It’s 7am and I’ve just finished my second cup of tea. This isn’t news really – the same thing happens every morning and every morning those cups of tea feel like magic.
It’s school holidays here. Dave and Dan are at an Easter conference – Dave is drumming in the band and Dan is in extrovert heaven seeing lots of kids his age and getting to play and chat all day long. I’ve appreciated how well Mikey and Jemima are getting on (this is quite unusual!) and for a big change in Mikey’s ability to be trusted to play sensibly and not put himself in danger. He’s only chucked a few things out of the bedroom window!
Depression has really knocked me in the last few months. It’s an obnoxious illness which chips away at all the good things in life. A change in medication has done me a lot of good. Counselling sadly didn’t do me any good at all, except that I learned to assert myself and say, “I don’t think this is helping”. I’m currently at a stage where I would say I am recovering from depression – I’m not in the depths but not completely well yet. I keep having to remind myself that I still need to be careful and do the things that aid recovery and not beat myself up for the things that remain tricky. A course at church for those with mental health problems has been absolutely brilliant and very well timed.
I envy the people who, after a period of suffering say, “it was such a hard time but I never doubted God – I knew he was caring for me and really sensed his presence”. The most painful part of the last six months (and time leading up to a diagnosis) has been the complete absence of faith and the complete absence of God. I suspect my faith will never be quite as straight-forward as it was before. I have a lot more questions, a lot more doubt, a lot more brokenness and my map of faith isn’t showing me a straight path any more. But you know, Jesus gets under your skin. Even when I’ve wanted to give up and I’ve wanted it all to be nonsense (and gosh I have), Jesus’ goodness is hard to ignore. That’s what I hold on to and I have to hope he’s holding on to me.
These things are hard to admit when previously I’ve been someone whose faith was characterised by certainty and Truth with a capital T which drowns out all other voices. It’s hard to know where to belong – I’m neither conservative enough nor liberal enough to quite ‘fit’ anywhere. For some of you this may be very disappointing to read – you may feel I’m letting the evangelical side down, but for others, I know you’ll read this and nod in recognition.
I’m not the finished article and while that’s scary it also makes for quite an exciting journey ahead. As always your prayers and wisdom are appreciated. I’m hoping to be back here more regularly (once a week?) so I’ll be more able to engage and respond to comments and emails.
It’s probably time for another cuppa – fancy joining me?
ps – if you used to follow my old alicecrumbs blog PLEASE would you delete it from your feed reader? The domain no longer belongs to me and has been taken over by someone posting unsavoury things. I am so sorry if you’ve been upset by it – please know that it’s nothing to do with me and unfortunately out of my power to change it.