Hollow Motions

For years of mornings, I have woken wanting to die. Life itself twists into nightmare. For years, I have pulled the covers up over my head, dreading to begin another day I'd be bound to just wreck. Years, I lie listening to the taunts of names ringing off my interior walls, ones from the past that never drifted far and away: Loser. Mess. Failure. They are signs nailed overhead, nailed through me, naming me.

The stars are blinking out.

Funny, this. Yesterday morning, the morning before, all these mornings, I wake to the discontent of life in my skin. I wake to the self-hatred. To the wrestle to get it all done, the relentless anxiety that I am failing. Always, the failing. I yell at children, festering with bitterness, forget doctor appointments, lose library books, I live selfishly, skip prayer, complain, go to bed too late, neglect cleaning the toilets. I live tired. Afraid. Weary. Years, I feel it in the veins the pulsing of cultures hopes. Would I ever be enough, find enough, do enough? But this morning, I wake wildly wanting to live. Physically feeling it in the veins trembling, the hard pant of the lungs, the seeing it in steady stats, how much I really want to really live,. How I don't want to die. Is that the message of nightmares and dreams? To live either fully alive...or in empty nothingness?

It's the in between, the days of walking lifeless, the years calloused and simply going through the hollow motions, the self-protecting by self-distracting, the body never waking, that's lost all capacity to full feel- this is the life in between that makes us the wildly walking dead.

- Ann Voskamp "One Thousand Gifts"

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