Here comes the sun

How easily we forget the past. Five months into this season of depression, I'm finally experiencing some freedom from the oppression - by practicing skills I've known for 2 years now. I brush the dust off slowly as my therapist reminds me how to bring the sunshine back. Opposite action - throwing myself into the life God has set before me, children, messes and all. Accumulating positives - a scribbled list of gratitude in my Joy Journal. Mindfulness - ignoring my constant, self-refreshing mental to-do list and entering into the present moment completely.

Returning to these practices slants the sunlight back into our home. There are long periods of freedom from sadness and guilt throughout the day. The urge to simply leave, either temporarily or permanently, eases as life becomes less difficult. My eyes are no longer blind to the beauty that surrounds me - the dancing girl on the dandelion lawn infusing my day with yellow; the orioles glistening in the morning sun as they sing to heaven; the twin mama cats co-parenting the little brood of kittens that arrived on Monday. It soaks in, finally. All this joy!

A line from a favorite song floats in - "we went dancing in the minefields, sailing through the storms" - yes, that voyage sounds like our lives. For a season, perhaps we'll walk easy on a safe road. Perhaps the minefield is in the rearview mirror for now.

The children always feel it, the lifting of oppression. They pronounce to the sky above that I am healed! Getting better every day! I wonder if they remember that depression has repeated it's turbulant course through our lives multiple times now. Another thing I've felt guilt over: they are all too familiar with suffering, pain, anguish and torment. Is this because of my weakness and my failures? I have to lean hard into the truth that God sent these children, these specific four, to me to mother, weaknesses and failures and all. It's all been seen by Him and allowed by Him and only He knows what He is shaping these children for. As much as I would love to believe that their lives will be easy, is there such a thing? Is life ever truly easy? I know so many of the house of faith for whom life has been an aching bittersweet experience. I know no one who does not miss someone, long for somewhere or something. How can I expect that my children will be free from desires, from failures, from heartbreak?

They are marked for glory, four baby believers already on the hard path of faith. I pray their journeys are marked with the beauty and sunshine I've been blessed with. Rosy wrote to me this morning, "I had a lot of fun through my life and most of it was with you." I feel just the same - my family is the most delightful blessing I've ever been given.

May you dance freely with no fear of danger today...for He can take away the fear even when dangers still lie ahead.

...when I forget my name, remind me.
We bear the light of the Son of man,
so there's nothing left to fear.
So I'll walk with you through the shadowlands
until the shadows disappear,
Because He promised not to leave us,
and His promises are true.
So in the face of all this chaos,
baby, I can dance with you.
Let's go dancing in the minefields,
let's go sailin' in the storms.
this is harder than we dreamed
but I believe that's what the promise is for.
~Dancing in the Minefields, Andrew Peterson~

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