Sunday, June 27, 2021

Life Lately: I Can Do Hard Things

Through hardships, to the stars

A few moments ago, I was listening to Shankar Vedantam (host of the Hidden Brain podcast) discuss how commercials from our childhood influence our decisions as adults while vacuuming our living room and half-thinking about slow cooker recipes, and it hit me that I was “back”. I realized that was the first moment in four weeks I was thinking just about myself and something I wanted to do. It was the first time I wasn’t consciously in “go” mode – speaking to someone, hurrying somewhere, managing familial stakeholders, or making what felt like an endless run of important decisions.

At the end of May, I packed a bag in a hurry, unsure what I would find at my destination but confident I had to go after weeks of following the situation from afar. What followed was an intensely challenging run of days. My faith, patience, decision-making, and diplomacy were all tested. Emerging on the other side of it, I’m grateful for God’s healing power, modern medical care, family, church, friends, and everyone who supported us through the past few months. Thank you.

Among other learnings, reflecting on the past few weeks caused me to remember Proverbs 24:10, presented below in the Message translation. If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn’t much to you in the first place. One of my pastors in OAU used to say it wasn't ideal to learn to fight for the first time on a battlefield. Learning trust in God, a good process for making decisions, how to keep your head in a crisis - all that important stuff - should happen before it's required.

That’s enough reflecting for my first day back.

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What I’m currently reading: I’ve just finished Colleen Hoover’s It Ends With Us, a brilliant novel that tackles the difficult subject of (physically) abusive relationships. I’ve often wondered why people in abusive relationships don’t just leave, and this book explores that line of thinking in a beautiful narrative based on real-life experiences. I’d not ordinarily have chosen to read this book but it was picked by my book club and I’m glad I read it.

What I’m currently listening to: I don’t think COVID-19 is going anywhere. The genie is out of the bottle and the nature of this virus is such that we’ll have to learn to live with it. We’ll have to vaccinate as many people as possible, adjust our behaviours for the next few years to smooth out the curves, and then get on with things. This podcast episode, Do we have to learn to live with Covid-19, from The Guardian’s Today in Focus explores this thought in greater detail.

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Have a fab week!

Koye.

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