I can’t put my finger on it, but something changed this week. I noticed that flowers are blooming. Wildflowers, wisteria, honeysuckle, and amaryllis all caught my attention. Light green, budding trees and flowering bushes are all around. I found reasons to sit outside with my boys and watch the sky. We imagined we were aliens on UFO-shaped clouds and we traveled to the fly-through Chickfila in outer space. We made imaginary rockets and sent our cat, Scruffy, to the moon. We are enjoying our days. Things are lighter, brighter even. I feel like I’m waking up.
Sometimes we fall asleep and don’t even realize it. We lose interest in the things that once brought us joy. We stop going to the places that brighten our days. We stop reaching out to people who need our help. We hide out and wait for the next emotional hit. And we miss out on the hope that is all around us.
Staying awake in hard seasons can be tricky. Emotional exhaustion, loss of focus, depressive thoughts, overwhelming sadness, consuming fears, painful recollections, and unexpected overload seem to make going back to sleep a very inviting option. It takes so much energy to simply put one foot in front of the other that sleeping through the difficult seasons appears easier.
But I’m so tired of being asleep. I’m tired of missing out on joy. I’m tired of feeling like I’m trudging through a muddy swamp day after day. I’m tired of being sad and feeling heavy. As I recognize the springtime that is all around, I, too, want to spring back to life and wake up.
Each new flower, each new bud, each new evidence of growth is encouraging me to take off my night clothes. It is going to be a hard, uphill climb to recondition my mind and heart to want to stay awake, but after experiencing a little bit of hope this week, I want to make sure I fight to make it happen.
Every new bloom, each new bud, and all the new growth happening around me serve as tangible reminders to stay awake. Going back to sleep in the midst of such a beautiful outdoor season just isn’t an option. Find some flowers. Pay attention to the trees. Lay outside and watch the clouds. Do something that always makes you smile. Count your blessings. Spend time with God. Just do whatever you can to stop sleeping through life. Let’s take off those night clothes.
It’s time to wake up.