A Blog on Roots v. Loneliness by Adult Forum Members
Sometimes when I say “I’m okay,” I want someone to look me in the eyes, hug me tight and say, I know you’re not.”
One of my favorite songs in high school was Turn! Turn! Turn! by The Byrds based on Ecclesiastes. The idea that everything has a season made a great deal of sense to someone growing up in Iowa We had corn season, football season (Go Hawks!) ice skating on Cherry Lake season and the season of the flood. When reading over this week’s prompts I was drawn to the prompt beginning with the word “Sometimes.” Sometimes is a season and I am a firm believer in the occasional season of self-pity. The season when one suddenly uncontrollably begins to chant
“Nobody likes me, everybody hates me
I think I'll go eat worms!
Big fat juicy ones
Eensie weensy squeensy ones
I am convinced that I am unloved, underappreciated, overlooked, taken for granted, forgotten, neglected, and generally ill-treated.
There is only one cure for this malady, a good wallow in self-pity. To qualify as a good wallow there must be certain elements. I must be alone. I only wallow at night. I only wallow in candle light or in front of a fire. The wallow must have music. My music of choice is sad, soulful, sung by a woman and frequently in French. Nina Simone and Barbara Streisand are definitely on the play list. In fact back in the days of cassette tapes Lee made me a cassette of my favorite wallowing songs. I titled in Dea’s Depressing Dabblings
Red wine is a necessity as well. I need the visual of the wine swishing in its glass as the firelight transform the red liquid into a reflecting prism of the wrongs the world has dealt me. I shout out the lyrics to songs like Barbara Striessand’s Free Again or Janis Ian’s I learned the truth at Seventeen. The lyrics are only tangentially connected to my mood. The songs are selected to evoke a mood. They are the sound track of a wallow. But eventually I notice the candle wax is dripping onto the coffee table, the wine glass is empty, and the music is becoming maudlin. I blow out the candles, take my glass to the sink realized how blessed I am. I am now chanting
For the beauty of the earth,
for the glory of the skies,
for the love which from our birth
over and around us lies.
Christ, our Lord, to you we raise
this, our hymn of grateful praise.
Wallow over. It is the season to dance.
Lonely is when no one else will do
A year after my divorce I found myself in a living arrangement that turned abusive. Maybe that was self-punishment or maybe just a match for wounded self-worth. But when I got choked in the shower, I walked from Phoenix to Tempe and found a retreat where I could regroup. I delved into my spiritual studies that no-one before seemed to understand. I practiced my yoga and I read
Someone up above saw my efforts. I searched deep to determine where I was failing. By now I blamed no-one for my aloneness. I wanted to know why everybody fled when I loved them or why I frustrated the last one who called me a malcontent. Nobody could make me happy. Something was missing. I wasn’t a complete person.
So I turned back to Christ, my childhood idol. My rock. I read all the Gnostic gospels -what had I missed? What did they say about my Lord. Who was Magdalene and who was Thomas really. And this Phillip, who wrote (or told) about Jesus and Mary. These were new discoveries and I found they explained a lot. Or at least made me wonder, Who was the real Christ. And who were these wise men from the East who knew of His coming. How did he transform himself? I began this relationship with knowledge and found the living Jesus guides us and is present.
There is no loneliness when we we get very still and let the chaff of the wheat fall away. But you have to let it go, let go of the opinions of yourself and others -those are all judgements and have no value. I think love is a gift that is there by Grace when we become centered and find that point within that connects us to the Divine. Then God comes down to meet us and bestow us with Faith. So this is what I nurture, my Faith. And it takes effort, on my part, every day to not waste the gift. I’m never alone. Or lonely because I can now reach out, I don’t expect anything. I do my part. I make the effort, and God notices and reciprocates.
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