Beloved

Love of my life
Look deep in my eyes
There you will find what you need

Give me your life
The lust and the lies
The past you're afraid I might see
You've been running away from me

You're my beloved lover
I'm yours
Death shall not part us
It's you I died for
For better or worse
Forever we'll be
My love it unites us and it binds you to me
It's a mystery

Love of my life
Look deep in my eyes
There you will find what you need

I'm the giver of life
I'll clothe you in white
My immaculate bride you will be
Come running home to me

You're my beloved lover
I'm yours
Death shall not part us
It's you I died for
For better or worse
Forever we'll be
My love it unites us and it binds you to me

You've been a mistress, my wife
Chasing lovers that won't satisfy
Won't you let me make you my bride
You will drink of my lips and you'll taste new life

You're my beloved lover
I'm yours
Death shall not part us
It's you I died for
For better or worse
Forever we'll be
My love it unites us and it binds you to me
It's a mystery


("Beloved", Tenth Avenue North)


The Prayer
"God, my heart is surely broken. It is so hard to trust others, even You. Help me be open. Help me understand, too, about anger. I am so angry at them that I never even knew I deserved their love. And I was taught that anger is a sin. Admitting this rage makes me feel evil all over again. I need to learn it is part of being human, not a sign of my wickedness. Help, God."

(God speaks:) "Cassandra, listen to Me. You have a right to your anger. Your loss is tremendous, but I do understand. I will help you heal."

"But God, I missed out on so much. I want to have a happy childhood. I want a father who loves me. Oh God, I want what I never can have."

(God speaks:) "What they did to you is wong. But now you are making your own choices for the future. You are building a new life in the light of My love. I am proud of you. Do not despair. I have been with you and I promise to remain with you."

"I want to believe. Each day I choose for the future, but it is hard to remember the pain and anger that sometimes I can't let it go for fear of forgetting again. How do I live without pain, without anger, without a family? I just can't do it myself."

(God speaks:) "I promise you this; I am your light and your salvation. You need not fear. I will never leave you. I will never desert you. Even though your father and others deserted you, I will always care for you. You can believe Me; you will see goodness in life. Put your hope in Me. Be strong."

"I do try, God, but I feel such overwhelming failure. Again and again, I slip back and no longer want to live. Please God, are You sure it's worth the struggle? Do You even remember that I am here?"

(God speaks:) "Hush, Cassandra, Does a woman forget her baby, or fail to cherish the daughter of her womb? Yet even if these forget, I will never forget you. It will be all right. I'm here."

"Okay, I will begin again, God. While the source of pain was forgotten, I could not heal. Now I know. Thank you, God, that I now know. Thanks for the memories. You always did know and You never left me. I don't understand that very much, but thank You. I will try to believe in You and--so much harder--try to believe in myself. Together we will heal, one day at a time."

"God wants to be my comforter against the cold of sorrow and loss. He wants to protect and warm me, and give me rest. He is a solace, and hiding place, and very near to those who mourn."


Okay, God. I'll trust you today.
Mom's out of the hospital now. I'll be talking to her tomorrow, so I'm not sure exactly how she's doing, but I know it's better than before she went in, so that's a blessing.

Our new pastor was at group meeting last night. It had the potential to be awkward, 'cause it's like, how am I supposed to keep up appearances when you show up at one of the few places that I really bare my soul?! I had heard him banging around downstairs prior to the meeting (I was upstairs lying on a couch and reading, since I'd already finished cleaning and I had wiped myself out earlier that day), so I took off my ring and stuffed it in my pocket... just in case. Then, when group started, we all had our eyes closed for prayer, and I thought, "You know what? Screw it. I'm just gonna be myself. He can hate me if he wants to." So I pulled the ring out and slipped it back on my finger, where it remained for the rest of the night. He never said anything. As a matter of fact, I even got comfortable and bared my soul during check-in time. "How was my week? Well... my mom's been in and out of the hospital all week and she just got out of surgery right before we started the meeting and it's been really freaking me out because Larry just died out of the blue and I'm afraid that my mom is going to die too so I've been bargaining with God/trying to grasp at straws for the control that I've basically lost over my life and everyone I love and so I've been seriously contemplating anorexia even though I know it's stupid and will ruin my future and won't actually help me control anything and won't do anything but help me live in denial and make me sick but I've been kinda doing it and so I've lost weight and it makes me feel kinda giddy inside, and... oh, yeah, and I'm struggling with whether or not I actually trust God... but I know for sure now that I believe he exists. That happened about 3 weeks ago." I then went on to explain the bombadier beetle to the group, especially C ("It's a beetle that shoots fire out of it's butt!) and how that comforts me because if God puts that much care into a stupid beetle, then some of that care and creative energy must be directed my way.

Oh, yeah, and they noticed that I'd lost weight. Apparently, since I have those high cheekbones that everyone loves, it's more noticeable when I lose weight. They say "gaunt"... I say "not so much". Anyway, I'm not sure whether to be happy about that or not... and even though everyone says they can tell I've lost weight (not just in my face, the fam says my body is smaller, too, and my collarbones more prominent, which doesn't bother me because I love distinct collarbones), when I look in the mirror, I actually seem to be fatter than before. How can that be possible? It's not drastic.. just maintaining, maybe a little bit wider... but I don't see the loss. I know that I don't want to go full-blown eating disorder, but now that I've lost some weight... I really, REALLY don't want it to come back. I'd much rather maintain, or even drop another five or so.

Now that life is sorta good again, though, I guess I can stop freaking out. Less stress means my appetite will come back.

I made an accomplishment yesterday. I was upset b/c Mom was going into surgery that day, so I went for a walk. I decided to walk up to the next road, which is...? miles, and some of it's uphill. Anyway, it took me about an hour, but I made it there and back in time for lunch, and the most important thing is that I told myself that I could/would do it, and I did! Awesome.

I don't know how I feel now. It's all confused and swirled around inside... like I'm not super-happy, but I'm not sad, necessarily... and I don't really hate myself at this point... there's not much anger floating around in there...

It's so weird how the landscape of emotions is constantly changing. That's the one thing to remember: this, too, shall pass. No matter what it is, it will pass eventually... right?
I know it's cynical and bitter, but...

So, Summer Camp... do you still want me now? Hah.
Boyfriend. It's a good thing I don't have one, because I would alternate between obsessive neediness and despondent antisociality. (Yes. It's a word... now.)

