Skip to Content

Ready to Work

Readiness is important in many major areas of life: ready for university, ready for marriage, ready for parenthood, and sometimes after a long absence, we need to be ready to do something vital again such as work.

For weeks now, I have not written anything comprehensible, haven’t worked. I am sure this hinges on the loss of my mother. Though I have had much to say, I haven’t had the wherewithal to say it in writing. Let’s face it. Daunted by grief, I quit working for nearly three months.

This is not to brag about it. Nor is it something that I am particularly proud of. On the contrary, I would like to pretend it hasn’t happened. But it has and all things that happen out of order, my silence as a writer, deserve an explanation.

Otherwise, such practices sneak their way into the norm, though I do understand that it is normal to grieve. And that there is no set time when we should get back to work, back to life as we knew it before loss. Of course, the latter never happens since with loss, life changes and often drastically, depending on the degree of the loss. We find ourselves taking on new roles, living in unacquainted space, etc. I know I have, but that’s another blog.

In any case, most of us have a responsibility not only to ourselves, but also to our surviving loved ones to live after loss and often to the deceased one, too.

A friend pointed out that surely my mother wouldn’t want me to quit indefinitely. Spot on! When she lost her father to a tragic accident and then her mother to an illness, my mom felt broken hearted as I do now, but was able to maintain her commitments to family, church, community and work and so on.

On this note, it is fortunate for me that I am self-employed and have a fall back—my husband. Otherwise I am almost sure I would be out of job, not to mention what else I would be out of.

But writers, artists, the likes, do have a history of long absences; dry spells and so on, since the mind is our most valuable tool. And grief, at least for me, has been mind blowing. The tricks of the trade that helped me out of the dessert in the past have been futile —stepping away from the work, running, which normally satisfies my thirst, letting the work rest and going back to it and so on.

Typing for Inspiration

How about typing for inspiration?

This time, the quagmire, whatever you want to call it, was different. As I came to terms with this, I accepted my feelings as natural to the grieving process, although they felt (and still do) rather alien, as alien as death itself, though dying is a natural part of living, I said with a brave face to a dear friend the other day.

With heartfelt remorse, she replied, no it isn’t.

Of course we’re both right. Everyone has to die; there is no way around it. It is the natural end to life, however it comes about. But death is an evasive matter, one that plunges us into the depths of grief. Nothing about it feels natural. Nothing.

Yet, here I am, to some still early days yet, returning to work. To others, I am ever so late. Due to the nature of their work and the way they process grief, they’ve been back for ages, even if their hearts still ache.

But here is the thing that we likely have in common. To some degree, we return to work, do what we need to do, when we are ready. Ultimately it was such words that provided the incentive I needed to write again, coupled with a take away from my church’s Bible in One Year subscription.

In Luke 19: 11-14, Jesus tells The Parable of the Ten Minas, in which a man of noble birth called ten of his servants and gave them a mina each before he left on a journey. When he returned, it was the one who turned the one into ten that received the highest of blessings, precisely because he made good use of his resource.

To paraphrase our vicar, Nicky Gumbel, we are not only supposed to use our money, but also all the gifts God has given us. That means the gift of writing, too.

Hence, I am ready and I hope you are too. Visit sonjalewis.com or onthisandthat.co.uk for weekly blogs on life, on lifestyle, on London, and other relevant topics. See you next week.

 

2 comments

  1. The parable of the Mustard Seed. The story goes like this…a woman’s only son dies; grief descends and she is consumed to the point where she carries her son to Buddha.

    “What can I do?” she begs Buddha for some relief.

    Instead of words, the Buddha gives the woman a mustard seed.
    “Your answer is here in this mustard seed. Go out and find me a family that hasn’t been through grief and bring me back a handful of their mustard seeds.”

    “This is all I have to do?”

    “Yes.”

    So, the woman sets out. She arrived to the first house and asked the kind woman for a handful of mustard seeds; the host was quick with the request.

    “But I have to ask you, dear woman, has your family had grief?”
    Tears ran down the greeter’s face.

    The traveling woman handed back the mustard seeds and proceeded down her path. She went from one house to the next and the story was all the same. None of the houses she came upon had been untouched by death. So, again she returns to Buddha seeking some sort of relief.

    “You already have it, dear lady.”

    “Relief?”

    “Yes.”

    “I don’t understand.”

    “You don’t understand that you have just learned that no family escapes it, death? You are not alone in your suffering.” Love and blessings to you Sonja. Yes everything in Divine timing.

    Comment by Cardie on April 21, 2016 at 3:26 pm
  2. What a fantastic parable. Thanks so much for sharing. It demonstrates beautifully the nature of well, human nature.

    Comment by SLewis on April 21, 2016 at 3:47 pm




Allowed HTML tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

By submitting a comment you grant Sonja Lewis a perpetual license to reproduce your words and name/web site in attribution. Inappropriate and irrelevant comments will be removed at an admin’s discretion. Your email address is used for verification purposes only, it will never be shared.