Hitting the Pause button*

After writing every day in 2013, I decided to give myself a break. What was supposed to be a break from writing has come dangerously close to a break from living. I’ve found that as I’ve detached myself from the daily discipline of writing – that I’ve retreated into a mind-numbing world of escapism. Netflix, Facebook, Roku – whatever its name – I’ve sought solace there. And of course, now that the month is over, I’m left feeling empty.

But I think that’s okay. Because I’ve learned some valuable lessons…

I’ve realized that one benefit of my daily bible blog was a constant supply of short-term goals. As I’ve hit the pause button on writing, I’ve also hit the pause button on accomplishing any goals. And without goals, I begin to feel overwhelmed by the future and the sheer scope of caring for Anne. I need short-term goals to keep me grounded in the present and help me stay dependent on God.

I’ve also accepted that loving Anne requires a boat-load of perseverance. Thankfully, Anne continues to make progress, but it is oh. so. slow. The amount of patience required to persevere with therapy and school work seems impossibly infinite. I fall so short of what Anne needs. My inadequacy keeps me tethered to God.

Bottomline: I need to live a life characterized by ENDURANCE.

I know a little bit about endurance from my running. I’m a very slow runner, but I can run a long way :) When I run a longer race – I LOVE the water stations. I always walk through them – savoring every drop of that icy liquid – and when I come to the end, I throw my cup down and start running (slowly) toward the next break.

We all need breaks. The difficulty with life with a disability (or for me as the caretaker) is that there really are no breaks. Everyday is a fight – a fight to carry out normal life…toileting, bathing, grooming, eating – so we have to look for respite in different ways.

I’m still figuring this out. I need to learn how to give myself a break without checking out of life and then resenting the gift of caring for Anne. And I think Anne needs breaks too.

Hmmmm…. I’m going to start thinking more deeply about this idea of living with endurance. I’ll let you know if I figure anything out ;)

*I stole the idea for today’s title from my friend, Josh

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12 thoughts on “Hitting the Pause button*

  1. Lu says:

    May you discover a multitude of ways to “live from endurance” and possibly that’ll transform into living from joy, grin. A joy that has become part of the very fabric of your being, part of every cell.

    One of the many benefits of endurance and consistency (and the power of choice), is that you grow muscles ….all sorts of muscles…and the things that took almost brute-force-effort, gradually require something different. Things do truly become transformed…and more than mere muscles grow. And it’s awesome.

    And choice in viewing points added to those, and wow, what can happen will really and truly knock your socks off! I know it takes my breath away. And I marvel at how I got from the beginning place, to where I am today….and when I think of the incredible possibilities from here to wherever, I hit my knees with the wonder and awe of it all.

    May you also learn a vast variety of break-forms….mini breaks that restore and refresh without equaling abdicating the journey or shirking the investment. Ahhh the changes here, and the ways breaks can take place….again, we cannot conceive at the beginning of the journey, the possibilities and realities that are truly out there/out here.

    LOVE how you share your heart with us. Thank you for your courage, your grace and your steadfast love.

    Prayer-songs continue to flow…..

    Like

  2. Rebecca Johnson says:

    I think you already know the answer…those water stations…they aren’t all in one place at the end or the beginning of the race….they are spread throughout. A little netflix once in a while isn’t so bad! It’s doing it all at once :) Resting the mind here and there is not only a good way to defeat resentment but a way to feed your imagination and writing, too. Rest is a much a spiritual idea as running the race. Like Lu said, “mini breaks that restore and refresh without equaly abdicating the journey or shirking your investment” Well said, Lu!! Lots of love and refreshment to you thoughout the new year, sister…we love you all…

    Like

  3. alice molpus says:

    I love you Kathryn. please know that i pray everyday for your family and for ANNE. You are a blessing and gift from God above. Please let me know if you ever need some help. I always look for you at church just to hug you and tell you that I love you. Here is the scripture that I live by,,, TODAY IS THE DAY THAT GOD HAS MADE<>> I love you,alice

    Like

  4. Kathryn, I am new to your blog and just loved this post. I write about our journey with our son who has autism and this post spoke directly to my heart. Thank you for your honesty and insight. I will be coming back to read more!

    Like

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