Today’s guest post comes from Aletheia of According to Aletheia. She is gifted to draw out raw beauty in both paint and print. I encourage you to see her artwork at her site; It’s my pleasure to share her words with you here. –Tamara
“I just didn’t want to think about the loneliness anymore. And I knew that doing this would make me forget it. So I masturbated.”
She went on to talk about other things so matter-of-factly–what she felt and what went through her mind before, during, afterwards, but we both knew that this was the golden nugget, that this was the real heart of the matter: She wanted to avoid the loneliness.
We all want to avoid the loneliness.
I got into my car pissed. Here we go again. The anger rose from me like cool rain on a warm pavement.
I pulled onto the highway. The mall? Target? Panera–for some chai tea? I do love chai tea…
And my mind was a jumble gym.
I was so angry, so frustrated, so not feeling it again.
I could smell my disgust.
My anger reeked something fierce.
I felt like a teenager who just wanted to break something.
I felt like an adult who just wanted to break something.
I just wanted to break something.
I kept driving.
And even though my anger was loud it wasn’t the only child in the room:
Aletheia, you’re really upset. You’re not feeling seen. That is what this is about. You’re feeling really alone…
I didn’t want to listen.
I didn’t care.
I just wanted to do my thing; go shopping, forget about it, feel better. Plus I had something to return and some definite items that I needed…
I just wanted to do my thing.
She had just wanted to do her thing.
We were so alike.
We are so alike.
And yet somehow before that confession, offered as we sat together on my kitchen floor, I had forgotten this. I had been a bit smug on the inside, quick to want to help her see the lies, eager to move in and call checkmate.
I thought of another friend who had once told me that loneliness could be one of the most significant vehicles, a transporting towards the Lord if we would let it.
But that night I didn’t want to let it.
That night I had this choice–to move towards the Lord–to literally change direction. I had the choice to be honest about and interact with my emotions, asking God to breathe life into these raw places instead of opting to self-sooth. But that night it didn’t happen. That night I didn’t want to let it.
And so I didn’t and I chose to keep going.
I arrived at the store, picked out a few cute whatevers and left with more things. And while the purchases were small, it was really a big thing; there was such power in this choice.
As the cashier rang up the final item and I swiped my credit card, I thought about the me underneath that choice. I thought about the deepest parts of who I am and how I am and never will be above another. I thought about how very essential it is for me to remember this. And I thought about how much choice is a grace. I don’t deserve to be able to make choices in life, to have freedoms offered me, and yet the Lord extends so often, inviting me to decide what it is I really want. And that is a true grace.
That. Is. Grace.
Aletheia (uh-lay-thee-uh, Greek for TRUTH) finds her days full of her favorites– art, reading and writing, and living life with college students. She sits on her kitchen floor as much as possible, single-handedly supports good earth tea, and adores hole-in-the-wall-dives. Aletheia is in love with the God who redeems all life, and is on the hunt to see this good God in all things.