When the Security and Comfort of Defining Labels is Torn Away

Child, son, daughter, brother, sister, mother, father, nurse, teacher, engineer, student.

As a young adult I have been transitioning through roles at lightning speed. I’m realizing it has actually been that way most of my life. This is something I’m sure we can all relate to. Take a moment to think about the labels and roles that have defined your life the past year or two. How do you cope with losing your “identity”?

It’s definitely painful transitioning especially when it catches you off guard. In the last two years I have been a nursing student, a secretary for a building campaign, a nurse in the hospital, a nanny, a religious discerner, and now a full time volunteer at a shelter for pregnant women who are homeless.

After the shock and pain of the first barrage of label stripping, I was spinning. I had lost my footing and my direction, I felt helpless. I can tell you my compass seems to still be quite broken or otherwise unreliable. At the center of my confusion there is an unchanging peace. A garden of refuge where Jesus waits patiently for me to throw my arms up in the air and run to Him, shedding the weight of my uncertainty and despair. This garden is where I am learning to trust in the Man with the plan. He holds me close and tells me to forget about my compass and take a good look at His.

I was told life is like a mountain, as you climb higher you can see more of what is around you. This is how He shows us our future. Tiny glimpses, enough to take the next step or two over that rock or ducking under that branch. One day as we get closer to the top the view will be wider. The beauty will take your breath away. Until then I need to be patient, focus on the next step, try to keep my feet firm on the path. Take my time in the gift that is now. The gift of the present.

What do you say? Take a walk with me and my Friend?




2 thoughts on “When the Security and Comfort of Defining Labels is Torn Away

  1. This post is so timely for me. I just started reading Strange Gods by Elizabeth Scalia and one of the things she writes about is how these labels can become little idols. It is hard to be open to new ideas or ways of doing things that don’t “fit” our labels when we get so entrenched in them. I think that is one reason these transitions can be so painful, at least for me.

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