I walked into my closet. And sat down against the wall. I was officially overwhelmed. And I didn’t want to cry in front of my boys because I knew it might be hard to stop. I predicted it had the potential to be one of those downpours where it didn’t even matter if I had an umbrella. A lost cause. Between the wind and the crazy overwhelming tears coming from all directions, I knew I would be a mess. Drenched. I thought I should just try and be apathetic. Seemingly unphased on the surface but literally crumbling underneath. It’s a struggle. When everything seems to be happening at the same time. Mondays are just plain hard. On the body. All around.
I wake up and feel so exposed, unclothed and vulnerable because I don’t have to push down the feelings and pretend like the painful stuff doesn’t hurt. Not anymore. Outside of the walls of work, I am free to hurt. And be so sad. And pissed. And then damn sad again. My roles quickly change as I kick off my work shoes in the garage and enter the doors of my house. On Monday morning. At 2:00 am. In a few short hours, a healthy eager boy will need to get to school early. I want to talk with him and hug him longer before I drop him off and he walks up the stairs to his first grade classroom. There’s a sick boy that needs me at home. At the kitchen table, he handed me pictures he made for me while I was at work. I love his giving heart. I love that he draws pictures for me when I’m gone. He always wraps them up and tapes them together like a package. I love how excited and proud he is for me to open them.
I want to cry. Because I’m so happy to be home. I hate that I can’t be emotionally available yet. I feel so weak. And tired. Physically and emotionally. Thankfully, I have a husband whose compassion and patience for me overflows, especially on Mondays. Somehow it never runs out. He hugs me. It’s hard to hug him back because I don’t want to fall apart. Yet.
This work doesn’t make piles of laundry disappear. It doesn’t help the stacks of bills get magically paid. It doesn’t buy fancy vacations. It’s perks are few and include a discount that you don’t want to need to use. It’s a job that forces a continual reexamination of my faith in God and humanity. It strongly encourages the necessary prioritizing of what matters most and on some days, it triggers the unraveling of my heart. And as I pick up the string and slowly wind it back up, I feel overwhelmed. For good, really good, like gratitude-that-hurts kind of good. For my family. My home. My perspective. It overwhelms me for the uncomfortable too though. It makes it hard to fit in sometimes, hard to hold my tongue when someone says something so unimportant or worries about something that just doesn’t matter. When you’ve seen the wounded. The raw. The so completely and uncomprehensibly painful. And you wonder how will they ever pick up all the shattered pieces. When everything stops flying through the air. And you hope and pray that they have people that will stick around long enough to help them learn to fit all of the pieces back together. Somehow. The most important pieces. When I’m home, its difficult to just turn off my thinking and my feelings. I think if its ever too easy, or too comfortable then I will leave. Just quit. Some things should never be easy.
Today, instead of unraveling completely, I gave myself some time to process. Just to feel. On the ground in my closet. Then, I took a shower. A long one. Then, I made a promise to those I’ve worked with and myself that I will love abundantly, forgive constantly and appreciate the moments with those I missed all weekend. I will try my hardest. Because I’m here now. Today I owe the ones in front of me my focused yet imperfect, unconditional and overwhelming love. They get to have all of my Monday feels.