Autism: Learning to be Content

07 Mar

My nose is running, and my head hurts bad. My throat hurts, and I am reminded of all those times as a child when a sore throat felt to me like dying. Horrible, horrible sickness. I saw it coming, as my husband was sick before me – but being that I am at home, it didn’t concern me too much. Yet now that it has hit…

It has been raining. It has been raining all week, with the dark skies that come along with it. And the darkness and rain always leave me feeling tired, weak, sad. Another thing to add to the sickness that brings me down.

And then there is my grandmother. She has been holding on since the fall when I first heard that she wouldn’t recover – but her body has shut down, and “it won’t be long now.” This makes me sad. Sad that I wasn’t able to get back there to visit her one last time. Sad that I moved away, and drifted apart from the family I adored growing up. Sad about the passing time.

Yet with all of these things to bring me down, what I have noticed growing over the past few days is an overwhelming sense of contentment. I feel it as I read my Bible, and study Spanish in the mornings. I feel it as I sit at my keyboard to practice. I feel it when I consider writing – my blog, or my book, or just writing in general. I even feel it when I look at my house, which at this moment, I don’t want to leave.


It is an unusual feeling for me, this contentment. When always I am so restless in looking for the next change, or trying to return to the past, or dreaming of another life – it is strange to experience this joy right where I am. I have been praying for this. I have been praying for this for a long time – yet I am not sure I fully believed it could be obtained.

And while I admit this feeling may not last, and knowing me, I will likely return to my restless state pretty quickly, I am really… maybe amazed isn’t the right word. It is more like in these moments, when I feel so pleased to be where I am, I am in awe – that in spite of everything: my childhood, my lost children, my lack of work, and all of the above mentioned reasons from this week, that I am able to find contentment in anything.

But as Paul said, “In everything, I have learned to be content…” (Philippians 4:11)  So perhaps it isn’t some feeling that might overcome me when everything in my life is perfect. Perhaps it is something that can be learned, and so maybe – just maybe – it might be something I can hold on to.


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