I stopped writing around the time I thought I might lose my faith altogether. There was too much going on inside me all at once. I had too many questions, and too many hurts, and I honestly couldn’t deal with it. So I just…didn’t.
I was completely overwhelmed.
It probably looked I was lost. I did wander a lot, at least metaphysically speaking. But you know that saying, “Not all who wander are lost”? I’ve lived that. I don’t think I was lost, not really, just wandering.
I held the good and the bad and everything else I had thought I once believed out at arms length. I was terrified to touch almost any of it, for fear I would take back on a burden I didn’t know if I could live with anymore. But slowly, I’ve begun to let go of the toxic. To pick up a few things I know I can unequivocally embrace. And to engage in the painfully slow and laborious process of examining the rest in detail.
Somewhere along the way, I learned how to process internally a little better. I’ve found other ways (than writing, myself) for the words inside me to take form. I listened and read, and listened and read, and found there were others who were able to express some of the very thoughts and feelings I couldn’t give word to. They became little bits of my voice when I felt so very voiceless. And through this process, I began to feel less alone. I found camaraderie and community in some of the most unexpected places. I didn’t feel like such a heretic or an outcast for the questions I had. Knowing I wasn’t alone gave me added courage to start battling to find my own words again.
I’m not sure what the impetus was, really. Maybe now I’ve just reached the point in this process where writing (especially writing in a public context) doesn’t feel quite so scary anymore? Or at least where it just feels like a “right” and necessary step.
But also, this summer I was (for the most part) happy and content. This fall I can feel depression lurking around the corner. Finding the gumption to write seems like it might help keep depression at bay, at least a little longer.
So I fight for the words to come out.