I like the illusion that I'm in control of my life.
Most times the regular routines prop up this myth: get the children out the door and off to school, do laundry, housework, shop, visit a friend, go to the library, prepare meals ... vibrant, purposeful activity shapes my day and my sense of control.
As I write this, I'm convalescing from surgery. Humanly and medically speaking, I've now done everything possible, sacrificed every last bit to ensure that breast and ovarian cancer are not in my future. The prolonged weakness and pain took me by surprise - I'd forgotten what even a "minor" surgery does to the body. No housework, no driving, no shopping; just me, the sofa and my thoughts. No distractions. No escape.
Right now even the internet is not my friend. Google "surgical menopause" and the words "abrupt", "premature aging", "osteoporosis", "a shell", "afraid of change", and "anger" unscroll in a litany of
Issues that I believed I'd dealt with, surrendered to God, started poking their heads above ground, like resurgent weeds. Why must I face these hard choices and their consequences? I had followed all the rules, lived a good girl life, no smoking, no drinking, no drugs, a healthy lifestyle. Why must I pioneer this course in our family? I'm a terrible pioneer. In a melodramatic moment I told Nate I felt like a punching bag - just as I'd reached equilibrium and stopped swaying after the events of four years ago, the universe reached out a casual hand and punched my life again. What next?
Now I am aware that the appropriate mature Christian response is not "Why me" but "why not me." I must also confess that at times the mature Christian response is long in coming. I'm not sure it can be hurried. God is bigger than my anger, my questions, my fears. Rationally, I know God works his own purposes for His glory and our good, but emotionally I think frankly that I could do a better job running my life at the moment. Instead of building up my soul with unpleasant and permanent choices, I'd choose to build up my soul with some unexpected blessings like a trip to Europe, a four bedroom house, children who obey me at least two thirds of the time, and a landscaped yard.
I'm only partially kidding.
At the same time, I realize how ridiculous it is to expect that I could control my life in a positive way when I can't get through a day without losing control of my temper.
Dear reader, this is a more honest post than I usually allow myself. It's where I'm at on February 17, 2013.
I cannot know Why. I can only learn to know and trust Who.