This past week was hard. We had to say goodbye to our cats. We’ve had two sweet cats for the past ten years. They’ve been constant companions and loving. Until the last few years they were a very happy part of our family. Adding kids brought stress to their little lives and once we had our third child they were no longer happy. In the past 6 months they’ve been peeing on our kids things. We’ve been to the vet, checked on medical issues, tried all sorts of behavioral aids, etc. to no avail. It was time.
It’s funny how making the right choice is hardly ever the easy choice. In some ways it would have been easier to pretend like they were happy, and just clean the pee and complain about them. But, the truth was they weren’t happy. That’s why they were acting out. I pray they are adopted by a sweet little lady that just wants to cuddle and pet them.
This was one of the hardest choices I’ve ever made. I never planned for them to not be apart of our family. Grief has come in waves and washed over me at the least expected times. Peace with a decision doesn’t mean that grief won’t come. It comes fast and hard. Just less twisted and dark than it would have if you weren’t expecting it or weren’t willing to sit in the muck.
So if you’re sitting in the muck or resisting the muck, just let go. Rest in the Father’s arms. Cry those tears and name those losses.
Grief like waves it crashes upon my soul each choice carries loss within its core
Painful and bleeding grief oozes from open wounds
Welcome, welcome name each loss feel deeply, don’t withdraw
I hold each in the palm of my hand letting hot tears wash over, cleansing the wound I let go
A scar remains, bearing witness to pain grief and healing freedom
Today was a hard sabbath day for me. I’ll share more later, but these words arrived in my inbox and spoke to me. He’s listening. He sees my weariness. I’m not alone. Grief is hard, but it’s purposeful and life-giving.
So, if that’s where you are today, drink deeply friends.
Sometimes on the Sabbath all you can do is settle into the soft body of yourself and listen to what it says.
Listen to the exhaustion that is deeper than tiredness the hunger that is for more than food the thirst that is for more than drink the longing for comfort that is more than physical.
On the Sabbath body and soul reach out for time of a different sort time that is full of space rather than activity: time to watch the burning bush in your own back yard… the movement of the wind among bare branches… the last leaf that clings to the branch before its final letting go.
Letting go is hard, letting go of that which no longer works that which no longer brings joy and meaning that which is no longer full of life.
It seems cruel That something that used to be so beautiful should fall to the ground sinking into the earthy mud along with everything else that is dying, no longer recognizable for what it used to be.
It seems cruel but it is the way of things. One generation gives its life for the next. One season slips away so another can come. One crop of fruit falls from the tree so that more can be borne. One wave recedes while another gathers strength to crash upon the shore.
It seems cruel but it is the rhythm of things And rhythm has its own beauty.
Well, 31 days of October have past. I can’t say I wrote all that I wanted to, or that I intended to for the 31 Days series, but I was reminded that I have limits. Especially as a mama of three wee ones, I need to honor those limits and not punish myself for having them.
I have been thinking a lot about stillness and meditation lately. I am re-reading Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. She has a very different journey than mine and the first time I read it I was not in a good place to receive anything from that book. I was too caught up in the judgement of the book; is this right or wrong, etc. This time around, I’m more at peace with myself and my faith and know that God can speak truth from anything or anywhere, not just Christian writing and language. I’m finding her writing on meditation and stillness especially provoking.
Then, this weekend I read this article, Practicing Stillness and Silence on The Art of Simple. Do you practice meditation? or silence and solitude? I’d love to hear what works for you. I’m often so daunted by just the idea of doing it I procrastinate until I’m in bed, horizontal and thinking…”I should really meditate right now” and then promptly fall asleep. But, I do want to practice this art, so I’d love ideas on how you got started or what keeps you from trying.