I did realize, though, as I was thinking on the way to and from racquetball last night, that when you're in a relationship (say, for instance, married), there is a certain degree of mutual need. It's okay to need that other person. Why are people so devastated when they lose their mates? If they were independent islands, it wouldn't be that big of a deal. I need my family, too. I need my mom, and she's going into surgery today, and it's freaking the living daylights out of me.

But, back on track... I've had this pet theory that I'll be ready for a relationship when I get to the point that I don't need another person at all, that I'll be able to be totally self-sufficient and untouched, so that if the relationship ends, it won't affect me. You know... "just Jesus and me." But it occurred to me last night... that's not the case. That's not how it works. Maybe that's why relationships are so scary... because they involve... trust. Allowing another person to matter and to have impact in your life. Needing them and allowing them to need you. I guess that's the scarily insidious thing about putting up those walls to keep people out-- sure, you never need people, but you never allow them to truly need you either. It's like you don't matter. Because that's part of the joy of life, isn't it? Needing and being needed? Fulfilling and being fulfilled? Giving and receiving?

Trust. Here we go again. I was running this whole idea through my head last night on the way to r-ball (and no, I didn't bring it to the group... by the time I got there, it just seemed to personal... and I was afraid they might try to "fix" me. I don't want that.). Some musings came to the surface, such as...

Motive. Motive is a huge factor in trust, I've realized. I mean, you can trust someone all the livelong day, but if their motive is to destroy you, then you're gonna get burned, and, well, destroyed. Take, for instance, my ex-stepfather. Did I trust him? Kinda-sorta-not-really. I wanted him to love me, that's for sure. And I trusted him to take care of my basic necessities, because he was the adult and I was the child. It didn't work out. His motive was to make sure he was happy and comfortable at all times, and screw everyone else. I was one of those everyone-else's.

I see now that my trust was misplaced (though I can hardly expect a child to understand and act on that), and that he didn't deserve it, because his motive was not for my benefit.

I think that's the issue I have with you, God. I can trust you, sure... but am I gonna wish I hadn't? What's your motive? People talk about how I can trust you totally because you sent Jesus to die for us, and isn't that proof of your wonderful love?

Yeah, but... I mean, anyone can do something nice and totally awesome once. Even Gary was good to us once in a while.

So what is the bedrock? You know what I mean? Do you really have my best interest in mind? How do I know that? I'm just afraid of being used again... and you're bigger than I am.

I believe you exist. Why? The natural world. The complexity and intricacy of the world around me convinces me that there is a Creator... and that's you. Plus, you've answered prayers.

I believe the Bible is true. Why? Daniel 2. Prophecy. It's too clear and accurate to be guessing. It has occurred to me that part of the Bible could be real and part could be fake. I do know that I have a lot of questions still. But I guess it all comes back to the same thing, in the end... trust. You gotta trust something. Whether it's a scientist's conjectures, your physics textbook, your own two eyes, or the Bible, at some point you must choose to believe that the source of the input your are receiving is truth.

So the question then, is this: What am I going to trust?

You Are More



Sometimes... I just need to hear this. Over and over and over again.
trust |trəst|nounfirm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something• acceptance of the truth of a statement without evidence or investigation• the state of being responsible for someone or something • poetic/literary a person or duty for which one has responsibility• poetic/literary a hope or expectation verb [ trans. ]believe in the reliabilitytruthability, or strength of• ( trust someone with) allow someone to have, use, or look after (someone or something of importance or value) with confidence • ( trust someone/something to) commit (someone or something) to the safekeeping of• [with clause have confidence; hope (used as a polite formula inconversationI trust that you have enjoyed this book.• [ intrans. have faith or confidence• [ intrans. ( trust to) place reliance on (luck, fate, or something else over which one has little control) 
So I came across a verse this morning... Psalm 56:11. It says, "In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid of what man (or the adversary) can do to me." (I added that obvious addition.)
And when I read that, it's like, Yeah! Okay! Trust God and everything will be peachy! I mean, I'll be able to take anything that comes my way!
My mind, of course, immediately drifted to the circumstances at hand. Mom is in the hospital, and that stresses me out. Especially because Larry just died (so suddenly, when he was allegedly healthier than ever before), so it's ultra-scary to have Mom be this sick. I have pretty much been stripped of any illusions of control I ever had. So, with that in mind, I'm like, "Okay, yeah. I'll put my trust in God, and then I won't be afraid any more!"
Then it occurred to me... what is trust?
Seriously.
According to Webster, it's a firm belief in the reliability (of God- he won't let me down!), the truth (of God- he is not trying to trick me), the ability (of God- he can do it!), or strength (of God- he's way bigger than my mind gives him credit for) of someone or something.
The hard part about abuse and dysfunction is that it violates the very core of this idea of trust. Reliability? No. You never know which way the pendulum is gonna swing... whether they'll care about you or themselves at the moment. Truth? Hah. Abuse breeds secrecy. The truth ruins everything, or so you perceive. Ability? Ability to what? Not applicable. Next. Strength. Yes, there's strength involved, but you don't have it, and it's being used against you. Bummer.
So trusting God... it's believing that he is all these things, and that he'll demonstrate them in his dealings with me? That sounds good. Sounds spiritual, too. But is it the right conclusion?
To me, trust sounds like kind of a passive thing. Like, yeah, I trust you, do whatever you want. Meh. But then there's also stuff like the "trust fall". You know the one. 


You're thinking, "Are they going to drop me? Are they strong enough to hold up the force of my weight combined with gravity? Do they even want to catch me? Oh. What if they don't want to catch me? What if I hit the ground?! That's going to hurt! I don't want to do this." (At least, that's what I'm thinking when I have to do stuff like that!)

It's kind of a blend between passive an action. You have to make the decision and lean back, but then you just kind of let gravity have its fun while silently freaking out.

I think I'm going to take this to youth group tonight and ask for the group's input. (How funny. I spelled it "imput" and the spell checker marked it as wrong, yet that is the way I pronounce it when I speak it. Guess I'm doin' it wrong.)

I guess my question boils down to these few things: 
1. How does one concretely express trust?

There are more, but I gotta go to racquetball now.
Mom is staying the night in the hospital, because it was too hard to manage her pain at home. Also, they'll run a test tomorrow that they were going to do on Friday. The CAT scan results came back with no results. They still don't know what's wrong with her, just that she's in excruciating pain. *sigh*

J texted me right before R called. She's really worried about Mom, and R said he figured, because J was really grumpy. LOL.

