So, as is sometimes said in our house, I did a dumb. I was switching lenses on my camera this morning while walking with Scout and my 18-135mm lens slipped out of my hand and landed right on the edge of the curb and bounced from there onto the road before coming to a rest. With a large amount of dread, I picked it up expecting to see the lens or the housing cracked. I was surprised to see that, other than a scuff on the lens hood, it looked good. I immediately hooked it up to the camera with a measure of hope that it somehow was ok only to have those hopes dashed when the lens would not focus and then an error message came up on the camera LCD. Something was broken on the inside. With the nature of a camera lens, it is most likely that it isn’t possible to repair it (or that the repair would cost more than a replacement lens). All day today, I’ve had a measure of annoyance at myself for it. It was a dumb for sure but it will also be an expensive dumb if I choose to replace the lens.
As is often the case with me, there’s more to this as I’ve been thinking about this a lot of the day. First and most obviously, it is only a piece of metal, glass, and plastic. There’s a lot more important things in the world.
Second, there’s a deeper lesson in this for me (other than be more careful next time I am switching lenses). A friend who died of cancer several years ago often shared “be kinder than necessary for everyone is fighting some kind of battle.” The brokenness that we each have in our lives isn’t always obvious to others (or even to ourselves). But it is there and sometimes we find ways to live with it and adjust and sometimes that brokenness can be something that completely takes over (as one who has experienced times like that, they are scary and so hard to deal with). But that brokenness is there in all of us.
But the good news for me is that (unlike this lens), healing is possible. It isn’t instantaneous and sometimes it isn’t always complete but it is possible. I can point to my own life and the healing I’ve experienced. In my case, it was through a lot of different things – it was prayer, people, community, meditation, Scripture, exercise, spiritual direction, journaling, photography, medication, counseling, nature, and probably a bunch more things that I can’t think of right now. But all of it has brought about so much healing. But even with all that, the scars are still there – they aren’t as painful or debilitating as they once were but they’re still there. And I don’t know if I want them to go away because they are a part of me. But I have been graced with so much healing and for that I am deeply grateful. (Even if I am still feeling pretty annoyed about the lens)