June 13, 2019

Again

Life is such a beautiful, broken, messy thing.

It's been over a year since I've written anything.

No blog.

No articles.

No book.

No grocery list.

Maybe that last one is stretching it a bit.

I have spent the last 3 years rediscovering who I am, what is in my soul, and what I'm going to do with this life I'm left with.

It's been 3 years and almost 2 months since my world shattered around me. Of feeling a deep longing in my heart that nothing can soothe. Of finding strength, losing hope, and building a protective wall around my heart.

I now live alone in my own head, having pushed away most people or at best keeping some only at a distance. But never in. No one may come in.

I went back to school. Became a teacher. Moved away. Started over with a very convenient reason for not truly opening up to my new community; I'm the teacher. It seemed like a good excuse to stay slightly distant and aloof from everyone, right? Teachers have to have their you-know-what together.

Always professional. Always perfect. Always...

Now I'll stop the teacher train right here and be first to say that I'm not perfect. Not even close. But I have some still notion that everyone else expects me to be.

I've never been a very good actress.

So, I've created this little bubble of isolation around me.

Everyone is kept at arms length.

Everyone. My friends. My family. My community. As painful as it is to admit it... even my children.

Defense mechanisms are so fun. Says no one ever.

In the recent few months I decided to try opening my heart to see if it was still beating. It was, barely. I let someone in and was reminded of how painful a beating heart can be.

Sigh.

It's a good thing (or not) that I'm surrounded by constant distractions. I managed to average 10-hour work days by the end of the school year. You don't want to know how many hours I began the school year working everyday.  My children, who are both in my class, could see the imbalance in my life before I could.

Oh my children. Sweet. Loving. Ever-present.

No really. Ever. Present.

Every.

Single.

Moment.

I am literally almost never away from my babies.

I love them so much.

I'm not sure it's healthy to never have a break. Remember that whole not letting anyone close to me thing? This is one downside.

But this is different. This week, I am alone.

This week, my little guy is at his grandma and grandpa's house. He left last week and girl and I will fly out to spend the summer with them next week. And speaking of girl, she's at summer camp for the first time ever. I'm totally OK with this and not stalking the camp website for photos and borderline ready to drive up there at any moment. Or something.

So for the first time in over 3 years, I am alone.

Alone. What an odd concept.

For a good several hours of the day I'm well distracted by the classes I'm taking online. Research articles, papers, projects, and hours of recorded lectures keep me adequately preoccupied from the void that my children's absence has created.

But then, when I put the books down and walk away from my computer, I'm surrounded by a cloud of aloneness that I find suffocating.

I stare into the empty cloud and I whisper to myself, "This is what you wanted." And I realize that consciously or subconsciously trying to protect my heart from any possible pain is lonely place.

Almost as lonely as death.

But this time, it's not my husband's death. It's the death of every relationship I could possibly have.

Gutted.

Ripped out.

Torn off.

And I'm finding that what I thought was protecting me, is causing me more pain than than I was trying to avoid.

Sigh.

I'm reading a book this week.

Listening to a book, actually (Audio books are the bomb).

It's not a new book but it's very timely in my life and kicking my butt a good bit. Brene Brown's "Daring Greatly." I've had it on my shelf for years now but hadn't picked it up. I had a spare Audible credit and a long drive and thought I'd listen to it.

I think God's been saving me from reading it until this week. Like for some reason He knew that when I was all alone and feeling all the effects of my wall-building that I would need to hear it.

Like somehow every distraction being stripped away and being left to see that I don't have a single meaningful relationship* in my life was a good time to cut me to the heart and remind me that I have an entire life to live and living it this way sucks.

[*To those offended by that please know I'm not saying that I don't have meaningful people in my life. I'm talking about the relationships with you that I'm not contributing to.]

Our hands are meant for holding.

Our thoughts are meant for sharing.

Our lives aren't just for us.

My hands are meant for holding and my thoughts are meant for sharing and my life isn't just for me to live as safely as possible.

I don't want to be alone because I'm too afraid to be hurt. I want to have deep connections and meaningful relationships and close friendships.

I want to write again. And laugh again. And love again.

Life is such a beautiful, broken, messy thing. And I want to share the beauty and the brokenness and and mess.

So this is me. Coming out from living in my own head.

3 comments:

Lost daughter of God. said...

Dear sweet Cass, with all that you've been through lady you have shown me your walk with God and your strengths. I know we don't talk much and I guess we're really not that close. but you have been such a blessing in my life. In your posts and in your blogs God has shown me compassion and strength for every weakness. Keep walking girl one step in front of the other God has a huge huge purpose for you I don't know what it is did I know that he's been teaching me Mercy forgiveness and life is not fair. you along with other hand full of friends that I follow on Facebook in my own personal study have helped me have a better personal walk with God. You're an awesome woman Cass. God bless you and your children and your family thank you for sharing.

DJ said...

Beautifully written. Only God really knows the "Why?" answers in life. It is okay if you are not ready to take down the walls. Love hurts, and you have endured more than your share. I love how you look up to God from it, though, and have the emotional strength to carry your sweet little ones through life. You deserve to be loved again, in God's time - and when you are ready.

TN Quiltbug said...

I have no words of wisdom—but know that I am praying for you and for your precious children! ❤️ Thank you for sharing this piece of your heart.

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