It did occur to me, though, as I was thinking through all this... perhaps this is the wake-up call for the kids I've been praying for? Maybe this is, indeed, just what my family needs...

O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes! O forsake me not utterly.

Deal bountifully with thy servant, that I may live, and keep thy word. Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.

My soul clings to the dust: revive me according to thy word. Make me to understand the way of thy precepts: so shall I talk of thy wondrous works.

My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according to thy word.

I have chosen the way of truth: thy judgments have I laid before me. I have stuck to thy testimonies: O LORD, put me not to shame. I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart.

Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.

Let thy loving-kindnesses come also unto me, O LORD, even thy salvation, according to thy word. And take not the word of truth out of my mouth: for I have hoped in thy judgments. Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope. This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath given me life.

I have remembered thy name, O LORD, in the night. Thou art my portion, O LORD: I have said that I would keep thy words. I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies. I made haste, and delayed not to keep thy commandments.

Thou has dealt well with thy servant, O LORD, according unto thy word. Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I have believed thy commandments. Thou art good, and doest good: teach me thy statutes.

Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding that I may learn thy commandments. They that fear thee will be glad when they see me: because I have hoped in thy word.

I know, O LORD, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.

Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant. Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live. Let my heart be blameless in thy statutes, that I be not ashamed.

My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word.
Mine eyes fail for thy word, saying, When wilt thou comfort me?
For I am become like a bottle in the smoke: yet I do not forget thy statutes.

Forever, O LORD, thy word stands firm in heaven. Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it stands. They continue this day according to thine ordinances: for all are thy servants.

I am thine, save me: for I have sought thy precepts.
I am afflicted very much: revive me, O LORD, according unto thy word.
I have inclined my heart to perform thy statutes alway, even unto the end.

Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.

Uphold me according to thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my hope.
Hold thou me up, and I shall be safe.
Direct my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.

The righteousness of thy testimonies is everlasting: give me understanding, and I shall live.

I have gone astray like a lost sheep: seek thy servant: for I do not forget thy commandments.

These are the words of my heart. Amazing that one so long ago could echo my sentiments so exactly... and also help me to regain focus and not lose myself in the wallow of my own misery.
hatred |ˈhātrid|nounintense dislike or ill will ORIGIN Middle English : from hate -red (from Old English rǣden[condition).

Thud. (fist hitting wall)

I HATE YOUUU!


THUD. (miscellaneous object hurled to the floor)

Stop being so WEAK!!(!)


Cue hysterical sobbing, punctuated by loud wails and pounding of walls/floors/own body.

It sounds so... silly... now that I am hours removed from the situation. But in the moment, hatred surged through my veins like heated adrenaline.


It's moments like that... they scare me. I could actually really do myself harm when I'm in that frame of mind. These self-destructive urges... they sweep over me, and it's all I can do to listen to the voice of reason.

Today, I've been toying with the possibility of going ana. My rational mind screams at me, "What are you, crazy?! You're trying to get HEALTHY, not develop a new sickness! You've done the research-- you know that it is NOT the solution to your problems. And besides, what about your plans for the future? It would screw up your whole life. How can you expect to help other people if you indulge this side of yourself?"


And that's the thing... I do, I do, I do want to help other people. I mean, that's the dream, right? So how can I jeopardize that, just so I can feel in control?

But the other half of me says, "Go on, do it. I bet you can't. I bet you'll cave. I bet you'll fail. I bet you don't have the guts. It's what you get, anyway. You think you hurt now? I can show you real pain. What you've got now is all in your head. I can make it real."

And isn't that I want, after all? Something tangible to fight against? Maybe some way of making myself pay for... for... whatever my sin of the moment is. Some sort of masochistic penance.

And then there's this whole thing with Mom... she is so sick. It's really weighing heavily on me. It's not just the fact that she's sick.. it's that she sent me care packages. Finally! The thing I've been yearning for for years! But it's bittersweet... tainted with guilt... stained by my deep sense of unworthiness. Like, she could have spent that money on a thousand different things, better things... but she spent it on me. What a waste. But she did it because she loves me, and it makes her so happy! So I ham it up, and churn out more enthusiasm than I'm feeling, because I want her to be happy, and I am happy to get these things, but not as happy as I sound, necessarily, because she really could have spent her money on something better but I'm not about to tell her that and burst her bubble... and part of me longs, yearns, craves that love she's showing me. It's like rain in a dry desert.

Ah! She loves me! How wonderful. 

I don't know how to explain it. I guess I just really want to be free to enjoy these gifts, but I can't. I'm not. I don't know.

The other big thing is my schedule.
Monday: work for B.
Tuesday: therapy day.
Wednesday: work for B, record, session w/Julene
Thursday: racquetball
Friday: clean house, clean church, group (possibly Bible study w/Johnson kids)
Sabbath: church
Sunday: sometimes something, sometimes nothing

Maybe it just feels like BW all over again, but I'm getting claustrophobic. The walls of my life are starting to close in on me, and I'm freaking out. Seriously freaking out. Like, I'm tired of "doing".  I don't want to "do" anything anymore. This being scheduled for something every day is...well, freaking me out.

I'm just itching to run... No, actually, not necessarily run, but to dump everything and hermit myself away. But the GUILT that comes attached with such an idea is so tremendous that it outweighs all else. I can't quit anything! They need me! I'm committed. To back out would be high treason to them and to God. Because, I mean, look at me... I'm already selfish enough. To just quit everything but the bare basics and hide away is selfish, right? Well, I don't know. That's why I'm asking.

I just can't make sense of my life anymore. It's all unraveling, from the inside out... and what exactly am I supposed to do right now? What does trusting God look like at this point? Just sitting tight and chilling? Quitting? (Because that was the answer at one point before...) Certainly not developing an eating disorder.

But how, pray tell, do I deal with the rage that wells and pools within me? How do I stop hating myself? And how do I get to the point where I no longer want to destroy myself?

Let's Avoid Responsibilities Day! Or, maybe more accurately, Do Whatever I Feel Like Doing Day! (which isn't much... I haven't managed to get a shower before noon the last two weeks in a row.)

So! This will change. I hate feeling like a sub-human underachiever. Right now, I'm going to go shower. Shortly after that, I will put on Anggun and clean my room. Then I will scan in and e-mail necessary documents. Following that, I will take my meds, check the mail, and settle down with my therapy book. And, if I still have time, I will check Amazon for another book I want to purchase.

