When we are young everything is new, and life is joyful and exciting. The simplest things can bring the greatest joys! At holidays and birthdays, it seems that we can hardly wait to experience them!
Then, as adults, we get used to these things. They become second nature and we no longer look forward to seeing what can or should be exciting.
What once was new and exciting becomes commonplace and dull.
Especially if we have gone through some really hard things or traumatic experiences. Depending upon when that trauma was experienced, the greater the lack of joy. The long anticipated birthday at five years old becomes a disappointment at 15 and a ‘why bother’ at 25. At that trajectory you begin to wonder why you were even born in the first place.
That spark for life and zest for being alive is gone.
It usually happens slowly, almost imperceptibly. And even if there has been a sudden trauma, it doesn’t happen all at once. There seems to be a glimmer of hope that hangs on from childhood fantasy. Like a belief in Santa Claus, where you just can’t help but believe, and hope that good things, even magic can still happen.
No, it doesn’t happen all at once. It happens very slowly like a disease you don’t know you have. The pain begins slowly, you hardly notice it and then it becomes normal as it eats away at the very fiber of your emotional being. As it increases, you take it in as a new normal, and it becomes reality. You have begun to forget what it ever felt like to feel truly good, truly free, truly happy. This numbness of mind, body, and soul goes on for years, little by little eating away at what used to be until it is forgotten completely.
The innocence of children.
The beauty of believing, of trusting, of anticipation, excitement, and of love unconditional, eaten away by an unseen hand—
a psychopathic methodical killer with no remorse.
Til all that is left is a distant memory, so long ago forgotten that it’s as if it never happened. Or at least not to me.
How do we remember what it was like to feel? How do we get back to believing, trusting, and loving unconditionally?
I know everyone doesn’t feel this, like my daughter who seems to have a childlike personality. She's so creative and open. This methodical emotional killer seems to have largely passed her by. I pray life will somehow leave her unscathed, and she will be spared this silent death.
But I, like so many others, remain in my life-imposed, self-imposed(?) insanity of numbness, ever searching for a way out of this mile deep black hole I seem to have fallen into.
Can I please be relieved of this dark prison into the next life
of beauty and peace?
The only longing I feel is to be removed from this ugly place of confusion and hate, my purpose long since evaporated from my mind.
I see my grandchildren and feel their smiles and hear their excitement. They call to me, call down deep inside my soul, and I sometimes see a light at the top of my black hole but usually I am suffocatingly reminded of just how deep I am, how very far away I am and that glimmer of light is gone again. I am left alone in my darkness desperately searching for echoes of beauty to remind me of which way is up.
Prayer is my lifeline.
A single golden thread that does not break.
I desperately hold onto it until my emotional soul hands are bleeding, for it is my only life line.
Most times in my bleakest darkness, I cannot find it. I am lost completely. It is in those times that I have felt as Joseph Smith when he knelt to pray:
“I was seized upon by some power which entirely overcame me, and had such an astonishing influence over me as to bind my tongue so that I could not speak. Thick darkness gathered around me, and it seemed to me for a time as if I were doomed to sudden destruction......and at the very moment when I was ready to sink into despair and abandon myself to destruction—not to an imaginary ruin, but to the power of some actual being from the unseen world, who had such marvelous power as I had never before felt in any being—just at this moment of great alarm,....”
I did not see a pillar of light above me. I did not feel relief.
The weight of my situation pressed upon me like unseen hands around my neck, threatening to squeeze.
But my deliverance somehow came, was sure, ever so slow and unexpected, but sure. my ministering angels came.
They have surrounded me. Pointing my heavenly spirit back to my mortal life and the temporal reality I still have a place and purpose in. The reminder of that purpose echoing ever so quietly down from somewhere above me.
Then, I would find myself yet alive, with an emotional Everest of heavy suffocating pain and numbness to overcome.
What had just happened?
What have I done?
Did I hear something?
Did I feel something?
Then, I would find my golden thread of prayer once again and hold on. After a while, I would even be able to see a glimmer of light above me.
Sometimes, sometimes I would even look up. Sometimes my eyes would be able to focus on that glimmer and actually feel a mustard seed of hope before falling.
Falling back into numb nothingness.
At times I have been able to live there, One hand firmly grasped onto my golden thread of hope: prayer, while the other clawed my way up the black, muddy prison wall of my self-imposed mile deep black hole.
This is one of those times. I find myself approaching the light, nearing the top of my black hole. I am beginning to want to hope and trust again, to want to see things more clearly.
I inch my way up towards the light at the top.
The light blinds my eyes. I hold onto my golden thread of prayer, of hope.
I feel someone’s hands reach out and take mine.
They are lifting me. I am bruised and my hands are bloody. My strength is gone, but I pray, pleading over and over and over again to show me the way out. Please, please don’t let me fall again.
I feel something, metaphorically take the hands offered to me. Finally, blinking and blinded, eyes stinging, I somehow step into the light.
My back hurts, my feet tingle, my neck is sore.
I haven’t stood for a long, long time.
Somewhere though, the pain is redeeming...
I have never trusted like this before.
It seems it was another lifetime ago that I felt this kind of hope, —felt anything at all really.
Yet, here I am.
What do I do now?
I am vulnerable and raw but there is purpose forming somehow in my heart.
A new world is coming.
Through this shadow of death and pain, beauty is coming.
Just be still.
Feel your heart beat.
Trust me, my Savior says:
“You have a purpose.
All is well, look to me,
I am the light. I will show you the way...”