I know, I drew you in with the catchy title….or at least, you were wondering what on earth I could possibly have to say on this topic. But that’s ok. Now that you’re here, maybe I can make something of this.
Pudding for Brains
A little over two months ago, my mother was perfectly healed from metastatic breast cancer. Although I wish that she were still here to share in the little moments of life, I celebrate that she is dancing with Jesus and no longer in pain.
For those of us still here learning to live with a new normal, things have for obvious reasons been difficult. (For anyone who may be inclined to worry, we are still eating, and are slowly getting used to things being different.) In the wake of what can only be described as the transition from one chapter to the next, I have on many occasions found it hard to concentrate on tasks that previously I could breeze through with impressive speed.
I notice, and find this most disturbing, at work. On more than one occasion, I’ve even commented to one co-worker or another that it feels a bit like I have pudding for brains, or maybe lime jello between my ears. Since I’m in a profession where quick responses and attention to details matters a great deal, this is disconcerting….especially since I’ve been doing this for over a decade now.
And yes, I did say decade. It’s actually quite a shock to my system to realize that I’ve been out of college for almost 10 years and still don’t really know what I want to be when I grow up.
Part of the reason that I restarted this blog just shy of a month ago was to both find a way to express some of what rattles around in my head with regard to this new normal in the hopes that it might benefit someone else. The other reason that is becoming clearer to me each night when I sit down to write is that I needed to have a new focus.
Something that all the grief books will tell you is to not make any drastic changes in your life in the first few month following a loss. What I think they all fail to realize is that the hole that is left is a drastic change. Literally EVERYTHING that follows is going to be drastically different.
I know, what they mean is to not go out and sell your house and quit your job, but I stand by my earlier statement that EVERYTHING is different.
Because EVERYTHING is different, I think what has been required of me is a new focus. While obviously I’m not going to go and quit my job – I do legitimately like the people I work with, even if there’s more work than bodies to go around right now – I do think that this new chapter is pushing me into uncharted waters with a new passion and focus that started with an old interest.
BEFORE AND AFTER
Before, in the last chapter, I wasn’t living intentionally. Things happened to me and around me, and they pushed me to where I am now. Many blessings came from things in my past. I’ve seen and lived in places that I wouldn’t have spent any real-time before. Today’s image is one I took on a trip to Grand Teton National Park. I’m pretty sure I still wouldn’t have visited that part of Wyoming if not for the circumstances that had me living in Denver at the time.
There have also been heartaches that have pushed me to different things. I’ve been engaged twice, but never married. (That will do a number on your self-esteem, let me just tell you.) I, along with the rest of my family, lost both grandmothers within a span of six months. And of course, the last line on the last chapter.
All of these things, and more, worked together for GOOD. I know this because Romans 8:28 says it clear as day:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
That’s s promise…..all the things that make us feel like we’re being dragged through the mire are working together for GOOD. So I have to believe that here in this next chapter, I will begin to see some of that good.
Which brings me to the AFTER portion, the NEW FOCUS, and why I think I’ve had PUDDING FOR BRAINS at work. I think and have been seeking an outlet for some of what I have dancing around in my head. It’s to the point of being marginally distracting at other times of the day when I can’t write like this. (That’s the pudding for brains.)
My new focus is on writing, and trying to put together encouraging words here. Sometimes, I get inside my head too much and worry about how things flow, when really I think God just wants to speak through this medium to anyone who will listen. I hope and pray that I can get myself out of the way enough so that He is heard.
I also endeavor to use my photography to that end. There are some days when words just fail (like yesterday), and it’s in times like that when I hope that combining the ever relevant Word with moments in time enjoying His creation might bring others closer to him. (That’s the new focus part)
So what to do with this next chapter? Where does one go in “AFTER”?
Well, honestly, only time will really tell…..but in the meantime, I think that Proverbs 3:5-6 has a word on how that:
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”
Soli Deo Gloria