I’m sitting in the hospital as I type. No sleep, so this might not turn out so well, and I think I’m to that stage in crisis where it’s all just numb. The past month in my life has felt like one hit after another. It’s not so much been my life getting beaten up and battered, but rather the lives of people I care about.
If I seem vague about my trials, that’s why. It’s not my business to share in detail.
However, I’ve felt these hardships as if they were my own to fight. That’s probably not so good. There’s a letting go to be done when someone we love is facing a major, life changing event. It’s the kind of letting go where I let them fail or succeed on their own, and I pull back to take note of my own heart.
I’m not so good at that.
But I need to be.
I need to work on being honest, and real, and recognizing where I end and the other person begins. The catch word for that is boundaries, and I’ve noticed I’m not as bad at setting those as I used to be. It’s a good change. I don’t remember changing, but it happened.
I think it happened most when I started being honest.
Honesty is the blessed elixir of life, I think. It frees us. It in itself is a boundary line. Someone may slap my cheek and expect me to give them a go at the other side, but I don’t have to stand there smiling like I’m happy about it. I can be me in that moment, and they can smack away.
The truth helps me sit through the night in a very sad hospital room, knowing that when I leave I will be me. I don’t have to perfect or say the right thing or make it all better. I can just bring me to the chair by the bed. It’s okay because I’m not pretending to know what needs to happen or that I have all the answers.
I don’t get the truth out a lot of times. Sometimes I don’t even see it. I reflexively lie. The other day my husband asked if his playing praise choruses loudly at our table in a public area was bothering me, and I said no. That wasn’t true. I just didn’t want to deal with the truth or how it might make him feel. I did fess up, though. Because in the end, me not telling the truth does me far more harm than it does anyone else. I disappeared once because of it, and I won’t let that happen again.
Maybe the first stage to boundaries is honesty. Being honest with ourselves and letting ourselves honestly be with others.
So this warrior fastens on the belt of truth because when all is said and done at least you will have gotten the real me in that moment, as I sit by your side, hoping for the best and not knowing what to say.
PS – Next year’s word of the year is going to be kitten. Surely nothing bad can happen with that.
The truth may hurt for a time but it’s part of the work of healing. Praying for you this morning and for God to be present and real as you spend time in a hospital, wondering and waiting. He does deep work there.
So true. Thank you Susan. I’m excited for you and your new book. I know it will bless many people!