What is it about me that I find myself continually staring into the Void? Ignoring the obvious fact that I don’t have enough of a “Life” to distract me, I marvel that I often find myself fighting the feeling or subconscious sense that there is nothing beyond this life. I’ve been known for over-thinking the simplest things, so when it comes to contemplating truly big issues my hesitancy and fear are very real.
When Kim and I divorced twenty years ago I was tired of feeling like shit for being a flawed imperfect human. Clearly I was doing something wrong in that my non-Christian friends seemed so much more comfortable with themselves (or maybe they were just much better at hiding their own self loathing… ). I was tired of not measuring up. So I stepped away from my faith and tried to learn to appreciate myself, the good and not-so-good, living one day at a time. Sex and relationships weren’t the problems they’d been before, but I was haunted by the thought that all we have is this life and after that there is nothingness.
I spent fifteen years in that place and might have stayed there had I not fallen in love with Whats-here-name. Before her, each day was important but I can’t tell you what I accomplished in all that time because all of my connections were tenuous and transitory. In actuality I accomplished a lot but there was no one in my life to share it with. I was a living example of the fruitlessness of being a tree falling in an empty forest. Then I fell in love and found the one I wanted to pour my life into. Even if all I would ever have was this life and nothing else, I felt like that would be enough if I spent it with her.
Thus, I rendered the question of life after death moot by identifying something that made living this life meaningful. Alas, my timing was tragically off and you-know-who was not in a position to reciprocate what I wanted with her, in the beginning because she was married, and then in the last three years because she couldn’t navigate a difficult divorce while having a relationship with moi. So then I was left to wonder, again, what was the point? I waiver between belief and doubt, and it didn’t help that I couldn’t seem to move on from my relation with her. It seems insane that the two, my faith and my relationship with her, are linked, but they were.
I was drawn back to what I’d lost because I found an all-encompassing love and I made the connection between that and the Author of Love. Sadly I was never able to enter into a real daily relationship with you-know-who. So I went to church alone or the movies, aware of the empty seat beside me, and it felt like waiting for the Rapture. But in this case when the rapture came (i.e., her divorce) I was left behind while she created a life for herself without her ex- and only marginally included me. So, one year after her divorce I’m a little frustrated with things. I mean, over the course of that relationship I’d learn that it was a mistake for me to be alone and that God knows the desires of my heart and wants to give me that right relationship. So, why the hell am I still alone?! It may seem trivial or petty in the larger scheme of things, but I’m getting back to the point of frustration that led to my spending fifteen years in “the wilderness.” I have been patient and I have participated in “my salvation” (i.e., e-harmony, or not just sitting on my ass expecting a knock on my door by some amazing woman), but if something doesn’t nudge soon I’ll be forced to doubt the promise that He wants to give good things to His Children.
I know that all of this seems assinine, especially in view of real suffering in the world, but I’m getting ridiculously tired of waiting.I feel like that vulture in the cartoon who says, “screw this waiting, I’m going to swoop down and kill something.” I mean, like the Simon and Garfunkle song (with a 2007 twist) I’m finding myself spending way too much time fighting my loneliness with mindless “entertainment” on the Internets, which just adds to the feeling of shittiness. It’s a vicious circle.
I must be doing something wrong. He wants to give to His children, I recognize that I was never meant to be alone, and I think I could make someone happy… Either I’m doing something wrong, or He really doesn’t care about my pathetic little life. Surely I cannot and do not blame Him for the state of my non-social life, but it’d be nice if He could lend a brother a hand, or something. jbb
Music: Take My Life from the album “Take My Life – Vineyard Voices” by Scott Underwood