After I hit “publish” on yesterday’s post, I surfed the blogosphere and Twitterverse for a while. I love Addie Zierman‘s honest thoughts about talking evangelical, mostly because I’ve not met many other people who also grew up entrenched in the Christian bubble. Yesterday she posted with Sarah Bessey’s synchroblog about “What is saving your life right now?”
I love this question. I needed to be asked this question.
In the existential content of the afterword to his book Christ and Culture, Richard Niebuhr writes about Jesus as our “compresent” companion – “com” meaning “with,” “present” meaning “here now.” Jesus is here with me now. Salvation is ever-present–it didn’t just happen once in an empty tomb 2000 years ago for me to remember every Sunday at church. It happens now.
And I need it. I need saving.
Thursday morning I woke up angry at insomnia, which I wrote about in yesterday’s post. What I didn’t write about was that I snapped at K because of it, which made the minutes between 5:13 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. very unpleasant. I immediately apologized, but we still drove in tense silence to the coffee shop where K caffeinates the world at dawn.
At 6:31 a.m., K sat down with his own Americano at the table next to where I was finishing Neibuhr’s book. “I think this goes without saying,” he said. “But next time you’re mad at the world, can you not take it out on me?”
I have been nasty to live with this week.
So one thing that has been saving me is K’s unfailing patience with me, my moods, and my tears. At least when I lived alone, the people who received the brunt of my moods were in a little box with pixels. And Captain Adama can take those moods, but K doesn’t deserve them.
Transitions are hard. Whenever I move, I have a chart that I keep handy to remind me that the awkward unrooted feelings are normal. Lately I have been thinking that I need a mini-version of that chart for changes like returning home from vacation, changing from the weekend to the work-week, and definitely moving from school year to summer.
Returning home from vacation to my non-scheduled-writing-work-
So on Thursday afternoon, after writing and errands and driving, I stepped onto the mat in the heat of my non-air-conditioned house and began yoga. When I pushed up into DownDog, I began sobbing. Great huge sobs. When I step on the mat, my emotional guard falls down.
I sat down because crying upside down only leads to headaches. I sat on my meditation pillow and felt myself grieve. Grieve for my attitude, for vacation, for lakes in Michigan, for the lightheartedness of vacation, for familiar places, and for grieving the presence of my own anxiety.
When I begin crying on the yoga mat, I know it’s God’s signal to me to let go. Let go of what I’m carrying, the emotions, and the pressure. Let go of the crankiness and accept the fact that I feel adrift. Let the mat ground me. Regardless of whatever else, I am here, now, and I can breathe. So yoga has been saving me by giving me space.
Finally, Coconut has been saving me this week. She hasn’t left my side whenever I’ve been home. On Wednesday, she sat on my lap on the front porch without wanting to leave my lap and explore the great outdoors. That may not mean that much to you, but it meant the world to me.
So thank you, K, Down-Dog, and Coconut.