Today, it is 2020.
As my brother in law said this morning, welcome to the roaring ’20s.
For me, this new decade didn’t come in roaring. It came in in a fog.
I’m in a fog.
I left on the 26th for Minnesota to spend a few days with my best friend, Kristin, and attend her son’s funeral, and returned on the 30th. A quick turn around of my carry on bag at the house, and then I left with my family for the farm. As is our New Year’s Eve tradition.
Two of Bray’s siblings and families were there, along with his parents, and the kids popped fireworks last night and laughed and ran and drank too much soda. I posted photos on social media, as I do, and my daughter and I even snapped a photo of us with me smiling.
It felt fake.
I didn’t smile much the rest of the time. Isaac wasn’t even my son but I have been heartbroken. I can’t focus or function for very long. I’m completely sleep deprived. Last week, I slept with the phone in my hand in case Kristin needed anything in the middle of the night. She never did, but somehow me not sleeping felt like I was helping. Then I never get any sleep at the farm, and little bit got sick, so I’m bleary in my fog.
I just didn’t have a bright and shiny New Year’s post to offer.
Last year I wrote about resolutions and hopes. And this year, I don’t know how I’m going to be able to work this week. I’ve left a part of myself in Minnesota and I just want to get back. (It’s actually a miracle I got out – thank you all for praying. I ran from the snow in Marshall and got out 6 hours in advance, and then my plane just beat the snow in Minneapolis by hours too.)
At the same time, I don’t want to let go of my kids. I kept hugging and kissing them once I got back until they finally pushed me off.
As I plowed through emails today, a GetAbstract book title caught my attention, You are Awesome, by Neil Pasricha. The book professes to help you through change and failure and be more intentional. So I started reading.
His first point is what struck me and finally enabled me to write something. Like I’ve meant to for weeks.
He writes to see changes with an ellipsis instead of a period. It moves your thinking from “finality” to “future” – the gap in the sentence marks a transition. He wrote about a woman who saw a change through the lens of an ellipsis instead of a period. Seeing changes as beginnings instead of endings helped her to press forward and remain stronger internally.
This ‘door opening’ perspective, according to the author and his research, gives you the ability to say “yet” at the end of your sentence.
So, I don’t have any catchy resolutions. I don’t have any grand bargains or promises, which I most certainly will fail to execute.
I have an ellipsis for this year. A ‘yet.’
I don’t understand God, yet. (That yet may never be fulfilled this side of heaven.)
I can’t focus on my work, yet. (I’ll get there. It will be far easier for me than for Isaac’s family.)
I don’t know what’s next, yet. (Maybe I won’t know until the next happens, and so I wait.)
This fog won’t lift, yet. (It will lift. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. – John 1)
As a Type A planner, this is the most unplanned I’ve ever been. Darn near unraveling.
But maybe it takes unraveling to pull together what God has planned instead of what I planned. The dictionary says unraveling means to undo twisted, knitted or woven threads. And Colossians 2 says:
I want you woven into a tapestry of love, in touch with everything there is to know of God. Then you will have minds confident and at rest, focused on Christ, God’s great mystery. (The Msg)
So I don’t know, yet, what to expect or want from 2020. Maybe simply to expect or want this unraveling to result in a new tapestry that is woven by the hand of God.
Rejoicing after weeping.
Clothes of joy after grief in sackcloth. (Psalm 30)
Peace through tribulation. (John 16)
Beauty from ashes.
Hope from despair.
Rebuilt and restored ruins after devastation.(Isaiah 61)