She would spin and twirl everywhere she went. She had dreams of dancing on her toes – high up on her toes – fluid with a quiet, elegant grace. Her eyes glowed with it. Her heart could see it. Her muscles craved it.
So she worked. She learned. She stretched. She flexed. She practiced over and over and over again. Every movement – even a simple run to the kitchen – would end with a series of plies’ and a sparkling grand finale.
So beautiful to watch her dream those ballerina dreams.
One day we were outside and my sweet girl was practicing some of her very best moves on a bench that ran around the periphery of our back deck. When she reached the end of the bench, she took an exceptionally graceful ballerina leap that landed her squarely on the “bouncy” part of the deck – right between the support posts.
The clamor created by her dramatic dismount was incredible – it sounded like the whole earth rattled. Birds fled, chipmunks scattered, and her brother collapsed into the best uncontrollable belly laugh ever. I can still hear him now.
The best part about it, though, was that she looked around a little and just quietly said,
“Well … that wasn’t very ballerina-like of me”.
She then turned around, climbed back up on that bench, and went at it again, ignoring the roars of her brother. He seriously just could not stop.
The picture of that memory makes me smile, but it’s her words … those words spoken by such a young girl … that continue to come back to me all these years later.
These last few years of learning to live with Lupus has been a challenge to say the least. By nature, it’s a disease of exacerbations and remissions. Good days, bad days. No rhyme, no reason. I’m thankful for the good days – so very thankful.
But they also leave me feeling torn. As twisted as it may sound, the good days can actually feel a bit cruel sometimes. They allow a glimpse of what life could be. What it used to be.
Who I used to be.
Debi the productive one. The involved, committed one. So strong, so energetic. She was always covered in paint. Or dirt. Or flour. Or all three. There were always extra people at her table. She loved to cook and teach and laugh with them. Debi could always be counted on. She never backed out. Yep, that Debi. I get a glimpse of her. We all do.
But then the sucker punch comes again.
It always does.
It lets you forget about it for a while.
Maybe there’s been a mistake.
Maybe it won’t come back.
Maybe it’s all over now.
Maybe it never really was.
But there it is.
It’s a bully.
So this is the life I live. And I really want to live it well, I do. I have so much to be thankful for. I have some very good days. Yes. So many rich blessings that I don’t deserve.
But I dream of being able to spin and twirl my way through all of this randomness. I dream of being able to accept each new challenge as easily as if I was simply adding a new step to my dance routine. They just add more beauty to the dance, right?
I dream of accepting such a frightening, unknown future with a quiet, elegant grace.
High up on my toes.
Just spinning and twirling.
That’s what I dream.
But reality crashes in with every random flare. Every plan that’s changed. Every time I have to say “No, I just can’t right now”.
And it lands me all over again squarely on the “bouncy” part of that deck.
There’s no elegant, fluid grace with this landing. No, there is not. It’s full of fear. It’s loud. It’s ugly. And … no matter how many times it happens … it’s incredibly jarring. Each time is just like the first.
But God’s right there. He’s waiting for me in my uglies. He’s there ready to remind me. Trust Him. Trust in His hope. Just trust.
And He reassures me … maybe it IS true … maybe now I really can’t. But that’s okay.
Because He can.
So this is how He lifts me back up on that bench over and over again. Keep working on those twirls, Debi. High up on those tippy toes. Head up. Back straight. Eyes focused. On Him.
Thanks for growing with me. ❤
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
This song, “Rest in the Hope” by Karyn Williams, played in my car the other day and the lyrics reached out and struck me for the very first time. Wow. This is me. Take a few moments to listen – maybe it’s you, as well. ❤