I’ve been going through the dark night of the soul. It’s a term I am using to help you understand my state. I have loved God from my childhood. I sought Him and felt disappointed when the night sky didn’t light up with angels because I BELIEVED, even as a child that miracles were true and attainable. My mother helped me study the catechism. Memorizing verses and standards of Christian faith through the Lutheran traditions. They were dull and dry for a child. Much of the meaning and significance eluded me but I got the basics. Don’t lie. Don’t want what other people have. Don’t kill. Don’t kiss a married person. Think about God as the most important thing above all other things and talk to Him as much as you want. Don’t hold bad feelings because they tend to stick and make your life miserable. Don’t steal anymore change from your Dad’s pocket for candy.
All my life this desire to know God has been my number one desire. I felt pulled, driven, lonely, searching, for the spirit of God. Oh, I lived in the world alright and was totally unprepared to live in it. Overtly in my life you may not have seen a clue that my heart was preoccupied. In the military I swore with the best of them. I experienced domestic abuse from several partners. I left a career and cared for my mother who had parkinsons. I gave my best but broke her heart with my temper so much like my fathers. I succeeded in Naval service but failed to connect with people. I had several jobs starts that would start well and then would fail. Unbeknownst to me I was a cycling depressive who one week would be painting a barn and the next laying in bed crying so depressed I could not work. I did manage to support myself alone until I decided to marry. The first eleven years were a horrific train wreck. In the ninth year my spirit and will to live left me. I no longer had the energy to rebuild myself one more time. I willed myself to die. As a result I developed stage three liver disease. I became the constant veterans department patient. The mental health wing was entirely too familiar to me. I had come to end of my hope. I had never had children. I had an unhappy marriage. I had no friends. There would never be a successful career. I was now on disability. My memory left me lost while in the car, missing appointments, or going to bed instead of dealing with my husband one more minute. I was in the dark night.
I had learned from the Bible that the Lord never promised me success or prosperity. Any dullard with half a sense can see that around the world there aren’t exactly tons of happiness. There was another side of what my life that had been better. I can say I always tried my best. I hadn’t killed anyone. I had tried to help quite a few people with great success or not. I had given my gloves to a boy one winter day when he was asking for shoveling jobs with a thin jacket and no gloves. I had stolen little to nothing. I had laughed some days with my whole being especially with my father. I had danced, ridden motorcycle, traveled, and read volumes of material.
In other words there wasn’t much I had to hang my head about.
Yet I carried labels from the world such as codependent, abused, failure, mentally ill, and so on. There is a cliff edge that arrives during the dark night of the soul. Your toe slipping and sliding toward suicide. The other toe on sharp rocks of insanity. Ahead of you is an unknown darkness. The kind where you think you see a light and then there is none and then there it is again. Nothing is sure. I am balancing on the precipice of acceptance or rejection of myself. No one can reach you there. Their words seem senseless or careless and so far from this dark cliff edge. You can balance there for days or years. I have been.
My assessment and my word for you is that the dark night has a purpose. You have to face yourself in depth. You cannot go back you can only chose one of the directions. They all seem shitty. I have rejected suicide. I have too much curiosity for that. I’m still experimenting with insanity and I have a great respect for those of us who struggle in a second hell besides our lives’ struggles. We are great warriors of the mind and world branding our swords daily. It’s almost when I have become the most exhausted when I cannot fight anymore that I see that light in the distance again. My hands are bloodied from scrambling trying to get up to the light on my own. I have stopped and become still. He’s coming and He’s coming for me and me alone.