A Joyful Morning

You ever have one of those days when after a storm in your life has passed, you’re finally overcome with an overwhelming sense of peace? Almost like God and nature just wrapped their arms around you and hugged you until you had no choice other than to smile again? The last couple of days have been like that for me. Wandering around the farm, grinning, and counting my blessings.

There’s this pressure in the spring time to hurry up and get the next batch of baby chicks, to rush to get seeds started, and to mend pasture fences in a timely manor. Farms, homesteads, and gardeners are in a race with the seasons until harvest time. This winter has been especially challenging for my family, but the sun is finally out again. The decay from winter is seeping nutrients into the soil of the forest and new life is springing into motion. The process is as humbling as it is healing.

I myself have been fighting with time to overcome the trauma and decay that we have endured. I have been searching for my peace of mind and the harder I push, the longer it takes. One moment I think I’m feeling like my old self and the next, like a sneaky final frost… something will trigger that overwhelming feeling of terror that I had when I found the hooded stranger standing in my bedroom. I’m starting to learn that healing and happiness is an awful lot like slow feeding fertilizer. The damage has been done and it will take a while for me to bloom again, but I can enjoy the sun while it’s shining.

In the last couple of weeks I have struggled with depression, hypervigilance, insecurity, flash backs, and PTSD. I have blamed myself and made lists of things we can implement to make us safer. I’ve had nightmares that even kept my husband up late into the night with concern, and I’ve had to help Nikolai through nightmares of his own. Then out of nowhere, like a spring rain I almost feel normal again. I’m able to smile and to laugh again. I embrace feeling that way and hold on tight. Sometimes it lasts for a day or two, sometimes just a couple of hours but it’s a wonderful glimpse of what I know is to come.

I had to read the police report over the phone to the insurance company. It sounded easy enough but it ended up being a detailed retelling of the events of that terrible night through the eyes of the arresting officers. They mentioned that my hands shook with fear as they were speaking to me. That I told them over and over again how afraid I was for our lives. They mentioned that both Nikolai and I were traumatized. As I read it, I found myself stumbling over their words and choking back sobs.

Later that night a brand new furry of nightmares began. It left me getting a total of 6 hours of sleep over the length of 3 days. My eyes were bloodshot, I was angry all over again, and back to feeling depressed. It took five days from the moment I read the report to feel the sun on my face and to find my smile again. I went to church with Rob even though I didn’t want to go and hadn’t been to church in a long while. The pastor whom I had never meet, handed me a Bible verse that I kept in my pocket. I’m sure I gave off the worst impression but the verse was about hope and healing. It was exactly what I needed and it took my breath away. It was another beautiful reminder that this season won’t last forever.

Back when I was mostly bedridden, I learned that the best way to find joy was to create it myself. A quiet moment stolen to sip on a hot cup of tea and listen to the birds sing. Taking some precious time to lean against a fence post and hear the sound of my horse thoughtfully grinding the hay left dangling between his lips. A hot bath full of bubbles, my favorite scent, and a good book did wonders for my mental health on a night when I was in too much pain to sleep. When I can’t feel joy naturally, I know the recipe to create it.

It will probably become more challenging when my husband leaves for work. He will be gone for a couple of weeks. He has been the glue holding me together on my roughest days. It won’t be much longer now until he has to return to help the life-flight helicopters and airplanes so that they can continue flying people to major hospitals. His job matters and we make sacrifices as his family so that he is able to serve those who need him most. I’m not looking forward to his departure but I know that we will be okay.

This past weekend I visited one of my best friends and she loaded my car up with enough plants to jump start the garden of my dreams. I filled the planters on my porch with stunning cold hearty bulbs. The sun was shining as dirt found it’s way underneath my finger nails, smeared across my arms, and Georgia clay stained my blue jeans. I was humming to myself, grinning, and completely filthy. Yet there it was… happiness again.

“Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” Psalm 30:5

Nikolai on a beach in Florida

15 thoughts on “A Joyful Morning”

  1. I’m guessing that what you are experiencing is pretty typical of someone who has been through a traumatic event. I honestly have never experienced anything that scary. I’m not a licensed therapist, but my gut tells me that you approach this the right way. By writing about it, you are the one taking control—not letting the event overpower you. I commend you for your bravery and wish your family the best.

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  2. Well written and from the heart! So glad the clouds are lifting and you are seeing God’s sunshine through the clouds! Love you, dear! You are an inspiration to me!

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  3. I don’t know the backstory here, nor do I need to. It sounds like you’re doing your best to get back to balance. I like the imagery of clouds lifting, sunshine, and digging in the dirt. New growth is good.

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    1. I’m cleaning and multitasking tonight so forgive me for making one last statement as I mulled over what you said about not needing a backstory. I hope that you don’t feel obligated to read or comment on anything I write just because I write on yours. The backstory on this is horrific, it’s the post before this one. It’s a mother’s worst nightmare but that’s beside the point. Talking about it has helped some, writing about it has helped so much more. I think it helps me heal to organize my thoughts. So yes, new growth is good and hopefully as time goes on I’ll have better days moment by moment. That was basically the point of this. To be able to feel happy again a little at a time until hopefully I feel whole again. Anywho if you felt obligated to read don’t stress, and if you didn’t wanna pry and that’s why you worded it that way… then the backstory is called “The night I had to save our lives”. 💋

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      1. Thanks for this explanation. I understand about organizing your thoughts with writing. I do the same thing, sometimes it’s the writing of the post that I need so I don’t publish it. I only read and follow bloggers who I find interesting and sincere and clever, btw. And I don’t always comment on what I read. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about blogging it’s that I have to set limits on my time. Blogland is infinite and available 24/7– if you let it be.

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      2. Well I appreciate that you spent your time on mine! I think the best part that came out of posting what happened to me is the fact that I was able to be introduced to quite a few other people who ended up having similar situations. Which at the time seems really crazy because what happened to me was quite unbelievable, but honestly it was like somebody rubbing a salve over my wounds. I feel rather blessed by this Community

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