a four-year-old little girl who just could not let go of her daddy's hand. Her father is a soldier. He was about to be deployed to Iraq for 18 months. He had joined the formation with his fellow officers, but his daugther (a little blonde that reminded me so much of my own daughter) was still holding on to his hand even as he stood in the line. A year and a half, I thought to myself...no weekends, no breaks, no kisses, no hugs.
The second message was sent to me on the radio as I was driving to my church for choir practice this evening. I was listening to a Christian radio station and a woman called in to dedicate a song. Her husband has recently become a Christian as a result of a ministry inside the prison where he is currently incarcerated. They have been apart for four long years and he has only served half of his sentence. She called not only to dedicate the song, but also to let him know that she was waiting for him-staying true to the commitment that she had made. What a testimony of strength and enduring love.
These "messages" did more than just evoke sympathy in me for a few strangers whose lives have been affected by seperation from a loved-one. They brought me a little thing called perspective. These people and their stories reminded me that no matter what struggles life brings, if I take the time to look around, I will always be able to find someone whose circumstances are more difficult than my own. No matter what, there is always cause to be thankful...and so I am.
"Be joyful always. Pray continually. Give thanks in ALL circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." -1 Thessalonians 5:16-18