January 13, 2012
5 Minutes on the Dangers of Being Awake
Awake. Ironic that this should be today's prompt, since at times I feel like I've been unceasingly awake for the past four years or so. Mom's 3:00 a.m. panic attacks, triggered by a body that was shutting down and trying to warn her to fix something that could not be changed. 5:00 a.m. feedings with an infant. Ongoing PTSD, with all the attendant lack of sleep and bizarre bio-rhythms that entails. I wonder how long it will be before awake and asleep function properly for me again.
And yet, in the past few weeks, my husband and I have suddenly awakened, emotionally and spiritually, and it's like a whole new world descended upon this family. He asked me about a week ago, "How did this suddenly happen? Did someone go through the house and sprinkle 'rational dust' on both of us?"
Several installments of 5-Minute Friday past, I wrote--very obliquely--about a decision that was suddenly staring Michael and I in the face, a terrifying and yet enormously peaceful feeling that it was time to vote with our feet. Saddening, in some ways disheartening, and yet such a relief, to have that decision finally made for good and all. This past week, we made it officially. Hand in hand, we woke up, cast our ballots for love, compassion, and being rational sheep, and walked back through the same door we had once pushed open as an entrance, and which served this time as an exit.
No more standing just inside the doorway, being a refugee in the nearest safe haven because we had nowhere else to go. You can be a refugee in a tent in an open field; you don't need special permission for that. This time, I think I'll try finding a place to belong. It doesn't have to be perfect; after all, we're not. Its inhabitants just have to be honest about being as f***ed up and sinful as we are. Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. On us all. Together.