It’s not often you find a book you relate to so well that you vow to re-read it every year before you’ve even finished it.
Thanks to my wonderful friend Nicky, I was introduced to Glennon Doyle Melton, her blog momastery.com and her book Carry On, Warrior. I honestly don’t even have the words to express how much I love this book. Its heartwarming, its hilarious, its smart, its inspirational. As Nicky described it before I started reading – “Its part auto-biography, part beautiful essays, all about life and Jesus and being a human.” Pretty perfect description.
What’s interesting about this book is that I could see how one could read it at different times in their life and learn different lessons each time. There are a lot of chapters about being a parent, of which I’m not currently, but when I am, I’m sure I’ll go back and read it and relate so much more.
As I’m about halfway through the book, I’ve already bookmarked several pages of her words that have been so inspirational and fitting for the time of life I’m currently in, struggling through death and grief.
On helping her sister deal with a tragic situation: “I learned that in these disasters, all we can do is tell them that their grief is real, and if it lasts forever, then we will grieve with them forever. As far as I was able to tell during those two years, there was nothing else worth saying. It was not going to be all right, ever. Everything doesn’t happen for a decent reason. I couldn’t do anything at all except feed her, hold her when she cried, pray angry prayers, keep showing up and know that time, and my home and presence would offer healing.”
To her son, on the death of their fish: “When he asked me, ‘Why Mom? Why does God send us here, where things hurt so much? Why does he make us love things He knows we’re going to lose?’ I told him that we don’t love people and animals because we will have them forever; we love them because loving them changes us, makes us better, healthier, kinder, realer. Loving people and animals makes us stronger in the right ways and weaker in the right ways. Even if animals and people leave, even if they die, they leave us better. So we keep loving even though we might lose, because loving teaches us and changes us. And that’s what we’re here to do. God sends us here to learn how to be better lovers, and to learn how to be loved, so we’ll be better prepared for Heaven.”
Y’all. I just had to share those passages. When I read the first one, I literally just started crying because she’s SO right. I don’t want people to know that just so they can understand what I’m going through, but I want to know that and remember it for when I’m helping others through their grief. Then the second passage – whether it’s a 6-year-old struggling with the death of his fish, or a 25-year-old struggling with the death of her dad, we all ask the same questions and her answer gave me HOPE.
Now is the part where I tell all of you to stop what you’re doing and go buy this book right now. I want to buy a billion copies and give them to everyone I know. And even if you don’t, I’m sure I’ll be writing at least one more blog post about what I’ve read, but in the mean time,
Carry On, Warrior