To be tired, truly tired is an awful and overwhelming feeling. It swamps you leaving a feeling of disorientation and rudderlessness, at least for a time. While I believe one can recover from the state, the shock of its very occurrence has a lingering effect much like a bad odor impossible to completely eradicate. Ultimately, there becomes a gnawing feeling your life has made a turn, one impossible to deny, a sobering acknowledgement of no going backness.
I have had such a feeling of late, brought on by yet another health crisis. And while it is still possible the ship could yet be righted once again, it has begun to feel less likely. What’s worse, the effort of righting the ship feels hardly worth it. After all, how does one recover directional functionality when one has lost the very tool itself used to navigate.
ON THE WINGS
At one of my darkest moments, a woman recently told me her husband had been diagnosed with Stage Four stomach cancer months ago, leaving little to no hope for survival. In her voice was the unmistakable whisper of the very life he was threatened to be losing being carried aloft by a possibility fueled by the hope of living.
She told me this while I was in tears, tired beyond comprehension of taking one more step towards hope myself, zapped beyond anything I ever experienced before. My will seemed gone, eliminated. And yet she arrived in my hospital room exuding an authentic energy of, my God, could it be a ray of sunshine, of hope? A sliver? I was clearly skeptical. And yet…
OF A PRAYER
She spoke of a pray-to-God moment that was oddly palpable. How is it she came then, at the very time of my unmooring if not for that? She was not a seminar, not a mantra, not a meditation group, she had none of the trappings of an organized delivery system of fortitude. She was not programmed. And yet here I sit writing this itty bitty story of a moment, offering the exact breath I need to breathe differently going forward by a nurse’s aide from a foreign country.
So many things in my life—activities, events, practices—have spoken to my soul that have truly propelled my spirit. But this woman was a quieter and simpler delivery system, a compass load star spoken with an accent from another place. A universal place. She related, no, transferred the baton she offered in her simple message of “pray to God.” That may not even have been her exact wording. But it was her specific intention and energy, delivered with authenticity from her experience and a learned awareness.
It was not to gain anything. Rather it was to trust that all would be righted somehow. To understand I was not to gut it out by doing it all myself but instead to believe in a faith all would be well, would carry me forward and be righted no matter the outcome. She spoke of hope not by using the word but by demonstration for she was the prayer.
THE ENERGY OF LOVE
There are times in life when a message comes unbidden, from God knows where by who knows what but it comes just the same. At times like these I think of Christopher Reeves after his accident, lying motionless, trapped in a nobody that won’t move without another’s assistance. I heard he cried everyday which was likely cathartic even if only temporarily so. I image his tears also might have made room for hope. Not of some miraculous physical healing but of a more transcendent psycho-emotional-spiritual one.
I think of all the thousands and millions of people who have died of Covid, and not just that but other diseases, alone and feeling unspeakable loss and hopelessness. My loss, my hopelessness is not that large but I can still identify with their presumed sense of tiredness, of giving up. Were there moments of inspiration, of comfort from some unknown force whether human conveyed or from an energy of Divine origin even if only for a split second?
There are times for suffering and unspeakable loss and there are times for recovery’s wings and a belief in something greater than one’s self. There are times for hopelessness and times for endurance that all will be well no matter the outcome. My recent gift of hope — and dare I say, faith — was delivered recently by an unsuspecting hospital aide. She shared a universal gift. She shared a gift of compassion, hope and love, and from the trenches of her own experience. A gift so subtle and seemingly ordinary I could have missed it had I insisted on only relying on analytical mind. Hers was a gift so pervasive it was not to be ignored, rather to be immersed in and lifted up. To hope in things unseen.