Yesterday, in the silence of the house, I could hear the rain softly falling, dibble-dabbling on the ground. It was the soundtrack to my day. I had walked past the bedroom – and felt the absence of my boys. I walked to the bathroom, and saw a small pair of pyjamas on the nappy changing table, and I missed them both. I went down on my stairlift to the kitchen to get my pre-prepared breakfast, and there was oil on the floor, and I had to mop it up with kitchen roll, but my muscles were weak and I was losing strength, and I had to focus on getting my breakfast so that I would have something to eat. The kitchen was a mess, but I couldn’t do anything till my friend arrived later in the evening, and I thought, “I would be in serious trouble if Jon died”, and that was a lonely sort of thought.
Jon and the boy have gone away for the weekend because our godson is being dedicated on Sunday. I am staying at home while Jon represents us both. I seem to have reverted back to being a student, with nothing in my day and no structure, I am eating funny food at peculiar times, whilst lying on the sofa in pyjamas, watching TV on my own. I never watch TV on my own, but here I am, watching a 2003 re-run of ‘Homes under the Hammer’, and telling myself that I will go upstairs and rest properly or write properly just as soon as my important program has finished.
I tear myself away from the TV and feel an emptiness, and the sky is grey. The summer is over. I am not going to be at the Dedication.
The rain is continuing to fall, and it sounds gentle. I am looking through my wardrobe, and seeing all the summer dresses that I should be packing away for next year. The weather has been so lovely, for so long – all these years we have been complaining that we haven’t had a summer, but this year the sun actually came out for August and I was able to lie in the garden and enjoy its heat. I had a good summer, and I got to wear my pretty dresses. For once, I don’t begrudge the rain for its season.
I look through all of my autumn clothes, and they are all the same, the same clothes again, the same as last year and the year before. The thought whispers in my mind: I don’t want to do this again. Not for another year.
I want to buy a warm, colourful dress, something new for the autumn. I want something to be different.
The shadows are getting longer and I replay the voicemail again: my MP is coming to see me. I try not to get excited, but I can’t help it: this is my chance to change things, to be heard.
I have been home alone for a day, and I am leaning into the restfulness of it. The silence is no longer a taunt, but a companion.
I decide that I will wear a dress on Sunday. While Jon and the boy are at the front of church making their promises, I will be lying in bed, making those promises in an empty room. But I will be wearing a dress.
The rain continues to fall. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies are new every morning. I look outside of the window, and it all looks so green and clean, the start of a new season.
Over to you:
- How are you feeling about the start of Autumn/Fall?
- When do you need to remember that God’s mercies are ‘new every morning’?
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