One of the scenes I remember best from the Chronicles of Narnia book Voyage of the Dawn Treader (at least I'm 99% sure that's where it's from) is a scene of total darkness.
I remember reading it and thinking how much like that I can be.
The ship had been sailing along in bright daylight until all of the sudden it was dark. Pitch black and completely void of light.
I don't know if they talk about it in the book or not, they're on my re-read list I just don't currently own them, but I remember thinking how one could realize they are in the dark without the light. I thought, how do you know how dark it truly is until you start seeing the first flashes of light?
Over two years ago I was told I had F.D.. Fat Disease for those of you that weren't around back then. I've made strides forward and have leapt backwards trying to become less of a Bethany than I am right now (physically I mean). It has been really hard. Harder than I was prepared for it to be. I've found new depths to the darkness that I would have sworn to you didn't exist.
I've also found that having semi-regular levels of estrogen in my body makes me more than a little crazy.
I don't like looking/feeling silly. I am a mocker. I'm trying to stop, or at least slow down. Because I know that if I do it so do other people. So I get this inflated sense of self and think that others are staring at me and mocking me. Especially when I work out and am all sweaty, grunty (is so a word), and red in the face from the exertion. So sometimes, I really have to psych myself up to even pull on workout clothes, or even pack them for the evening because I have already thought up the jokes people will tell at my expense. Sometimes I would rather slowly kill myself then risk looking silly to people whose names I don't even know.
I've found that as my estrogen levels out and my body starts acting like a woman's body should act (sorry boys) I get crazy. If I don't pay attention to when it's happening I get so dark and hopeless. I can't see the end, I think the light has been extinguished forever. Crazy scary things run through my head and I can see no reason. Until suddenly a light bulb comes on and then I'm just left feeling foolish for forgetting about the light.
I don't like that it's hard. Because it's hard. It's so hard and I'm so lazy when it comes to my own self care. If you need something, I'll hop to it. Need a favor? I'm your girl. But I'm finding out just how little I think of myself. I'm finding out just how little I value my life at all and it is really scary sometimes. Because, when you don't value the life of something you squash it more often than not.
Because the thing is, until I allowed the slightest crack in the wall there was no light in those and many more places. Now I understand the theology of Jesus being there and that God is everywhere and sees everything. I get that in my head. But just like when I used to keep Jesus in the closet hidden away, I pretend it doesn't matter, that these deep and dark things were just between me and my shadow.
So when I started to let the light of the freakin WORLD into this darkness it was almost blinding.
Sometimes I wonder, if I'm plumbing it to deep. If I'm focusing on the dark to much. But other times I feel like it will envelop me and take my life if I don't resolve it.
But then I think back, to before I knew Jesus. I think back to before I was going to a church of people I loved so deeply and before I was (however sporadically or begrudgingly) chatting with God. I think back to the bottles of liquid and bottles of pills. I think about the boys and the razors, I think about the oncoming traffic and how I tried to figure out how to make a noose.
I think about how it was so dark. It was so so dark.
And I didn't even know it.
So it is hard. It is hard and disconnected and contradictory (just like this post). It's melodramatic and silly and motivating and paralyzing.
But I know there is light. Even if I can't quite see it yet. Even if I don't know which way to look for it I know that it's there and I just hold on to that. Because now that I know the light exists, what else is there to do but keep reaching towards it; even if I feel like I'm reaching blindly in the middle of a very deep dark.