Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Bed of Roses

At Glendale Shoals making new memories
A few years back, as I was thanking God for the rich, beautiful, blessed life He'd given me, I felt...almost guilty. I had known little real suffering (or so I thought) while others suffered so much all around me. I prayed that when God saw fit to change the tide of my life and bring me real pain, He'd also strengthen me to be able to face it. I prayed in the face of inevitable sadness He'd cause me to remember His joy.

Maybe my problems are still small in the scheme of things, maybe people all around me are still suffering so much more. But in the last 3 weeks of my life I've been unhappier than I can ever remember being. The beginning of September was so bittersweet but full of promise - seeing my love off to his new life, and embracing the 9 to 5 life of working adulthood. I knew it was going to be hard. I was right.

What I didn't realize was how much the joy of my soul had become wrapped up in one man, and how my happiness would fall to pieces in the wake of rejection, just weeks since I was floating on a cloud, feeling like the most loved woman in the world. Though I was steeling myself for a long and meager love's winter, I didn't expect it to just...end. And I never anticipated how much it would hurt. I won't go into messy break-up details here. I'm simply writing about pain. Real pain, my pain. It hurts, damn it. It hurts a lot.

I've come to realize that I was, in a sense, right about myself when I feared that my happy, accepting disposition was pretty much a product of a happy, pleasant life. Throw some curve balls my way and I don't handle them any more gracefully than the next person. I'm ashamed to say I have been bitter, I have been unkind, I have snapped at loved ones and strangers alike in my pain. It's certainly given me a lot more compassion and sympathy for grumpy strangers and snappy co-workers. Who knows what deep sorrows or nagging thorns have been eating them, and for how long. 

I know and trust that this too, will work out for my salvation, for not only my good, but his as well. I thought that we could simply be reasonable, come to an understanding, shake on it, and start over as "just friends." But hearts are far more complex and wily creatures, I am finding out. I'm no longer sure "just friends" is really an option. And that hurts. The possibility of nothing, just a big empty place where someone used to be, hurts like hell. It's going to take far longer than the time I allotted to "get over" this.

On a completely different note, my first month of work has been everything I dreaded and everything I hoped. One minute I am overwhelmed and discouraged, the next minute affirmed and energized. Failing when attempting the impossible is, I think, nobler than failing to attempt. I'm simply charged with trying, and announcing equally both the effort and the failure. I feel like just being in this job while accepting its impossibility is accomplishing something important - helping lay the groundwork for a great change that is far past due. I can sense it coming...the seeds I planted are starting to sprout. But it sure is slow going.

If you pray, pray for me. I could use it.

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