I just said "hell." Twice now.
Anyway I think a lot of people probably mull over the same things over and over again. They just don't record the evidence like I have here. But really it helps me to read back over things sometimes. I can see what hasn't changed, what never changes for me. And I can see the subtle changes, the inevitable changes, the surprising ones. It comforts me that no matter how much I may feel I lose myself in the process of "growing", I never lose the core of who I am. And its encouraging to see the old worries fall off my shoulders, even if new things take their place. Evidence of progress made.
Now I'm trying to think of something new to write about. Or at least something I haven't touched on in awhile.
So I don't really know about this whole God business. Apathy would best describe my position at the current time. Maybe curious apathy. I would like some definitive answers about what/who God really is, but I don't think I'll be getting those. And I'm tired of searching. And church people always, always upset me. So I just assume that he/it is out there and has the ability to take control whether or not he chooses to and that also maybe he loves me despite or maybe because of being able to see the terrifying real me.
But I don't know if there is a plan for me. Or if I could know what it is. Or if I'm carrying out the plan without knowing it anyway. The idea that maybe there is a plan to all of this makes me feel better. Because there have been days in my life where I thought maybe it would hurt less to just not have to exist anymore. Not that I wanted to die, but maybe that it would be better to be undone altogether and never have lived a day at all. But its been a long time since I've felt that way. What I mean to say is: I would feel better if I knew that those days were for a reason. They were the knots at the end of a row of stitches. They were loops resting against the needle.
I can take the events of my life and weave them into a story. I can make the pain and the light complement one another. Lessons learned. Progress made. But is that just me carrying out my human need for things to make sense? For things to have an order and a reason? A story? Or is it the glimmer of the thread God is weaving through my life? Maybe that is faith, seeing God where there is only hope and wonder.
I was thinking about all of this in the context of my relationship with my cousin Ashley. We talked about this, but now I want to write about it too. She was my best friend. I didn't think there was anything she didn't know or understand about me. No secret I couldn't tell her. And she understood because she was there. There aren't words for what I mean. I didn't have to explain it to her because she already knew. She knew things unspoken.
And then the schism.
Now we both did things to each other that we shouldn't have. Things that could easily go unforgiven for a lifetime. People divide over lesser things.
We weren't friends anymore. We didn't even speak. She was off becoming a different person and eventually, I did too. We did this separately, all alone. And I remember longing for her. For who she was rather, because I was disappointed each time I saw this person walking around claiming to be her. But then I stopped looking for my old friend in Ashely's face. Even later, I started changing the person behind my own face. Now, we weren't friends and the people we used to be no longer existed. Poof.
Suddenly now, I find in her a person who understands things unspoken. She is different, this woman I call Ashley. And I am different too. But now I see that these separate paths we have taken to get to this point have been wholly necessary in understanding one another now. For so many reasons, we could not have been friends over these last couple years. We both needed to do things and the only way for a long-term friendship to last through the changes taking place was a schism.
Because she lost weight before I did. And I never would have understood the changes taking place in her life. I would have been jealous. And how could she confide about the awful parts to me, the jealous one. I would have been jealous and angry. And then she, looking at me, would be daily reminded of all she hoped to leave behind. A constant reminder of the unhappiness that was obesity. Even if we had miraculously had surgery together, she got sick. And how then would it have been? Would I have gotten sick too? Who knows? Too many questions.
And then I didn't have surgery. I started weight loss by myself. Because I could see how much she gained even as I lost her. I could see how much happier she was. And I wanted that. No matter the cost. It was slower for me. So much work. And I'm not even finished yet. I was jealous. But now I'm glad I didn't take that path. I'm happy with where I've ended up. And it wouldn't have happened if she hadn't done it first.
I don't know if there is a plan or a destiny or just things turning out well. And I can't say that we would have hated each other if we stayed friends. But I do know that she knows intimately well how it feels to lose yourself in your own body. To feel separate from it and controlled by it in terrifying ways. I know she knows how it feels to feel completely alone in the changes. She understands about feeling not feminine and fat girl syndrome and about all kinds of things I can't even describe. And now we can talk about it. Now when we both are at or have been at the points where these things are part of our lives. Now that we've both been just wanting to talk about it with someone who understands.
So yes, we were both jerks to each other. But somehow, I don't even care. Those people, they aren't us anymore. And who she is now, I love that person. I loved who she was too, but I'm not expecting a return. I doubt I would be very good friends with who she was.
We can call it God or Fate or just my lovely need for story making, but I think it all worked out for the best. It hurt like hell sometimes, but now I see the beauty of it.
I'll try to translate this lesson into one my heart can carry and understand on those days when I get so frustrated and impatient and just jealous. Things happen in their own timing, without input from me. And maybe I can't see today why I must wait or why I must suffer, but if I'm patient and watch, I just might see it all come together in the end.
Or maybe God has no plan for me after all. I'll let you know at the close of my life, if I have enough warning. Perhaps my last words will be, "I see it now." How very, very romantic.