If you’re like me, it seems like getting sick always comes at the worst possible time. I don’t have room in my schedule to go to doctors, stay home from work, or research symptoms. I don’t have money in my budget to devote to prescriptions, supplements, or doctor visits. And of all the things on my never-ending task list, dealing with this is not something I want to add to my “to-dos”!
And sometimes, that’s exactly why I need an interruption.
In my post, “Burn Down the House,” I shared about my first encounter with lice. Six months after “getting clean,” I found relatives of my first unwelcome visitors … we discovered them earlier this time, but still, I had lice again.
My first reaction was anger. I knew which roommate I got them from. It felt easy to blame her for not taking precautions or telling me she had lice. Admittedly, I did blame her. Why should I suffer for her poor decisions?
The next emotion I felt was overwhelmed. This is a busy time in my life with changes at work, in my health and diet, in my dating world, and in my finances. I already feel chaotic from life every day, and it seemed like no matter what I did right, the outcome was always wrong.
Both responses carry a trace of validity, but neither are 100% true. My housemate (and dear friend) did not know she had lice; she wasn’t maliciously keeping a secret –– she just didn’t know. And there are many things in my life that were going GREAT … candidly, they had nothing to do with my effort. They were a gift of grace from God.
During that second round of lice, I wrote:
Today is Saturday and I had some plans. I always do. But I decided to cancel them all to take care of the lice situation. Today became one of the best Saturdays I’ve had in a long time. The only thing on my agenda was to read my Bible and clean lice paths (vacuum, etc.). Other things ended up happening … a couple short naps, finishing a book that had been on my list for weeks, catching up for an hour with a housemate I don’t usually see, eating dinner at dusk in the backyard, texting my sister, and cleaning my room.
Those are all things I hope will happen each weekend that cannot occur when I over-schedule myself. And they are exactly the things I didn’t realize I needed when I went into this weekend. The housemates who were home today cleaned a lot of the house while I rested. That saved me so much time, exertion, and stress. What a blessing! They reminded me I’m not in this alone.
I so often feel like I’m supposed to be self-sufficient and that will save me from pain and troubles. The truth is, we all face hard things no matter if we do it alone or with other people. What I’m finding is that doing life with other people is not only more rewarding –– it’s more fun! It’s how we were created to live.
Having lice forces me to rely on others. They do a way better job of combing through my hair strand-by-strand than I could alone. And that they’re willing to do it! That’s an entirely other gift. And that they’re willing to do it while listening to me sob and tell all my life’s woes –– that’s another gift!
I’m astounded at the patience and love and grace I’m observing by living in this house … here is so much to learn, give, and receive. One main lesson is rest.
How do you handle interruptions? What have you learned through them?