Yesterday as I dragged myself up out of bed, I wondered how I would get through the day. My body ached, but I had missed three weeks of church (one because of work and two from being sick of being sick.) I had planned to have family dinner afterwards but at that point I wondered why.
I’ve been hosting a dinner and a documentary Sunday for almost 2 years, but recently, health issues have caused me to cancel more than a few. One of our family members is leaving for a mission in Japan, so we wanted to be with him before he left. Still, my body ached and I was moving slowly. I pushed myself up, made myself get dressed and climbed the steps of our beautiful church building.
Once there, I got the love and hugs and the sermon that I needed. Rev Sierra of Christ Church Episcopal spoke about the need for community in times of pain. She quoted her college roommate who’d said that isolation is the dark room where all of her negatives are exposed. WOW.
I tried to hold back my tears, but the best I could do was to avoid the crack cry that was fighting to burst forth. Sierra spoke of the need to come together as a community, finding strength in one another.
As she spoke, my pain subsided and I felt renewed. Sitting there with these beautiful folks, I felt a kindred spirit of like-minded, like hearted people.
My Sunday dinner only confirmed what Sierra had said as we all sat breaking bread (literally, I’d left it in the oven too long,) and laughing together together. These beautiful young folks made me feel renewed and I suddenly became fully aware that the real balance in life is not between life and work, it is between your flesh and your spirit.
When my spirit is willing, but my flesh is weak, I need the joy and laughter of others.
When my mind wanders to what is wrong, I need my heart to remind me of what is right.
When my feelings have been hurt enough for me to want to stop doing what I love, I need the embrace of a friends and family in spirit to remind me of who I am.
The real balance in life comes when you know how to give your all to others and then turn around and give that same all to yourself.
And with that I will drop the mic.
Be you, be well, be love.
Bertice Berry, PhD.