My words on waiting are coming back to haunt me.
I said I wanted challenge to change me, reshape me, rename me.
Maybe I shouldn’t have said that.
I was serious, yes indeed, but I thought I had an understanding of the rules of the game, the parameters of waiting in this case.
I didn’t anticipate recovery being far worse than what led me to surgery in the first place. And maybe that is the whole point. I can trust and try to press in when things seem out of hand. But what about when they are really out of hand? What about those days where despair and discouragement spread a sticky layer over everything. Do I still value character then or do I just want relief?
It has been one month since my surgery. One month in bed. One enduring headache of Guinness Record proportions. Two failed blood patches. No solution other than lay down as much as you can and pray it gets better.
If you had told me I was going to spend a month in bed, I would have come up with a plan. A reading list. A writing list. A stocked freezer and piles of clean sheets and podcasts and a “Deep Things of the Soul That I Never Quite Get To” List. Boy, I would have made this time count if I had known.
But I didn’t know. And my brain isn’t very clear. Reading hurts my eyes. My sentences come out tangled. The only things in my freezer now are pizza and chicken nuggets. I keep diving below the surface and coming up empty.
The month has felt like a waste. All the things I could have done and I have just lain here. The best moments of productivity have involved drawing renditions of Lego creations or squeezing as many smiley fire trucks on one 8 ½ x 11 sheet as possible, reading stories, singing some toddler songs with feeble actions.
But maybe, between the sheets and on the couch as dust collects around me, I am discovering some things. Worth isn’t in productivity perhaps. Sometimes it is okay to need help. God isn’t impressed with our efforts. Maybe these things will shape my character once I can get up and walk away from this. Perhaps they are shaping me even now.
Maybe once my head is clear and my eyes are open I’ll catch things that have been simmering unnoticed.
And just maybe I won’t walk away with life lessons neatly packaged. This may never make sense. And that is okay too.
On Facebook the other day, someone posted this image and it as silly as it sounds, it has stayed with me.
So today I wait and slowly digest the words: “Hope that is seen is no hope at all.” And I press on, in a lying down sort of way. I won’t give up one day too soon.