In recent months, our family has gone through some difficult things that were not under our control. The thing about things you can’t control, is that they’re hard.
They can leave you feeling powerless, desperate, defeated, discouraged, and quite frankly like you’re in a deep hole that you might never get out of. The thing about this - is that you do. You do climb out of the hole, even if you have to army crawl your way out, 1 centimeter at a time, so slowly its painful. You go through phases of frustration, boredom, anger, exhaustion, and worry. You can’t imagine yourself in another state of mind, but the thing is - you do come into another state of mind. It does happen. The thing I would remind myself about that place, is that it can and does change, you don’t stay there.
Before we encountered this hard season, I simply heard the phrase “leave it all on the field”. While it sounded inspiring, I had no idea what that actually meant for me at the time. Whether I wanted to or not, I would soon find out.
For me, it meant:
Holding onto hope, sanity and encouragement for dear life when you need to.
Doing and saying some hard things.
Showing up when you want to just sleep the day away instead.
Letting other people help you and step in when you can’t do it yourself.
Hanging onto your faith even when you don’t understand what’s happening or why.
Messing up often and doing what you need to do to repair yourself and those around you.
Pulling in close, even if it means not responding to those around you for awhile because you have to preserve every ounce of energy to show up for yourself and those that need you.
Taking one moment at a time and letting yourself feel the joy of micro moments that create enough joy to get you through the hour.
Realizing that we don’t get to avoid pain in this life, but some of our most vulnerable moments and important realizations come from it.
It means so many more things, but these are some of my personal realizations as I reflect back on being in that place.
HOLD THE POSITION. When you’re on the field, you can’t just leave your assigned position at any point in the game, you can’t move off of your post. If you do, you’ll let your team down and yourself down. You have to man the post until it’s time to head into the dugout for a break.
LET IT RUN ITS COURSE. Don’t leave. Don’t leave when you need to stay. The holding pattern is doing its work. You’re putting in the practice that will prepare you for your next “game” in life. The new habits and rhythms are being formed one day, one hour and one minute at a time. If you leave before it’s over, it doesn’t have time to “set”.
CONSERVE YOUR ENERGY. When you’re not actively in the game, conserve your energy when you need to. Prioritize what things you need energy for and use it there, not on things that suck you dry. If you don’t determine the things that needlessly deplete your energy, others will.
SOMETIMES YOU CAN’T GO AROUND, YOU HAVE TO GO THROUGH IT. As the image of the this post indicates, sometimes there’s no “easy way” around whatever it is that’s coming your way. As much as you try to find a path around it, you can’t - you have to go through it. Walking away in the middle of the game isn’t an option, you have to play, even if it’s going to cost you something.
KNOW WHEN ITS TIME TO MOVE. When the game is over, it’s time to move off of that particular field and prepare for the next. Know when it’s time to step out of a particular season, and start moving into a new one.
Take heart knowing that when you walk through these seasons, you can “leave it all on the field” and come out better than before. ✨