I want to whisper back to her and say, "I hear ya, sister. Let's just go..." And don't think I haven't considered it.
But instead I wallow. Not intentional or unintentional wallowing. Just a sort of free floating in the wallowiness of the past months. I do not want to be consoled.
In Philippians 4, Paul says, for I have learned to be content in whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned to be content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
"Thanks, Paul," I want to say sarcastically. To be content in any and every situation is a tall order. Tolerant...maybe. But content? Not so much. I'm just being honest.
A few months ago, a friend mentioned that she didn't know what she would do without her spiritual mother, a precious woman who provides my friend with maternal care and spiritual guidance. I understood what she meant, but I couldn't help fidgeting. None of us knows what we'd do without the people we cherish active and alive in our world. People are not like hors d'oeveres. If one falls, you can't just have another.
The inside of my head howled in it's private anguish as it thought about my own circumstances and the loss that has been in and around my life: You're right. You don't know what you'd do...you'd just have to do it because you wouldn't have a choice. You'd survive...You'd want to run away...You'd be crazy sad...but you'd continue to exist and do things...numb, strong, bored, OK, disinterested, afraid, lonely, anxious, up and down, manic. You would still be here...or somewhere.
I don't know if she would learn to be content...and neither does she.
One of my favorite American poets, Robert Frost, seems to echo Paul's wisdom.
|A Prayer in Spring|
<Insert my long sigh here>