Monday, January 24, 2011

Good Grief

For the last week I've been asleep. I am not being metaphorical. I've slept a week away with a knot in my stomach, a Ken shaped hole in my heart, and a head full of confusion. The doctor said I had a stomach virus, but I think, in my own way, I was sitting Shiva for my truly dead marriage.

When you sit Shiva you don't go anywhere. Your week of mourning absolves you from duty. You cover the mirror. Personal appearance means nothing in this sacred time. Your brave face can be saved for when you venture back into life. If you grieve well, you may find you aren't just wearing a mask of courage. You earned it, even though it cost a lot.

In traditional Jewish homes you light a tall candle and let it burn. My candle was my wounded soul, grazing the hem of Christ's garment, with the battered fingertips I hurt trying to claw my way out of sorrow. It's over. My marriage is really over, I thought, again and again, as the harsh reality buffetted me. Some people said I'd be relieved once I decided to move forward with the divorce, but I only felt sad, and that ache demanded expression, even if it had to look like a virus.

It's good grief, however, even if I only now realize that I have been indeed, grieving. Grief is necessesary. Eventually I will take off the garments of mourning. I will put my eyeliner and mascara on again. I will slide the frosted pink gloss across my lips, or maybe even the more dramatic maroon. I will clean the house, and put together the dining room table I got from Walmart, even though I swore I'd never buy assemble-it-yourself furniture again. I will create a life, the one I long for. God keeps giving me signs that this new life is Yes! Yes, yes, yes! It won't be easy becoming, but it will be good, because finally, FINALLY! I'm taking responsibility for the care and feeding of my life, which includes my peeps, my desires, my challenges, and my life's work. To hell, literally, with depression and anxiety, and this idea that I cannot do what is basic, fundamental, to live the life of abundance Jesus said he came for me to have. It's time to get up and uncover the mirror, seeing the beautiful stranger looking back at me. Hello, pretty lady, where have you been all my life? It's time to wash, and extinguish my desperation, beginning again. God loves me. I can do more than cling to a hem. I can hug my Beloved.

My friend Shanna sent me this poem, and the subject line for her message was: your full moon. I always loved a full moon, especially when it comes with gifts.

If God is saying yes to me, I'm answering the call with my own yes. And hey, sorry I disappeared for so long. I'll try to do better. Much better.

God Says Yes to Me
By Kaylin Haught

I asked God if it was okay to be melodramatic
and she said yes
I asked her if it was okay to be short
and she said it sure is
I asked her if I could wear nail polish
or not wear nail polish
and she said honey
she calls me that sometimes
she said you can do just exactly
what you want to
Thanks God I said
And is it even okay if I don't paragraph
my letters
Sweetcakes God said
who knows where she picked that up
what I'm telling you is
Yes Yes Yes

Yes backatcha, God.


Terry said...

Welcome back and good morning!We all join God in saying YES!

MaryAnn M said...

hugs! been waitin and prayin...glad you are seeing Light :D

April Dishon said...

I see so much more for you than sorrow. You are so much more than your circumstances. You are one of the best writers I have ever read and I've read hundreds in my short 30 years. Truth is, sorrow sells you short on success. Start preparing today for tomorrow because Ma'am, you will be an iternationally known author. And not just by your relative who happens to live in Canada type of international either. Get Ready! We once were blind, but now we see. God has so much more in and love joyfully. God bless!

GailNHB said...

God is saying "yes," and so are your soul sister friends here. Yes, girl, you can put that table together and begin again to create the life you are meant to have. You can put on new garments and lip gloss and dance and sing and write and live again.

And in between the strong moments, you can cry and be weak and miss him and miss the life you thought you had and sit down and just sob. It's all part of the package; it's all part of life.

The wonder is that God will be with you every step of the way. Every moment. Holding you close. Binding your wounds. Walking with you on the road, through the valleys, up and down the mountains, all the way.

Yes, yes, yes.

Deirdre Mundy said...

Sometimes, I think God must spend a lot of time saying "You don't really need that, sweety."

We think we need certain things, certain people, certain events and certain outcomes.

And we pray and plead and ache and cry, and yet the miracle doesn't come.

Because what we thought we needed to make it through this life isn't really what God knows we need to make it to the next. And letting go of the extras is agony.

God's given you the strength and trust and faith to pull through. It's going to hurt-- it's not a physical crucifixtion, but it's a spirtitual and emotional one.

It's your Good Friday now. It's OK to cry out. But somewhere, on the other side of this betrayal, there's a ressurection waiting for you.

I'm praying like crazy for you. God will give you just enough manna to get through this desert, day by day.