Sunday, July 20, 2014

Breathe. In and out. Repeat.

Some days just pass by without me taking much notice; they seem normal and uneventful, as if nothing tumultuous has ever happened to me or to those I love. 

And other times, I have fleeting moments where I need to remind myself to breathe, to let go, to concentrate on doing the next right thing. 
"Waterfall In Forest" - courtesy of
phonsawat at

Still others are entire days when I need to remind myself continually of those things: specific days such as a birthday or an anniversary, a statutory holiday like Christmas or Easter or Thanksgiving. At those times, I wonder how I'll get through the day, remind myself to breathe, in and out, and repeat as needed. And it's hard, even with relying heavily on my relationship with God and reminding myself that "He's got me."  

And ... miraculously ... I get through it. 

I had a day like that recently - our baby girl's birthday was last Wednesday. She would have been 22 years old. Try as I might to treat it like "just any other day" ... it was difficult to concentrate and I kept making silly, stupid mistakes that just weren't "me." 

The love of friends and family helped me as I breathed in, and breathed out. Giving myself permission to grieve without guilt or shame was key to surviving the experience. And love, love expressed in tangible ways, was the healing balm that I needed. God usually finds a way to remind me that He cares by showing me that people care. This particular time it was through a thoughtful gift from a friend miles away from here. 
Photo "Daisy Flower" by
markuso at

Someone reminded me a few weeks ago that the pain of an initial physical injury (such as when I tore the cartilage in my shoulder on August 7, 2006) can be remembered, but not brought back and relived or re-experienced with the same intensity. (Not that I'd want to!!) 

However, the pain of an emotional injury is just as fresh and excruciating as its memory. If the emotionally painful experience is remembered, the emotional pain comes with it. 

What I didn't know until several months ago is that the brain releases the exact same chemicals when experiencing emotional pain as when having physical pain. It's therefore crucial to be gentle with ourselves when life throws a monkey-wrench into our daily experience. 

"It will pass. It will," a still small Voice says inside of me. "Breathe."


And I do. And it passes. 

And the next day life could return completely back to normal. And it often does. 

But I'm so glad that when those times come, when the billows roll over me and knock me around, I know I can count on Love to be whatever I need it to be for me at the time I need it. Even if it's hard. 

Love is Life's breath.

So I breathe. In and out. And ... repeat as needed.

No comments:

Post a Comment