The last two weekends I have been away from home, and this weekend I find the routine falling back into place. Plans for things to teach the children, books to read for myself and for them, field trips and soccer practices. The business of life.
Part of that routine is the care-taking of our souls. Sometimes I forget that and I try to just plow through the days. Not living, not really embracing but just getting through the day. Finishing the duties to be able to relax. There are days like that, but I do not want them to dominate.
Wednesday night at our homegroup something happened that surprised me. During our time of taking prayer requests I updated everyone on my last trip home and as I was telling about how my Dad sees caring for my mom as his delight and not obligation, I choked up. I don’t cry publicly. I mean, like never. I could feel the well of emotion right there, though, and that awareness that if I began to cry I would not be able to stop.
All the writing of joy in the midst of walking through this season, all the lessons learned, all the things of trying to see God in the midst does not negate that this is my Mom and this is terribly painful to watch. And sometimes I need to weep about that. I’ve written about that before…that this dementia is a long mourning without release and sometimes you have to just be a bit removed or you would find yourself overwhelmed with emotion.
But sometimes we just have to weep.
This world is broken and is filled with so many who are holding that well of emotion just in check as they try to get through the duties of the day. That maybe why they look so angry or distracted. But I wonder if it is partly because we do not spend time in care-taking our souls. Not just talking about having moments of prayer or of Bible reading, although that is part of it….but having moments of weeping and moments of embracing what is our life in this time. That may be joy or grief or fear or hope…or more likely a mixture of it all.
I want to write a bit about how music plays into all of this, because it is an important element for me, but this post is getting long already. Maybe tomorrow…
For now…maybe it is stealing away some time on a snowy morning at a coffee shop to think and read and pray and journal. Or maybe it is weeping in the privacy of the shower. Letting the emotions and the experience of life be felt before they become a tide we can’t hold in check.
It is okay to feel…and sometimes we need to make the space for that in our routines….to take care of our souls.