Searching for Solitude
Most of the time I’m quiet these days. Though I go through my day with minimal conversation I have made strides in putting together the steps needed to begin to rebuild a life for kiddo and I. After a lovely conversation with my college advisor I need to wake one more week for my official acceptance letter. Classes will begin in January and I only have one course left until I graduate. What a blessing!
You would think that the most difficult thing about my life right now would be the waves of grief that wash over me at the most random times. But, it’s not. Instead, the most difficult thing about my life right now is being Christian in an atheist household. You see, even before Daddy passed on to be with the Lord… he and I were Christians. We were quietly practicing Christianity but not really going to church. It worked for us at the time. But now, so much has changed.
Since Daddy passed on to join the Lord, I have completely leaned into my faith to survive this tragedy. I confess that those first two weeks after everything, I felt like I couldn’t breathe. Even to this day, my heart and soul simply ache for him. I know that ache will never go away. But, one thing that has made this experience… bearable?… is knowing that the Lord is carrying me through it.
How do I know? The first night after Daddy passed on I had a massive panic attack. Tears streamed down my cheeks in the middle of the night and I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I felt a strong hand suddenly touch my chest. It was warm, inviting, and calming. Instantly I felt soothed. I know it was Daddy. Since then, I talk to Daddy daily. Little by little I began to process and pray. “Lord, I’m not strong enough to get through this” I wept aloud, “I’m not strong enough to go on! How the heck am I… a homeschooling mom with NO degree…. NO work experience…. how am I supposed to take care of kiddo and I??”. I felt like the world was going to swallow me up.
And then, God reached down and scooped me up in His arms. He swaddled kiddo and I in His love. This came in the form of unexpected donations from friends and family. People I had never even met, but who knew Daddy, gave us hugs of support and a shoulder to cry on. All of YOU continue to post comments here that uplift my soul.
Kiddo and I moved to Washington to financially get on our feet and for me to figure out how to rebuild our life. And again, I kept praying. “God, what do I do???” I said, aloud when we arrived here, “show me the way… PLEASE!”. I felt a tugging in my soul to contact my old college (here in state) and see if they would take me back. On a whim I listened to this call and sent in my application. Not only did they reach out and let me know that I only need 1 course to graduate in May, but the advisor worked with me to make it an easy Freshman-level course so that my brain isn’t too overloaded while I grieve. I was floored.
On and on I have had to make rapid, hard decisions for kiddo and I. And each time the doors have opened and what I worried would be a long, arduous process turned out to be more seamless than I thought. I know the Lord is with me with every step that I take. For that, I lift my hands in eternal gratitude.
Last night my mom said to me, “I am so proud of you, honey! You have moved mountains!”. I paused and felt uncomfortable. I know it isn’t me that is moving mountains, but rather it is God showing me the path that He wishes me to follow. “Well” I said softly, “with the Lord by my side… things are slowly coming together”. She glanced at her partner and made a face. Then my mom proceeded to tell me that she didn’t want me going to a Christian college because “though the education would be good, the politics of the founder is abhorrent”. In other words, because she and her partner are liberal atheists, she doesn’t like the idea of her daughter going to a Christian college.
I tilted my head and took a calming breath. “If you are judging Christians for the way they act… is that no different from what you say you dislike about evangelical Christians?” I asked politely. Ultimately they backed off and said it was my choice in the end.
But, deep down I feel conflicted. I’m not a “super religious” person in terms of how I live my life. I believe in Christ. I try to model the fruit of the Spirit in my actions. And…. that’s about it. I still identify as a submissive. I still slip up and use cuss words when I’m upset. I’m just me. It’s just that now, since everything happened, I know that having faith to walk with and lean on (especially in hard times) is critical for my soul. I do feel that spirituality is important regardless of what you believe, but I digress.
So, right now I’m searching for solitude. In 10 days kiddo and I will have the house to ourselves and our world will finally quiet down. I will be able to focus on music, movies, and most importantly…. healing. I will be able to make space for being Little and talking aloud to Daddy (because I know he will be watching over me).
And, I will be able to watch sermons, play Christian music, and worship without the fear of judgment and/or criticism. Thank you all for sticking by me and leaving your lovely comments. It means the world. Until next time. x
One thought on “Searching for Solitude”
I think you are handling your mom’s presence with a lot of grace, Penny. She’s there to help, but of course it is hard to live with one’s parent, especially one who is prone to making her thoughts on sensitive topics (such as weight, religion) known. You are doing GREAT.