Yesterday a portion of interstate that runs straight through downtown Atlanta collapsed as a result of a fire. Interstate 85 looked like a lego structure with a big missing piece, replaced by billowing smoke and flames. Millions of people rely on this portion of the road to get to where they are going on a daily basis. As a result, schools are closed, events are cancelled, and many will have to re-route themselves for months.
Aren’t there times when an unexpected event in our lives causes a similar disruption? Maybe it is an eating disorder, an escalating addiction, a secret uncovered, a cancer diagnosis, or another cancer diagnosis. Maybe it’s a sudden loss, or a piece of news we find impossible to digest.
We are faced in those times with the need to re-route. Our usual paths and strategies no longer make sense or feel remotely relevant. The scenery is unfamiliar, foreign. We may get lost, or be faced with a need to rely more than usual on our support networks. An important goal is to keep going, to find your next best route, and have the courage to navigate the unfamiliar roads.
Find the road maps that serve you well- friends who will listen rather than judge and advise, coping strategies that bring peace. Experiment with prayer, meditation, movement, connecting with others who understand you. Eventually the interstate will be reconstructed. It will likely be stronger and more able to withstand future hazards. And we can be, too.