Sunday, February 7, 2010

Life is But a Dream

Since Bridget has a double ear infection and Dixon's on his way to one, I'm at home today instead of church. The last couple of nights have been miserable with constant sleep interruptions (at least hourly) and night feedings that I thought we'd done away with. Makes it hard to be anything but grouchy come morning. On the plus side, I didn't have a mad dash to get all gussied up and out the door this morning, and plan to remain in my cozy, albeit frumpy, jammies for the duration of the day. Right now it's quieter than it has been in a while, with the older girls and Mike at church and Dixon napping. Bridget is creating all sorts of art projects with things from the Sunday Box while she eats strawberries, wearing an outfit she put together herself. Good thing we aren't making any public appearances today.

I'm still trying to climb out of my rut that seems more like a giant chasm at times (I know--the frumpy jammies and lack of showering don't really help), but I think I'm making progress--a little, but progress nonetheless. It's nice to have a little time to reflect on some of the troubles that have been weighing on me, and to try to both put them in perspective, and find solutions to them. I feel at times as though I'm one breath away from drowning, as I struggle to find peace. It occurs to me that I'm supposed to be learning some great lessons through this, and again, I find myself turning to analogies to make sense of things.

The Current and the Shore

My life's little boat that I've been row, row, rowing down the stream sideswiped some rocks, filled with water and went under. In the meantime, that stream emptied into a mighty river, sweeping me into its roaring current. I now have two choices. I can swim with all my might to get to the shore as quickly as I can, or I can ride the current to some distant location downstream. If I choose the first, I'll more than likely waste my precious energy fighting against the current that is going to take me where it wants to anyway. In the event that I actually struggle hard enough and make it to the shore of my own accord, I'll be lost, and will doubtless have to struggle again through whatever terrain lies between that spot of shore and safety. If I choose the latter, it will take every ounce of faith I have to relax and be confident in my ability to keep my head above the water, however, remaining in the water will allow the current to effortlessly carry me to that destination at the end of the river. There will still be treacherous rapids to navigate and the threat of crashing into protruding rocks, but both options are fraught with inherent danger and unpleasantries.

I realize I've been looking for the relief that comes from finally getting to the shore and planting my feet back on solid ground, but only the Lord knows what lies in wait along the shoreline, and He has further to take me. If I struggle hard enough and get myself out now, I won't be where the Lord wants me to be, or end up where the Lord wants me to end up. I'll have to struggle through whatever terrain lies between where I got out and my 'final destination,' and as a result I may never make it there. It will take longer and be harder, ultimately, than remaining in the current and allowing it to effortlessly carry me. I just have to try not to drown in the process. It's a difficult thing for me to allow myself to relax while in the river, but I know if I do, it will be easier and I may even be able to enjoy some of the scenery along the way. After all, as President Hinckley said, "Life is to be enjoyed, not just endured."

I was reading my friend, Ashlee's blog this morning and something she said really stood out to me.

"I have watched several people struggle to find solace in the midst of a trial. It seems to me that those who have the desire to be teachable while in the fight come out stronger. They do still experience frustration, loss, disappointment, sadness and more, but there is increased purpose and patience in their struggles. I think we can learn things the easy way or the hard way, and praying to be teachable makes every challenge just a bit easier."

I sincerely hadn't thought to pray for that, but I can see her point. By truly looking to and allowing myself to be teachable, amidst all this angst, I will be made stronger and wiser. And really, isn't that what the goal is? For wisdom is acting upon truth and knowledge. Now, I just need to find the courage to stay in the current.

No comments: