When you feel like you’re falling, she said, steer into the fall. Lean into it instead of away, and you’ll be all right.
–Glennon Doyle Melton
I read this quote the other night on Glennon Doyle Melton’s wonderful blog, Momastery, and it made me tear up. These words struck a note in my lately un-singing soul, and maybe even helped me find a song in there again.
Her post was about the moment when her marriage was on the rocks, and about how Easter taught her resurrection can also happen in relationships, in herself, and in life. My marriage right now is fine. We laugh, we cry, we support each other as much as possible. We know each other’s limitations, we respect each other. We fight, we yell, but we kiss and make up. It’s pretty good.
So her post didn’t speak to my marriage, but it did speak to me. I need resurrection in my spiritual life, in my creative life, in taking care of my corporeal being. It’s an issue right now, when I’m going through a tough time (that really isn’t my tough time, but I’m just talking about how it’s affecting me).
I also need to find faith in people and in their ability to let me lean into them when I’m falling. Because lately I am falling and stumbling a bit, and I need to be reminded that that is normal and natural, and that I’ve picked people around me that are willing to help me by just being there.
This quote reminded me of that :
I read somewhere that God sends us partners who are most likely to help us heal. This rings true to me. It’s just that sometimes the healing is so hard that one or both of the partners can’t take it, so somebody bails, or makes it impossible for the other partner to keep on loving. I understand this completely. Healing is so painful. Thankfully, when we turn away someone who would have helped us heal, God sends us another. I don’t think He punishes us. He gives us lots and lots of tries. God is Forever Tries. I think He sends our healing partners in all different forms, not just spouses. He sends sisters, girlfriends, strangers, authors, artists, teachers, therapists, musicians and puppies until one or several partners stick. But if we want redemption, we have to let one stick, eventually. We have to sit through the pain long enough to rise again.
–Glennon Doyle Melton
Now, I’m not trying to get all religious on you all. But God, or whatever your higher being might be called, or fate, or whatever you think does it for you, has placed people in our lives to make us better, to help us, to get us to a good place.
By my nature, I’m kind of a Pollyanna. I look for the bright side of things, I try to avoid the negative and harsh. I don’t like conflict, but even when there is conflict I look at what the cause is and what good the conflict can bring, maybe a lesson to be learned or a new beginning.
And, when there is something really bad going on in my life, I just take care of it. It’s kind of a family trait: we don’t talk about the bad, we just take care of it.
I guess that can be a good thing, but it’s also a problem. When it’s something that can’t be fixed, when there is no bright side or something to be learned, I kind of shut down. I escape into myself. I don’t discuss my thoughts and feelings with others. For me, talking about the bad things in my life seems narcissistic, even more so when I’m discussing how someone else’s health is affecting me.
Right now I can’t fall back on my Pollyanna ways. This time there is no bright side, no lesson to be learned. There is hope, and that’s what I’m going with. But there’s a feeling of helplessness (there isn’t much I can do about the situation) that makes me angry and afraid, and I find myself doing what I usually do: playing ostrich. Sticking my head in the sand and hiding.
But I’m aware of what I’m doing this time. I guess with age does come (a bit of) wisdom.
Because I’m aware, I’m trying to do it differently. This time I’m going to try to steer into the fall by having faith that the people God placed in my life are here at the right time for the right reason. I need to rely on my friends, my family, my husband. I need to talk. It’s a must that I use those around me as a vent. I’m so bad at that. I smile, I laugh. And I go home with my head brimming with thoughts and words and anger.
So I’m determined to TALK and to VENT, and maybe even to SCREAM with my support system. Friends, family, and this little spot in the world (and other places where I write) need to be my emotional vents. It can’t always be happy, and at some point, if not vented, it will blow.
Thank you Glennon for the wise, wonderful words. I’m going to steer into the fall and use my words to lean in, to help me through the crashes.
And now, onto an interesting French thriller: After the Crash by Michel Bussi.
Just before Christmas in 1980, an airplane traveling to Paris crashes in the French Alps. All die, save one infant seemingly thrown clear of the ensuing inferno.
And that is a problem. There were two infants on the flight, one born to a rich family, the other to a struggling young couple. No one has a good picture of the infants, and neither set of grandparents really had a chance to know the child.
Both claim her. Prior to DNA evidence, both claims may be valid. After a long, dramatic court battle, the struggling family wins, and she grows up as Lily.
Secretly the matriarch of the richer family hires private detective Crédule Grand-Duc to learn the child’s true identity. On the child’s 18th birthday, he is no closer to the truth and is ready to take his own life when he re-reads the original article and something clicks.
Meanwhile, Lily is now a beautiful 18 year-old university student when she hands a secret notebook to Marc, her life-long friend who is broodingly in love with her. At this point, Lily vanishes.
Now many are on a hunt for Lily, as her true identity is coming into focus. Many want to claim this girl, but not all want to save her. And she has no idea.
After the Crash pulled me into its machinations completely. Twists, turns, and new characters cropping up nearly every chapter.
I loved the twists and turns, but I could have done without so many characters. Maybe because it was translated, the abundance of bad — and good — guys overwhelmed me.
But the intrigue! Once I adjusted to each new character, the intrigue held me tight. I couldn’t figure out who Lily really was, and that’s always the best kind of mystery. The ones that keep you guessing right up to the end.
The main characters were all very flawed, a trait that keeps them interesting. The good guys do bad things for the right reasons. The bad guys do bad things for what they think are worthy reasons.
Their flaws and their justifications make After the Crash a perfect read for a long weekend read. Just don’t read it on a plane.
I give it 3.5 stars. Worth the meandering, and well worth the read.