I am being torn apart.
I want to be free of this pain.

(Kylo Ren, The Force Awakens)

I thought that when the lap and lunge of busyness had stilled for a few weeks,
it would disappear–that long car rides with snowy peaks out the window and evenings piled high with blankets and trivia games would steal away the sorrow.
I thought this, only to learn that fear intensifies in silence.
In the stillness, thoughts pounce and crawl through hollows in the skin, shriek in the middle of the night, and draw out tears as red and white bleed together.
Shrinking back onto bare bones, the gasp and quick breathes become a state of being. The numbness, sharpened by peaks of fear, becomes the new normal. It is wrapped in sandpaper and buried in the snow–but its grave site draws me back again and again.
They say
unable to follow through
not loyal
And in these ripples of things I want so desperately to be false, I find hints and shouts of truth. Tired of gritting my teeth to impress my hands into different, bolder clay, I shrink back into the form–the form the words have traced the outline of, the shadow they call to answer back. Hardening into coldness, I find a bitter strength in saying “no”; a power of control that they can mock but not take away.
I am tired of feeling my heartbeat rise and my ears echo with colliding thoughts that march back and forth, projecting madness and whispering confessions.
I fear the lullaby that will still my dreams and neutralize my hopes.
I fear the plague of doubts that promises that my faith is dead and my soul is lost.
I fear the onset of greater pain, the stroke of debilitating mundane living, the ache of nothingness colliding with age.
I fear the cave of comfort from which I crawled and I fear the storm that drew me out into the open.
I fear being so close to someone that they will have power over me, but also the distance of losing friends and family to different lives and different paths.
Oh God, I am afraid and lost and broken–I have looked for the answer but cannot find it.

I hear the words:

The King of Israel, The LORD, is in your midst; you shall never again fear evil. On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: “Fear not, O Zion; let not your hands grow weak. The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exalt over you with loud singing.

And I wait for those words to draw fire from the numbness and to draw the cross over the harsh ache of fear. I watch Your love through a telescope and pray that I will be able to feel and believe that it is, and has been, always beside me.
But only You can help me to see it.


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