Jacob refused to release the angel until he received a blessing.
From that night of wrestling, Jacob emerged with his blessing.
He also emerged as a stronger man, a fiercer man,
a more courageous man with a new name.
From that night on, Jacob's way forward was with a noticeable limp.
These days, I've been living through my own angelic wrestling match.
Perhaps my opponents are multiple - an angel who will eventually bless me
and the demon to whom I have given a new name - kanswer.
Either way, the nights are long. The wrestling match, the battle for my restored health is fierce.
Although I am unlikely to emerge from this with a limp,
I am certainly going to emerge with scars.
Physical scars, emotional scars, relational scars, soul-deep scars as well.
Alice Walker wrote a book called, The Way Forward is with a Broken Heart.
I may adopt that title as my new life motto.
My heart has certainly been broken by kanswer.
My way forward will be with a broken heart
and a mended spirit,
with less hair on my head
and less meat in my diet,
with less judgment in my thoughts
and more gratitude in my soul,
with more scars on the outside of my body
and more love on the inside.
My way forward will be marked with joy and laughter,
anecdotes and advice,
filled journal pages and empty vitamin bottles,
soaked with alkaline water flavored with lime,
surrounded by friends and family who refuse to let me lose hope.
My way forward will include an epic and celebratory journey to Spain.
Between now and then, many nights of wrestling await me.
Dozens of blessings are yet to come - they had better be.
I refuse to release the angels or the demons until I am thoroughly blessed.
I pray to be blessed with more strength, fierceness, and courage.
Yes, the way forward will be with a broken heart,
few eyelashes, and a persistent metallic taste in my mouth.
But the most important truth is that I will move forward.
I will not stop moving forward.
No turning back,
no turning back.