Monday, April 12, 2010

More Common than a Comet

Things shake, lose strength, and my hands have forgotten how to hold on. I don't mean that metaphorically--lately there's something wrong with my peripheral nervous system, and it's rather annoying.
Such are the unsung effects of who I am.
But enough. I must keep my brain moving with happier things.
I realize that almost nothing is in my control, but it feels like they should be, so my body is aching and groaning with frustration. My heart won't sit still. I can't make more money appear. I can't bring Andrew home sooner. I can't make my hands work or my feelings balance, simply out of sheer will. Believe me, I fight as hard as I can.
I get angry sometimes, because Andrew can't pour himself out for me. No, that's not accurate--I get angry that I get so drained that I can't take care of him, and he can't take care of me because he's also drained beyond measure, and so I'm angry at the whole situation, not him. I told Dad that it feels like my bones have been scraped out.
I don't blame Andrew. I don't blame the war, or the Army. That's just where we are right now, and I don't mind it. I don't know what I blame. I blame myself, I suppose. I hate that I can't be strong. I hate that I can breathe and calm myself and psyche myself up and muster every ounce of courage I have, but then someone looks me in the eye, and I fall to pieces.
I've ended up crying in front of two different people at work today. I feel terrible. I feel like I'm letting them down, because these are people I love, and this is a place that I love, yet--my insides are abandoning them, and I hate it.
I hate being so weak. I hate that everyone sees me weak. I hate that everyone else has to pick me up. I hate that people suffer because I'm weak. They worry for me, they fear for me, they stand around feeling helpless as they watch me wasting away. They blame themselves because they can't help me (a feeling I understand, as its one I often carry when I see Andrew suffering).
This is the second time I've responded in anger to this. The first time was last semester, when I needed to be at my best. It was my last semester, for god's sake! I was excited, confident, brave--and then I was eaten away from the inside out. But I wasn't sad, or scared, or nervous like before. I was freaking pissed. Furious. Why the hell do I have to do this yet AGAIN? That angry energy did not bode well for my nerves, but at least it kept my eyes clear, for the most part.
Now I'm angry again. Anger, and anguished. My hands refuse to grasp. I drop things, misjudge distances and hit my arms and hips and feet on everything as I try to walk and move. I've honestly been screaming at God a fair bit. Not blaming Him, but pleading with Him. I hate the animal sound of my own cries.
I can't show Andrew what I'm going through. How could I? We talked Saturday night, and just before he got online, I prayed, as fiercely as I could, "God, please, please, let things be okay with him. I can't help him today. I need him to help me. Please, PLEASE."
But last week, it turns out, was one of the worst weeks his unit has had in a long time. Horror, death, destruction, they finally walk back onto their base, dirty, torn to shreds, and hello, emails from wives--I can't do this anymore. I want a divorce. And full custody of your children. So, yeah... you get to come home from war in a few months... come home to nothing and no one.
Andrew was a wreck. He was watching the men he loved suffer, watching their hearts break at a time when they needed their hearts to be strongest. It was almost no comfort for him to be reassured that I would not leave him. The pain wasn't his, and it couldn't be healed by me.
I did what I could. Luckily, we were only chatting. It's easy to type, "Oh, sweetheart, I'm so sorry" over and over as he spilled his burdens. It would not have been easy to look him in the face or hear his voice. With the chat at least, I could weep and weep and weep on my end and he would never know.
Of course, majestically, he recovers so quickly, and because of the amazing man he is, he can turn around with a day or two and cheer me up and, if nothing else, give me certainty. Of everything in the world, of everything in me, of all that is in turmoil (whether in truth or in my perception)--I know he loves me. Even if he can't be here to hug me, or put a bandaid on my pain, he shows me that he loves me. He can be in the worst of moods, suffering through the worst of memories, angry and bitter and railling against all the evil, but he'll manage to drag himself through the thickets and say, "I know you probably don't feel it, and I kinda don't feel anything right now, but you know I love you, right?"
That's something. That's a huge something. It sounds pretty sacrilegious, but I don't feel even as certain of God's love right now (I know He loves me, but I don't FEEL it, ya know?), because part of me thinks He just wants to piss me off right now.
But Andrew's love IS a part of God's love. Andrew belongs to God, I belong to God, God gave us each other. Our love is a reflection of Him. So maybe, when I feel loved by Andrew, that's God's way of showing me His love, reaffirming that there is good to be had, and He is the one who brought it.
My favorite verse for a long time has been James 1:17---every good gift and every perfect gift comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.
There's so much promise in those short words. Every good thing is from God. God is the originator of all light, of all good. He does not change from His good ways.
But the problem right now is, I don't feel any ways. I don't feel good ways. I don't feel bad ways. I feel like nothing has a way to it.
But I'm loved. That's a start. I guess the paths and ways will be found later.

1 comment:

  1. This is beautiful. I'm sorry to hear you're hurting so much, but you bear it very gracefully, at least in prose, even if you feel like you're falling apart. Thanks for sharing that verse from James, too. I have every confidence that God WILL support you through this because even if you're angry with him it's clear you still have a love for him.