Monday, January 12, 2009

dish soap with a side of tissues.

They came with the dish soap today; the Dawn Simple Pleasures Water Lily & Jasmine dish soap—the same dish soap that sits on our sink ledge at home. They came, they were nonrelenting & soaking, dripping on the counter in the silence of my apartment.

And it was silent. Because once again, for the first time in five weeks, I was alone. And for the first time in five weeks, I didn’t feel like a wife today. And for the first time in five weeks, those feelings of dread & nomadic living came back with full force.

And I didn’t like it.

In fact, I still don’t like it. And although I’m well aware that my complaining & teardrops won’t get me anywhere but further into by celebratory self-pity party, sometimes its just good to have a cry.

If you knew me prior to this whole endeavor, you’d never know I’m referring to the same person. Because the past-me didn’t cry. The past-me didn’t worry about trivial things like dish soap—and certainly didn’t cry over them. The past-me trusted that things would work out. And the past-me was at least remotely optimistic. The truth is that I’ve changed. Drastically.

Love does that to people, you know. And so does distance. And trial. And tragedy. And situations beyond our control.

One of my goals in 2009 is to remain more faithfully optimistic. Because optimism, as you might have noticed, is one of the things in my life that has slowly been leaking, dripping slowly so that it is just now that the “Happiness Gauge” is registering EMPTY.

So to be totally honest, I’ve just about had enough—and so have my slightly-swollen eyelids. I’m tired of living apart from my husband—and completely, totally, utterly imtimidated by the 18 months we have ahead of us apart. I’m tired of moving, of packing up all my belongings in cars & boxes & Tupperware containers and moving every year. I moved every year in college & twice since then—that is 6 times in 7 years if the mental tally hadn’t computed quickly enough. I’m tired of this state, tired of studying, tired of being away from the people (mostly person) I love. I’m tired of sleeping in a smelly apartment with noisy neighbors in a run-down town. I’m tired of paying thousands of dollars each semester & being blind to the fruition from the profits of my tuition. I’m tired of teaching myself the medicine I’m supposed to be taught. I’m tired of the complacency I’ve let take over my exercise habits, eating, and devotional time. I’m tired of the all-or-nothing attitude I’ve flashed at studying, Bible reading, and relationship building.

I’m just tired. Emotionally exhausted. Mentally run-down. Spiritually dry.

At this point, I’m bold enough to make these lofty goals…to boast that I’m on the “upward swing”. When the truth is that at this point I feel like I’ve jumped off that swing and am just flying through the air, hoping to land on something other than a giant slab of concrete. Life isn’t easy right now. My faith isn’t strong. My trust isn’t there. My optimism is, well, EMPTY. And although I’d like to think that I have the power to turn my attitude around, I darn-well-know that I am not that strong.

Above all, though, I think my biggest fear lies in my yearning for something better. There have been so many nights over boxes of tissues that I’ve convinced myself that “if only” we could move home, then things would be better. “If only” we didn’t live apart, then things would be easier. “If only” I didn’t have to stay in this state, then I’d be happier. And while there is some truth to my thoughts of idealism, the bulk of that truth is that they are ideals: the best of the best situation(s) that may be just as disappointing or difficult or trying as the ones I’m in the midst of right now.

There really wasn’t a point to my writing this. Unlike most of my posts, I don’t have a happy ending. I don’t have a magic wand to wave & exclaim that God will save the day (although the annoying peppy voice in my ear is cheering that He will). I don’t have easy answers. And I certainly don’t feel like I have much left in me to give.

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion?
Come to me. Get away with me & you’ll recover your life.
I’ll show you how to take a real rest.
Walk with me & work with me—watch how I do it.
Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.
I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.
Keep company with me & you’ll learn to live freely & lightly.”
–Matt. 11: 28, The Message

1 comment:

Craig said...

Your writing ministers to me. Thanks for your honesty and openness.

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