Excerpt from Sammy Dietzman’s personal blog “SammyDietz.” Sammy is a fall 2015 ASC student from Spring Arbor University. Reproduced with permission.
In my last blog I expressed my delight in finding a burrito shack that advertised a crunchwrap supreme in their window. It looked EXACTLY like the one Taco Bell offered. I spent 3 entire days dreaming about the day I could venture back to South Bank and eat it. I imagined the comfort it would bring in reminding me of home. My expectations of this crunchwrap were pretty high, I must say. This may seem extreme, but anyone who knows me well can imagine how excited I was about there being a crunchwrap in my vicinity. Yesterday was the day I got to go get it. I started my day in my Issues in Counseling class which I voluntarily took despite being a business major because the topics looked super interesting. I almost was a social work major because I love people and am fascinated by the way they tick. Both positively, and negatively. Yesterdays topic in class was pain and grief which was ironically suitable for the experience with the crunchwrap that was just hours away…….
After class I met up with a lovely American on this trip named Jenny and we went to our volunteer work at a place called Regis Bulimba which is the elderly home I talked about briefly in my first blog; however, I learned yesterday that it began as a homeless shelter years ago and then was taken over by the Regis Bulimba company. Because of this, some of the residents had been there 30+ years! We had truly just walked into the “home” of these lovely souls. We watched them play bocce ball from a seated position while Don and Alice (a couple amazing workers) lead the game. I have a very special place in my heart for the elderly community and can’t wait to spend my Monday afternoons with them.
SO, after hanging out with my oldie buddies, I went on my first ferry ride through Brisbane on my quest to the crunchwrap! It was beautiful! This city is unreal!
After ordering my crunchwrap I sat in anticipation for what was to come. I am sad to report that this was one of the biggest let downs. It was nothing like a Taco Bell crunch wrap. The beef was shredded, it didn’t have sour cream, it for some reason had guacamole, and it was nothing like the picture. And then I realized……..the picture in the window was the Taco Bell advertisement! I had been bamboozled! I actually was more sad than I probably should have been if I’m being honest haha but for some reason being here I have this thing where I take small life little downers and see what I can learn from them on a bigger scale.
This reminded me of something I have been struggling with, and something that actually tied back into my loss and grief class session from earlier on in the day. There are two main types of loss: the first is loss of people and places we can’t have again and the second is losses of things we hoped for, dreamed of, or expected to have. Often times, the loss of the first results in the loss of the second. A loss that often goes unrecognized but that can cause the most heartache is the loss of expectations. The loss of dreams, of hopes. Often times these are the ones we don’t grieve. We are told to “get over it” or the cliche “look ahead not behind” or “the best is yet to come” but there is validity in feeling hurt about losing out on things you hoped of and dreamed of. Let yourself feel those losses. Often times the loss stems from us believing something to be one way, but it turns out to be another. Things are not always what they seem. People are not always who we think they are. Dreams are often just that, dreams. The loss of those are losses we can wallow in, or losses we can overcome. The key to climbing out of the grief is accepting the loss, allow yourself to feel the hurt of it, accepting the new you that was inevitably created from it, and reinvest in a “new” reality. The last one is magic. The minute you accept that things will never be the same, and that you will never be the same, you are able to start fresh. We were told in class to come up with metaphors for grief and our table came up with the following:
Grief and its process is like a deck of cards. The deck of cards being your life. It starts out nicely stacked in order in your hand and then when grief hits its like dropping those cards on the ground. Complete disarray. Complete chaos in your heart and mind; however, each day you pick up a card and begin to stack them again. Its a process, and it takes patience (LOTS of patience) but eventually the deck will be back together…your life will be put back together. It will be in a different order, it won’t look the same, but its put back together.
“Change means loss; loss means grief; grief means pain; pain means change…”
New things and change is uncomfortable, which we know because of my fresh white kicks. But in Ecclesiastes 3 it says “He has made everything beautiful in its time”….time. Time heals all. Time allows you to pick up your deck….and time creates a new beautiful reality.
Time also brought me from the terrible crunchwrap supreme, to a nitrogen magic ice cream shop where I had the best ice cream I have ever had! If you stop at the let down of the crunchwrap you’ll never move on to the beauty of a magical nitrogen made bowl of triple chocolate brownie icecream! This analogy is silly, but you get what I’m saying 🙂 Life turns out better than we think if we trust Gods dreams for us above our own. But don’t take my word for it, take Gods.
Romans 8:28 – “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him….”
Proverbs 16:9 – “In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps”
Isaiah 43:18-19 – “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland”
So cheers to heartbreak, cheers to change, cheers to all things new; because it is all simply steps towards the beautiful life God has designed perfectly for us.
xo from down under