This is my real life. We’re on the home stretch of a two-week bout with flu—not the gross intestinal type, but the respiratory variety that keeps you awake coughing and pinned to the couch with nary enough energy to lift a pinky. It’s been brutal. Mr. S got the shot, I didn’t. I guess this strain sneaked through. I tried as many immune boosting remedies and DIY recipes for relief as I could possibly find on Pinterest as well as the OTC “tried’s and true’s.” (Thank you, God, for Nyquil.) I’m sure I would have gained several honey-cayenne-ginger induced pounds were it not for the lack of appetite that accompanied this bug. But we’re all better–or almost, and life is getting back to normal. A new normal since Daylight Savings Time happened in the interim.
While I was down, I had the opportunity to face the reality of my attachments.
- I had to cancel a presentation I was scheduled to give on the topic of simplicity at the fourth of five retreats in a 9-month program in which I serve as faculty.
- I missed meeting with the small group I lead.
- I had to cancel the third meeting of another newly-formed mid-week group I facilitate.
- I had to forego a planned personal retreat with a dear friend.
In other words, I had opportunity to consider how much value I derive from the roles I am given to play in the world.
Who am I and what is my value when I am rolling back and forth on the couch, staggering to and from the kitchen to the bedroom for a week or two straight, contributing nothing, days and nights blending into one long, gray, horizontal timeline?
I dreaded going to bed at night—it was just more of the same. I’ll do a whole post another time on the relationship between simplicity and attachments, especially the internal kind.
For now, though, I just wanted to say, “Hey,” and connect. It feels so good, this coming back to life, feeling Spring, like the plants all over our little corner of the world. Little shoots of this and that. A blade of green here and there. Swollen buds and leafing bushes.
Here are some of the things that have produced a feeling of aliveness, Spring, in me this past week: (If I was a photographer, I’d have great pictures of these. But I’m not. You’ll have to activate your Imagination Station.) 🙂
- Cleaning the front flower beds. The coral bells ALL survived the winter. Yay!!
- Planting onion sets between the strawberry plants. I think there’s enough room. The berries are still young. (Fingers crossed.)
- Starting seeds indoors—tomatoes, coleus, pansies. I’ve never done flowers indoors…but why not?
- Copycatting my favorite Mexican restaurant’s salsa—Boom! (‘cause you know they’re not giving up that recipe any time soon…)
- Getting more clarity on how to proceed with the bathroom remodel. DIY is not really our thing, but we’re in up to our elbows. Ugh.
- A new burlap ribbon around the neck of the ceramic turtle on the front step, and the yummy purple primrose with the lime green bow in the planter next to him. I’m reclaiming beauty.
- Friends and a spouse who let me be depressed and pray me through it.
- Two pre-adolescent grand-girls who helped me at the community food pantry. What Champs! Listening to them practice flute and piano and giggle at their own pubescent humor.
- A nearly-twelve-year-old sprawled across my lap for a long-overdue back rub, waiting for Mom to retrieve her from a late-night shift.
- A husband who cooks his own dinner— and remembers to turn on the electric mattress pad every night.
- Having the last dental appointment in the seating of a crown—it was a marathon. (Just what’s needed when you’re trying to recover from the flu…!)
- Farkle—we just call it dice—with the adult-ish grandkids while Dad and Mom are vacationing in Mexico.
- The happy discovery that one of my college loans is nearly paid off!
- Feeling like writing a blog post. I’ve been a little distracted…sorry.
It’s a good time to turn toward Holy Week. Lent has been long and has done it’s work. The visiting virus put a bold period at the end of the sentence: You’re a mortal.
In fact, two days ago I felt the darkness of the tomb as real as anything I have experienced in a very long time. Today, however, I feel the hope of Resurrection. So I think I’ll celebrate.
What signs might there be that Spring is happening around you? Can you receive the hope of Resurrection? If not, be gracious to yourself. God holds you until you can.