Tuesday I came home from my morning classes and set about cleaning my room. I have a tendency to hoard things, half broken things I am convinced I can find a use for. I hold onto things that scarcely have any relevance to my everyday life, but hold some sliver of emotional value. I equipped myself with a bag and began throwing things away. If I could not think of a use for it, or had not used it in the last six months, it was gone. I did the same with my clothes, the only exception being seasonal items. I swept, I mopped, and when I was done I still felt unsatisfied. I had cleaned my room in hope to be rid of the aching creeping inside me. My birthday is coming up and with it the holiday season. This time of year has always been rough for me, as I have rarely been able to find joy in these events.
I left for work, disgruntled and confused. I had spent the weekend planning my next few goals in life, my degree plans, mission work, my future garden, and the potential of buying property. I had a game plan, but I was not happy with it. I had cleaned my room, but I was not happy with it. I sat in the parking lot thirty minutes before my shift. Looking on Twitter, I became annoyed upon seeing praises from my managers to other employees. I was envious of the appreciation they received, while I had never once received appraisal. Realizing my negativity, I quickly changed to instead be joyous for my coworkers and their accomplishments. Envy has no use in my life, and I do my best not to tolerate it. However, noticing this recurring theme I realized the toxic atmosphere I was allowing myself to steep in by following my managers on social media. I unfollowed them immediately. But I had already started the pity party, and before I knew it I was crying more than I’ve cried in the past eight months. Heavy sobs rolled out as I tried to find a reason or some rationalization for my outburst. I felt underappreciated at work, at home, and at school. All the time I spent over the weekend mapping out plans left me overwhelmed and feeling unable to accomplish any of it. Suddenly I was crying for the loss of every single person that has moved away or not kept touch. All the old pains were new, and I hurt deeper than I have before. I asked myself again why they left, why they stopped talking to me. I felt lost, unwanted, abandoned, and alone.
I had a stupid realization. I am trying too hard. Not once in the Bible are we told to figure things out ourselves. We are never told to walk alone and shoulder the burdens individually. And the same way I was removing things from my room was the same way God was removing things from my life. I held onto things that were broken and no longer served a purpose. In order for me to be fully functional, I need to be decluttered. I cannot move forward if I am constantly picking up old pieces. Hoarding the broken leaves no room for the new. I set myself up to be hurt again, and again, and again.
But even after this realization, I still felt awful. Emotionally drained and with no direction, I trudged through my four-hour shift, excusing myself once to cry again in the bathroom. On the way home I was pulled over for the first time because a headlight was out, and I cried. The officer with panic in his eyes as I began hyperventilating did his best to calm me. I caught my breath long enough to explain it was not his doing, thank him for doing his job, and the hiccups and tears started again.
Today, we met with our counselor. Every single one of us. My mom, my sisters, my dad, and his fiancee. My dad brought forth another skeleton from the closet, and the building we had been working on was destroyed all over again. I was numb and, to be honest, not entirely surprised. I no longer hold the emotional attachment to this person, I can not remember seeing his face in memories of my childhood. He is simply a stranger that continues to hurt me.
I left and went to a friends house where I cried a bit more. Then I simply asked what else? What more can happen? I was told several years back that I am being prepared for something big, and the trials I go through will make me strong enough to shoulder what’s to come. I can’t help but wonder, if these are the trials, then what monster am I to face? I feel so helpless. I am unable to protect my family; how am I able to defend against what is coming?
Now as I lay here at the end of my day, I am tired and worn. I am two days shy of my eighteenth birthday, yet I have faced far more life than most. The responsibilities I shoulder should not be mine. I spent my childhood masquerading as an adult. Now here I am, longing to be a child for a fleeting moment.
I feel old; my body seems to be longing for a place to rest. My mind is scrambling to make sense, to find a game plan, something simple enough to accomplish so I am not stuck in this never-ending loop of rebuilding.
Perhaps it shall come on another day. I must allow myself to reside in God, where I shall find comfort and rest, and my strong desire, direction. I need to remember that as long as I am in God’s hands, no harm will come to me, nothing greater than I can bear. I do not need to know the plan, I simply must be obedient. But for one who has been independent for so long, I have so much more work to do to allow myself to be vulnerable in order to watch God’s miracles happen.
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