Digging in the Ditches

I do not want to dig! I said, I do not want to dig in the ditches. It is too much.

As I scanned over my many writings, just the titles stir my emotions. How can I even go there without losing myself in the memories and feelings of those exact moments when things happened in my life and of my broken heart? I do not really know how to move past except to move through those times and put words in front of me as I feel and remember to share that you, too, can make it. Maybe it is for me to remember and to know where I have come from and what I went through to be right here at this right time, sharing my story.

A coach I had recently expressed all this as ‘digging in the ditches’ and so true, as it is digging through some bad, muddy times where I felt stuck. Throw me a lifeline please, I would cry out so many times under my breath, in my mind. Do you all not see I am struggling? Sadly, those words were on my mind while sitting on the church pew many times. I was invisible, I felt.

So, this is a start of my digging and thought I would test the waters. Unsure if I can dig tonight, as I write, but this is a start. How’s that?

Tied Up In Knots

Many years ago, while we were in the thick of the pandemic, I sent my son a wind-chime as he had the perfect place. I love wind chimes.

He had just moved into this place with a back yard that reminded me of Gatlinburg. It was in the middle of a big city but hidden. I always loved to visit and help clean up the yard or help him in the house, giving it a mother’s touch and food on the stove.

This was such a big change for him. He had never enjoyed yard work growing up, as most kids, but this place captivated him and his time, as we were all home bound. This was actually a move of God for him to be in this place at this time.

Prior, he had an apartment by himself and with his work, being able to work from home, he was isolated from people. He is a people person. Work was demanding and placed him alone in this apartment for hours at a time, getting overwhelmed and I knew depression was grabbing hold. He is a lot like me so I recognized what was happening. I have written about him several times in my blog here. The Lord has a calling on his life, he knows it. Sometimes, running away from such seems like it will work but it won’t. I have been there, too. You can run but can’t hide.

This big house and yard came available and two roommates joined him and it was perfect for all three. Again, a God thing. I feel if it had not taken place, especially with the stay at home ruling, I may not have a son right now. Depression sucks life from you.

I am proud of him to move forward but also seek help from a doctor. It’s okay to take anti-depressants, if just for a bit to get through whatever. Some may feel that is a lack of faith and place that condemnation on you but it is not their journey and none of their business. Take care of you.

The wind chime arrived and soon was hung up in the tree making the sounds that some love or hate. He was not so sure at first and him and a roommate had to put a cord around them, to stop ringing. We laughed over this but soon they enjoyed the sounds and how pretty it was in the backyard.

Things happen and another move to a smaller, better house and by now the ban from leaving home and restrictions were lifted. This house had no real place to hang the wind chime. A little tree in front had to do so it would not get tangled. It is a long wind chime, perfect for the other yard.

Time went by and it remained and ringing but either wind or the neighbors twisted it up and now it was jumbled up and not pretty looking or sounding. He threw it in the shed. I was saddened but understood.

Recently, he was coming home. I have a great yard and trees so I told him to bring to me and I’ll use and enjoy once I get it back to it’s purpose, so he did.

Oh my! It was a mess. I had no idea of how this would ever be put back together. As I watched television one night, I thought I would tinker with it, one tube under, another one over and continued.

It was overwhelming. I would work on it and put it down and try another night. A couple of times I was tempted just to pitch. Not worth my time. Looking at it though, the tubes were pretty, the string was strong but it was tied up so bad. I just wanted to give up.

Isn’t that just like life? There are things we need to do and conquer but it is too hard. Thinking there is no way it can happen. Hopelessness enters our minds and we stop.

I laid this out on the floor, which was for a good week. Each night I would move tubes under and over and I started to make headway. I’d get frustrated and stop. I knew I had to keep going and finish. I have come too far to end. Again, life experiences we deal with.

I finally got the tubes and string in order. What a fantastic feeling to conquer. While I still have to hang the tubes correctly, I will attempt. I will also go through the frustration and hopelessness of it not being right. Still, I will move forward. Soon, it will be hanging in my tree and I will enjoy knowing its history and the pain to get there.