Optional activities include:
-Budgeting my recent paycheck
-Creating an account/password list
-Sorting through my clothes closet
-Searching the Bible for something relevant to what I'm going through now (which may be difficult, because I can't even really explain what's happening inside my head at this point)

Big goal for the day: STOP GOING ONLINE. Only to post blogs. Nothing else.

Okay. Maybe aol and fb.
Let's see... where did I leave off? Baker S came, and that was an adventure in and of itself. He's... a character. I guess that's what you call someone that you really don't know how to describe. A character.

And then came Friday night... the inevitable group-grieving session for Larry. Actually, it was quite... upbeat. Shocking. Basically, he was loved, he is missed, but we're glad that he doesn't have to fight anymore. So it was good closure, as far as those things go. I've realized that I feel things very deeply. I'm incredibly emotional. Is that bad? I don't think so, but it sure can be an inconvenience.

Where to start on the current emotional crisis? Too bad I waited so long to blog... I'm rather numb, now.
Maybe it'll all come back to me later.
Mom has been in and out of the emergency room all weekend. All she knows is that she can't keep food down, and it causes her excruciating pain to eat, and she's dizzy and nauseous. The ultrasound showed nothing. The endoscopy showed nothing. Tomorrow, she's got a CAT scan.

Call me crazy, but I am so afraid that she's going to die. I mean, the very thought of it is sending me into full-blown panic mode on the other side of this screen.

God, no, NO! You can't do this to us! We're just learning how to trust you! We're actually talking about it and sharing about you and the Bible and spiritual things, and connecting on levels we never have before... our relationship is just getting to the good part. You can't do this to me! Don't take her, please!

When it rains, it pours. Larry died. Now there's this whole turmoil thing happening at church involving some of my best friends being attacked... now Mom is sick...

God, you have to help me figure out how to handle all this stuff. I feel claustrophobic... the walls of my life are closing in on me, and I don't know what to do. I just... can't deal with this right now. I need to sleep. I may or may not actually sleep.

I have no words to describe the panicky grief that washes over me at intervals.

Is there nothing safe, nothing sacred? Is all of life this dance of welcoming happiness in, and then having it ripped from your sagging arms?

Is there anything, anything at all, that I can trust down to the core? Is there any place where I will not have the fear of loss hovering over my heart?

What can I trust? It seems like everything is being torn from me. 

How much pain can the human heart endure before it simply stops beating?
I have alot going on right now, stuff that needs to be processed. No time. Perhaps Tuesday?

Therapy Day, how do I love/loathe thee? Let me count the ways...
...just different.

My mantra for Baker S. He's quite different from me, especially when it comes to habits of cleanliness, which I can appreciate (because he works with food professionally), but... it is slightly irksome. I'm always looking over my shoulder to see if he saw that I touched something and didn't wash my hands. I picked up a book he had lying on the table to show us, saw him kinda glance in my direction in a hesitating, do-I-say-something-or-do-I-not way, so I asked, "Can I look at this?"

He replied, "With clean hands. It's a kitchen book."

Right.

He would be absolutely horrified if he knew that I use a spoon to taste test when I'm cooking... and I use it more than once! LOL

So it kinda rubs against my grain, but it's also kinda funny if I can get over myself long enough to see it. Anyway, this is a good time to practice being tolerant of other's differences. :)

I have also realized that I am nowhere near as enthusiastic about baking as I had previously thought. As a matter of fact... it's kinda burdensome. At least, this method is (to me). Oh, well. Maybe God will heal me and I can go back to buying store bread. (On the bright side, I'll soon have breadsticks for the first time in years, and bread for the first time in a month or two.)

I just re-read my last post.

Am I a jerk, or what? "It's a good thing that Larry died..."

I think my point was made, but... sheesh.

I don't know. I mean, death is one the few things that I've been sheltered from. The last time somebody relatively close to me died was... 2006? And even then, I was away at academy, so I never really had to face it. They just weren't at church anymore when I went home on breaks. Before that was Aunt Vi, but we weren't very close, either. Before that was Great Gramma. I cried over that one. I did love her.

By far the most traumatic and memorable, however, was when I was 5. Great grampa. We were best friends, he and I (at least I thought so). He would sit sprawl-legged on the floor with me, and we would roll an orange back and forth between the two of us. Sometimes my aim was bad, and the orange would roll up his pants leg! He would jump around and say, "There's a bug in my pants! Somebody get that bug out of my pants!" What a kick I got out of that. :)

When he died of lung cancer, I crawled underneath his bed and wouldn't come out. The next thing I remember is sitting next to Mom and crying my heart out as they wheeled him past us and through the doors on a covered stretcher.

I grieve pretty deeply when animals die. Did I think that a human friend of mine would evoke any less of a reaction?

It just freaks me out to feel so much sorrow... so my mind is blocking it out... drugging myself with inadequate sleep and internet over-usage and country music.

I think it will really hit me come Friday night... when he's not at group. Boy. That's going to be hard.

How... how can he just be GONE?! Quite frankly, it ticks me off! It's like, nothing is safe. Nothing. Why even bother to get close to anyone? They might just keel over. Or get smashed. Or drown. Or any number of ways that one could cease to exist.

Why are my abusers still alive, yet my friend, a good man, is dead? If anyone is going to stop breathing, let it be the ones who inflict so much pain.

I don't understand all this. I don't get why this has to be. I was just getting used to the idea of pain as something that you don't necessarily need to run away from, or anesthetize yourself from, and... now this. What good does this pain do? I almost want to say, Let me be the one to sleep. Then I won't have to hurt for the one who is gone. However, my passing would leave just as much pain behind.

So, then... pain is the reality of life. I see.

I really, really need to sleep.
So this is my 100th post. I had kinda thought it would be more... upbeat... of an occasion. Guess not.

I still haven't come to the grips with the fact that Larry is gone. G-O-N-E. Gone.

Today was weird. It's funny, how when I'm distressed, there are certain patterns that I tend to follow... one of my comforts is window-shopping online. Another thing is that my appetite diminishes. (I'm now hovering between 130 and 135. I haven't been this light in a while. Too bad you can't see it.) And still another thing is that I somehow don't want to sleep. Either I'm not tired, or if I am, I don't want to.

Not much happening tomorrow anyway... Baker S is gonna come and teach us how to do baker's percentage. Basically, baking is a science. So, when you do it scientifically, you can ensure a perfect loaf of bread, every time. Awesome? Totally. I just hope this doesn't mean that baking bread will become an even longer process.

I'm gonna go hang out with H for a while, I think. We can comfort each other. And eat chicken. And maybe watch a movie.

