God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day.” Psalm 46:5
We’re getting good at tossing clothes in a bag and escaping for the weekend – when the short days feel too long and the stress overwhelms and turns to tears, we pack up and head out and escape the real world for just a long enough to keep going.
My mom told us the story of the time she went crab hunting and a crab clamped on to the guide’s hand and just about the time I was taking a sip of my drink, she told us how he said, “watch this,” and he bit the crab back! We laughed and my nose burned with bubbles and the harder I tried not to laugh, the more I laughed and the carbonated drink came out my nose and out my mouth and all over the camper floor. We laughed so much we cried a lot on that trip, and it was worth every drop of salt water.
We dug our toes in the sand and felt the warmth of the sun fade as it disappeared to the other side of the world. We searched for crabs, barefoot over the cold, cold sand – none were big enough to bite us, but we already knew to just bite them back. We wrote wishes in the sand before the tide swept them away and we talked about the morning in Germany and how our sun would greet them soon.
When the weekend was over, we drove home. Stopped for ice cream, detoured on old country roads around traffic. Made plans to vacuum the sand out of the car (but never did, still haven’t), instead breathed deep the salt water smell that lingered on my hoodie. Finished one to do list, began a new one. Unpacked the bag, went to work. Came home, hugged my boys. Tucked them in, started the washer, paid the bills, signed the notebooks, swept the floor, washed the dishes, wiped out the sink. Went to bed, wished for sleep, dreamt of the sun and the breeze and the sand and the rest and the things left undone. Rinse, repeat, always tired.
My weary soul knows nothing more than to just keep going… to pray and scrub and hope, to trudge through each mundane task because it’s Life-Building, Love-Giving, and Child-Raising – them and me, to create moments we remember and find ways to gently ease us through the pain of old wounds, to find things we love to do and do them and do them well, and to fail but figure out a different way. I lean in to rest when the sunset reminds me the day is done and when the day breaks, the sun will rise. God sends light to the broken places, to ease the darkness.
He’s already there, He’s waiting, there will be Daily Bread – just enough to get us through. I know that every tear – happy and sad, every ounce of salt water that drips from my face and down my shoulders, each salt-stung wound is His Light breaking through.
Leave this day, begin the next.