I think it is safe to say that we have all just about reached our breaking point. I can say with confidence that if I had never heard the words social distancing, COVID, quarantine, and lockdown, I would be totally okay. This pandemic has impacted all of us in one way or another. For me, this pandemic has been an emotional roller coaster and, if I’m being honest, a bit of a nightmare.
It’s been a while since I last posted or shared an update on Michael and I’s current situation. The last couple of months have been challenging and have put my faith to the test. At the end of March, Michael and I found out that the border was going to be closed to non-essential travel. Shortly after receiving that news, we were then told that all immigrant visa appointments and processing had been put on hold. In the span of two short days we not only found out that we wouldn’t be able to see each other anytime soon, we also found out that we wouldn’t be getting a visa interview when we thought we would. Since March, the border closures have been extended and more restrictions have been placed on visa processing. We have absolutely no idea when we will be able to see each other, and we don’t know when they will start processing applications and scheduling interviews again. We don’t know if I will be in the U.S. by the end of summer or even by Christmas. We are completely in the dark.
It has been one year and nine months. That’s 641 days since this whole situation started. Even as I type that it almost doesn’t feel real. I am exhausted. I am discouraged. I am angry. But most of all, I’m honestly just sad. I miss my husband, I miss my family, I miss my friends, and I miss having a feeling of normal. I look at our friends and our family, watching their lives move forward while ours stands still. Thinking about the reality of this situation is overwhelming because I have no idea what it means for us. We have no timeline, we have no ballpark answer. What we do have is a lot of confusion, unanswered questions, pain, heartbreak, frustration, stress, and of course sadness.
Sadness was something I used to run from. I didn’t want to feel sad, and when I did, I felt like I was doing something wrong. I felt as though it was something to be ashamed of and that no one would want to hear about it. Throughout this entire situation when someone asks how I am doing I usually take a deep breath and say, “I’m okay, just hoping we hear something soon.” In an effort to avoid having to tell the person how I’m really doing, I talk about the things we are hoping for or looking forward to rather than what is currently happening. If I were to answer that question honestly, it would sound a lot more like “If I’m being honest with you, I am really struggling. I am sad about the whole situation and some days it takes everything in me to not just break down and cry.” Feel uncomfortable? The truth is, sadness is uncomfortable. No one wants to sit around and talk about how sad they are and what sad things happened to make them feel that way. We don’t like to acknowledge it, so instead we push it to the back of our mind, take a deep breath and put on a smile.
Our sadness might be something that is hard for us to admit and seek comfort for. We often feel alone in our pain, thinking we are the only ones who understand what we are going through. I’ve felt this way numerous times throughout the last year. I’ve felt alone and felt like no one truly understands how I’m feeling. But God knows.
God knows exactly how I am feeling. He doesn’t ask questions, He doesn’t need me to explain, He just knows and, even more, He feels my pain along with me. When we are sad, God is sad with us.
“The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
– Psalm 34:18.
He doesn’t like seeing his children in pain or hurting, it breaks His heart to see us upset. He knows that He has asked us to face a life that is going to be hard and a life that will sometimes cause us pain. He knows that asking us to trust Him can be hard, but He also knows that in the midst of our pain and hurting, He is working something beautiful.
God is in the midst of my pain. He feels every bit of my sadness. With Him, I don’t have to be ashamed or try and pretend that I’m okay.
Yes I am sad. Yes this is hard. Yes I just want it to end
Yes He is working. Yes He is faithful. Yes He will get me through this.
“And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.”
– 2 Corinthians 1:7