*sigh*

Well, on the bright side, J really enjoyed his christmas present (one of our cd's).

And, on a different bright side, I was thinking about it earlier, and I guess it's a good thing Larry died. I mean, think about it. He doesn't have to fight anymore. He's at rest. How many times have I wished to be where he is now? Exactly. He's got a good thing going. I am going to miss him, though.
This world suddenly seems to be a dark, dark place.

Larry is dead.

As abruptly as the sentence above, he just... died. One of his friends found him Thursday night. No wonder he wasn't in group on Friday, or church on Sabbath.

It's so strange... I can still see him, in my mind... I can hear his voice, telling about his week, about how happy he is to know God, about his progress in quitting smoking... He looked so good. Hair cut, ironed shirt, beaming smile... he was the best I'd ever seen him.

How can he just be... gone? My mind refuses to wrap itself around that fact that I will not see Larry this Friday night. I will not buy chicken from him, and I will never help him learn how to read. I think the worst part is that I don't even have a picture of him.

I can do nothing but silently scream my agony into the black abyss that yawns before me. He was my friend. I loved him. He had plans, dreams, hopes, ambitions... gone. All gone.

In the end, is that all it comes to? One by one, the lights of our lives go out, leaving thin smoke trails of memory in the minds of others... until they, too, are no more.

Oh, Larry.

Why?

At least I know that you loved God. I am absolutely sure I'll see you again.
The last post was a bit... angry. I know. I guess I'm just rediscovering my anger, and this is as good a place to put it as any. Nobody gets hurt.

Funny thing is, due to all the rains around here lately, there have been landslides. As I drove to work today, I thought, "What if a landslide hits my car and I die? The last post I left was so angry! I don't want to leave it like that!"

So... with that said...








There. That's better.
I am so sick and tired of Ellen White. Seriously. Who cares?

I started reading this book called God's Appointed, and it's a story all right, but basically it's just a staged setting for a string of Bible/Spirit of Prophecy quotes on how we ought to be living our lives. I believe he has good intentions. As a matter of fact, I know he does. But what bugs me is that he uses one or two Bible verses, and like 6 Ellen White quotes.

Please. Like wearing a skirt is gonna solve all the problems in my life. Baking bread in a wood stove won't cure me of my anger. And spouting off Testimonies quotes doesn't make me a better person.

I don't doubt the fact that she was a sincere Christian. And I'm very sure that she was a messenger from God... just as my pastor is. But why don't people quote Uriah Smith all the time? Why don't you hear, "Well, you COULD eat that cheese, but Joseph Bates said..." Cha. Right.

I'm tired of pushy Adventists. You can't make me do what you want, especially by reading the same well-worn lines to me and thinking that it's going to persuade me. What, you think I'll change because I'm afraid of damnation? You don't know how often I've been there, even without Mrs. White in my face, telling me what to do.

Yeah. You're so good... you're so right that you don't even treat people with common decency anymore. If that's what reading the Great Controversy does to you, then count me out. You read Steps to Christ, then go around calling my friend a harlot, eh? Classy. Very sanctified of you.

So following the guidelines will make me happy, huh? Doing things right will usher me further into the arms of Jesus? Well guess what? Ellen White never told you what to do when your mom's boyfriend is torturing you while she's away at work. Ellen White doesn't say anything about what to do when you're molested by your step-father. Ellen White probably doesn't give a flying flip about the fact that you are lost, confused, and angry, except to tell you you're not doing it right. Come back to the Lord. Forsake your heathen ways. Repent and be converted.

Shove it.

Your hollow phrases mean nothing to me. I hate you. Just leave me alone. I'll die in my jeans, if that's what it takes. Just leave me alone.
I was deliriously happy. I'm better now, but I was in absolute agony earlier.

You know, it's funny... just when I thought I couldn't possibly be more broken and wounded... I realize that I am. It seems that there are no end to the dark corners and twists of my soul.

Srsly? Will I EVER be whole? EVER?!

It's like I've been walking around with these vicious, inflamed, oozing wounds for years, but I didn't feel the pain, because I kept myself drugged and anesthetized. In addition to that, I had bandages covering the sores. They didn't heal, but they didn't hurt... all they did was snake their infectious tendrils down to the bone and compromise my entire system.

So, now I've taken away the drugs. I'm off the anesthesia. I'm peeling off the crusty bandages so that the wounds can heal. (And of course, when I say "I", it's really Jesus and me doin' it together... in no way would I ever have the guts or the strength to do this by myself.) But now, I'm walking around with these open wounds, and people are bumping in to them. It HURTS! Every bump sends me into fresh paroxysms of pain that last for an indefinite period of time.

Basically, this sucks. I hate it. But I guess it's a necessary step in the process. After all, if we never felt pain, would we ever seek healing? It's when the pain gets too much to bear that you start looking for a cure... or something to dull it.

I called J to pray with me, and she did, and it was good. It helped me focus and get some perspective again. I'm not losing my religion. I'm not less saved. But I'm discovering a previously un-illuminated corner of my soul that needs to be brought to light... with all the mutilated corpses and skeletons that entails.

Entails. Entrails. Emotionally, it feels like vivisection. Yes. It does. But I promised Yah, I will go through this if you hold my hand.
I just had my interview with MiVoden (about an hour ago). It went really, really well. Actually, I asked them what my chances are of being hired, speculatively speaking (since they haven't finished interviews yet), and they said an 80-90% chance. They also said that they really want me. Me. Wow. (For the counselor position, no less-- my dream job!)

I'm so deliriously excited! However, I have another opportunity to check with God on, because they also said that they're considering me to be the leader of a traveling Vacation Bible School team, His Travelers. They came to our church last year, and it was really positive. The traveling would be hard on me, though... especially b/c of the food situation.

Anyway, this is just really neat. I'm going to apply to a few others, so that God can open and shut doors as he pleases. I'd hate to miss out on the place I'm supposed to be, just because my eyes were dazzled by MiVoden.

So I'm thinking... MiVoden, Yavapines, PSR, Sunset Lake, Ida-Haven, Leoni Meadows... I think that's about it.

Yeah. I really wanna work at summer camp. It's gonna be an awesome experience.
Someone, somewhere lied to me yesterday about the contents of my food... and now I pay for their untruth.  At least it's a good remind of why I don't eat the foods I'm allergic to... Many times I've thought, "Well, I'll just have a little. I mean, yeah, I'll get sick, but it can't be that bad, right?"

WRONG. I'm not even going to bother going into detail, but all I know at the end of this day is that I have a porcelain friend.