Again, life. We have to keep moving forward and not give up. Many trials and misfortunes may come but soon if we don’t give up, there’s joy and a pride within ourselves that we made it through.

This hopefully will be something that will strengthen you or my son’s ability to keep moving forward whenever times get tied up in knots and it seems there is no way out and feeling like throwing our hands up in defeat. A story his mom has written, understanding him and how each one of us struggle at times. Life experiences. Life happens.

Don’t give up.

It all falls together

HOPE

We all need HOPE, nowadays more than ever. Last night, as I was going through my jewelry, I found a ring that says HOPE on it and my mind went back to the night I found it. Memories, good and bad, will surface at the oddest times from years ago, just like it was yesterday.

My mind went back to when I went to a large arena, I am unsure if it was a sports or a music event and I am unsure of those I was with, but I was not alone. I say that because I know I went for a reason and with others but even in the huge, dark building filled with thousands of people all around me, I felt alone.

It is hard to even think so far back of that time, reliving this moment, it is just as real and allowing the pain I felt deep within my soul. It seemed as though everything around me in life was like a huge, dark cloud that I was living in. It was lowest time of my life due to situations. I had nobody to tell or to trust of what I was experiencing, I felt hopeless. I did keep a lot to myself. In that, depression enters and you survive another day, at times making one foot go in front of the other, just to move forward.

I experienced that period of deep depression, but I wonder how many others share the same sense of hopelessness, the heartache within, wearing a mask that all is well. It doesn’t matter if in your circle of friends, family, passing others in public and sadly enough, sitting on the same pew at church with you. Life sometimes does not go well. Odds are, they are there among you, among all of us. We are all going through something.

As I sat in my seat at the arena, for whatever reason I was looking around, probably at an intermission time, and I saw something shiny in the corner under a seat. Since I was alone and the seat was empty, I hesitated but then reached for that shiny object. It intrigued me so why not. As a I pulled it out of the muck that can build under seats, I wiped it off. I knew it was round and a ring and knowing such items are lost at times. Wiping it off to look at, I could have bursted out crying. It had HOPE stamped on it all around the band.

It’s in the dark places that you grow, even if you feel stomped on and near death. We may not understand the dark valleys we walk through and may question God, why? He is with us, He was with me as I held that dirty ring of HOPE. I was reminded of His Love and to hold on, for I was not alone after all.

You cannot tell me that God does not see us and knows where we are. I walked in with no hope and walked out with HOPE.

Knowing it was not an expensive ring, I knew someone had lost it. As we were exiting, there was nowhere to return it to lost and found. Odds are the person who lost it will never come back to claim it or even look for it under the dirty seats. So I made the decision to keep it, as I needed HOPE and it did indeed give me just that. I cleaned the ring better at home and it was on my finger.

Not to forget through this, somebody lost that ring and at some point needed hope, too, and I do hope and pray they are doing well in life. I would like to think that they, too, hope and pray for the one that perhaps finds the ring, me.

In life, there are times we walk through and feel stuck in the muck and nasty stuff, just like this ring. Still through the mess, the ring was shining through as a fleck for me to see. We each are blessed with gifts and talents, which may seem dim and useless to us, or to even put forth an effort trying, feeling so worthless. He has to remind us, even in such simple things as this ring. He cleans us off and makes us shine so that we can share His Love with others and provide HOPE when there seems to be none.

There is HOPE!

https://formerheathen.wordpress.com/2014/11/17/blessed-in-the-dark-places/

“And you will feel secure, because there is hope; you will look around and take your rest in security.” Job 11:18

“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.” Psalm 62:5

“But I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more.” Psalm 72:14

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his wordI hope;” Psalm 130:5

“More than that, we rejoice in out sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces, hope,” Romans 5:3-4

“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” Romans’ 12:12

The Bible is full of HOPE, as He knew we would need such in our lives to pull strength from, to live on this earth day by day. “My soul, finds rest in God; my hope comes from him.”