Sometimes I feel like I’ve lived two separate lives. There were the high school/college days. Then there were what I like to call the dark years. And then there’s now. I know that seems like three separate lives, but I kinda think my high school/college years connect with this life now. I don’t know about everyone else, and maybe you think I’m a little crazy, or a lot crazy, but that’s just kinda the way I feel.
I guess, if I think about it, the dark years started a little in college. I hated college. Was not a good experience. I met some wonderful people with whom I’m still friends, but the whole school part of it sucked. I did, however, learn to play guitar better and grow in my faith. I also learned how to exist without really being known. Maybe that’s why I hated it. Even with the people from college that I’ve grown to love, sometimes I wonder if I really ever let them see the real me.
I wonder sometimes why I hold back.
Right now I’m wondering why I want to be doing anything else in the world but writing this blog. Geez.
(For those of you who know this story, suck it up and read it again…sorry) Back to the dark years. There’s a poem that I remember writing a paper on in high school that describes them perfectly. The Hollow Men by T.S. Eliot. Check it out. “Shape without form, shade without colour, Paralysed force, gesture without motion.” It doesn’t paint a pretty picture, but that’s how I felt. Ten years ago this coming November I was kneeling over my 3-and-a-half month nephew trying to breathe life into his body. I never want to do CPR again. I started spending money and eating a lot. I think, to be quite honest, I didn’t care if I lived.
And then it happened. I started to feel again. I started caring about other things, other people. I still haven’t got the compassion down pat…don’t know if it was ever in me, but I started moving forward.
There were some people during my high school years that I reconnected with. Some had walked with me through the dark years and some hadn’t. But I was tired of living a live not being known. My youth pastor and his wife quickly became new/old friends. The friends that had walked with me through the dark years became deeper friends. Tragedy can bring relationships to a whole new level. I regret just about everything in my life during those years except that I was finally able to be open and honest with people.
Several years later, and I’m not quite sure when it happened, I think I finally forgave myself for some of the things I’d done and the things I thought were my fault. I’m still working on it. For some reason I find it a lot easier to forgive other people than I can forgive myself. Not really sure why. Maybe I don’t deem myself worthy of forgiveness? My thoughts recently have been that forgiving myself is small beans compared to God’s forgiveness…and He knows I could never be worthy of it, but He gives it anyway. He thinks I’m worth it. I’m known by Him. If He can forgive me, maybe I can forgive myself? Ouch. I recently read a blog written by Becca from Barlow Girl. Kicked me in the butt. French Fries and Forgiveness. Read it if you want to be punched in the gut…literally.
What I am SO thankful for is that season is over. I’ve heard people saying that 30 is the new 20. I think when they’re talking about that, then they’re probably talking about someone who had a good 20th-decade experience. I did not. I’m really looking forward to these next few days, months, years, whatever God chooses to give me. I’ve finally realized I’m a child of the King, and He is invested in me. I’m so thankful for His love and this life He has chosen me for.
“He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.” 1 John 5:12