You Had a Bad Day ...

Monday, 21 September 2009

Discombobula is feeling discombobulated today. I have a ton of things to do and very little motivation to do them. My fatigue level's ramped up the past several weeks, and while it's low-level, it still scares me. However, once I get going - like last night at Theatresports with my friends - everything's good. But stick me on a chair with no outside impetus and it's easy to get stuck for hours online, sinking into my fears. The anxiety that comes out of feeling unwell has always surprised me with its weight.

There are so many fears surrounding my health dipping downhill even slightly (why am I feeling worse? Is it endometriosis? something horrible like cancer? a return to CFS? What's wrong with me?) Trailing on the ends of those thoughts are fears that I have brought this upon myself. This is an intermittent thought and one which is frustrating because there are strands of truth mixed in with error there. After all, it is taking responsibility for your health and tuning into your body which enables you to begin to act to do the things that lead to health. But sometimes I think we are encouraged in our pill-popping culture to feel a strange sort of over-responsibility whenever anything does go wrong and doesn't rectify itself in 13.4 seconds.

And yet, I am the owner of my own body and therefore responsible for what I put into it, and feeling bad today is partially linked to the McDonald's I had yesterday - twice - and the evening before that as well. Three lots of Maccas in one weekend, and I can feel it. I once hated McDonald's when I had trained my taste buds to a better place than they are at the moment. I saw it as cardboard unfood and now I gobble it up, yum yum, to comfort eat. Maybe comfort punish is a better thought. We do so easily punish ourselves with doing awful things to ourselves, do we not?

So these fears and worries about feeling more fatigued are strengthened by two underlying fears that bob their head up intermittently. I wish it was not so. I wish I could say that I would get to a certain period in my spiritual life where these thoughts have no power to affect me, being the sorts of unreal illusory unthoughts not worth my consideration, but they seem to creep in unawares sometimes, without my even realising it. The first thought is that there is something lacking with God and he is not as lovable as I believe. The second thought is that there is something wrong with me and I am not lovable. Pretty obvious how the two fit into each other, right? And yet I am more dismayed about the first thought than I am about the second, however. Even though my lenses have cleared in ways unimaginable at the beginning of my journey, I still see far too easily in the Scriptures when I open them the ogre God, as Baxter Kruger calls him, and it is dismaying. Where do these pockets of unbelief dwell within me? How do they dwell co-existent with the beliefs I do have about God? It takes courage to admit those pockets exist, or that they have sprung up again from when I last called them out onto the carpet and shot them with my reality gun.

How we want to be pearlescent. It does feel we are made to be so, and seamless and open, with no hidden pockets to trip ourselves up. How much courage therefore to steady your eye upon them and not flinch away. Their existence does not mean I am a complete giant freak but hey, who doesn't feel this way about themselves? And how hard not too when everywhere surrounding us in the world we are told we are freaks if we are imperfect.

And so even though I do not like the hidden pocket I look at it, because I am far enough along in my faith that my unfaith is acknowledgeable. These thoughts about unlovable God and unlovable us are so entrenched into our hearts. It's why the bastard God of Christianism has been given so much power and emphasis; it creeps me to ponder that it seems easier for us to believe in that God than a good god. This is surely a shocking thing to consider, and so we dismiss it. And yet the evidence seems overwhelming that this sort of God is easy to believe in even when our hearts whispher otherwise. Because hey, look at the evidence in the bible, right? There are all sorts of verses to prove that God is basically a prick. And how quickly we believe that we are seeing clear-headed when this God is presented, the petulant Jonathan Edwards version of God. But what about those times when we experience something numinous about God? How good this God is. How love, how beautiful, how massive and expansive. And then we see Jesus and we get to see how far our conceptions of God stretch as compared to this man Jesus. We are so very blind to the reality of God.

It's such a wrench to look inside yourself and see, sinkingly and with some dismay that here you are - at least today - believing small things about God again. Not even consciously. You don't believe these things consciously but then you act in ways that seem to bear out the fact that unconsciously you are believing those very things, from out of the delicious murk that comes up to you in your dreams and sculptings and ponderings and writings. You are believing what has been told to you every day by many and varied sources that because of your obvious imperfections and your self-centredness and self-absorption and your failure to continue to love your husband and the fact that your father did not show you hardly any affection and the way that person looked at you and the fact that you are stuck doing the same shithouse job you were last year and the fact that that thing over there in your soul is still there and blah blah blah blah blah means that in actual fact you really are not lovable and not loved by God (who is also not lovable himself, being a bastard, so who really cares? Let's all get drunk).

There is enough in that sort of state of mind to despair for several centuries. You feel you could sink into oblivion in that headspace. And yet sometimes faith grows upon the back of unbelief, if you let it. It's hard to climb onto the springboard from those sorts of quicksand thoughts. How surprising then the quick bounce once you have from admission into yieldedness. So much yielding in this faith life. Like a woman's pelvis cracking open for birth. A return, once again, in the spiral of life, back to somewhere you've been before. You always wonder when you come back to this place how you could ever leave it. When you are here the air is so fresh it is much easier to acknowledge just how much Vaseline sits on your lenses.

And how strange, the comfort in that. The amazement that the depth of my blindness when viewed through the lens of a loving trinity God is a far greater comfort than any of your unbelieving illusions. How good to be able to fling them off again.

Artwork by Erdmute

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