So, here it is, Christmas Day, 2015. I said I shouldn’t write anymore words that weren’t beneficial to others, but I am feeling wistful and nostalgic. This is the first Christmas with L being old and big enough to be somewhat engaged with Christmas activities. I was feeling sad about the past and everyone who won’t be with me on Christmas, but then I see L playing with his new toys, and I am so excited for the future. I don’t feel like I’m turning 40 in the coming year–I feel like I am turning 30. It’s hard to think about how much time has passed since I arrived in Texas after college. If I try really hard, I can kind of piece together where it all went, but I don’t especially feel the need to.
Maybe it’s the new meds I’m taking, but I feel like everything is going to be okay whether I am accepted into seminary or not, and whether I walk away with at least $20K from the sale of the condo or not. I feel the need to spend less time trying to read every book about the Bible and theology that I can get my hands on, and maybe read some novels and meditate on just trying to improve myself in a few areas where I am lacking and still find myself caught up in sin.
I also need to exercise more, and continue to purge myself of old junk that I don’t use or need. I don’t feel especially disheartened by the prospect of starting ambitious projects or resolutions or regimens that I don’t finish. All will be well no matter what.
Maybe it’s just the fact that I drank too much last night, and am in the middle of experiencing the point of recovery in the hangover where all of the darkness and doom and gloom trends toward sunshine and bunnies. It helps that it is quite warm and nice outside today. I am slightly remembering Christmas of ten years ago, when Mom was still alive–one of the last Christmases I would spend with her. There was all of the drama with D that was just getting started and would almost consume me for the next two-three years of my life.
I am probably socially and emotionally about as mature as your average well-adjusted 29 year old, and so it is difficult for me to get my brain around the notion that I will turn 40 next year.
My mind is a bit scattered right now, but I think I am getting to a point where I can put some overall themes down for what I would like to work on in 2016:
I should read more fiction and lighten up on my ambitions about what I need to read.
I should exercise more each day.
I should write more each day with an eye toward producing a book that people will want to read. This isn’t a backup plan for if seminary doesn’t work out, it’s simply something I should do.
I should purge more of my things regardless of whether or not we move out of this house in the coming year.
I need to stop worrying about what will happen with the condo and how I will support my family if I don’t sell it for as much as I would like and seminary doesn’t happen in 2016.
Overall, I need to work on lightening up myself–stop taking myself so seriously, and taking seriously everything that is going on around me. I need to enjoy life in a more spontaneous fashion. I get stuck in ruts, but most of them are of my own creation.
Of course, I need to continue to practice praying for others–praying for those I know and the leaders I don’t know–praying for more light to come into the world. If I am capable of even slightly altering the balance of light vs. dark in this world, I should be spending time in this effort, even if prayer can sometimes feel a bit dry and pointless.
For whatever reason, I had it in my head for a long time that I wasn’t really one of the little people. I am nothing and I am nobody. God sees me, and loves me, and loves me as much as the next soul that has turned back to Him. But, I am not a somebody on this earth.
I pray to Jesus to bring more light into my heart, and to squeeze out the darkness that lingers there. I pray to Jesus to give me strength to be the kind of presence for my son that my dad was for me. I feel just a little safer when I am visiting my dad or my dad visits me, because he still carries that light which once burned brightly for me on the darkest winter nights. I never knew just how terrible the world really was until I was completely out on my own. Nowadays, my dad is quite old and has shrunk to be several inches shorter than he was in his prime. If someone had to do the protecting and saving, it is more likely that I would be doing it for him, not vice versa. But the sense of his power still remains, since it was embedded deep inside my baby brain.
I hope that L won’t see me as the ferocious and scary presence that my dad sometimes was, though. I hope he won’t resent me too much when he becomes a teenager, the way I resented my dad.
I pray to Jesus to provide some light to my brain, so that I may know the right next steps to take with my education and career. These are the darkest nights, as I await the decision of the seminary to accept me or not. If I am not accepted, then life’s course will be readjusted, and I am certain that I can’t go back to being a marketing button pusher.