I find irony in the term “Facebook feeds.” If anything, the steady stream of humblebrag and milestone pictures does not feed me but but deflates me and vacuums out my store of happies. I doubt I am alone. I would guess its effect is similar for most: It feeds off our insecurities about choices and relationships and whether or not we are the first or last to experience the season’s first pumpkin spiced latte.
And yet we still log-on and click the heck out of that like button. Affirming others and logging off to pity ourselves and our inability to handsew Halloween costumes by deadline. Unlike.
It’s no wonder why so many of us feel stuck. We are not distressed about any one thing in particular. We are also not excited by the prospect of any one thing either. We are just stuck and pirouetting in the same hollow we were last week. Searching for meaning or an exit door, or at least a clue as to whether we are standing in a hallway or if this is actually just a dark coat closet.
For the last few weeks, I have entered my office and gamely made a to-do list of perfectly manageable tasks that I had no intention of completing. I sit in my office and feed off the feeds, wondering why I can’t get any work done.
In my prayers of late, I sit on my knees and words come not in sentences but in single words and fuzzy reminiscences of the day’s events. I have nothing to offer and I receive no concrete answers, except for the fact that God is present. He is here and sometimes He is holding me and He will keep showing up–I am given this assurance.
In these times of stuckedness, I feel a lot of shoulds. I should read, I should go, I should put on make-up, pants, a new attitude. I asked the sages of Facebook what they did when they felt stuck. Responses ranged from eating one’s feelings to crying tantrums to shoe shopping to running a 10k. I appreciated the candor and was reminded that we all feel stuck (and what an appropriate forum in which to discuss it, with the rest of the feeds of happy engagement news and weight loss triumphs).
I am not a fan of being stuck; control is deeply interwoven in the fabric of my being. The condition of getting stuck and then getting un-stuck, though, becomes less of a spiritual battle the older I get. I see it as a spiritual opportunity. Oftentimes, these are chances to lean into God and His promises and most recently, it has been an opportunity to rely on the body of Christ to uplift me, to be praying the words that don’t seem to come to me as readily.
I broke my ten year streak of not crying in front of my boss last week. I thought I was going to be okay, but then one of my co-workers led a beautiful prayer in staff meeting and my tears pooled. When she ended, I thought I was still going to be able to recover, but then another colleague sort of called me out and the tears came gushing. Just that simple release was enough to feel a little bit lighter and a little bit less stuck.
Wishing you all stuckedness so that you can experience unstuckedness. The captivity and confusion isn’t nearly as tremendous nor as powerful as the release, I can tell you that much.