“This too shall pass.” That was the saying my mother would tell me as a child, and I took it to heart. Whenever bad things would happen, I would imagine myself holding my breath as I rode out the storm in my head. I would envision the light at the end of the tunnel. My mantra unconsciously became, “suck it up now and things will get better later,” and so I would.
Sometimes this exercise is easier to perform than other times. Right before Christmas, I just couldn’t find that light. Rather than feeling excited and in the Christmas spirit, I felt down (bam, bam, bam—everything that could go wrong, break, or “happen” seemed to during the weeks leading up to Christmas).
I am only confessing this so that you can appreciate the gravity of the serendipitous moments that helped me snap out of my funk. Here is what happened to help realign my perspective and provide me with a renewed sense of strength and gratitude.
One particular day, I was struggling to stay motivated. I was scheduled for an exercise class after work, and I seriously considered canceling (regardless of the cancellation penalty). I was having an internal debate similar to the ones I have when my non-morning-person-self has to get out of bed: “wake up, you can do it, just rip the band-aid off and get up.”
Only this conversation went like this, “go, you will feel better afterward, you’ll be glad that you went.”
(Bear with me, it gets better.)
As I am driving to the gym, my rambling mind is working overtime. Without going into detail about my convoluted thought process, I will say that the following words came into my head: “It’s always darkest before the dawn.” The words just came. Almost as if they appeared in my mind in ALL CAPS. It was my way of reassuring myself.
A funny thing about a good workout, I DID feel better. I WAS glad that I went. I was ready to be in a good mood. You know—turn on the radio, sing along to the song playing . . .
I got chills. And then laughed. When these “coincidences” happen, I validate them as confirmations. God was speaking to me.
(It gets better.)
Later that night, my husband and I decided to watch some TV before bed. We didn’t want anything too serious or long (something just enough to take our mind off of things). So, we turned on Saturday Night Live on Demand (my favorite part is the Weekend Anchor section), and we watched THIS SKIT: Click to 3:38 and you will hear . . . Colin Jost saying . . .wait for it . . .
You guessed it: “It is always darkest before the dawn.”
Those powerful words came to me THREE TIMES within three hours. I could chalk this up as simple coincidences, or I could take the words to heart. And I did—and I do.
I am sharing this with you to reassure you (in case you’ve been feeling down or overwhelmed) that it is always darkest before the dawn.
And there is a new dawn emerging.
I encourage you to take some quiet time, reflect, and be kind to yourself. Watch a morning sunrise. You may hear your heart speaking to you, encouraging you to SHAKE IT OUT.
Regardless, I hope that you will join me in wishing and praying for a better 2021. For now, I’ve decided to—despite how tempting it is to look elsewhere—give my focus to the DAWN.