There are days when I don’t want to get out of bed or play with my kids or put on real clothes. My mind feels empty and real conversation feels far too hard. I wake from a daze and find myself giving the kids a bath or reading books or playing marbles and I wonder, “How did I get here?”
There are days when I can’t sleep at night, where thoughts torment me, and I find myself huddled on the bathroom floor, weeping and wishing life didn’t have to be this way.
Nights are filled with Zoom calls, and deadlines feel all the more impossible to meet.
This is quarantine life.
I’m a working mom with no hours during the day to get work done, a woman of color with no physical community to grieve and mourn with, an introvert and an internal processor, who probably bottles up far more emotion than I should. But one day passes and another day comes, and everything starts all over again.
And then the guilt creeps in. I love my kids more than anything in this world. So why am I so impatient with them all the time? Why can’t I just put the deadlines on hold and enjoy the moment? Yes, we’re still in quarantine, but it can’t be that hard to have fun around the house? Shouldn’t I just be grateful to have a house in the first place?
I stare at my body and struggle to see the beauty. Four months with shelter-in-place stripped away all of my new year’s resolutions to better care for my health. But I also fear going outside. Our city has one of the worst positivity rates for COVID-19 in the country, and my son has respiratory issues. The risk is just far too great. But what mom really works out at home? I get one minute into an exercise, and my baby girl demands I hold her. Or it’s nap time. Or it’s lunch time. Or all that movement has upset my bladder and now I need to use the restroom because birthing two kids will do that to you.
My prayers have become smaller lately too. I’ve spent months praying for justice, for the healing of our nation, for systemic change, and for hearts and minds to be changed. Nowadays, I pray for sleep, for one foot to step in front of the other, to make it through each day. Days are not measured in terms of success but by moments of mercy and relief — by those small, precious moments where I can smile and laugh and forget the troubles of the morning.
Tears are ever ready to flow these days. The tiniest altercation on a good day can suddenly make me feel enraged. I’m exhausted by my own emotions and the weariness of my own heart.
But I’m still here. I’m still breathing and fighting and choosing to make it through another day.
The Lord is my Shepherd, even though I am still feel left wanting. The Lord is my Peace, and it is only because of Him that “in peace, I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8). I might not feel like I’m doing anything great these days, but I can keep choosing to cast my cares before God and commit to sleeping and waking on repeat.
Sometimes, that is enough.
I can keep choosing to cast my cares before God and commit to sleeping and waking on repeat. Sometimes, that is enough. -@drmichellereyes: Click To Tweet