I think I’m having a midlife crisis, or maybe I’m just a bit crazy, or maybe both. Nothing seems to satisfy this longing in my heart. This emptiness. For the first time since I can remember my calendar is not busting at the seams with activity and no one is expecting me to be anywhere. I find myself wandering around the house aimless from time to time wondering what to do next.
I’m waiting for the next thing.
I have no idea what the next thing is, but I’m standing at my window watching for it as though it holds the key to saving my life, or at least my sanity.
I thought I might travel once the kids were out of the house, turns out I’m not cut out for weekend jaunts. I don’t recover like I used to. I find packing the excessive amount of necessities I need for forty eight hours stresses me out more than relaxes me. I’ve never learned how to pack light. I drag multiple suitcases filled with way more stuff than I’ll probably ever need, but, I have to bring it, you know, “just in case.”
I thought I would remodel the house or something in these midlife years, but I’m pretty sure I’ll hate the mess it makes so, that’s out. Is it too weird to move to the college town where my kids live and follow them around? Why can’t we just agree to be one big happy family under one roof forever?
I’m not handling these empty bedrooms well.
I hear the whistle of the wind outside when I sit on the couch in my outdated living room; has the sound of it always been there? Our house was always a buzz with activity before so I never noticed.
So, in my distress, I turn to the Lord and pour out my lament. Where else can I take all my frustrations and fears? No one else cares like He does. Well, your momma cares, but since mine is with the Lord, He gets a double dose of me. I would apologize for that, but, after reading Psalms, I see David was as whiny as me and God loved him, so, I’m pretty sure He’ll keep loving me too.
Day after day I cry out to God, “What do you want me to do with my life now?” And day after day I hear….
Nothing, crickets, nada.
My house is empty.
My mom is gone.
My dad is happily remarried.
All the things I thought I would be doing right now…I’m not doing.
I feel unneeded and sometimes unwanted.
And still God says nothing, so I wait.
Waiting for instruction, waiting for direction, for purpose and for healing… anything.
Speaking of waiting, have any of you ever spent any time in a waiting room with a sick child pining for a nurse to call you back only to wait again in the examining room for the doctor? And if you have, have you ever said to yourself, “I’m so glad to be sitting here waiting, there is nowhere else I’d rather be, this is so great to just sit and wait.”
If you are a soul that loves the wait, I’m pretty sure we won’t be best friends.
Waiting makes me pace the floor, figuratively and in reality.
Waiting makes me frustrated and sassy.
I don’t like it.
It seems the good Lord knows this and has decided I need to grow in this area, so here I sit in the waiting room of my life.
And I’m not happy about it.
I’m trying to be so careful not to fill my days with meaningless activity, I really want my time to be used wisely. BUT, he didn’t get my, “I am bored,” memo so here I am on a weekend dusting the house and looking out the window waiting for life to come barreling though my front door and fill me with purpose.
Yes, that’s what missing these days, purpose.
What is the purpose in all this WAITING?
What could God possibly be doing?
He must’ve forgotten how much he NEEDS me to be out there helping him.
But, no, he tells me in his word he never forgets me, he knows the number of hairs on my head.
So why all the waiting?
I don’t have an answer, maybe I’ll get one sooner or later, but I bet it has something to do with obedience. Obedience and probably some issues that lie deep within my heart he knows I need to work through. But, it’s easier to keep “busy.”
It’s hard to stay put when it hurts, it’s hard to rest when it’s uncomfortable.
The Lord has brought me so far, but loss and loss and more loss has left me deeply wounded. In my zest to be past all of this hurt, I run on and on to the next “thing.” It’s much easier to HIDE and SUPRESS those painful feelings when you’re too BUSY to think about anything except what’s in front of you at the moment.
I wish the Lord would give me a map or a sheet of instructions of what I’m supposed to be doing right now, wouldn’t that just be helpful? Then I would get up each day, look at the list and know I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing. It would be so much easier.
But, where’s the relationship in that?
No reason for communication when I could just get out my handy dandy list and follow along for the day.
So, here’s what I’ve established for this “I have no idea what I’m supposed to be doing” period of my life.
I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing.
Brilliant, huh? You may have been hoping for an insightful answer, but this is all I’ve got.
I’m going to keep praying and lamenting until the Lord shows me what’s next, or until he gets so tired of hearing from me he moves me on to the next season of life.
I may not like all of this waiting and feelings of purposelessness, BUT I am going deal with it. As a matter of fact, I will deal with whatever emotion or unhealthiness he brings up out of this broken heart.
And while I’m sitting in this waiting room of life, I guess I’ll clean my house or bake cookies or something.
“They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up on wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31