Correction from my last post, I was indeed scathed by Harvey… but not in the way I was expecting. It goes like this:
Bumper to bumper, compiled madness of every working man and woman in Houston trying to get to work and home on the same freeway and spare back roads. Lord, help us. If you’ve read my posts about working in corporate, you already know it’s a struggle for me… but now with a commute that has been doubled and, may I say it, tripled since Harvey… I’m scathed. I’m so scathed.
Yesterday, after two hours of braking and nowhere near my home, I broke down. It was tragic. And I had plenty of witnesses since all of us are so packed in and driving transparent fish bowls. People could see the tears in high def… and it wasn’t a pretty sight. I lost it.
Why? Because of everything I was losing.
I had already spent an hour driving to work, nine hours working, and now two hours driving… and getting nowhere. That’s TWELVE HOURS. I ain’t a nurse! I don’t do 12 hours shifts away from home if I can help it. It’s already difficult being away from home the regular 55 hours of a work week (yes, I include commute and lunch).
Here’s my list of losses:
Time with Tucker
Time with my roommates
Time to make dinner
Time to just relax and think about what I wanted to do with my evening
Bottom line: I lost time.
That does not feel good. Ever. I was out of control of my circumstances and couldn’t get over the injustice of personal loss. Who could I blame? My bosses for not adjusting work hours the next couple of weeks? Other drivers for making poor traffic decisions? Harvey??
Shifting blame around is pointless. It doesn’t help anything. It definitely doesn’t help my traffic situation. There are several things that need to occur for my mulligan trip home this afternoon.
- Surrender the moment. When I come into a situation with expectations, I set myself up for inner conflict. God is sovereign and in control. He has different plans than me for my day. He knows exactly how the day is going to go and His will trumps mine – and that’s a good thing! When life goes a direction I don’t expect (good or bad), I need to surrender it to God and see what He has in store for the time. Let. Go.
- Trust God. You want to know crazy? Here it is: my mind and heart were desperate to get home so I could see my dog. I am an obsessive parent. It’s true. I have no idea what I will be like as a mother to a child (if I ever experience that). I mean, I’m going to need to continue seeing my counselor and probably more frequently once I have children.Stuck in traffic, I was so sad that my time with Tucker was being taken by such a miserable alternative. Plus, I needed to feed her dinner, take her on a walk, and just play around. However, what have I learned before? She is best in God’s hands. He can do more for her than I can. So, this time around, I must trust God and know that He has everything taken care of.
- Redeem the time. I am a strong believer in spiritual warfare and I do not doubt that Satan wants to get the most evil out of Harvey as he can. And, you know what, I think he’s disappointed. The city, state, and nation have come together to help each other out. There is unity and light in the darkness.Now, he’s coming at us via intense traffic and loss. Well, not today, Satan! The time will be redeemed! My friend and I are resolved that we will stand firm against attack. Two and a half hours of traffic hell can turn into a two and a half hour praise session with God. It can be prayer. It can be working through our character defects as they arise. Instead of defeat, we will get stronger in Christ. We will draw near to God. Our mission is not to be “on time”, but to glorify God at all times.
- Don’t play the victim. Once I arrive home (whenever that may be), my goal is to enjoy the time I’ve been given. Even though my time at home may be condensed, I can enjoy it to the fullest. I’m only hurting myself if I come home and sulk the rest of the night due to my misfortunes.My plan is to look at the next couple of weeks realistically. Are there extra things I’m doing outside of work that can be postponed for a bit? How am I planning on taking care of myself in the midst of high stress circumstances? Where is God directing me in all of this?
All of the above is what I have learned so far. I plan on stumbling imperfectly into these lessons and seeing what beneficial habits come from this experience.