The time I left the ICU and crossed a washed out bridge

I sat down to write this post no less than five times. Several weeks ago I wrote about a new friend of mine who’s had trouble assimilating into the culture of our country, our community and my intention was to polish that up for today.

I wrote about bridges. How relationships are built upon planks that line up, are hammered together and allow us to span the gap between us. Even when we struggle with understanding language, circumstances, hearts. There’s always some plank we can be laying or fixing. Only sometimes we don’t know how to cross the bridge even if we can see it.

A month ago, an out-like-a-lion March snowstorm dumped 14 inches of fun in our town. And then it rained. And rained. And rained. 22 inches of precipitation in 24 days. Last week, we had the worst flooding on record. Homes destroyed, long-standing businesses devastated and ruin that will take months to clean up.

Just before entering downtown, you cross a bridge. It spans a creek and a beautiful view of renovated park. The bridge was cut off by icy water. Still visible, but un-crossable. The town available, but not accessible. Quiet intersections were backed up as folks tried to find a new route. It was surreal and my brain rejected it like an un-funded bank card. Popped the image right back out blinking Denied. Devastating reality can blow the mind straight up. Community rallies as we help our neighbors sop up their lives.

I used to avoid downtown. It seemed too much of a hassle to get down there. You should know this is not the big city and too much of a hassle = four turns, a merge, and several one way streets. Except recently they changed a bunch of the streets from one- way to two-way. We’re I’m not big on change. When I found out that one of my dearest thought I was actually afraid to go downtown, I realized I’m a whiner to call four turns a hassle.

For 15 years we’ve piled in our car and driven 45 minutes to church. Outrageous considering my hassle-driving-10 minutes-downtown issues, but there were reasons. This church fed our souls and created the space I needed for some serious healing. When you are in critical care, they isolate you in the ICU. Grace Church has a phenomenal ICU. We recently stepped off that familiar route and started attending a small congregation downtown. It was time for us to move to med/surg. When you’ve been upgraded to a regular room, they allow you to have visitors. My heart had spent enough time in isolation and was strong enough to handle visitors. My healing began to accelerate.

My inability to cross into community was due to a flood of manipulative languages, unfortunate circumstances, and a shredded heart. Community was available, I just couldn’t seem to cross the bridge. My soul is beginning to connect after decades of isolation. These precious people have helped me sop muddy tears. They’ve stood with me through celebrations and surgeries, they’ve loved my children and consequently tended my mending heart. Most of them don’t know what caused the flood in my life, and that’s ok. I’m learning that heart healing doesn’t mean heart dissection. Seems obvious, I’m sure, but a new paradigm for me.

                      First Congregational Church
First Congregational Church

Isolation Injures

Floods. Trauma.

                                   Disasters. Heartbreak.

Bombs. Abuse.

Explosions. Addiction.

Terrorism. Neglect.

Community Heals

   First Congregational Church – Thank you, from my healing heart.

Would you share a story of someone who’s helped you dry some tears? Would you care to click on the text bubble above this post and share how they’ve helped you heal?


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I'm a forty something women managing a busy family, working as a hair designer and trying to use my big-girl words.

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