This is what long term coping looks like…
Coping with unfriendly news over and over.
Coping with realities of your child’s diagnosis coming to be.
Coping with how all of it seems to envelop every inch of your life.
Sometimes, coping looks like…
Dishes left untouched for day.
Piles of laundry, unfolded.
A house left practically untouched.
Because the simplest task seems too much.
Sometimes, coping looks like stress eating a bacon cheeseburger, large cheesy fries, and a large chocolate shake. Knowing it won’t feel good later, but momentarily it does, so you do it anyways.
Sometimes, it looks like a short answer or a snippy comment to those we love.
Because we don’t know quite how to express the truth of how we feel.
Or we feel guilty.
Or we know that their pity will feel weightier than them just not knowing at all.
Coping comes in waves, with each blow of a reality now shaken.
It looks like tears streaming while binge-watching that Netflix series.
Yes, it’s sad, but you know the tears are coming from a much deeper place than what’s unfolding on the television.
Sometimes, it looks like motivation, a long run, a new project.
But, other times it looks like not wanting to move at all.
It looks like exhaustion.
And still the inability to find rest.
It looks like deep loneliness.
And still a desire to just be alone.
Sometimes it looks like fear, worry.
Someone who can’t just let loose and have fun.
Coping is the business of life where we grieve over and over again.
And no matter how much hope we have, life just never feels quite right.
Coping looks like all these things and more.
But as we cope, and we share our truth, we recognize it’s so much more than a messy house, or an unmotivated moment.
Because coping leads us to release again.
To surrender again.
To recognize our lack of control, again.
At its best, coping looks like falling on our knees one more time,
Begging for mercy, one more time.
And trusting God, one more time.
Today, I cope again.
And then, I lay it at the feet of Jesus.