Another Trip Around The Sun
Today is my birthday.
I’ll just be honest here and admit upfront that I struggle mightily with this day. It’s not the getting older. While on some days the slow approach to 40 nags at me a bit, you couldn’t pay me to return to the Land of Confusion that I wandered in during my 20s. And while my 30s haven’t exactly been smooth sailing, they have brought lessons and wisdom I wouldn’t change and recognize I couldn’t have gathered up along any other road.
But my birthday, much like the other well-established milestones along the loop a year takes, seems to serve as a constant reminder that God is still demanding patience from me when it comes to the dreams nestled firmly in my heart. And that patience is not a virtue I was born with a wealth of.
Sometimes I think I wasn’t even born with a teaspoon’s worth.
* * *
I started my day off by stepping in a pile of throw-up Hope left by the bed for me. She was stung by something yesterday and had a severe allergic reaction that resulted in her eyes swelling shut. She is not a fan of the Benadryl they have prescribed her, so I wasn’t super surprised by the vomit, but it wasn’t the way I really wanted to start the day.
I cried three times before 9:30 am. Not for any real reason. I woke up with a rock the size of Mount Rushmore lodged where my heart usually is and it felt as if the mass of this weight was forcing the tears out in an attempt to make more space for its girth.
Last week I decided that I would gift myself with a day working from the coffee shop. I nestled in by the window and opened my devotionals before getting down to the real business of the day. The following words greeted me as the sun shone through the window, dappling the plants along its ledge:
I can be sure that part of God’s promised blessing to me is delay and suffering. The delay in Abraham’s lifetime that seemed to put God’s promise well beyond fulfillment was then followed by the seemingly unending delay experienced by Abraham’s descendants. But it was indeed only a delay – the promise was fulfilled, for ultimately they did “come out with great possessions.”
God is going to test me with delays, and along with the delays will come suffering. Yet through it all God’s promise stands. I have His new covenant in Christ, and His sacred promise of every smaller blessing that I need. The delays and the suffering are actually part of the promised blessings, so may I praise Him for them today. May I “be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”
Streams in the Desert, p. 382.
I am trying so hard to wait patiently for the things that I know God has for me. I know there is no point in even trying to imagine what they are. I can’t possibly. But sometimes, even knowing as I do now that He is all I need, the additional things I want make me fiercely lonely. Make me desperate for my prayers to be answered now. Today. Here. This minute.
I do not want to wait anymore, even given the promise that the wait will only garner more beautiful results.
I am now 38 and single and childless and by all accounts grateful and joyful and happy. But that quick wisp of lonely is enough to make me want to camp out in front of the door to the Delayed Blessings Office and demand that my prayers be moved on through the system.
But I know it doesn’t work that way.
So instead, I spend the day quietly crying by my window in the coffee shop, wondering just how much longer I must wait.
* * *
This week I head out for Healing Trip #2 – a journey to Sedona, Arizona with my dearest friend, a cousin, and my intuitive by my side.
(I want to take a little detour here to extend a huge thanks to everyone who has donated to support these healing trips so far. I wouldn’t be able to make this trip without your generosity. While I know we will make great progress in the coming days, there will be more to do in the months that follow. If you’d like to contribute to this project, follow the “Help Us Heal” link in either the footer of the blog or in the upper left-hand menu.)
My intuitive is one of the many, many healers who found me on this path. Shortly after I told God I was open to using any healing modality He presented me with, I got the phone call that started our journey together. He is in Connecticut, so all our work has been done remotely.
In the meantime, Sedona was being mentioned to me left and right. It was starting to become impossible to ignore the pull to that place, and when it turned out that my intuitive would be there over my birthday, the whole idea that I was meant to tag-along with him was affirmed for me. So in two day’s time, off we go.
With these adventures, I am leaving most of what happens to God. In this case, I’ve told my intuitive to go ahead and take the wheel. I have an inkling of what he has planned, but you’ll need to wait for my return to get the whole story. Or follow along in real time over on Instagram.
My next bloodwork is scheduled for November 16. I know that what we are about to do is going to have a remarkable impact on my numbers.
* * *
We sat in the field, shoes scattered around us, finally able to flow together again. She has moved swiftly from acquaintance to teacher to friend to sister and her footsteps have never been far from mine in this last year, whispering reminders that I am loved when I wasn't so sure, helping me stay grounded when I threatened to fly away.
“I have decided that 38 will be the year of the butterfly,” I tell her, already working the new tattoo out in my head.
I am not sad about the future, no. Today I feel even more certain than ever that remarkable things are en route. I know it in the same way I know my disease will be cured. The knowledge flows out of my heart and into my bones and is simply undeniable.
But as my trauma coach has reminded me – anger and frustration and sadness and grief can coexist in that space. This deep understanding of nondualism is firmly rooted now, but still manages to take me by surprise.
So today – this birthday – like many others is a day of grieving and sadness and frustration.
But the year ahead? Its one that will be filled with joy and surprises and unexpected blessings.
Yes, I think 38 is going to be a very good year.