I am finally alone. All the kids and the one man are tucked into their beds and try as I might, I am trying to give thanks for the beating rain on my window panes.
I’ve heard of seasonal depression, but I have never experienced it.
It’s undiagnosed, of course, but y’all, I am standing on the edge of this never-ending rain cloud and all I can see is the black hole of gloom right below my feet.
They say we may get a dusting of snow overnight. The television makes noise in the middle of my hushing and my ears are tuned into the weatherman’s use of the word havoc.
And for a moment, I think he is referring to my insides and not just the outside outsides.
I am curled up in my favorite spot, sock feet tucked between the cushions, and all this rain sounds like it could come right through the front door.
Books cover the toy box my dad made for me when I was little and tonight, I’m stuck on Stuck. Chesterton’s Orthodoxy is laid open to challenge my thinking, but I’m hung up on this one passage from Jennie’s introduction and I just can’t engage a man of Chesterton’s caliber tonight.
I’m literally stuck in thought.
The more I am let into the deep crevasses of people’s hearts, the more I am convinced that every one of us is fighting something. Yet we look out from our secret wars and see people who smile peacefully and seem to be all right-and we smile back at them.
I meet with a girl from our church on most Sunday mornings. She eats pancakes and I eat french toast and we both drink enough coffee to run a small engine. On three occasions, when I have spoken to her about a dark period in my not so distant past, she has said this to me, “Well, you kept it hidden pretty well. I had no idea.”
Her words come back to me tonight. She had no idea? I felt like the walking dead just five months ago.
The wind howls and the rain pounds and I am struck with the idea that if God is going to complete the work He has begun in me, I have to do more than just write about my junk here.
I have to put audible words to the inaudible war going on inside of me. I have to wrap words around my junk and wipe the smile off my face and tell the girl across the table from me that she is not alone in how she feels. I have to wear my mess like a disheveled robe and let her watch Christ bring order to my ugly, broken life.
By withholding my whole heart from her, I rob her of seeing Christ in me.
The clock ticks later and the rain is letting up. I haven’t looked out, but I’m silently praying the dusting of snow has not taken the place of the rain.
I tuck the books back into the blue box.
Chesterton may have to wait a few weeks.
Or maybe I’ll read him when I dry my hair tomorrow.