When joy returns


A moment of weekend bliss on the drive back from New Hampton this morning.
Coffee and adventure time with my freshman year college roomie, Alison! It was...in a word...terrific. 

Good news: My joy came back.

I don't know the exact moment.
Sometime in the last couple months.

I missed it so much that I cry when I feel joy now.
I'll laugh and laugh. 
And then tear-up. 
Because it feels so good.
I didn't think it would come back.
I thought those files were deleted.

Life is strange with all its moods. 
All its hills and valleys.
All its crazy, unexpected plots twists.
All its gore and glory. 

There were some moments in 2015 when I didn't know if I'd get to keep being alive.
My body fell apart.
And then every single thing about my life fell apart...or was torn apart.
And I couldn't recognize any of the pieces left behind.
My life seemed utterly unfamiliar.
My skin, my mind, my dreams weren't my own anymore.
It was scary and dark. I couldn't find anything that felt like joy.

But then I DID get to keep being alive.

I learned a lot about how I now understand the nature of life on this planet. 

It's anything but predictable.
Sometimes it squeezes out every last drop of courage we can muster.
Sometimes it's like a steam room that's producing way too much condensation.
Sometimes it's hard to even breathe in any air at all. 
And all we can do is take tiny little gasps. 
And keep waking up. 
Every day. 
Sometimes all we can do is just keep waking up.

Then the tides turn.

Who knows why.
Who knows how.

But they do.
The tides turn.

And joy comes back.

And it feels like everything I imagine eternity to be.

*Late addition....I posted this reflection on joy a few hours ago. Then sat down to ponder today's Sacred Ordinary Days reading. The first listed reading is Psalm 30. And Psalm 30:5b is this: "Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes with the morning." How cool is that?!


  1. So relate to your post Emily! I too know what it's like to lose your joy and then find it again. When it comes back, it is AMAZING and even stronger than before!

    1. That's so powerful, Kim! Thank you for the comment - and the wisdom!