What a moment to be alive, eh? 2020 has definitely been one for the books. Being that Speak Life is a podcast committed to keeping it “real and raw” it felt only right for me to “go there” first. So, that’s exactly how we are kicking off season 4! Reflecting on the lessons, the unexpected gifts, and the chaos surrounding our family’s quarantine experience and beyond…

Sitting down with Dave to rehash the challenges and changes throughout this season, I have to be honest, was harder than I expected. Although our family has been extremely fortunate to have lived through the pandemic with many privileges (ones I know many people have not had the same opportunity to experience) the internal struggles we have processed through during quarantine have changed us in unique ways and drastically impacted the way we do life. We talk a lot about that today, including how Dave somehow landed an office space DIRECTLY adjacent to my pillow, y’all… it ain’t pretty! 

One interesting part of our story is that earlier this year we had already planned an intentional “family quarantine” for spring break. Because of that, we found ourselves navigating the world “shutting down” in the middle of the West Texas desert. Amidst spotty internet access and trying to facilitate our entire company going remote it was a balancing act to maintain the intentional engagement with our family that had originally called us to Big Bend.  I’m not sure if God just knew we needed to be eased into the changes, or if there is a greater lesson we will learn in the years to come, but something about being in the middle of nowhere, with no one, doing nothing, set us up to engage the slow down with a sense of curiosity and wonder, instead of fear. At least until we got back to reality…and the wheels started falling off! 

For us, it felt like every nook and cranny where we had shoved insecurity, fear, stress, and emotional unhealth was rattled right out into the middle of our living room. Suddenly, we needed to “deal with it all” in the midst of managing distance learning, working from home, figuring out how to run an office remotely and trying to keep up with the 500 meals a day required to keep a family of six alive! Who knows, it also could have just been the fear of there being NO toilet paper ANYWHERE that put us over the edge, either way, it was a mess! In the end, Covid highlighted the areas in our lives, our hearts and our family that we had been avoiding and offered us the chance to work on them, to grow, and to change. Throughout our conversation, Dave and I relive a few of those hard moments together, including my first trip to the grocery store with a mask, gloves and a whole lot of fear. It was interesting to look back and realize the things we still have yet to process. 

Hopefully, listening in on this conversation you will also be able to reflect on the areas of your life that have been impacted throughout this season and highlight the ways you’ve grown and changed in the midst of the hard. Although we have all weathered the same storm, it’s important to remember that we have experienced it in a wide array of different transportation methods, therefore dramatically impacting our experiences. I pray this season will provide each of us a better understanding of what it has felt like for our brother, sister and friend and that together we can learn ways to Speak Life into one another along the way.

Speak Life with Taylor Nichols is a podcast committed to keeping it REAL and RAW — real people, real stories, and real life. Be sure to subscribe so you never miss a conversation! {You can listen to the show right HERE and to make sure you never miss an episode just hop on to your favorite podcast app (ie. iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify) and subscribe today! I hope you will consider sharing the show with your friends and if you have a friend with a story you think we need to hear, please nominate them right HERE!}