The last year has been a hard one for me. I’ve come to the painful realization that my life in many ways is far from what I wanted. I always wanted to be faithful, but I’m a doubter. Always wanted to be connected, but in many ways I’m a loner.
The dream I sought for years was that I would get past my doubts and finally come to know the truth, come to know that God loves me and that he’s an active part of our lives. But instead of closer to that dream I’m farther away than ever.
My dream was to be firmly ensconced in a loving community, accepted for my contributions, loved in spite of my faults. But I no longer feel I belong where I’d built my life for so long.
My dream was to be married to a woman I loved with all my heart, to be surrounded by children in a home filled with love. But I’m a failure at relationships. I don’t know how to be close to people. Anyone who tries eventual gets pushed away or put at a distance.
My dream was to build a better relationship with my father. But he’s been dead almost three years, and my mom even longer.
A lot of the time I’m fine. I can make life work with its ambiguities and disappointments. But ultimately the pain of these broken dreams comes to the fore and I find myself casting about for an anchor to hold on to.
I’m in one of those times right now. I’ll pull through it. The crisis will recede sooner or later. But still these tensions will remain. I don’t know the long-term answer. I don’t know how to really make life work as a hypersensitive guy who’s struggled all his life, struggled to find a foundation, struggled to stay connected to the people that love him. I don’t know how to finally resolve all the memories, all of the past that I carry around inside of me, the tragedies that still ache for me years removed, for which there is no answer but mourning.
But I suppose that is the answer. Mourning.
How do you go about it? How can any mourning ever be sufficient? How can any tears ever make right entire lives of tragedy?
I don’t know.
But maybe that’s not what tears are for. They don’t make anything right. But they help us to accept that there is injustice in the world. And they help us to let go of the wrong.
Anyway, this is the latest chapter in my life story. It’s not the story I set out to tell. But I guess that’s because I’m not the omniscient narrator: I’m really just a character. And I guess it’s taken 34 chapters for the character development to really come to a head. What will the next chapter bring? I guess we’ll all just have to keep reading.
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