how long has it been?

by epi

it seems like forever. honestly, it seems like forever since i’ve written anything. this isn’t because i have nothing to say. on the contrary, words are so blocked up in my mind that they’ve overflowed to my stomach, my throat.  like old glue, mustard whatever, now i’m blocked. there’s so much to say that i don’t know where to start. so maybe the beginning? or maybe, if i just write to write (rather than to share a thought), I stand a chance at speaking again?  Why is this harder than it used to be?  But I have to start somewhere. I have to.

[Deep breath]

I went to India. I roamed the halls of the Taj Mahal.

I came home, and took a break from everyone, from everything.

I drank alone in my car. I drank not at all. I quit smoking, and then started again.

I dated a boy who told me he loved me, and I responded in kind.  But then, I cried, because I’ve always prided myself on always telling the truth, but I lied to him, saying I loved him.  So, I took it back. But I wanted it.  So badly I wanted to be capable of loving another person, that I tried (to love him, I mean).  I failed.  He knew, and it ended.  I understand that now… & I believe that I’ll understand that better in the years to come.  (I’ve never encountered this before, I’ve never tried, and subsequently failed.) I’m happy the relationship ended. Is that weird?  Since I did fail, I know now that I probably would have failed, and I’m just glad it ended before anyone got too hurt.  I hope he isn’t terribly hurt.

I got a B-. I didn’t cry. It was deserved.

Also, during this time, God spoke to me. He told me to confess.  He told me to repent. He told me to turn from my sin. I’m still struggling with this. I’m hungry for the day when my sin is out there in the world. I’m eager to speak it out loud.  I’ve always thought that speaking sin gave it life.  Now, I am beginning to see that speaking sin, giving it a name, is the first step to laying it down in it’s grave.  It’s the first step to giving myself life. (No, that’s wrong. I’m not giving myself life. I’m accepting life that’s been given to me.  I’m allowing God to begin healing me.)  I’ve admitted that I wanted to be healed. From the idols I’ve worshiped. From everything I place above God. I’m saying out loud that the only thing I want is God. No matter what the cost. (I’m fighting tears typing that. I am afraid. I’m so afraid I shake. My hands shake, my mouth waters. I’m so afraid. But I’m less afraid of my sin than the cost of the same. I’m more repulsed, than afraid. I want to rid myself of these dirty things. I want to be free.  I haven’t come far. I’ve only admitted these things to God as of now. But I’ve taken steps, and I will be free. I will.)

I asked myself what I was so afraid of. Because, I am. Afraid. I still don’t know the answer. I see though, that in asking the question, I’ve gone further than I ever have. And maybe there isn’t an answer. Maybe I’m afraid of nothing (but, isn’t that something, here?).  Maybe I’m afraid of everything (but, isn’t that almost like nothing? Is everything, nothing at all in the end?).  Maybe I’m afraid that freedom isn’t what I think it is. Maybe I’m afraid that I’ll never be free. I guess the point is, that I’m no longer afraid of trying. Again, that’s a step. A small one, but it’s further than I’ve ever gone.

I met another niece. I met my first nephew. They are beautiful. Some days, I hold my baby niece, drink in her scent, stare at her sleeping in my arms.  She’s a reason I need to be free. I want to be able to love her. I want to be someone she’s proud of. I want to be an example. I want to be something for her. She’s beautiful. She belongs to God, that precious, innocent, beautiful child. And so do I.

So, I’ve spoken. After months, I’ve spoken. I said very little, but isn’t speaking the first step? All these words are mumbles, coos. But isn’t that what we do first anyway? Before learning to speak, to say SOMETHING, we explore the sound of our voice, we experiment with using our lips and tongues and lungs to shape sounds, and eventually all of that starts to mean something? Isn’t that how it works? I’m praying that it is.

I’m a sinner. I need someone to know this. But, I’m giving it up. My sin. I’m giving it up, and I’m finally taking a terrifying step towards freedom.