I always decide against having any "bad" foods on purpose, 'cause I know that *sigh* I'll pay. Oh boy, I'll pay. I hate food allergies. Why can't I just be like J and get sub-dermal cysts  and a low immune system?

Well, on the bright side... at least I don't go into anaphylactic shock. I could be dead right now. (My colon wants me dead. Seriously.)

So, I must prepare for my ordeal tomorrow. I have no idea how it's going to go, I only know that God has told me I need to try to patch up this relationship, even though she pretends as though nothing ever happened...

I guess the whole point is that I want to try to understand her perspective, and use some I-statements to explain to her how much her actions hurt me. If the opportunity arises, I'd like to insert this question/statement: "In the future, if I go to God about something and come out with different convictions than you have, is this scenario going to repeat itself?" Something along those lines. I also want to stress that, if she has a problem with me, please come to me. I mean, I understand as well as the next person the value of getting counsel from others, but she was not looking for counsel. She was (from my point of view) badmouthing me to my friends. But, tomorrow, we'll see what her perspective was.

Oh, Lord... what the heck am I gonna say?! I'm not skilled at this whole conflict-resolution thing. Just give me the right words. I don't want to alienate her or come across mean and spiteful or anything. I just want clarity. Clarity and resolution. And permission to be myself without looking over my shoulder all the time.

On a bright note, had a chat with a friend today. It was the perfect thing. Not that we were able to give each other answers or anything, but just knowing that someone else is out there fighting a similar battle is... heartening. Knowing that she'll be praying for me is awesome. And knowing that I'll be praying for her gives me a reason to keep talking to God.

And maybe it's also the friendship aspect of it. I'm honored that she chose to come to me. It makes me happy. And with her, I can be totally transparent and honest, and she's not repulsed. That in itself is totally cool.

Plus, I resonate with her emotions and thought processes alot. So when I'm praying for her, it's almost like I'm praying for me. Because I firmly believe that God loves her, has plans for her, and wants to elevate her to joys beyond her wildest dreams... and I have a hard time believing that for myself. But we're so similar that when I believe it for her, I'm believing it for me, too.

Oh, yeah. And I'm chopping my hair off on Friday. It'll look like this:

Awesome? Totally.
Okay, so maybe it's not so scathing, but I did send a complaint to United. On the trip there, they broke my tuner and shattered the plastic containers inside my guitar case. On the way back, they ripped a gash in my suitcase and twisted/broke a latch on my guitar case. Really? Even with the "Fragile" sticker on it, and the OBVIOUS fact that it's an instrument? I think someone at United has a vendetta against guitars.

So, here's the letter I sent them:

I understand that checked baggage is at a certain level of risk when it comes to damage. However, my baggage experienced treatment that I believe was unduly rough and careless. On my flight to Appleton, WI from Spokane, WA, I checked two bags-- one a suitcase, the other a guitar in a hard case. It is incredibly obvious that the guitar is, in fact, a guitar, and should be handled with at least some care. When I got my bags back, however, the plastic containers in the case were literally shattered, the contents were strewn throughout the interior, and my tuner was broken. This, I can handle. I can overlook it. I did, after all, sign a waiver. I simply hoped that a little more caution would be exercised towards my instrument on the return flight. Again, I checked both bags, and this time, a "Fragile" sticker was placed on the case, which eased my mind a bit. However, when I picked up the bags, I found that not only was there a large gash in the side of my suitcase, but that one of the solid metal clasps of the guitar case had been twisted and broken. Needless to say, I am more than a little incensed. Do you understand the sheer force it would take to break one of those clasps? I would like to request compensation for the damage inflicted upon my belongings at the hands of your company, and I can assure you that, unless something changes, I will not be using your services again.


So... I guess we'll see what happens.
I hate myself.

I think it's finally time I fully, openly acknowledged the fact.

I don't know when it started, or why... it's just been a fact of my life, similar to the fact that I am a girl. It's just... there. And it shapes my daily interactions with other people, with myself... with God...

And now, as I my gaze travels across my walls, my ceiling, my dressers, my floor, I see disconnected fragments of who I am. Like a shaft of sunlight refracting through a prism, pictures and trinkets splayed across tan paint reveal glimpses of who I am.

The funny thing is, if I didn't know myself, I would probably like me. If I wandered into this bedroom unwittingly, I would be curious about this girl with the wall of photographs and drawings (and muscle cars). I would admire the rock collection, fiddle with the keychains that hang from hooks, and appreciate the shimmering softness of the gold curtain that hangs over the closet.

So many bits and pieces of myself, on full display... I can take this diluted version of her. But not what goes on inside my head. Not all the time.

Why do I hate myself?

I hate me for hating me.

All three cats are sleeping on my bed right now. It's kind of funny... especially since I have never seen George on my bed before, much less asleep on my bed.



I almost lost it today.

I knew I shouldn't have gone to church. But I wanted to see my friends. So, I did.

"Happy Sabbath!" *smile*
"So good to see you! Yes, I'm so glad to be home." *smile*
"Good morning!" *smile*

Good enough. That's common. But I knew that today was the day I approached the jewelry nazi and asked for a "date" this week to discuss "something". It's that incident that pained me so deeply. We need to discuss it.

"Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift." Matthew 5:23, 24

Apparently, relationships are more valuable to God than gifts, whatever those might be. Anyway, we need to get that squared away before it comes back to bite me later on.

I found out about the job thing. It's finances. They hope to bring in another Bible worker at some point, but it'll be a while, for the same reasons. Hopefully, by then I'll be far away, so I won't have to play the inevitable comparison game... or feel the sting of my failure all over again.

Anyway, I went to church. That was great. I love church. But I've really been...frustrated?... lately. Spending time with God in the morning seems to make no impact on my day one way or the other. Whether I skip it or not, things just... go on as normal. But then when I do, I feel better in that "I did what I was supposed to" glow that I used to get when I would go door to door. Just another thing on the checklist. I resent devotional time because it's what Christians are supposed to do. I hate doing what I'm supposed to do.

In addition, all sorts of funky emotions were stirred up by my visit home. You remember my utter shock and dismay to find that I am, in fact, the same person? Yeah. So I've been rather confused and frazzled lately.

