So – where are we at?*
It feels like daily I am wondering, “Where are we at?” This could pertain to COVID – the regulations, the restrictions, the openings, the closings – who really knows. It could pertain to my job – what comes next – are projects ready to begin – are we meeting in person all the time or some of the time. Maybe it pertains to our own building we live in – do we still need to wear masks – do we shower before going into the pool – how are people feeling about being around others in the building.
Where are we at?
If I think about relationships and the things that have changed and not changed since COVID – I sometimes wonder where we are at.
If I look at my family, there is an eagerness to get together and play games and laugh and just be. But, during COVID, we have all created little family pockets. We have adapted to our household families and in that, things have changed a little. I think my kids have developed more fully into their marriages. I also think they have found those one or two other couples to spend time with during the restrictions. Perhaps they don’t need the larger family in the same way? We have a large family so sometimes get togethers are more challenging. So, I ask myself sometimes, where are we at with our family/kids
When I look at my friends I, again, see pockets that have formed out of necessity. People who have bonded with people who either live closer or are closer. We haven’t had church in person so those relationships have not developed over food and laughter and small group gatherings. When church resumes in person, will those same people attend or have changes occurred that will either prevent them from attending or by choice they will not attend. Are there still people concerned about contracting or spreading the virus so they will choose to stay away from gatherings. So, I ask myself sometimes, where are we at with our friends and church family?
Then there is my hubby – the person I spend the most time with.
What has COVID done to our relationship? Where are we at? We have spent a lot of time breathing in the same air in our apartment – we have spent a lot of together time soaking in the air conditioning in our vehicles. All without others interjecting very often. I think, if I really think about it, that our relationship, thankfully, has grown. We have weathered the many ups and downs of covid restrictions because we both have used our strengths to help each other through. My ‘restless’ mind pushed us to buy kayaks – this opened a world where we could kayak along together OR with others in the great outdoors which helped Bernie’s social need. His patience and ability to turn chaos into a logistical dream, helped me to battle the demons that lurked when things got too be too much and the restrictions were getting too hard to bear. My choice of movies brought us joy and laughter – his choice of movies brought us… well, most of his choices are bad – so we laughed our way through those! (HE will want to rebuttal this statement!) AND, let’s not kid ourselves, there are still arguments and some angry moments between us – but, in the big scheme of things – on this topic (hubby and I) – I know where we are at!
Spiritually. Whew. This is a toughie. This whole journey over the last while has been one where we have been so grateful to have a God to lean on and a Saviour to depend on. The beauty is that even when we were angry or upset and frustrated, we believed in a God bigger than our petty angst. A God who stood patiently by as we complained and whined. We are grateful that we could still meet as a church group and worship together – none of our spiritual rights were taken from us. We could open our Bibles, we could sing our hymns (not in person of course!), we could play our Christian radio stations and listen to worship songs. We have much to be thankful for. However, I know that during this time, my ability to concentrate on prayer and Bible reading has been tested and I don’t have any good reasons why. Maybe there have been so many daily decisions to make during COVID (like, when to wear a mask, when not to – stay 6 feet apart – follow the arrows (remember to look for the arrows) – don’t gather – do gather – eat together – don’t eat together) that I sometimes felt like my brain needed to shut down. But that should not be an excuse for spending time with God. So, where am I at? I have some work to do.
Then there is that lifelong question: Where am I at in life? Is this where I need to be right now? Are we doing the job we should be doing right now? Are we living where we should be right now? Are we pursuing the things we should be right now? If you have read my earlier blogs, you know that this is a perpetual issue for me and a constant thorn in my side. When I listen to the world news, my questions seem so petty and so unimportant. We live in such privilege, and I sometimes do not know how to work around it. It was brought to light, again, for me in a book I was reading called, ‘A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.’ The book was written quite some time ago and it walks the path of a young girl growing up in Brooklyn between 1900 and 1920. She is poor and her father is an alcoholic – albeit a gentle quiet one – but can’t hold a job and eventually dies due to his alcoholism. It talks about how people view her and how those with privilege treat those without. How teachers pick favourites based on clothing choices and cleanliness. It made me ponder how often do I look down on others – perhaps not on purpose or even realizing it. It was a reminder to be aware of how I come across to others.
But – it doesn’t necessarily answer my questions nor help me propel myself to definitive solutions. So, maybe I need to just rest in this question, “Where am I at?” a little longer. I happen to live in Canada – a land where I am free to speak my thoughts, share my feelings, live my life. This is where I am. So, what do I do with that and how do I use that to shape my future?
Maybe the question, “where are we at” is a good one if it can make us stop and look around us and learn, grow, listen. I just can’t stay in that – I need to go out and see where we can go – what we can do – how we can help – how we can grow. I guess my prayer needs to be, “Speak, Lord. Your servant is listening.”
Where are you at? If you need a sounding board or looking for thoughts and ideas – I’d be happy to listen. Maybe together, we can find people and resources to help each other walk this amazing path we have been given.
*written a few weeks ago