Monday, October 29, 2007

Listening

I awoke in the middle of the night. Brenda snored softly, cuddling close.

There were no sounds from Jeremiah’s room on the other side of the wall, no sounds from Isaac’s room on the other side of the ceiling. I kissed Brenda’s head, went back to sleep.

I awoke again, the glow of the numbers on the clock told me it was not quite 3:00 a.m. The house was quiet. The elders of our church had been over the evening before, prayed over our family, prayed over each of my sons in their bedrooms. I felt no threat. Brenda’s breath was a soft gentle beat to a peaceful night. I touched her hand. She rolled over, clutched my arm, her briefly interrupted pace of soft breathing deepened.

I stared into the darkness, praying for my family.

I awoke again. The clock read 4:30. It would brighten in a half hour, music would gently swing up out of the silence.

“I love you,” I whispered to her.

She mumbled something softly, pressed her face into my neck.

I closed my eyes and prayed in the dark.

She groaned when the alarm went off. I hit the top middle button on the Bose remote, giving her another ten minutes of rest. She snuggled close. I pressed my nose into her hair.

The faintest of clicks marked the speakers awakening again. She moaned, pressed closer to me, I pressed the button commanding the growing music to silence once again.

I did the waltz one more time, silencing the musical interruption, giving her the peace that gives us peace.

When the music swelled up for the fourth time I let it rise. It was time to get to our day.

As she became conscious the muscles, the sinews, the vitality of consciousness stiffened her body. She moaned. Her legs withdrew from around mine. Her hands clenched and unclenched.

“Shit,” she said.

“Good morning.”

“I wish I didn’t have to wake up,” she complained. “I hate my life.”

“Your life is bad because you start each day with that mantra of how unhappy you are. You don’t have to feel that way. My life has had bad things happen, but I am happy, mostly”

“I’m not a Polly Anna.”

I rolled out of bed. This was a conversation best left unfinished.

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I rushed away from the turmoil of my wife’s heart, went for a walk in the cemetery where my son is buried, listened to the songs of awakening birds chattering about their upcoming journey south.

I read from my Bible for a bit under the dome light of my van. Hosea.


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A week or so ago I was praying and I asked my master... “How long, Lord? How long do I keep loving her? How long do I keep forgiving her?”

The gentle answer floated in my heart immediately.

“How long do you wish for me to keep forgiving you?”


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The elders and my pastor and friend spent an hour in our home last night, prying gently at my children, asking questions, giving soft advice, praying blessings, exhortations for protection, commanding evil to flee.


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I have no answers. I have no idea of where I am going. My wife is still in my home, at least her body is, if not her heart.

I’m unsure of my path, unsure of what will happen next.

A gentle answer floats in my heart:

“Love the Lord your God with all of your heart, and all of you mind and all of your strength, and love others as you love yourself.”

11 comments:

ame said...

:)

You're welcome.

It's hard, you know, to be wrong . . . and then to try to swallow that and be right. I hate saying "I'm sorry" so much that it's deterred me from doing some really stupid stuff in my life. I hate having to suck it up and swallow my pride and waddle back with my tail between my legs.

I'm not sure her unconscious could be so accomodating if her conscious was not desiring the same. But it's gonna be harder for her to forgive herself than for you to forgive her. It's gonna be harder for her to accept and receive your love than it is for you to give it.

Wise ... ending the Poly Anna conversation! ;)

You might consider trying NOT to give advice ... I know, she needs it and you're right ... but it will probably just add to her feelings of unworthiness. It will drive her nuts, though, for you to not give any more advice! That would be fun to watch!

They say in counseling that if you change something in your pattern of the "dance you do" in life, then the other person will have to change b/c it will require a different response. Fun to do this as an experiment when it doesn't hurt anyone ;)

Love her as Christ loves you ... lay your life down for hers. There's not one of us who deserves the love of Christ; not one.

wilsonian said...

Will... stay the course. Keep praying. Stay in community. Remain in the Word. Rest in what you know to be true. You will continue to find yourself in the best position to do the next right thing.

You are a blessing to many of us here, Will. I hope you know that.

Peace...

Anonymous said...

ame and wilsonian - said it right.

Reread what they wrote.

love you lots and pray for you many many times during the day and night.

Pia said...

been real busy lately but you and brenda are in my thoughts. still praying for you...

curious servant said...

We had a good night last night. Brenda doesn't read my blogs, so I can choose what I want to tell her. I told her last night that she loves me more when she is unconscious. She laughed, but took it seriously. She was kinder last night, and when she woke this morning I could tell she made the effort not to start her negative mantra.

ame said...

Baby steps ... gotta appreciate the baby steps :)

Chris Krycho said...

Keep fighting Will - and by that I mean, keep holding on to Christ, not to anything else. All else may crumble, but He will not. You remain in my prayers. So is Brenda. So are your children.

Jada's Gigi said...

no answer but love...that one will do

Amrita said...

May God bless that prayer time you had in the house and keep you all safe.We ask people to pray for us and that has kept us safe.We get the an ugly goat smell in our house when evil is near and we rebuke it in the name of Jesus and it goes away.There are no goats nearby!
Brenda is all tangled up inside, may she submit to the Lord accept the Lordship of Christ over her life.

MMM said...

Wow, I remember the angry mantra. It used to start my days too; I had to pray for ten years for it to go away.

It did, though. And it can again. I have hope. For you, I have hope. Thank God.

faith/perseverance/character=hope......

3 in one blessing. yours for the asking.

I wave gently from the sand dune.

Susan said...

It is so sad that she wakes up feeling that way. You write so beautifuly and descriptivly, I could almost smell her hair!
My continued prayers for your happiness and hers.