So then the message today was the story of a girl, Alice, who was the perfect little Christian all her life. Her family was great, she loved God, etc. etc. She gets to be about my age, and she has to take care of her Alzheimer's grandfather all weekend. Long story short, he wears her patience thin to the point that she snaps and gets really upset and angry, and takes it out verbally on her grandfather. They are both shocked, especially Alice, and she realizes that this is truly who she is way down deep. This is an aspect of herself that she's never expressed before, but stuffed away. So she runs to her room in tears, confesses and asks for forgiveness, and pleads that the Lord will deliver her from who she finds herself to truly be. A few minutes later, this peace comes over her, and *boom*, she's delivered. She's changed. She's no longer living the form of godliness, but she's living the power thereof.

So then the speaker goes on to bring us to 1 John 5:18, which says, "We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him."

And then something else about how, when we're born of God/born again, we're not the same people anymore.

Well, I guess that means I'm screwed. I must not really be born of God (i.e. born again) then. I guess I'm not Christian after all. I'm still the same person. So then what's the point? What's the point of fighting anymore? I mean, that girl was delivered in an instant. Why am I going through this long, drawn out process? Am I not doing something right? Is my journey not legitimate? Has this all been a lie?

It was kinda all downhill from there. I spent the rest of the sermon focusing on not crying. I think I understand what they were trying to say-- it's like, you're connected to God, in His protective bubble. In order to sin, you have to purposely step outside that protective bubble. It doesn't just "happen". But my heart was already run through, and had not the strength to search for whatever hope was in there. I almost got up and left so many times, but the infernal "What will people think?" kept me in my pew. Besides, that's just one step closer to never coming back.

I managed to smile on the way out, and even hold a conversation with someone who I should have been able to open up to. I didn't trust myself to talk about this, though, because, truthfully, I don't understand it. It's like I'm back to square one, all over again. WILL I NEVER BE ABLE TO MOVE BEYOND THIS POINT?! I'll get a few steps into the path, and then look around to find myself back at the trailhead once more.

So I held it in until I got into the car. Those same crazy self-destructive urges swept over me again, and the blackness shuddered and lurched through my being. I cried the entire half-hour home... not just tears, but wails. I sounded like an infant. I also screamed. I raged. I pounded the wheel and cussed. I looked into the emptiness inside me and grieved the pain and blackness that stared back. I wanted to go eighty mph, but I knew that I don't have the money for a ticket.

"Sorry, officer.. I didn't mean to speed, but I'm horribly depressed and raging at God. Can you let me off just this once?"

Yeah. Right.

I came incredibly close to packing a suitcase, taking all my money, and driving down to Yuma. I could be gone by the time the family gets back. No one to stop me. But what would that do to them? And besides.. the fear of running out of money always hangs over my head. If I spend it now... how will I ever go to school? Can I really live on $700 until I get a summer job? Perhaps...

I thought about calling someone... but how do I articulate the intense agony that has seized me?

So on the hike up the driveway, I came to one conclusion: God exists. The natural world is too intricate, even in its degradation, to have occurred spontaneously. I just can't buy that.

So, I believe that God exists. I'm not sure what else I believe right now.

I really just want a hug... someone soft to cry on. Juneaux gave me a nice hug earlier, though.

I over-ate again.

I even thought about running off with someone from my old groups... but no one from SOULS is that dumb, and I don't want to go back to C, and B is married now.

So, anyway, here I am. A black hole.

At least they don't ask me to preach anymore.

My mind is skating on thin ice... it's times like this that I half-heartedly contemplate suicide. Maybe I could... Nah. I like life too much.

It's times like this that I seriously consider escapism.

I'm glad the family is coming back tonight. I need someone around to keep me from doing anything stupid.
Unwittingly locked inside a cocoon--not of her own weaving--
Butterfly flutters frantically, but never thinks of leaving.
She's unaware of the load she bears;
Cannot afford to think that there
Might be a sinister intent in the one she is believing.


Unwittingly locked inside a cocoon comprised of pain and silence,
Butterfly paces quietly, and tries to forget the violence-
The casual torture of her soul,
The prolonged death consuming her whole...
Not understanding the unceasing demanding assault upon every sense.


Unwitting locked inside a cocoon that has grown overly tight,
Butterfly yearns for the passing of years to usher her into the light.
Distance is power; the safety of hours
Is the balm that soothes while Reality glowers,
And she cannot decide whether Wrong or Right is what prompts her urge for immediate flight.


Unwittingly locked inside a cocoon now mercifully unraveling,
Butterfly peeks through splintery cracks down the path she is slowly traveling.
A gentle love; a fragrant hope;
A gift from God; a strong sure rope
Supports her as she walks along the edge of what she once had found a mystery un-worth tackling...


Freedom.


I wrote that probably around half a year ago... maybe closer to a year. I wrote the last stanza in faith. Right now, stanzas 1-3 apply in a big way.
I'll get to that in a second.

I made it home safely (clearly). While I was waiting for my ride at the airport, I pulled out my guitar and started playing. By the time I left (about half an hour later), I had a small crowd gathered! It was rather funny. One guy told me, "I hope your ride takes a long, long time." LOL!

Juneaux wasn't as excited to see me as I thought he'd be. Instead of:



it was more like, "Oh. You're home. Well it's about time."

He definitely still knows me, but he's not as lovey-dovey as he was. Perhaps that will come with time...

Anyway, I hate money. Rather, I hate what it does to your mind. 



I just found out that my church is re-contracting with me to clean the church (they think I do a really good job!), but  they have chosen not to keep me on as a youth worker. So, here's the timeline:
I come to Idaho as a Bible worker. I make twelve hundred a month. I'm able to sock away two to three hundred a month in savings (which came in handy!), or pay several hundred towards my SOULS bill. I alternated between the two.

Then, I quit Bible work and became the youth worker/janitor/radio personality. I now get five hundred a month. It's tight, but I'm still squeaking by. I've had to dip into my savings a few times, and I'm definitely not putting any away, but I'm still managing to make some payments on my SOULS bill, along with helping out the S's with food money.

Now, I'm a janitor for a little over one hundred a month, plus they're no longer covering my gas to and from like they were before. (It's an hour round-trip. Thank you, Lord, that you didn't let me get a vehicle with less mpg!!!) 

So, I'm feeling uncomfortable because of the finance situation. I'll still be working for B, so I'll probably  be netting somewhere around three hundred a month, total. Almost one hundred of that will go to tithe, offering, and SOULS bill. That leaves me two hundred for gas, food, and anything else I need. Cripes.

I mean, I know that I could go out and get another job, but for 4 months? That's rather ridiculous. I really enjoy the schedule control that I have now, especially with my doctor's appointments, counseling sessions, and therapy days. I can kiss all that goodbye to some degree if I get a "real" job.

