Daniel is up for work early. Like, it's-still-dark early.
Sometimes I hear the coffee beans grinding and it brings me out of my dreaming state, sometimes I hear nothing until the faint sound of the garage door, and his ute reversing out.
The best mornings are when my alarm wakes me and he's already gone and I'd slept through it all.
Today though, I was already awake. Felt like I'd never slept, although I'm sure I had dozed restlessly throughout the night, half-asleep and anxious.
When sleep still wouldn't come I quietly pulled the blinds so I could curl up and watch the black sky lighten; it's cloudy. It will rain today. Trying not to worry about how tired I'd feel later.
Trying not to worry about everything.
I'm not a worrier, usually. But it's those times I'm not quite awake enough to fight them, that they come. The anxieties and the embarrassments, the reminders of failures and the overwhelming urge to sink and keep sinking. I'm not good enough. I'll never be good enough.
I squeeze my face shut, and it's hot and red and my heart hurts. Failure.
Then as the sky turns from black to grey, clarity comes slowly. I felt vulnerable, I didn't bring perfection to a situation, and the same old narrative starts again. The one entitled, "You aren't good enough." The pattern becomes clearer and then it's easier to change my thoughts. I force them to be kind, which feels almost impossible. But I remind myself what's true.
You are IN the arena. You showed up, despite your fear. You're being brave with your life.
"And when we make the choice to dare greatly, we sign up to get our asses kicked. We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can't have both." (Thanks Brene)
I layed in bed and just let myself feel the discomfort. Maybe there was another cringe or two of vulnerability but then this:
"[loyal, faithful, committed] walks in step with God; his path blazed by God who delights in very detail. If he stumbles, he's not down for long; God has a grip on his hand."*
God delights in every detail. Full knowing we'll fail, that we won't be perfect (if I was I'd have no need of Him) that we'll feel disappointed in ourselves. But in the war between daring and comfort, daring has to win - stepping out is the only way in to a life that is vibrant and wholehearted - faith not fear is what pleases Him.
And as the sun made the sky pink I told myself, "yes disappointment is painful and embarrassment is almost worse... but neither have to last long."
And instead of screaming, 'get me out!'; the arena is too hard, too tough, too painful... I'll stay standing. Because today is brand new, and so is the grace that I so desperately need.