Do you find yourself looking for evidence in terms of likes and comments to prove you are appreciated and loved? Does each seeming social dismissal send you into a swirl of anxiety? If so, you are not alone. FOMO is a horrible reality if we constantly search social media for validation to help boost our fragile self-esteem.
During my extended absence from social media and blogging, there was reduced digital evidence of my existence. It was easy to convince myself I was invisible, lost to the world at large. Extreme M.E fatigue and hypersensitivity to all screens prevented me from functioning in those places or much at all.
Fear, overwhelm and anxiety tried to convince me to trust their miserable messages. Their prophecies of doom and gloom. And I did for quite some time, until God reminded me to meditate on His word instead, and trust Him above all else.
Being out of touch is challenging because we have numerous ways in which to communicate and converse with others. Thankfully, a few loyal friends kept up email contact while I remained too sick to otherwise engage. Those messages became a life raft when I was adrift on a sea of uncertainty, wondering just when or if “normality” might return again.
Six months have passed since I was forced to take a blogging break. Six!! A person can change a lot in that time, can’t they? I’ve had a significant birthday, gained a few extra silvery hairs and inexplicably lost quite a lot of weight. Please don’t hate me! I’m tiny already and can’t afford to lose any more.
But much has remained the same. I’m still struggling with chronic illness. I spent far too much time, energy (and money) on Christmas. Oops! My husband and family continue to be a precious blessing. Most importantly, God always lavishes His love, grace and care on me, as He does for all of us.
As I slowly pick up the threads of my online writing life again, I am grateful for a fresh flood of poetry. It began a couple of months ago and lifted me enormously. Nothing quite cheers a writer’s soul than words flowing like they should. 🙂
I want to encourage you that being invisible to others is still very much seen and noticed by God. He accompanies us through all our deep, dark valley seasons. He also reveals evidence enough of His mercy, grace and love to help renew our joy and hope.
And when it comes to creativity, it doesn’t disappear like we imagine it does. It just lies dormant for a while. We could be stalled for a few days, weeks or months, but it will return again. It might be for our eyes only for a while. Then, at just the right time, we will have something of worth to share.
Fragments of me exist
in scraping of nail, in dust,
skin, saliva and hair, lost
from my body somehow
here and there,
now occupying space
in space, in rooms
I inhabit and vacate.
Little pieces shed freely
like a second skin or an
essence, a reminder, perhaps,
of where I have been,
where I have rested my head,
brushed my hair, filed rough spots,
shaken out my clothes
and been quite impervious,
oblivious to their loss.
Sometimes I wonder
if I should gather these tiny
evidences of my presence
and present them
to myself like gifts that speak
of an everyday existence,
as proof I am alive,
on days when weakness
pervades and tries to
persuade me otherwise.
How much does being visible to others matter to you?
What gives you hope when you feel isolated or unwell?
PS: This is actually a new home for Words of Joy, which was formerly sited at wordsofjoy.me but is now settling into WordPress instead under joylenton.com. New or regular readers, please sign up in the sidebar here to continue to receive these posts in your inbox. Thank you! 🙂
Oh Joy, what a blessing to welcome you to your new home here, and to savor these precious thoughts. Your poem has brought tears to my eyes, as I’ve been looking back on this slow and declining year that I’ve had also. Truly, where do those bits and pieces of ourselves vanish to? I have observed pieces that I thought were so essential to my own being end up being cut off as easily as a haircut also. But thank you for these reminders that our true selves are never cut off from our Lord: “I want to encourage you that being invisible to others is still very much seen and noticed by God.” When we look up and focus on HIM, then He begins to uncover more of our true souls, not less, in this healing process. Much love and blessings and hugs here at your new place, dear friend! xoxo
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Hello Bettie, it’s a joy to see you here, my friend! We’ve both had quite a year of it, haven’t we? It’s not surprising you can relate to this poem and thoughts about feeling invisible. The cutting away is a pruning we want to avoid.
Chronic illness can feel like a series of mini deaths as we grieve the life and abilities we had before. It’s a constant readjustment process to a new “normal” and the many losses we can accrue.
I love how you’ve expressed the paring back to our true, essential selves, and alluded to the inner healing process that takes place when we focus on God more than we do on our problems. Much love and blessings to you too, dear friend! xoxo 💜
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