How Do We Stay Strong Throughout A Series Of Unfortunate Events?

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On Wednesday morning, I woke up in bed alone.  For the first time since my wife and I got married a little over a year ago, I slept alone during the night.  And the night after that, and the night after that, and it will continue to be that way until tomorrow.  As I write this, my wife is out of town with her family to be with her grandfather, who is in the hospital and not expected to make it.  It came as a shock to both of us this last Tuesday evening.  We knew that he was struggling with heart issues and then COVID on top of that, but last we heard before Tuesday, he was actually getting better.  The news completely upended an otherwise normal day, and my wife had to run home from work, pack, and leave with her family.  Due to having no additional room in the family car and the fact that I wasn’t in a position to just up and leave work, I had to stay behind.  Having known Kay’s grandfather for close to five years now, I too was heartbroken and wasn’t sure how to cope.  It was a lot to take in.  The news of impending tragedy was heartbreaking, everything was happening so suddenly, and before I knew it, I was alone at home, wondering how I was going to help Kay after she comes back home.

Between catching COVID, dislocating my kneecap, and now this, it has been an eventful few months.  It certainly doesn’t help that we currently live in a chaotic time, where every day just seems to deliver more and more bad news.  Social media is a cesspool and (I’m just going to say it) a massive factor in causing division and meaningless drama.  Seeing masks on people for over a year has become a norm that leaves me feeling conflicted and sad.  I have a semi-addiction to scrolling through my Twitter feed, my productivity has decreased over the last two weeks, and it feels harder to escape the noise that has just taken such a tight hold on all of us.  Despite all this though, my marriage to Kay has served as a sort of beautiful sanity in an otherwise insane world.  Now though, just as I was really coming to understand that and feel grateful for it, bad news took Kay out of town for a while, leaving a hole at home.

I’m not trying to make this about myself and say ‘woe is me, I’m not happy because Kay isn’t home right now’.  I’m saying that life is, truly, not fair.  It’s not fair that Kay may lose her grandfather, a man who raised her for a while when she was very young and partially made her the beautiful woman she is today. It’s not fair that we’re all still wearing masks and ‘social distancing’ over a year after the pandemic began.  It’s not fair that I contracted the virus myself and then twisted my leg very shortly after.  It’s not fair that I feel like I’ve had to fight in order to get to do almost anything over the last few months, even being able to go on our wedding anniversary.

Even before the storm that was 2020, I was going through a very rough patch with depression, anxiety, and extremely negative thoughts.  As a Christian, I believe I was being spiritually harassed.  It was some of the hardest months I’ve ever been through.  2020 brought on a whole host of new fears and worries.  The anxiety of managing a new marriage, some left over anxiety and depression from the year before, fear over the pandemic when it was still just the beginning, fear over the growing violence in certain cities over the summer (there were even rumors at one point that rioters were going to come into our area), and then finally 2021 came along and decided to up the ante.  It’s a whole new ballpark, and it has forced me to try and adapt to the ever shifting environment we live in.  The future is more unpredictable now, and it feels like it can only get either better or worse.  Though I have a lot of reasons to believe it can get better and that’s what I hold on to, I get anxious once in a while over how it can get worse.

I realize I packed this particular blog with a lot, but when you spend a week with a lot on the mind, that’s what ends up on the page.  Still, I’m grateful that I can look forward to my wife coming back tomorrow, and as of writing this last paragraph I have heard that her grandfather’s condition is actually slowly turning around for the better (yes, I wrote this in fragments, it has been a hard week).  In the worst of times, the best gets elevated.  In my first Kay-less week, I got to learn what I had/have with her.  I learned how great my friends are when they know I’m going through a rough time.  We live in insane times, but there’s still plenty to be grateful for, and good things can still happen in the future.