There's a line in a popular worship song that mirrors my prayer, and sometimes when I have sung that song, the line gets lost amongst other glimpses of humanity's ardor manifested through that song. Today, though, I see clearly that I am loved. Some days it is less clear to me than others. Some days I see how people love me. Some days I have a hard time seeing any love around me. Today, I trust the invisible promise of love from God. Sounds so weird. Some days I scoff at such a statement, but it resonates and reverberates in my heart chambers today.
Today was really an ordinary day. Actually it was a little less than the ordinary day. It's my first day back after Spring Break-- feeling tired, overwhelmed, inadequate, self-conscious, not confident, not outgoing. I just felt blah. The weather today was also blah.
At the school in which I am teaching, I feel really out of place. All the teachers are at least married, most have children or are in the process of having children (One just came back from a maternity leave, I am subbing for one currently on maternity leave, and at least two women are currently pregnant). Stories of daycare, family vacations, sickness traveling around the school and teachers' homes all abound in the lunchroom, and today was no exception. The latest buzz was all of their fabulous Spring Break trips and what fabulous trips they were planning on taking once the school year is over...
I simply cannot relate to most of the people I work with.
I am poor, single, childless, houseless, vacationless, etc. I sit nearly silent at lunch everyday. I sit and think about my work and my students and how I can be a better teacher or at least survive this year and do an okay job. I have a hard time making conversation with other teachers unless it's about my schedule or my students. I feel isolated because hardly anyone knows what to say to me either. I can't blame them, since the street clearly runs both ways.
Only one person even inquired about my Spring Break, which really was okay considering my Spring Break was a bit low on the fabulous scale. I went back home to visit my family, who I haven't seen since Christmas. Sounded like a needed time. My few days there ended with a family feud rehashed and my person completely torn apart. The drive back was beautiful, and I was graciously awaiting my personal space and safe haven again, despite the fact that also meant loads of work to catch up on (what I did not do on my Spring Break despite my intentions) and back to waking up early to be at school and work some more.
But there is hope because I am not crushed by the weight of everything I carry, even though it feels like I could and should be. There is hope because despite all of this heaviness, I keep going and learning and changing. Perseverance begets character. Giving up is not an option because I am learning how to grieve and let go of control when I know I am only trying to manipulate what I can't really control. Within my sauntering steps, I hear faint music that keeps my heart beating steady and my feet moving forward. That music drives out fear, and the melody is a selfless, unconditional, untainted, un-human love--the only kind of love that is reliable. It comes from a reliable, trustworthy source. He never fails those who seek him. He holds us closely when everyone else ignores us. I want to love like him.
My life is vain, yet he loves me.