I originally shared this on Instagram / Facebook but it’s important enough to me to preserve it here. As nearly 1/3 of the world is under some form of coronavirus related social restrictions, there are varying degrees of loss happening. Please share if it resonates with you.

At first, I rushed to prepare and plan for my household. I checked our pantry, cancelled trips, and shelved some less immediate needs and feelings.

Now the dust is settling. Yesterday, I caught a glimpse of my April calendar. All the plans we’d made. My oldest’s birthday. A trip to see grandparents in Texas. My little brother’s wedding in Colorado. Two nights in Sun River.

I realized I need finally stop and take a moment to grieve what we’ve given up. I’m going to take that moment now and invite you to join me.

[Image features hand-lettering on a cut piece of paper, with a sharpie and scissors nearby. It reads: “Lamenting all we’ve lost”]

If I don’t do it, it will be harder to stay the course, to stay home and stay positive through these next few weeks. Or longer. Unacknowledged loss leaves my heart yearning for things to go “back to normal”, opening a door for discontent and bitterness.

If I do acknowledge the impact all this has had on me, it helps me let go and embrace the changes, both now and long term. It will be easier to let God redefine life as I know it, to create a new lifestyle, craft new dreams, and move forward in uncertainty.

It may feel odd given the magnitude of what our world is facing and the fact that we likely all know someone who has been impacted more than we have, who has lost more. However, I promise you it helps to acknowledge your own losses and frustrations, both big and small.

Image features the words below in blue font on white paper.

The Things I Have Cancelled:

Trips to the park or the zoo or the gym.
Coffee with a friend or date nights.
5ks or marathons, the fundraisers or awards.
Eagerly anticipated vacations.
Visits with grandparents and playdates.
Weddings, graduations, birthday parties.
Weekly Bible studies, monthly book clubs.

Loosing these makes me feel:
Disappointed, angry, frustrated, sad, cheater…lonely, scared.

Image features words below in green font on white paper.

The Things That Have Changed:

My daily routine or my family’s schedule.
How/ When/ Where/ If I work. Or Workout.
How I do simple errands or connect with others.
My budget and how I use my resources.
Financial goals. Fitness goals. Family goals.
If/ When I get time to pursue any goals.
Travel plans. My certainty about the future.

These changes make me feel:
Annoyed, uncomfortable, anxious, stressed…unhappy, restless.

I acknowledge the impact all this has on me.

Image features the words below in blue font on white paper.

Even though I still have hope
Even though I have reasons for joy

It’s okay to grieve what I’ve given up
It’s okay to lament all I’ve lost

I know I’m not alone
I will be kind to myself and others

I will be okay
Even if things never go back to the way they were

I believe God is with me
Even if things get worse before they get better

What losses or changes are you lamenting and grieving?

Image features hand-lettering on white paper with coffee mug and sharpie. It reads:
“Grieving what we’re giving up.”
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