Did we ever think we’d come through a thing like this? Did we ever know that our lives would be changed in the ways they have these past weeks (months?!)?
I come from a family touched by war. Having fled their home country in their early twenties, my parent’s life has been a continual adventure. Any time we look back as a family, my parents are still surprised that they did everything that they did. They catch themselves asking, “Can you actually believe we did that?”
My story has been one of equal surprise. But more along the lines of opportunity. When my family and I look back on the life I’ve been given, we ask, “Can we actually believe I got to do all of that?”
Changed lives come from both immense strife and immense blessing. Neither is devoid of the other. My parent’s journey is not monopolized by strife, and my story is not one of pure bliss. The sun shines on everyone, and the rain does not discriminate.
What is common to both my parents and my story is the fact that our experiences have framed us, and continue to frame us. We are hyper aware of all the aspects of life that seem to be asking us to change.
Experiencing drastic change comes with its own set of stripes. Someone who has walked through an extreme of life as a way about them. Enough of the experience of COVID-19 has passed that some of us can begin to reflect (even as we may still be in it). We can discover something about ourselves by seeing how we have naturally responded.
Maybe we enjoyed the uncertainty? Maybe we yearned for control? Maybe we are just now getting used to what has happened? Maybe we adapted by day #2? Maybe we adapt well, but parts of us still don’t accept that everything that happened is our reality? Maybe our emotions were heightened? Maybe we went numb? Maybe both depending on the day? Maybe we see ourselves, and our lives through a new lens? Maybe we feel like the only thing that’s consistent in this world is our own perspective?
The answers to these questions are our own, and there isn’t any right or wrong one. There is, however, the discovery of more of who we are. The opportunity here is that if we learn more about how we naturally respond (both to strife and to blessing), we might be able to better understand how we respond in relationship. With greater understanding maybe we can lean the change in our lives towards Love, and experience grace in the midst of it all.