Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Parallel Train Tracks

This afternoon I just finished reading Kay Warner's book, Choose Joy.

In the book she says often, "Life is like a set of parallel train tracks, with joy and sorrow running throughout our days."  I love this word picture of what I believe is truth.  Near the end of the book, she says it this way, "it means looking at the messes of our lives, and finding the places where joy is hiding."

Here's the truth. My depression has been overwhelming me lately. These past several months have been some of the hardest in many years.  In fact, I've even been to the doctor several times trying to find the right medicine to help me get through whatever this is. The meds don't even seem to be touching it.  Honestly, I've spent a lot of time just lying on the couch. I haven't felt like reading or writing, or doing much that usually brings me joy.  On days I have to work, I work. I get the girls to school. Mike often helps with dinner. I look at my life, and I think there is no reason I should be feeling this way. I have a beautiful life.  And yet, the mystery of why and the depression remains. I'm not proud of this, but it's just where I am at.

Sometimes I've felt like I'm not being truthful on facebook or my blog, because I usually post a lot of the happier moments.  But after reading this book, I think it's okay.  Yes, I have this 'unknown sorrow' in my life - but despite that, I still choose to look for the places where the joy is hiding -- I still choose to believe in a God who loves me just as I am, in my mess, and who has placed me here on this Earth for a purpose.

And yes, there have been many places where joy has been 'hiding' -- and I have chosen to see it.  In my husband's patience with me through this difficult time, in my daughter's hugs, in my girl's laughter, in the sunshine of warmer days (inbetween the snow days), in the text from a friend, and a card in the mail from another, in my dog's unconditional love and snuggles, the promise of hope.

I still hope to get up some of these 'joy moments' from Easter and April Fool's Day. And maybe now that I finally have my computer back after a month of being gone I will get around to it. Just need to get my icloud set up still, so I can get some pics off my phone to my computer!  (I will spare you the details, but I will say I will never buy Samsung again, terrible customer service! - and yes, I'm still grieving photos and writings I lost!) 

choose joyOn a side note, In her book, she used a lot of Henri Nouwen quotes that really spoke to me. I think I might have to look up some of his work and read some more of ponderings.

She also wrote this, which I liked, because it's kinda the 'heart' behind my blog... and a great reminder for me.

Make the most of this moment. The problem is we're greedy. We don't want just moments. We want weeks and days and months and years. We want a lifetime. And if we can't have huge blocks of time that are wonderful and stress-free, we decide we can't be joyful. 

Yet sometimes moments are all we have. You and I can decide we have this moment, and we will choose to love it. We're not denying we have problems. We're not saying our lives are wrapped perfectly with a bow on top and we have everything figured out. It just means that this moment is a gift from God, and we will cherish it. 

That's why I write Moments on the Journey, because I don't have it all figured out, but I'm choosing to see these moments, these gifts from God. I cherish the joy they bring, side-by-side the sorrow, in the everyday journey of my life.


Mel said...

Oh, friend...thank you for this brave post. I'm sorry it's been so hard for you. I understand to a degree, but each person's journey with depression is different...and I don't want to pretend that I understand completely. But I will pray. You inspire me in the way you look for that joy, even if it's found in hidden corners. By choosing it, you are stepping forward and embracing the good and the beautiful even on days that are really, really hard.

I'm lifting you up...and I'm here for a text or chat if you ever need me. I was thinking it might be fun to skype one day next week, if you're home. We could have a virtual coffee date. :)

Psalm of my favorite passages. I hope it will encourage you. (((hugs)))

Cathy Baker said...

Mel, thank you for your sweet words. A virtual coffee date sounds fun...although I'll be drinking hot cocoa! :) Thanks for sharing those verses too!