That has been my response lately when asked "how are you doing". Even in turmoil and struggle, I think I've always answered that question positively. To answer any other way would burden the asker and I just could never bring myself to do that. If my phone happens to ring in the middle of the night, even then, I attempt to sound like I'm up and chipper so as not to make the caller feel bad for having awakened me.
What is that? That innate need to please people even when I'm in no shape to do so?
My point is that, lately..."I'm doing well" is truth. The first time I said it and really meant it, I had a moment of thinking, "wow, I really am doing well". Today is February 3rd. It's foggy, misty, yucky, muddy outside and the fact that I'm not curled up on the couch, depressed and feeling disgusting and useless has me almost baffled. And, I'm not about to analyze it to death. I shall simply...enjoy-- being-- well.
It is not of my doing, this phenomenon of feeling at peace. I simply ceased fighting. The list of what I was fighting is infinite and too much to go into. The short version is that I quit trying to be perfect, beating myself up for not being perfect and feeling like a complete failure and then sitting in my pity and doing nothing. The cycle was vicious and unrelenting. I've climbed out of that pit but still feel like I'm lingering very near the edge. There is conscious effort that must be made in order to give myself a break. I'm kinda hoping that one day it will come naturally. But, even if it doesn't and I still have to put forth the effort to lay my burdens down and choose peace, I'm still free.
I took my credit card bills out today, laid them on the table, highlighted the balances, minimum amount due, due dates etc... and then felt heavy hearted and defeated. We are expecting a check any day but I'm afraid it won't be here in time to make the payments before the due dates. I called one of the companies and explained. He was very nice and told me I was doing an excellent job of paying on time and "not to worry". He must have said that 3 or 4 times, "oh don't worry ma'am". It made me feel a little better but I was still struggling with the lump in my chest that just wanted them all paid and put away so I didn't have to think about it anymore. Well, until next month. Ah, an opportunity for bravery. Oh was it? I finally just told God that I didn't know what to do and that I was going to trust Him with this problem.
I went about my work and then retreated to my office for a moment to read an email which led to reading a blog. The blog I was reading has soft kinda sad music. I could feet tears coming. Then, it started to rain outside and I decided that I'd park myself in my window seat, watch the rain and have a good cry. I moved Emma out of the way and settled in for a good bawl. Out of nowhere the music switched to something less moving and not conducive to crying. Then the rain started pouring really hard, distracting me from the task at hand. I kept seeing things in the yard, "oh look what Emma drug up now". The rain became very intense and, as if somebody flipped a switch, it stopped. Well, by this time with all of the distractions and weather weirdness, I was nowhere near crying. I don't know exactly what message God was trying to send me other than He did NOT want me having a pity party.
The difference in my spirit now is that, even though the message was a whisper, I listened. Typically, I would have changed the music, thought about something really sad until I got my way and had my cry out. See what I mean? I ceased the fight. Well, that one anyway. There is no way to know how I will handle any given situation. There is no way for me to know exactly what God wants from me other than accepting His grace and power through it. It doesn't even mean that I am not going to feel sad or scared or powerless, it simply means that I go with God. Whatever the circumstance, whatever the fear, whatever the joy...I go with God. And for that, I am better.