We meandered up and down the aisles. There were only a few aisles but still, my sister-friend and I, we mosied. I think that’s what it’s called when you slowly walk around a store and nod and point and say things like “oh that’s cute!”
I’m not a very good shopper-er. Malls make me nervous and anxious and all kinds of sweaty – and that’s just the parking lot. You can pretty much find me crouched in a corner at the Gap, humming while rocking my body back and forth. It’s just too much. Too much stuff. Too many options. I don’t typically fare much better at smaller scale stores, but a tiny bit farer so I tend to steer towards those… but mostly, my computer is my mall. It's safe. It's just me. I have SO MUCH CONTROL when I'm computer shopping. Control over the noise, over the running kids, over the options that THROW themselves in my face, over the millions of scents that all combine into one ranky-smell known as the #foodcourtstank.
Trinkety stores are the hardest for me. Everything feels old and dirty and smelly; like I’m at an estate sale and I can’t help but think about the old lady that died that loved that pretty little flowery tea set. How precious. BUT ALSO, why’d she die? Some bacteria? THAT bacteria ON THIS TEA SET? No thanks. I’ll pass.
But this past weekend, I found myself at a “stuff store” and I was in love. This store was FILLED to the brim with those canvasy things and like antique mirrors and then also, those old fashioned window panes – all of them with words written all over them. WORDS. I LOVE words. And so, the whole thing was like an enchanted forest, speaking and singing to my soul. You guys, I pointed. I never point. And I even said things like “oh I like that” and I actually MEANT it.
As I was doing that fancy thing of mosying, so proud like I had arrived at some sort of womanhood, a monumental coronation into adulthood. I even let my purse dangle, you know like how women do, they let their purses dangle on that spot by their elbow. Gawd, it’s so fancy. I always wanted to be fancy like that, fancy as a purse dangler. And there I was, having my fancy moment, when one specific piece caught the corner of my eye, it was to the upper left of my gaze and it read:
Let her sleep,
For when she wakes she will move mountains.
I’ve ran across this quote a few times this year. And I liked it each time but you know, like for a nursey. I mean, GAWD YES, please let this baby sleep. PLEASE, with all of my heart, PLEASE! each momma prays. I sorta felt like EVERY nursey should hang these words: LET HER SLEEP.
But this time, this time I felt like this was for me. But I wasn't sure why. I was WIDE awake. I wasn't sleeping.
(... OR AM I? Oh my god, I am! I am sleeping. It's called depressed.)
DE-PRESSED. That’s where I find my body, mind and soul as of late.
I’m a fighter. I don’t say that as a good or bad thing. I just am. My initial reaction to anything is to fight my way through it. To figure it out. I do that whole “keep it all together” first - THEN tend to the wounds. I think sometimes this is good. But I think sometimes this means I inflict un-necessary wounds upon myself as I burrow and furrow my way throw thickets and thorns.
And this past year, there was a lot to figure out, to understand, to just “deal with.” And so I pushed and pushed and ran through briars and branches. But deep down I knew I’d crash. I figured it would happen in the winter, when I couldn’t go out and walk and pretend like I was still moving, still fine. It would come when I was physically constrained.
I told sis we would identify when I was no longer pushing my way through; that we’d know when I officially had crashed, when I started to get a pizza butt (my wheat thin ass of fighting would turn into a pizza butt of depression – because it’s always super easy to think that food can fill my empty cup. Always.)
Thing is, we don’t like depression much. For me, I have little energy. I have little desire to engage. It’s a heavy weight that forces me to stop.... everything. All I can do is lay.
I think depression is a stage of grief, right? And well, I mean, grief isn’t in clear concise steps and stages. Grief sorta happens all over the place and in lots of places – grief is loss and even decades later something, somewhere, someHOW might be able to show you that loss and it is grief you will feel.
We can deny our losses. We can get angry that we lost. We can try to figure out ways to regain that loss. But depression is that final realization in the inevitable.
This year, so much deep loss that I am now depressed. I am finally fully aware of the inevitable loss in my life. And it so easy for me to try and push and run but I think that “heavy” feeling is actually the hand of God, telling me he’s right there with me, that he wants to stop time with me, to be with me, to honor my loss. He doesn’t want me “out and about.” He doesn’t want me pretending I’m okay. I think when we’re depressed we become anti-social, anti-do-anything, un-engaged because God wanted it to be that way – for us to come to him. To literally make us UNABLE to do anything but seek him and his healing.
I’ve been asking God the past few weeks what it would look like to heal. Never had I imagined the answer would be to get depressed. To sleep.
God wants me to sleep for a while. He wants me by the quiet of the fireplace. He wants me to sleep and sleep and sleep… FOR WHEN I WAKE, I WILL MOVE MOUNTAINS.
But only, only once he heals.
Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray thee Lord my soul to keep, and heal, and make whole and redeem and restore and renew; like all that. Do all THAT while I sleep, I mean, right?
Maybe you too? Maybe you get that heavy feeling. I think it's a part of grief; of loss. Don't run from it. Don't be ashamed of it. It's just telling you something; it’s whispering to your heart that life is HARD, inviting you into a quiet safe space where all the vulnerable and scared and confused parts of you can rest. Depression is an invitation to sleep.
And then after a good long night of rest, WE WILL WAKE.
And THEN, we will move mountains.