This is the hardest part of the pandemic for me. It feels like a personal hour of darkness.
At the beginning, everyone slowed to the speed of the most vulnerable. The whole world stepped into my shoes for a moment and it was comfortable.
Now though they’re stepping out into the world and moving on. To them it feels like small steps but for me those steps are insurmountable.
I’m feeling left behind. As the world opens up, my world closes in. As other people have more contact points in their social circles I feel the need to withdraw from the few points of contact I had. The risk is just too high that contracting COVID-19 would seriously damage me, or worse.
I know other disabled and immunocompromised people are feeling it too.
As I withdraw I have been finding comfort in music. I’ve been playing ukulele and singing pretty much every day and I’ve been turning to some old favourites. Worship choruses that I used to sing at youth group, songs by Delirious? and the Newsboys, and hymns from my childhood.
One song, more than the rest, comforts me in this time – Let It Be by the Beatles.
As I sing it (over and over because I’m working on my finger picking) I think about the words and what they mean.
It speaks of broken-hearted people being parted, which resonates deeply.
Times of trouble are evident in the world at large when I check the news each night.
My social media feed is filled with stories of hope, like a light shining through a cloudy night.
I don’t know exactly what Paul McCartney meant when he wrote all these words; I once read he was inspired by a dream about his mother, Mary. But the lyrics make me think about the other, more famous mother Mary.
When Gabriel came to her with the news that she would give birth to God’s son she gave a simple response to such a complicated task. “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” (Luke 1:38 NRSV, emphasis added)
Compared to mothering the Saviour of the world, navigating the lifting of pandemic restrictions right now seems downright simple. However, it impacts work life, home life, and relationships and there are no instructions on how to figure it out well. It certainly doesn’t feel simple and there is no end in sight.
I pray that I would approach this complicated task with a similar heart posture to Mary’s. If I keep her words of wisdom in mind, perhaps I can just trust God and let it be.