Below the Line

There’s a sickness in my soul
It’s filled with self-creating holes
The blood both paint and soap
washing painting losing hope
Entropic forces rip apart
Tear the wholeness of the heart
Ceaseless void and darkened eye
Deep and never-ending sigh

(abstractrelationsvi)

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Below the Line

(is it just me, or is it you too?): why I’d rather go to the opera than church

Phenomenal writer. I couldn’t agree more.

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No Language But A Cry

Sometimes I think all living is the story of what we do with our wounds. When we ask each other, How are you? what we are really asking is, What are you doing with your wounds today? Maybe Jesus asks the same question, when it comes down to it.

The human narrative is the narrative of woundedness. How we felt the cut to be fatal; how we try to bandage it with technology and distraction, or else inflict the same injuries upon each other; how we do our best to escape it but also feel inexplicably that such woundedness is us, is us not just in our most honest but in our most beautiful, and all our attempts at sewing really just begs for surgery; how it all feels so very much like homesickness.

The Gospel narrative, as I understand it, is also the narrative of woundedness. It is the…

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(is it just me, or is it you too?): why I’d rather go to the opera than church

of freedom

crying to Jenny & Tyler this morning.  not entirely sure what it is that is hitting me so hard…maybe their raw emotion and honesty, maybe the way they harmonize in a way that really makes it seem like their souls have been joined as one, maybe their abounding love for their daughter…

specifically the album Of This I’m Sure and this song in particular:

My Dear One, find freedom / Forfeit not hope … I listened to the logic / Fixed all the problems in my head / You didn’t know who to trust then / Didn’t know who would love you in the end … I’m not giving up on you, love

I started this morning with ordering some of the chaos that continually fights to overwhelm our apartment (a.k.a. mostly hanging up the pile of clothes that always tends to accumulate)… letting the sun rise and stream into our little home…and then doing something I never do:  yoga in my living room.  Yoga itself isn’t new for me, however, doing it by myself with just a light wordless soundtrack in the background, is novel. It made me want to start every morning that way.  To be still and know. To close my eyes and feel the way my muscles are interconnected, the way they loosen as I give them time.  To actually feel some semblance of balance, in my body and limbs and breathe, but also between my mind, body, and soul.  The typical Christian “quiet time” isn’t something I have been able to do recently without falling into the pit of my mind, however this felt free, peaceful, life-giving.  I didn’t feel pressure to reach a certain goal.  I didn’t have the distraction of comparison.  I could listen to my body, calm the voices in my head, and just connect.

Then I was listening to Jenny & Tyler while working on a collage and drinking coffee…and that’s when the tears came about.  Not the usual tears of bitterness or despair or hopelessness or loneliness… but tears of… freedom.

of freedom

Curation.

Hello, whoever you are who is reading this.  You may be new, you may not have noticed, or perhaps you don’t care, but I just realized that I have been so particular recently in what I have been posting in this blog that I feel I am being exactly what I DON’T want to be: curated, edited.  I want to be honest and real and rambly (that’s not a word, but you understand…one of the awesome things about language  – webster doesn’t dictate what I can or cannot communicate).  I want to be profound and dumb and whiny and inspiring and hopeful and downcast…I want to be REAL.  In everything that I do.  But instead I feel like I am actually being true in nothing.  Instagram gets a different part of me than Facebook does, and I still don’t understand Twitter to be quite honest, and here, on my blog where I feel the most real, I still feel this need to have a certain theme or whatever.   So what if someone scrolls through and moves on because I am too unpredictable in my content to follow.  I shouldn’t care, right?  Except that’s not really how it works.

I can preach all day about facades and honesty and give off the air that I am above caring about it all.

But I’m not.  I care desperately.  And I HATE that.  I HATE that I have been checking my number of followers on IG, that I have been wondering why people have unfollowed me, why I can’t reach 250, when some people hit 1,000 without breaking a sweat.  I am intimidated by the vast number of talented creative people all over the web and IG and etsy.  How will I ever stand out among them?  Why would anyone ever choose to buy a piece of art from me when ten thousand people are doing it better?

Comparison kills.

(speaking of which, so does smoking.  there’s research to back it up.)  It sucks any enjoyment out of the things I am doing because I never measure up.

It’s a constant striving, a constant desire for more and better, but ultimately for most and best.

And so I see that ugliness in me and my reaction is to seclude myself.  To run from other people.  Because then instead of facing that ugly jealousy in myself, that voice saying “you’ll never be as [good, smart, pretty, skinny, successful, creative, kind, artsy, motherly, perfect] as they are. just give up now before you fail.” – instead of confronting those things I go into my metaphorical cabin in the woods.  For a while I am content with the birds and the grass and the sunshine and books and art…but that loneliness always comes creeps back in.  And the part of me that has spent a good deal of time in Christian community says, “well, if you were finding your all in Jesus, you wouldn’t be feeling so lonely. that hole you feel is just that God-sized vacuum” or whatever quote I am misquoting….point being, then I feel ashamed at feeling lonely, guilty for wanting to rejoin society.  And then I step my toe in the water, go on a coffee date or whatever, and find myself tripping down social stairs with my tongue tied around my ankles. “How did I ever interact with humans in the past?  I can’t even tell a story without coming across like a lunatic!” And then I end up online again, where I can filter my thoughts before I send them, photoshop my acne, delete my whining, hide my tear-stained cheeks.  UGH.

My best friend and I have been talking about some of these things recently.  (Even being able to say that I have a  best friend (and an awesome one at that!) is such a blessing.)  And I am doing a lot of reading and thinking related to the digital world for my thesis.  Do we need people?  Are we cheapening our stories and our lives by sharing them in bits and pieces on all of these social media sites?  Is the digital inherently harmful for social interactions?  Can it be done in a way that is life-giving?  That actually allows for understanding and connection and authenticity?  Does that mean narrowing down to just a few places to invest?  (the internet never really ends up working like that though it seems…)  But today I read the blog here  titled “Is Blogging Dying?” by Mayi Carles where she definitely convinced me if there is one online place to invest, particularly if I am going to actually try and start a business, it is on a blog.  Which after thinking about it, makes a lot of sense.  If I don’t like the pressure of chronological posting (the feeling of always needing something fresh and new and better than the last thing) I have some degree of control to alter that here.  Maybe in the end that’s a horrible way to go about having a blog, but at least I get to make that decision for myself, and can choose to change it myself.

Anyway, now I’m really off track… I think being married to a man who rarely (never) tells a story without tangents and mid-thought rambles has rubbed off on me more than I think it has. haha  Not that it’s necessarily a bad thing.  Rambly just may end up being the best description after all.  The opposite of curation. Which is also, incidentally, not a word.

 

Curation.