what you don't see on Instagram
The hospital called and said Gertie is responding really well and they are hopeful that they helped her get over the hump! Hopefully she can come home Friday morning! Thanks for all the well wishing, friends.
I spent the shittiest Christmas of my 70 years just a few weeks ago. On the Fourth Sunday of Advent, in the midst of worship, I collapsed as I strode to the pulpit to preach. Of course, in a small congregation like ours, a majority of the worshippers quickly surrounded me. I assured them I was OK. I even shouted, "This was the best sermon I have written in my 32 years." But, wiser heads prevailed, an ambulance was called and before you know it I was on a gurney heading up the aisle for a ride to the hospital. I left the church to applause. Was it gratitude that the service would be drastically shortened or relief they didn't have to endure my sermon? I spent 19 hours in the ER of a local hospital which was filled to capacity. So, I lay on a bed in the hallway. I had Covid. I had home tested myself that morning, after a night of chills, and the results were negative. I was held at the hospital for my first two infusions. Everything about Christmas services had to be revised and I had to quarantine myself as my family celebrated in the rest of the house. I felt guilty for letting down my congregation and not be a part of the family's festivities. Thanks for posting this, Nadia. It is only partly cloudy, after all. I'm still alive and back in the pulpit!
So many prayers for both you and Gertrude, and a prayer of gratitude for Russ. May we all have - and sometimes be - the friend with the sturdy truck that can carry our loved ones through a storm while they cry.
In the spirit of continuing your work of normalizing these kinds of emotions/responses: My "just one thing after another that felt kinda hard" cloudy weeks have involved ongoing grief, a small kitchen fire in my downstairs neighbor's apartment, and office politics. It culminated in me crying at work, which felt like the grown-up equivalent of crying in class in middle school. (My "relative bravery" was going back to work this week instead of just quitting out of embarrassment.) I'm "getting out of myself" for the next 3 weeks by cat sitting for my first AA sponsor, who was the first to teach me that being of service to others is the quickest way to heal. What a weird and wonderful lifehack we program peeps are gifted.
Nadia, there have been times that my life is so shitty that I call women I sponsor and ask them to tell me their problems.
went to Selma with food and chainsaws this weekend. We were working on a gentleman's home and the three trees leaning on it. He said you have done more than you agreed to do. I said; I did not realize I had agreed to anything but helping. you could tell he was stuck in depression looking at it all not knowing where to start. He did not know how to accept help. When we left he saw everything was going to be alright. Nothing could have made my life better than seeing the difference in him from when we started and when we left. Often people just need a little help in life. love ya Nadia.
Thanks so much for sharing this. Not only is it a wonderful reminder about giving and receiving help and getting out of one's own way, but I felt it nudged me to allow myself to be sad, scared, and needy. All of that is temporary. None of it is shameful. It's just human. You're a gift, and I don't remember how I came across your work or writing over a year ago, but I'm so very glad that I did.
The timing of this reflection is spot on for me. I have been on the verge of throwing a big pity party for myself as I go through chemo for breast cancer. I delete messages for help, have avoided my responsibilities as chair of the outreach committee at my church, etc., avoid calls from friends who take more than they give even when they are calling to say they care. Time for a reset and to figure out what I can do while I keep myself safe and take care of my health.
Sorry, a shiny object side-bar, (always a side-bar) but your dentist words spark a familiar tangent with me, i am down to maybe two small areas that have enuf opposing teeth for chewing, all others pulled or broke or fell out. (don't use your teeth to open shit)(dumb-ass).
I keep telling myself that I am thinning the herd down to the mighty few, but I think I am most anixously approaching a full set of implants.
we can do all things, if the shit hits the fan hard enough.
Carry on nadia, i hope your doggie gets better.
I just came back from a funeral service raising up a beautiful woman who served her community well, was an example on how to do it, and spoke about healing ourselves through service. I love you. 🙏🏼 I don't know how many times now that I have wondered if I know what I'm doing, and then hear you say my heart in Christ. So happy to be here 🤓.
Oh man. I don’t like I-70 on a normal day. But I get it, and I really hope and pray Gertrude Stein can be helped. Keep us updated please. Thank you for this reminder. Take care you.
The Dentist. Oh-my-god-absolutely-and-completely-understand. In solidarity I stand with you on one of the worst places on the planet. Doesn't matter how nice the dentist is, I hate dentist offices. It most likely goes back to the hygienist I had as a kid in the 1980s. Her name was Connie. She wore turquoise eye shadow, bright pink lipstick and had curly hair. I thought she was mean. Really. What kid loves getting that nasty crap fluoride shoved in their mouths on that football mouthpiece type contraption? You're not supposed to swallow the fluoride. Therefore, I drooled... all over the bib that stupid paper bib. Connie didn't like that so she was stern, or at the age of kid, I feel like she yelled. Yeah, I have baggage. I still have to be reminded in any dentist office today that 1980s Connie doesn't exist anymore. Whew.
Anyway... glad Gertie is doing better. We have a cat named Layla - she's 16. She's not well. It's going to take some serious bravery when we have to take her to the vet to say goodbye. My wife's heart will be broken as she has had that cat much longer than we've even been together. I love Layla, but my wife... that's her kid.
I appreciate that we don't have to minimize our bravery. Thank you for that reminder.
And thanks for letting me share my childhood dental office baggage. I have to go to the dentist next week; most likely will need a crown. Bravery is relative. I'm going to hold onto that.
This. Was. Precise! :)
We all do that! We teeter on the edge of emotional catastrophe being caught up in daily minute-to-minute world of self. Serving others, that’s the leavening agent.
Thank you for your honesty. We all have fears/tears in life, but your vulnerability reminds us that it’s not “just us” trying to cope. Prayers for you and Gertrude Stein. 💕
I’m gonna be right-swiping on this one so it goes in my Save file on the app. Along with so many others. Thanks for showing the non-Insta view that is so relatable
Such a powerful testimony about the feeling of powerlessness and overwhelmedness...thank God for friends, and for friends who answer when we finally pick up the 100 lb phone and call.
Thank goodness for friends like Russ! Reminds me of Anne Lamott's wise words that "One secret of life is that the reason life works at all is that not everyone in your tribe is nuts on the same day." Sending lots of love to you and Gertie.