I'm thinking that the reason they decided to scrap the youth worker position is one of a few options:
- the jewelry nazi got to them and convinced them I'm a bad person and not able to have a position of influence and responsibility
-they can't afford it (after all, we are putting in new carpet soon)
-the new pastor and his wife are so youth-oriented that they don't need my position anymore

Could be a combination of all three. Who knows? I'd like to talk to a couple of the elders about it and see what actually went down at the board meeting.

Anyway, I just need to focus on the positive. I am sure, absolutely sure, that Yahweh is still the leading, guiding authority for the goings-on in my life, so this must be a part of it. There are a few things that I'm really bummed about with this situation, though...

I'm going to have to cut down on my driving (which means goodbye youth activities besides racquetball), which means being even more house-bound than I already am. I am in no way going to be able to do CLEP classes this spring unless I take out a loan of some sort. I may or may not get to visit Arizona this spring, which really crushes my heart. I had my hopes set on that. Unless I get financial help form somewhere, it's not gonna happen.

Sigh. Why is money so all-fired important, anyway? Who needs it? (Well... I do.)

I choose to view this as an exercise in trust, as something good... as a blessing, rather than a bitter disappointment/curse.

Here are the good things I see!
-I have time to focus on the remainder of my counseling/Celebrate Recovery
-I'll be able to help out on the farm more (I was so hoping to be around more in spring!)
-I'll be able to focus on school (CLEPing. I'm determined.)
-I'll be able and more motivated to keep a closer eye on my finances. No more waste, only what is vitally necessary.

Yes, there are good things. Another good thing--I am back on insurance! Whoopee!  And it couldn't have come at a better time :)

You know, I am really grateful for my family. If it weren't for my grampa and my dad paying for my car stuff and my cell phone, I'd really be in deep water. It's one of the ways they show that they love me.

I'm glad I went home for Christmas. Mom gave me a ring that she said was "so me", and I hardly take it off. It's like a tangible reminder of her love, and I want to keep it on my finger always... no matter what other people say.
I love lolcats. (icanhascheezeburger.com)

I feel much better!

It's amazing how much my family speaks in movie quote.

Anyway, I felt better after eating supper with the fam, and talking to my friend B on the phone. For a long time, it was just him, me, and C-- best buds. Out of our circle of friends, they were the only two responsible ones (i.e. could hold a job for a long period of time, didn't have kids, didn't do drugs, etc.) As I look back at where we were, I wonder why I sometimes crave it. I had no deep relationships, no safety... which is maybe what made it feel safe. No risk of intimacy.

Anyway, he and I had a chance to catch up a little bit. His son is 2 years old now. I can't believe it! Well, I can. It sounds like he's a good daddy.

We talked about C for a while, too. He has a girlfriend! I'm glad. But apparently it's not going so well, and he's thinking about ending it. I said, "Well, I'm glad he's moving on." (For a long time, it didn't seem as though he was.) I mean, he's got a house now, he's got friends that come over... he's got a life now. (Albeit not the life that I would choose, but still... for C, it's huge, HUGE progress, and that makes me happy!)

But he (C) has told B that he's never going to try as hard in a relationship as he did with me. B said that, if I ever wanted to go back, he'd probably jump at the chance. *sigh* That knowledge is a sweet poison. I don't want to go back... but knowing that I could... makes it seem all the more tempting. I mean, I knew that, but now I know, from a source outside my own conjectures. And it saddens me to think that my leaving could have dampered his spirit so... though I know it was best for both of us. Really. I know he doesn't believe that, but it's true. We were both so dysfunctional... we need our alone-ness to heal.

I also found out something that made me royally angry. We also talked a little about Christianity, and I told him about the conclusions that I'd come to about why C would not come to church, or believe in God, or w/e. Well, get this... there are more reasons why he hates church. I had forgotten about one incident he told me about, where a woman divorced her abusive husband and was kicked out of the church. He was so steamed about that! It went against every grain of what he understood to be justice. Not to mention that Christians are always talking about not judging, about loving, and about forgiving... but then they do something like that, and it shows up as diametrically opposed to what they have been talking about. Now, I also understand the church's perspective, but I'm focusing on what C saw.

Keep C's loathing of hypocrisy in mind, because this will rock your world and make you cry. Towards the end, he would drop me off at church on Sabbath morning, and pick me up after church. One time while he was there, he heard somebody badmouthing him-- right there at the church! "Oh, isn't it terrible that C is with that horrible guy, blah blah blah"

And you know what? I do not blame him for not wanting to step a foot into that church ever again. He never told me, because he knew that I loved the church and the people in it, and he didn't want to hurt me.

And I HATE with a vehement passion that the person badmouthing my then fiance never, ever took into account that, if it weren't for C, I probably wouldn't have finished school. It was because of C that I was able to keep my jobs. He provided stability for me when I had none, and kept me from walking down a very, very dark path. You don't even know. How DARE you do this thing? Someday, you will have to account for the fact that you burned someone who was, against all odds, maybe giving church (and, by extension, God) a chance again. And yes, I know, I know that C's response is his responsibility. I know this. But he has learned to self-protect for survival. That's one of the dysfunctions that he was raised with. So, when a situation comes when he is faced with pain, he protects himself by withdrawal and anger. Yeah, it makes sense. But it really, really, really angers me that this  kind of stuff happens.

Britt and I proceeded to ascend our soapboxes and talk about how much we hate that kind of stuff. He has a story similar to mine-- people (or person) in the church screwing over his family, and he is rightfully angry about it. The church is supposed to be a place of safety and refuge, not a place of poison and malice.

Oh, God... may I never, ever be the perpetrator of such hideous evils.
That's as close to guttermouth as you'll ever hear me. Trust me, it's there... I just choose not to use it.

I'm depressed.

And I don't know why.

I hate that. If I were depressed following some cataclysmic event in my life, I could understand that. If someone died, or if I got really sick again, or if something else bad  happened, I could get that. But my life is good. My family is (mostly) healthy, we found a church that my mom likes and plans to attend (even the small group!), the kids are behaving better, Mom + R's relationship is healing, God is good, and I'm home for the holidays.

So why do I feel like alternately screaming, crying, pacing, running away, hiding, and expending energy? Why is the desire to self-destruct swirling in and around my conscious?

Anyway, I guess I can talk about this later... I made supper, so I'm gonna go set the table.

It's just funny how everything is going so well, and I feel so... crappy. Blech.