Thursday, November 14, 2013
The Big, Shiny Power of Hope
I have always been a believer, even when, for some time, I thought it just made more intellectual sense to be an atheist.
I have always been a believer and I think it's because I almost drowned and I think that's what saved my life.
Yesterday I was driving to a meeting and I was listening to Vampire Weekend's new song, Unbelievers (which I really like), and it struck me...
That no matter what I believed in beyond myself, I have, pretty much, always believed. Why?
I was not raised to be this sort of person. That intellectual sort of atheism makes more sense if you look at my history from the outside.
From the inside, it's much different.
I saw my own body drowning when I was six. I can't describe this experience, not really. There are not enough words for the depth of the peace and okay-ness that I felt nor are there enough adjectives for the radiance of whatever it was that I was at that moment.
But from then on, I just knew. I can't hand you this knowing in a pretty gift wrapped box. I would if I could but I can't. It's not something you can give to anyone else. (And thus the failing assumption of all evangelicals.)
From then on, I just knew.
So when I felt despair so dark it felt like dying at far too young an age, I didn't. I didn't die and I didn't try to die. I kept going because I knew there was more and I knew there was different.
Marcy often looks at me in wonder that I did not end up on the streets, addicted to something horrific, wandering the world with no place to be.
This is why.
My belief in something more acted like some sparkling carrot just out of reach...keeping me upright, eating, and somewhat functioning, keeping me on the path to wellness, keeping me on the SEARCH.
And search I did. Under every stone out there. Seriously. Every. Stone.
Until I finally came back to myself.
But it was this belief that kept me going and keeps me going.
I understand and have looked into the bottomless pit of darkness. I understand the idea that some of us leap into that pit, take our own lives. I understand it. I have felt that.
I have faced that. Time and again.
But every time, I back away from that pit and look to the horizon.
Because I almost drowned and I saw my real self, and from that, I have always known how precious this time is that we are given. How worth it to fight.