Carry On


When I wake, the first thing I do is decide that I’m still really tired (stupid AE aftermath). The second thing I do is walk straight to the coffee pot. Third, I sit comfortably in my chair in my home office that has housed me a great deal in the past few years, and I proceed to pray. Then I move into reading a book and hope that I have some time before the big kids persistently tell me, “There’s nothing to eat for breakfast!”


At night, the last few things I do are journal, stretch, meditate, breathe, and go to bed early, because the days usually exhaust me (stupid AE aftermath).


I’ve had a long two weeks. I admitted to Sean that I swear I’ve regressed in all of my therapy as I’ve struggled with my usuals: anxiety, isolation, uncertainty, defensive, questioning others’ opinions of me, sadness, anger, pain, fear, and I’m sure more than anyone here wants to read, because I’m not paying you for therapy …


The last two weeks were shit.


One issue hit me on a Tuesday night with a phone call and it snowballed. And then for the duration of fourteen days, I ran on the cycle of: hurt, scared, cry, work at it, spin, excessively explain myself, get pissed off, and then finally come to that full circle and say, I’m so sick of dealing with this, and I can’t change it. Move on.


The day before, I (stupidly, why do I always challenge the Gods) told Sean, “I really haven’t cried in months. I used to constantly cry on walks or in my car. This is great!”


After the phone call, I cried while I picked at my dinner and the kids played outside. I hated just how hard it hit me. Later, as I sat down to journal with some soft music playing, I realized the song that was playing was one I don’t really like, “Carry On.” I listened a little and smiled at the way I heard the words for the first time, but went to bed sad.


The next morning, I hit the pool. As I swam, my eyes welled up with tears. I wasn’t sure what to do, and didn’t quite know how to pull myself together, so I silently sang, “Carryy ooooo oooo oooo ooo onn carry on carry on,” and kept swimming. It did the trick.


A week later, exasperated by it all, I turned on my internet radio, and the first song that played was “Carry On.” It made me smile. It also made me thank God.


Because also during this time, one of my early morning devotionals spoke to me. It asked the question: What if you always lived life like God had your back? I replied, Easy, I genuinely believe that each day. And I felt God behind me when I kept hearing the song, “Carry On.”


I still have a lot of questions about my life. And Sean and I are back to our deep conversations. We don’t say it, but there’s still a twinge of fear that says, When’s the next shoe going to drop on us (and crush our heads, tornado our house, and burn our belongings)?


The best advice I’ve had for myself for a few weeks now, is: Carry on.


I believe God has my back. As I say those prayers in the morning, while silently drinking that coffee, and as I collect my thoughts in my journal at the end of the day, I know I’m carrying on.


If you feel overwhelmed or beat down, make sure you’re looking around for help. Life in a pandemic is far from easy. Life after AE is uncertain. Living with chronic illnesses is challenging. But if you think it will help you, say those words as often as you can: Carry on.


Maybe somedays it’s all a person can do.


In solidarity,

jstebbs


“If you’re lost and alone or you’re sinkin’ like a stone Carry on May your past be the sound of your feet upon the ground, and Carry on


“‘Cause we are, we are shining stars We are invincible, we are who we are On our darkest day when we're miles away So we'll come, we will find our way home


“If you’re lost and alone or you’re sinkin’ like a stone Carry on May your past be the sound of your feet upon the ground, and Carry on” ~ Carry On by Fun.