Upward, onward, forward and often, backward. This constant process of reaching, of moving and of trying. A never ceasing, unending, constant sense of chaos. Looking for answers to long asked questions. Ever searching.

Like the cattails that sway in the breeze and never sit still. Are our hearts as we search them in the midst of pain.


I rarely talk about it. In fact I was reminded as I shared with a precious friend just this weekend how little I do talk and contemplate the turns in life that have come my way. It’s not that I haven’t let them mold me, challenge me, grow me. But, have I spoken to free myself from the fear? Have I spoken so that maybe someone else might gain strength? Have I spoken to find my own voice?

Have I spoken?

I live with daily pain, the kind that takes your breath away so immediately your chest feels like it’s caving in. It hurts to breathe. Yes, read that again. It hurts to breathe. The very thing we take for granted, that sustains our life, brings me pain. That’s the thing about pain. We surprise ourselves on what we can truly endure.

This can also bring me much fear. Not fear in the sense of I can’t catch my breath (although I’ve had a few of those moments), but fear in losing time. Once you have tasted the sweetness of the brevity of life, oh how you want to rewrite the story! I desperately yearn to be reaching.

For more.

Reaching inward, yes. Rearranging my daily activities, responsibilities and priorities so that I honor this life I was blessed with, again.

Reaching outward, yes. Seeking to build a holistic support system around me, calling out for help when I need it.

Reaching upward. To the God who allowed this all to happen in the first place? Not so much. It’s a constant tension to reach out. There’s a cycle of doubt which creeps in, fear takes over and I cave. Like the breathe caught in my chest, is the love I offer my God.


Rather than look up, I look backward at what could have been, should have been, on what I had planned. The “if only’s” choke out and I gasp for air again. This time, not because of a clot in my lung, but a clot in the relationship I have with my Father.

I reach. I grasp. I struggle to see His face, to hold His Hand. As I reach out, I find it empty, soaked with tears of grief. Of moments put on hold, memories missed and time lost. There I am, reaching backward once again. I know this path.

What will it take until I learn to no longer look backwards?

Perhaps that’s the point of the pain in the first place.

To trust.

To embrace this clinging, breathing, calming, moment by moment life of rest. That’s where my Father is, waiting for me, in our relationship together. Calling me to come.


Then the breeze blows, the wind moves and I feel His touch again.

This time, I reach up.

6 Replies to “Reaching”

  1. Oh my dearest friend. The reaching up…’s all we have! That’s where we find the shelter of His grace. The only thing that can sustain.

  2. I can’t even imagine the daily burden of physical pain. I can, however, understand the realization of the brevity of life and wanting it so deeply to be lived well, in honor of He who granted it to us. Blessings upon you my sweet sister. When we allow our life’s pain and joys–all things–to both drive us to our knees and lift our hearts up to God, then we are exactly where He wants us, and can do the most with us. Love you. Terri

    1. Terri, isn’t living our lives for the one who granted it to us in the first place what our life is all about anyways? I know that’s your hearts desire, as it is mine. Sometimes when you want something so much, you try too hard. But having it all humble us to our knees is necessary, but so welcome. It’s like a relief, of finally letting go. You are so right, it’s in this state our God can use us the most! I am so thankful for you. Love ya back!

  3. I can relate to this post in so many ways – especially when it comes to living with daily, physical pain, although there are times more recently that I have started to feel better. Your writing is real, honest, heartfelt and soulful and gives me pause to think about my own journey and where I hope to be, go, learn. Thank you.

  4. Sara, I know exactly what you mean. With the recovery from blood clots and their aftereffects, you do eventually get stronger and better. For some of us the road is littered with side effects, med change and constant upheaval as we struggle to manage our own self care, and perhaps the care of others we often tend to. I’ve lived with constant pain for a variety of reasons, the DVT’s and PE’s are just the most recent stop on this journey. I am so glad you’ve stopped by again. Thank you so much for your words about my writing, it reflects who I am and what life has taught me. That’s the thing about journey’s, we all have them, heading in places we hope to be, go and learn. Peace to you.

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