Closing a chapter ..

Endings are complicated. Even if they are happy endings, the feelings of loss can be tough to put your hands around.

I’m in the midst of one of those endings currently.

Over the next week I’ll be ending a job with an employer and trying to figure out what the next step is. This is the first job loss I’ve ever experienced as an adult.

Salient details include the fact that this job wasn’t due to performance issues, or anything personal. It was mostly related to market conditions and an organizational decision to restructure. The severance will allow plenty runway as I try to figure out the next steps for my family and I.

Still.

I find myself processing the feelings and cycling through emotions like relief, sadness, and a shadow feeling of loss that doesn’t match up with reality. It’s so interesting to try to look into the deep of my emotions and try to identify what is actually happening.

I’m trying to stay centered on a couple of facts as I try to figure out career-wise what to pivot into.

  • God is not surprised by this development
  • God knew and knows my responsibilities and the bills
  • God is still God

I’m also trying to figure out how to balance the priorities of a growing family, work, ambition, and rest.

I know that at the end of the day- my biggest challenge will be resting in the strength of the Lord as he works everything out.

Thank you for allowing me to process aloud and I’m sure I’ll be back as I work through all of these feelings.

Fly or Fall.

OFO

Comfort vs. Crutch

I have a child who is raising me as I’m endeavoring to raise her.

Every week there is a new habit or skill learned that leads some revelation that impacts the way I see the world. The most recent realization brought to mind a host of possible implications, but I’m jumping ahead.

My daughter has a pacifier that she has somehow named “doot doot”. “Doot Doot (DD) is something that she has come to cherish. It’s not much but a $2-5 piece of plastic that mimics the very real, life-giving comfort and actions of nursing, but my daughter will often stop crying at the mere mention of DD. She’ll look around, eye’s wide and ask her toddler version of “where” while scanning the room for the promised appearance of DD.

Needless to say, I’ve appreciated the presence of DD on many an occasion. On long car rides, I’ll confess that i’ve handed DD backwards in an effort to quell the cries of a child in distress at the length of transit.

However, the other day, I noticed that the relationship between my daughter and DD had morphed into something a bit more substantial than a source of comfort. Somewhere along the line, my daughter had started to depend on dd as an emotional regulator and as a prerequisite for peace. I didn’t realize it at first, but I found myself disturbed by this, and before I knew it, I was hiding DD from my daughter and making plans for its eventual disappearance.

Somewhere in the midst of this exercise of weaning, I started to wonder if my daughter was the only one in our family who had transformed what started out as comfort into a crutch. It didn’t take me long to start to see the things in my life that I may be forcing to serve a purpose well beyond what perhaps they were intended to. I could see clearly how things like money, job titles, and financial security were trying to usurp the position of something, or better yet, someone, who had the actual power to promise safety in my life.

I marvel at the natural ability of humans to create idols and attach meaning to those things that mimic the truer thing beneath them.

Definitely a #2 situation.

As a father, who is trying to build a strong daughter, it became my goal upon noticing this negative trait to remove DD from this vaunted position and make sure my daughter was able to seek sources of comfort that were legitimate, healthy, and hopefully internal/eternal.

It becomes clear to me that our Father in heaven may have similar feelings when he notices certain things creeping into positions that they were never designed for. They’re removal, although it can feel negative is actually for our own good.

I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to remind myself of this truth if and when God has to prune my life of certain things.

Fly or Fall.

OFO.