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The Unlikely (and Unwanted) but Wise Companion: Discomfort

“Approaching God always requires letting go.” My devotion found me in a week of discomfort. Something was amiss; I couldn’t quite place it. But Friday revealed the source of my anxiety. 

It’s Mother’s Day weekend;  I wasn’t expecting sadness to companion me. It’s been 10 months since the tragedy, and after the hard work of trauma therapy, I thought I was past it, but as my counselor says, “You don’t get over, you work through.”

As I turn to God, He’s faithful to gather me in His arms and give me what I cannot conjure in this difficult season: space, silence, comfort. 

Completely unnatural, I’m learning to keep company with this companion of lament. Taking the posture of a learner, curiosity keeps me open to the covert ways grief guides me into uncharted waters.

It’s uncomfortable, the lifeboat jostling over the swelling waves of grief, but I detect a break in this darkness ahead in the distance.

Sitting with discomfort is foreign to our modern mindset. With so many instant distractions at our fingertips, we succumb to a buffet of anesthetizing delights: scrolling, checking, posting, watching, eating, and drinking. But, 

Discomfort is not the villain she’s portrayed to be. 

Discomfort, a teacher and friend, trains and mentors. When I allow her a seat at my table, I open myself to ancient wisdom.

Growth and comfort never co-exist. Ginni Rometti

Sit with discomfort? She doesn’t seem friendly at first, but I’m discovering her hidden treasures. 

  • wisdom
  • solace
  • gratitude
  • generosity
  • compassion

These are a few of the gracious gifts discomfort bestows.

A wise teacher, discomfort leads me to reflection and introspection. My inner world often chaotic and crowded, I push past the yuck and seek solace in her presence. Allowing her to inspect, she slowly reshapes my thoughts, and I gain perspective. 

This Mother’s Day, I understand but refuse to own the expectations of well-meaning people. I smile and make well wishes but allow myself space to sit with these feelings, giving them a voice. It won’t be like this forever as I yield to her transformative work. 

loss, discomfort

So, whether you find yourself embracing the joy of little fingers wrapped around yours, small arms around your legs, or the grief of an empty chair at the table, find solace as you simply wait and watch.

Whether in moments of boredom, times of grief, seasons of despondency, or degrees of loneliness, take a few moments to sit with this unlikely companion. Ask this wise mentor what she has for you, and see what bubbles to the surface of your soul.

A ship is always safe at the shore, but that is not what it is built for. Albert Einstein

As we close, I offer this Mother’s Day prayer, designed to create space to find perspective. 

For the Mother in the throws of diapers and bottles,
The Mommy making lunches and drying dishes,
The Mom wiping tears and teaching virtue,
The Momma folding piles of endless laundry,
The Mom rocking a sick one, hot with fever,
The Mommy enduring sleepless nights,

The Mom up late with processing teens—
Emotions on sleeves,
The Momma who feels like a taxi service,
The Momma holding her, breakup after breakup,
The Mom watching her children grow too fast,
The misty-eyed Mom, hugging her college-bound teen,

The Mom juggling adult children’s needs,
The Mom who hears, “I’m questioning who I am.”
The Mom at a graveside; it’s been 3 years.

The Mother working to make ends meet,
The Momma doing it all alone,
The Mom cradling her child
After a devastating diagnosis,
The Mother who lost her baby
Before seeing his sweet face,
The Mom mourning the loss of one leaving too soon,

To Mom’s everywhere, in all seasons,
Enduring all circumstances.
Never underrate your gifts or sacrifice.
Don’t sell yourself short,
Thinking others have or do it better,
Or worse.

Don’t look around the room in comparison.
You’re a special Mom with a unique story.
Steward what’s yours with love and grace.

Parenting

Seek the Lord, allow Him space.
He will give you what you need.
His mercies are new each morning.
Gifts with your name on it.

There’s one mercy we seldom desire,
Discomfort; she’s our secret friend,
The kind who tells you what you need to hear,
Without catchy phrases or clever expressions.

Sit quietly and listen; a wise teacher is she.
You’ll find a strange strength emerge
From the dark, soft places you open to her.

Now, God bless and keep you.
God grant you wisdom and perseverance.
God make you lie down and sleep
In His sweet peace.
God grant you strength to rise and rise again,
As you sit with discomfort,
Allowing her transformative work
In the deepest places and most empty spaces.
Amen

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Chiquis G.

    So true and beautifully said! Thank you KC for your insightful words, specially that of “discomfort” and “comparison.” How seldom they are both spoken off, yet how challenging they can be in our journeys as moms. Thank you for sharing your heart and turning it into something powerful for us all. You are an amazing Woman and Mother!!!

    1. KC Edmunds

      Chiquis, you are a wonderful example of wisdom and joy in mothering. I am so thankful for your encouragement and for you!

  2. Lance

    I so enjoy it when you write poetry!

    1. KC Edmunds

      Thanks so much Lance! So grateful for your encouragement and wisdom!

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