I was trying to decide if I had anything to write about this morning, and I had decided that I had nothing. While I was browsing through my reader, I found a post by the lovely Good Day, Regular People about a word that is intensely personal to me – Hope. It’s a blog relay started by Melanie Crutchfield and I find that I can’t NOT participate with this one. Here you go.
There are few words in my vocabulary that are as personally meaningful to me as hope. In one week, it will have been exactly 3 years since I lost my job, in the new stages of pregnancy, and in a state of confusion and fear that was completely new to me. Some days it feels like it’s been longer; some days it feels like just yesterday.
I remember lying on the couch in that large, broken-down house in Anna, trying hard to keep the smallest amount of food in my stomach, trying hard to ignore the smell that was left behind by the previous tenants. I needed to find a job, but I was heartbroken. What was out there for a pregnant children’s minister during the recession? I was broken, anyone could see it.
I felt helpless. I felt abandoned. I felt as though I had done something to displease the God I followed.
I wasn’t sure God existed.
I remember scraping my pride off the floor and asking my husband to consider the options to leave the area. He chose to move us up to Oklahoma, to my family who welcomed us without question with open arms. We spent a winter with several blizzards in a 5th wheel camper-trailer, with my burgeoning belly and boots that my husband would have to put on for me.
But through it all… hope.
I can tell you exactly when the first faint rays of hope began to shine for me. Was it when I sat pouring over bills at that tiny camper table, my belly not quite able to fit underneath it? Was it when my mother would buy us groceries every week? Was it when my grandparents moved into the 5th wheel and gave us their house to put the baby in? For a year.
It was on April 5, 2010.
After a labor that everyone said was botched from the beginning.
I held that child in my arms and I heard almost audibly, “I have not forgotten you. See? I have not forgotten you.“
I still cry when I think about it. When we saw that “pregnant” sign on July 31, 2009, we felt as though we had just been thrown a curveball that we couldn’t handle. We spent the next 18 months trying to get back on our feet. Even though everything didn’t straighten out overnight, we received hope in the darkest times.
Hope is more than optimism. Hope is something greater, in the midst of the darkest moments. You don’t know how everything is going to be okay. You don’t know if everything will actually BE okay.
But you hope. You choose to believe that it will be.
You choose to cling to the glimmers of light that shimmer around you, even if no one else can see them.
You choose to hope. Even if it’s crazy. Why? Because it’s all you have left to do.
Pass along the torch of HOPE. Write something. Share it here, share it on the original post and link up.
I’m looking forward to reading each and every one.