One big beautiful mess

Typically the words mess and beautiful are not associated. For me, they are. You are entering one of the most private places in my life. The inner room. My sanctuary. My retreat from the noisy world. My transport to creativity.

Here it is…MessDoesn’t look much like an inner sanctum, does it?

The chair that holds the mountain of laundry is my writing chair. It’s where I sit and let my mind breathe. It’s where I go for my decompression session of one. As you have already guessed it’s impossible to write in this space when it looks like this. It’s also completely overwhelming to think about where even to start.

I’ve been doing it for years. Washing clothes and piling them in a place that is out of visitor’s view, where I can return later to sort, fold and put away. With five people in the house it’s not that easy and the bigger the pile, the more the stress grows.

It reminds me of my inner turmoil. I can hide it from the outside world for a while. I can close the door to that room so you can’t see inside. But eventually it spills over into other areas and it’s not as easy to hide anymore.

This mess begins to affect my morning routine when I’m getting ready for work. My evening when I come home from a long day. Intimacy with my man as it is an eyesore in our bedroom. I can only step over it, dig through it and make excuses for so long until I’m forced to look directly at it, admit the toll it is taking on my mental, spiritual and emotional health and commit to cleaning it up. It’s the wreckage of my present and it’s ugly.

I have discovered a system for seeing it through from start to finish. It’s called the “circle of serenity.”
circleI have to get right in the middle of it, hunker down and start sorting. If I stick to it, soon I have neat piles, assigned by owner. Before attempting to put anything away, everything must be sorted and folded. Sounds simple right?

It really isn’t very different from my mind. I have to do the same thing with thoughts and emotions. They pile up as well. Often times requiring sitting down and committing to sorting things out.

There are many other things I would rather be doing, but when I reach the end result I am always grateful for the process.
CleanAh, that’s the chair I know and love. The one that envelopes me and summons the artist within. My little corner of the world where I can process, meditate and be restored to a healthy place.

What about you? Can you relate to my sabotaging one of the few places I find peace?

When the silence is deafening

I pull into the garage slowly, being careful not to knock the side mirrors off. Though I have done this multiple times a day for six years I still have a tendency to nick the mirrors. I push the button to close the door behind me as quickly as possible. The boys have their headphones on and are watching the ninja movie for the umpteenth time. I look at the empty passenger seat beside me and it sets in. She’s gone…again.

As much as I love the fall season, I also dread what it means. Summer comes and goes, taking with it the bulk of my time with Bella. Chaos ensues with schedules, school and the many other demands that follow everyday life. As I sit in the car, staring through the windshield at the door leading into the house, I say in a whisper, “I don’t want to go inside and face the silence.” I don’t want to walk into her room to gather towels and sheets to wash knowing that her presence is no longer there. The silence is deafening.

Realizing that the tears are inevitable, I get the boys settled and head up to my room. Sitting down on the floor and looking up through the window at the blue sky, my prayer is one of hesitancy as I open my fists, in faith, relinquishing control.

“Lord, here we are again. In this place where words do not give adequate meaning to the void. How long will the sadness last this time? Will it be weeks or months? Will it be bearable? Will I be able to perform the daily tasks required of me? Father, I’m tired. I don’t want to go back out into the world. I want to stay here, on this floor. Allowing the carpet beneath me, the ceiling above me and the walls around me to act as tangible support, compensating for my lack of faith. I wish to withdraw from everyone and everything. You have already seen the week ahead. Father, I don’t even know how I am going to do everything I need to do in the time allotted and to add a heavy heart on top of it… It’s too hard.”

This verse came to mind.
“Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you.
I’ve called your name. You’re mine.
When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.
When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you’re between a rock and a hard place,
it won’t be a dead end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
The Holy of Israel, your Savior.
I paid a huge price for you:
…That’s how much you mean to me!
That’s how much I love you!
I’d sell off the whole world to get you back,
trade the creation just for you.”
Isaiah 43:1-4 (The Message)

So for today, in this moment, I will close Bella’s bedroom door and tend to the many other household responsibilities. I will be grateful and smile when I think of the conversations and time together we’ve had over the last few weeks. I will thank God for the ache, knowing that it makes the reunion all the more sweet.

I will meet tomorrow’s demands, tomorrow. Embodying the truth, today, that God always shows up on time and gives me the strength I need, when I need it.

Maybe you need to read this verse everyday too. Here is your downloadable copy You are mine

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