Earlier this morning I went for a walk. I live on a state road and some of it does not have any sidewalks, but they have well-marked breakdown lanes that make it pretty safe to walk on this particular stretch.
I do my best to stay as far to the left (because I walk against the traffic) as I can so the drivers can stay in their lanes. Some people gave me even more space by crossing the double-yellow line, and I thought to myself, stay in your own lane. I am way over here near some of the weeds or the guard rail.
Currently, I have been thinking about boundaries and limits. When there are clear boundaries, we don’t really have a reason nor an excuse for crossing into another’s “lane.” The sky is the limit — when you build rockets for a living. Most of us just want to get up out of the bed at our full stature, (mine is 5’2″) knowing that we have limitations. I ought to qualify that by saying that in the past I have attempted to ignore my own limitations and sometimes that was to my own detriment. For some of us, it takes time and pain to accept our limitations.
As a caregiver, I am witnessing my mother whose capacity both physically and mentally is extremely limited compared to even 3 years ago. One of her lanes is her memory. When I became her primary caregiver, she said don’t let me forget this or that, you have to be my memory for me. For a while this was okay and there were things that were important to her that I would remind her about and she expressed gratitude (surprisingly enough). As time went on, I realized that I needed to get out of this lane. Firstly, this may have given a false re-assurance that my mother is doing better than she really is. And secondly, there are many everyday little things that I have to give her cues about in order for her to get through a day. Anything beyond that is not my lane. The most important thing I need to do is remember to be present to her and for her.
There are limits to what any of us can do. No human being alive can do it ALL. Nor were we created to do it all. If we were, there would be no need for community. Relationships would be mainly optional. (Yes, sometimes, I think – that would be nice.) However, our Creator has made us to be interdependent people. These limits are beautiful when we accept that we each bring something to the circle or table. Being celebrated and being able to celebrate others gifts and talents is one of the fruits of good relationships.
There is much more to say on the subject, but my time and energy is limited. 😉 So for now, I will just stay in my own lane.
Superwoman and Superman need not comment, but I welcome others to share their thoughts about staying in your lane.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance. Psalm 16:6