They say that trauma is not the things that happened to you; it’s how those things affected you. It’s what they did to your mind.
They say trauma actually does things to the brain. It does physical injury. It causes brain damage.
It has been three thousand, three hundred and fifty-one days since my first post to this blog. That number is now incorrect, because I never finished this post, the day I started it. Is this important? Many things are not. The original goal here was to use this digital space as an outlet for processing the various things which have ostensibly needed processing, in order for me to go about the necessary business of being alive. The content presented here has ranged from the directly relevant to the unreasonably obscure, and I’ve also made a fairly enthusiastic go at including samples of everything in between. At least that has been the goal.
Sometimes, something happens to someone, to whom the idea of God and the practice of faith have been of central importance, and afterwards they find they are no longer able to have the same kind of trust which once made those things work. There are versions of religion that will say, “Well, that’s how life is, and faith is about simply accepting that, and moving on.”
Odd as it may seem to some, there are other versions of religion that will say the complete opposite of that. They will say something like, “It is your responsibility to speak to that mountain! If that mountain doesn’t move aside for you, if your words don’t successfully dismantle your obstacles and make a straight path for your feet to tread, then you’re not a true believer!”
Sometimes, when something happens to disrupt someone’s ability to walk in faith and trust the way they once did, and they experience more pain and confusion as a result of the way their faith community reacts to the incident, it can shut that person down completely. That is what happened to me.
If there’s one goal I’ve had with my writing here, it has been to help those people. Even if all I can say is, “I understand,” and “It’s okay,” that is enough.
As time has gone on, I’ve drifted away from these efforts. Life has continued to progress, as it sometimes does, and in my case it has done so in new and unexpected directions.
There was this one time, when it was June 29th, 2014, and I returned home from work at the usual time to discover that my wife had taken our two children and left for good. It would take another several months before I would be able to completely process the idea that she wasn’t coming back, and another several years before I could digest the fact that it had actually, genuinely been one hundred percent the fruit of my own actions.
What an absolute pickle we find ourselves in, at times, on this journey — this highly inconvenient utterly undescribed main quest, somehow thrust upon us by surprise at birth, and imposed completely without instruction. As a relatively middle-class kid from 1980’s white America, I shouldn’t really complain, should I? And yet I do. God, how I complain.