November 2, 2010
I've been so tired the past 2 or 3 months. Tired to the point of collapse. And depression. My kids ordered me to the doctor. The doctor ordered me to sleep. And sleep I have. At first, 12 to 13 hours a night, and 3 to 4 hours a day. Now, two months later, I'm getting back to a more normal 8 to 10 hours at night, and naps in the day as needed.
Of course my sister says I have been tired for years and years. She's right of course. But I was still amazed when this happened. I'd always been able to keep putting one foot in front of the other before. And rev up and charge ahead again.
As I've had opportunity to reflect on this time of exhaustion and depression, I've realized that I have been living with a lot of fears that I have just swept under the carpet. I really did think that I have been trusting God... but maybe not so much.
Maybe exhaustion and depression are good things sometimes. Maybe the inability to do anything at all forces more dependence on Father. Maybe it brings a quietness to life that helps our ears and hearts to open as we are separated from the bustle of life. Maybe it gives us time to see ourselves more clearly, and thus be able to turn over to Father things we didn't even realize we've been hanging onto.
What fears have I been hanging onto?
- getting old. Not being useful, needed, of value anymore.
- doubting my ability to care for, be responsible for others.
- becoming a "burden" to my children financially or physically as I age
- losing my connection with my family as they get busy with their families. And even losing my connection with God if my mind should go. Being alone, unwanted.
- not being able to get a decent job, or keep a decent job, because maybe I'm getting too old and my skills aren't totally up-to-date. And/or not being able to retain a job because I'm too tired, not strong enough, whatever.
- I'm so lonely for my kids and grandkids who live far away. I can't bear that they are growing up and I hardly ever get to see them. I'm afraid that one day I'll go to visit them, and they'll hardly know me, and won't want to spend time with me.
- mostly I'm afraid of "losing my marbles." My mom passed away a couple years ago after a long time with dementia. Her younger sister has dementia now. Because I lived closest, I was the sibling who visited her regularly, and watched her go farther and farther away. It seemed to me that she became so lost and helpless and alone ... and mindless. Separated from everyone after a lifetime of loving and being loved. Even separated, it seemed to me, from the God she loved and followed so faithfully all her life. She seemed to be forsaken. Not fair! I don't want to go there. I'd rather die now, or have terrible physical health, than have to face that kind of living death.
In my head, I know that Father never leaves us, never stops loving us. BUT...
Now that I've finally really come to understand His love, and have started to learn to live loved...
I couldn't bear to be separated from Him, from His love. The thought terrified me.
Still, somewhere in this long enforced physical rest, Father has reached out to me and brought me into His rest. So I have been learning to rest in Him. And the fear has gone.
Thank You, Lord.