I miss writing.
Which seems strange because I’m doing it right now. But this right now is a stolen moment, a pocket of time where things seem to breathe a little better and my inspiration and will both align.
These moments seem to be few and far between these days.
It’s more than the start of a new season, a new ministry position that is creating as I go, all the kids in school, time and space are structured differently than they were before.
It’s more than these things. All of these things come into play but I think it’s a season of life where looking ahead and looking behind are done in congruence with one another.
And it’s not even a crossroads. It’s not a right or left decision. My inner life right now seems to be flooded with the who was/will be/am of me.
Do you ever feel that way? Are you ever struck with the sensation that you are almost a totally new person to yourself and at the same time, shockingly familiar?
If you say mid-life crisis, I’ll deny it every time.
I think it’s more an idea of the evaluation of self. Who is this person that is me?
At this time of re-introducing me to myself, where I’m learning new things, parenting just school age children, venturing out in new ways in ministry and refining the familiar ministries and patterns.
Because I feel both not old enough and wiser than I’ve ever been. Things are rushing and poignant all at the same time.
It makes me sit on my front step early in the morning and gaze and think.
And what do I think?
I think of what I miss. I think of the college basketball me who felt light on her feet. I think of not being too spent to write. I think of court shoes and impulsive movies.
And I think of what’s now and ahead. I think of walking alongside those at the end of life. I think of being hands and feet of Christ a different way than I ever have been before. I look at my husband of 16 years and realize that we’ve been to each other for an entire adult (18 years altogether). Try that on for size.
One of the things that happens when I’m visiting on the wards is the natural inclination of people to do a life review. To look over their lives, past, present, and future, and find meaning. Meaning in how they were within themselves and to others. To find what brings them joy in the moment, birds out the window or heat in their room.
When memories and the present and a whiff of the future seem to all merge in their hearts and minds.
It’s an intentional place to be. To sit on your front step and think about how God wired you, the experiences you’ve come through, and what the future may look like.
I sat on my front step. I sat there and invited God to have a seat. And I decided that I would start asking him questions. I would ask him what he thought of me now, because he’s known me longest and best. I would ask him what he thought of the life I’m in the midst of.
And I would tell him about the things I miss. And I would ask him what that missing means in my life now. Does it mean a going back to a part of me, or does it mean that change can feel scary and uncomfortable and I long for the long ago known.
I’m committed to asking those questions. Sitting on my front step in the stillness and everyday-colder of the early morning. Because the only way I’m going to feel settled in my skin is if I see my past, present, and future through his eyes.
It’s a journey and a discovery and I don’t have all those answers yet and my inner skin still prickles with the unsettledness of it all. But that’s ok. It’s part of growing and rediscovering God and me and us doing this life together.
So I breathe, and I ask, and I discover, with him.