They say God doesn’t give you more than you can handle…but I think he’s seriously overestimating me lately.
Let’s just start this off by saying I’m not a religious person, per say. I grew up in the Lutheran church, somehow managed to find myself a “nice, Lutheran boy” as my great grandma once instructed me to do. We married in my hometown church, baptized the little monster in the Lutheran church in the town we live in, and are both members of…and haven’t been back.
When you ask me what religion I am…I generally give a standard….”Uh…well…” I do define myself as Lutheran, I guess, but more I say that I’m spiritual. Religion is so fucking fascinating, and as a former English major, I really struggle with aspects of Christianity….like the bible….sooooo.
The point I’m making here is….I’m not a pray-er, usually. For one, I went through a rough patch where I was like compulsively praying: like if I didn’t pray and say certain things bad things would happen. For another, well religion and I have a weird relationship. It can be summed up as I believe in a higher power. Other than that, I’m open to options: like I said, religion is fucking fascinating.
The past…two weeks…have been….
Hard. Exhausting. Bring you to your knees. Off-putting.
I haven’t shared much with people, because I’m not looking for pity and my father is intensely private and a lot of it isn’t easily summed up.
Monday, January 28, I called an ambulance for an unresponsive student in my room: in the first half and hour of a late start day. Then two snow days, which sounds ideal, but also brought me a toddler with strep, and due to RSV at 6 months, fluid filled lungs. Conferences the same week. Then, a long weekend, awesome right? Nope, we ended up driving across the state because my dad was flown out for blood clots in both lungs, and it turns out he had more in his legs and groin for sure, and they patched a hole in his heart. (He’s home now, doing really well.) I missed Monday and Tuesday for school. The day of conferences (Thursday, for those of you who need dates, before we went across the state) my husband had gotten a call that his grandma was in the hospital for the second time in a month. Tuesday morning (the day my dad had surgery for the hole in his heart) they moved her into hospice. She passed Thursday. We’ll be driving to the other side of the state for services tomorrow sometime. Oh, yeah, and because it’s South Dakota, we’re looking at impending weather. To top it all off, my toddler had a stomach bug last night, throwing up for the first time since he was a reflux-y little baby. (I will never look at chocolate milk the same. Ugh.)
Now. This is a lot. In fact, I feel comfortable saying it would bring anyone to the brink. Add in hormones and anxiety, and I feel like I’m being punished for not being faithful.
Which is fucked up. Because in my faith, spirituality, whatever, I prefer to think about the loving God who said, “Love thy neighbors” not the God of the Old Testament who was vengeful and angry.
When G threw up last night, I laughed. My hubby looked at me with…fear, is probably the best word…like holy fuck she’s cracked and I just told him. “Of fucking course he has a stomach bug.” Let’s be honest, icing on the cake of the past two weeks.
But. Let me tell you. I want to believe the whole, “God won’t give you more than you can handle.” I want to believe there’s a reason in the world for the suffering and the fear that we’ve had going on. (Side note, my husband is a rock. Literally, I can’t imagine how he’s feeling. I have six grandparents, long story, and haven’t lost one of them. He now has one left. I don’t think he’s cried, yet. I wish I had his strength, but I’m also worried about him.) I want to believe that after this we’re going to have an easy path for awhile. Because I can’t fucking handle it. I’m not good at fortitude, I’m weak, and suck in emergency situations.
And I need a fucking break.