Come Together: On Celebration & Mourning

There is a lot happening right now, lots of emotions swirling around.

Some people are anxious and terrified of coronavirus. Some people are angry and infuriated by systemic racism in our country. Some people are sad, some people are mad, some people are feeling both, some people are feeling neither.

Responding to both the pandemic and heightened racism is a lot for me to process.

I feel anxious and overwhelmed regarding the pandemic. I feel a righteous anger and undeniably upset about white supremacy.

I believe there is a divine mingling between joy and sorrow.

Growing up, I used to think I had to be happy all of the time. I used to think sadness, anger, anxiety, etc. were bad emotions. But through plenty of therapy and many life lessons, I have come to appreciate my feelings–all of them and for all reasons and seasons.

Maybe it is because of my mood disorder, or maybe it’s just because I am a human, but sometimes in the sweetest of moments I cannot neglect a feeling of sadness and melancholy, too.

For example, leaving my adult job and starting a position at the climbing gym was perhaps the most bold and bittersweet decision I have made to date. I was excited to try something new, to pursue a passion, to leave a toxic situation. But at the same time, I was sad to leave familiarity, to close a chapter, to end an era.

These days, I think there almost has to be some bitterness simultaneously mixed in with sweetness. We cannot fully appreciate the highest of highs without experiencing the lowest of lows. We cannot feel pure delight without knowing utter sorrow.

Will you celebrate and mourn with me?

Advent is a season of hope and expectation: hoping and expecting a Savior to be born, hoping and expecting a King. But it is also a time of longing and craving: longing and craving our Savior to return; longing and craving peace on earth as it is in heaven.

The holiday season can be a time of joy and celebration, but also a time we miss a loved one’s face at the dinner table or around the Christmas tree.

I hope you feel delight in this season, I hope you feel peace and excitement. But if you do not, or if you do not entirely, I hope you know it’s ok to feel sadness, too. It’s ok to feel anxious and to struggle.

Let’s come together. Let’s build each other up, not break each other down. Let’s mend our hearts, heal our pains, and celebrate and mourn together.

The Monthly Update: June

June highlights:

  • I went to the Boho Market at the Dallas Farmers Market with my sweet friend Lauren and my darling pup Jack in tow. The Boho Market includes a bunch of locally made goods from wonderful, local people. It was nice to approach shopping in a safe and fun way.
  • I got in some good quality time with my darling fam bam for Father’s Day and the weekend after. My crazy, cute, high energy nephew Mason turned two and we sang “Happy Birthday” together. And I got to hold and snuggle Mason’s tiny and wonderful, new baby brother, Westin.

June lowlights:

  • As the potential of starting law school in the fall approaches, my stress and anxiety increase. This dream has been a longtime in the making, and I just want to make sure I am doing it right.

This month, I was filled by:

  • Some friends came over for dessert and conversation in the middle of the month. We talked and laughed and drank wine and laughed some more. We dove into some hard topics, like coronavirus and how it’s changed us, systemic racism and what we can do, but handled the conversations with kindness, grace, and transparency. It was the most magical evening, it left me feeling encouraged and empowered.

This month, I was emptied by:

  • George Floyd’s death was a catalyst for a movement that our nation desperately needed: a movement that highlights injustice, brings darkness to light, and gives a voice to the voiceless. I have been encouraged to see my friends support their Black brothers and sisters, but simultaneously heavy-hearted to see the many injustices that are present in our society today. Though my heart aches and breaks for the BIPOC community, I know a feeling of complacency only leads to inaction and neglect.

In July, I am looking forward to:

  • Even though I am late in the game in posting the June update, I was majorly looking forward to Fourth of July this year. And my high expectations were met! I will elaborate more in next month’s update.