Tomorrow is Mother’s Day. I turned 39 a week ago and feel so far from where I thought I’d be. Today was a hard day. The sort of day when the darkness feels like a thick sludge I’m wading through. I feel like I bump off the walls of the day in a half awareness that I am actually here. Is this real? Am I awake or am I dreaming.
I go out to the garden and cover myself in the dirt of the earth. The flowers are so pretty but I don’t feel it, I don’t see them……I’m checking off my list today.
The chemist sees me and softly says hello. He is covered in leaves from digging out the window wells for spring. I love him. I grumble something about Mothers day and try to go back to my work. I want to wallow in my sadness and gloom. I deserve to feel sad right? His arm bumps mine and I turn into his chest……the strong, familiar chest that embraces me every day. I can’t see him sometimes. I don’t deserve his quiet, gentle presence in my life. His sweaty, dirty arms embrace me and we stay there for a minute……..we are the only ones in the whole world who know, who understand the pain, the years, the shattered dreams. There are no words needed, he just knows. So many months and years of the same old place in life………waiting for what we think will bring us happiness and maybe missing the joy of each other, right here and right now.
I go up and down all day……always returning to the voice of tomorrow. Tomorrow is the day I love on everyone else’s kids. I put hours into making a special craft for Mothers day with them and playing a special song in church…………..I pour myself out for them and I know it’s the best way to deal with the sadness………serve someone else, brighten their day, make a kid smile and giggle and get the little joy out of it, knowing these kids are like my own for now. I will love them the best I know how and point them to the one who’s love never fails.
But sometimes, there’s still days like this. I want to be alone in a dark room by myself all day, numbing my mind with trashy TV and a bag of potato chips…….NO JOKE THAT’S WHAT I WANT. I want it with all of me and I push everyone else away with my crankiness. I’m fighting, I’m trying so hard to keep from falling in the dark pit but it draws me in. I’m tired……so tired of not knowing what I’m suppose to want from this life. I know I have to lay down my Isaac, my dream and the thing that seems entitled to every woman. I know I have to want what God wants for me. So I try to pull myself together. I put on a pretty dress and get ready to go watch my chemist sing. I’m still in my own tunnel. He doesn’t know what’s wrong but I’m a constant mystery to him. He is standing in front of me in an amazing tuxedo. “you need money for the ticket?” he asks. He opens his wallet and lays a 20 in front of me. He’s always looking out for me. I look up at him……and there he is, a crooked smile on his face…”you look cute” he says and the concrete on my lips begin to crack with a corner smile…….how did I get this guy? How can I be so self focused that I miss that we have each other and so much more than many in this world?
So tomorrow we will go to church, hand in hand. We will love on other people’s kids like we do every week and we will try to do it for what God has done for us and not for what we get out of this whole messed up life of ours. We will try to pull some redeeming meaning out of the day…….a child’s hug, a picture they made for us, a flower………and we will try to remember that when we loved the least of these we also told our God, “I love you too”.