[from february 7, 2010. how far the Father has brought me since then! His mercy is kind indeed.]
You, Lindsay Leigh Ellyson, are all alone.
And it is all up to you to make your way in this world.
And that is the way it will always be.
Somewhere, someday this is whispered into my ear. Somehow, someway it drifts from out there somewhere, and it makes its way through my entirety, and settles in for a good long stay. Somewhere, someday is probably so long ago that I may never know it exactly. I may never know the somehow, someway either.
That whisper is an assault on my very design. My self is so tiny when that whisper first comes, and my reaction is not at all of the knee-jerking sort. Maybe at first I dodge the blows. But I quickly learn, as most humans do, the awkward ways to move along with this force to avoid being knocked off my feet. A side-step here, a hip-sway there. I bend over backwards, I twirl around, moving in rhythm with the assault until we are in a full-blown dance, complete with locked hands and an embrace. I cannot stop myself. The whisper never stops its movement forward, and if I halt my steps and the jerking of my body, it will hit me like steady blows. On and on I dance, led away by the whisper, moving in accordance with its thrusts toward me. I cannot stop, it has taken me over. Each passing year, my moves become smoother, my hand more firmly set in the hand of my assaulter.
Not much time goes by before I have forgotten the original whisper. The poison has mixed with my cellular make-up and I now have my own particular strand of sickness.
I am independent.
I might as well be, for I am alone.
I am responsible.
It is entirely up to me to make everything safe and secure.
I am sufficient for my own needs.
I have to be, for I am alone.
I’m fine. I’m tough. I can handle it.
I have to be, for I am alone.
I’m different than everyone else. My life is just not the same, and it will never be. And I don’t want it to.
I am alone. It’s pointless to want it to be any other way, because it never will be.
The unasked question throbbing is, “If I was never designed to be alone, how then do I survive this?” And thus my whole existence becomes the tragic dance of attempting survival in the face of aloneness.
For twenty-some years or something of the like. Until my no-longer tiny self is tuckered out. Until my smooth, well-practiced moves begin to slip as my strength wears thin.
I’m anxious. I panic. I’m frustrated. I’m so very overwhelmed. These are not the only emotions I ever experience, but sometimes they define my existence for weeks on end. I find myself looking around. Help me, please. I’m independent, but my chest feels like its going to cave in. I’m responsible, but I can’t keep it together. I’m tough, I’m fine, I can handle it, but I’m sitting in the middle of my bedroom floor weeping sorrowfully. My life is different, but I think I am going to die.
I rock independence.
And I die a little more with every passing season.
I strut my stuff, I motion to observers to admire my dance with this vengeful whisper. I’ve got this jazzy tune down pat and I look good swaying on the floor. I like this dance, its my dance. It’s who I am, it’s who I will always be.
Then why do I want to run away forever?
My roommates share feasts with me. My friends shower affection on me. My family shouts affirmation. My supporters lavish gifts. My mentors dump bucket loads of blessing. All the while, the my body pulses with “Alone. You’re alone. You will always be alone. Nothing will ever change.”
But it does change.
It changes because somewhere, someday I nodded my head yes when You asked me to love You. It changes because somehow, someway You are committed to keep me from falling and to sweep me up into Your arms in an unadulterated state. It changes because You are far more committed to me than I can ever dare to imagine. It changes because You heard my pitiful little cry for help.
You step onto the dance floor. I don’t know who I am dancing with, I don’t realize who I have embraced. It’s been so many years, and I was so very young when the dance began. I forget the poison’s name. I don’t even know it has tampered with my cellular make-up. But You point at the assault and tell me it’s name, loudly and so very clearly.
I’m so very glad You have come, and I’m so very glad that I finally know why I’ve been anxious all this time. I’m so very glad You have spoken, for at last my slow death has a visible cause. And now, every corner I turn I see how the whisper has forced me to move. Every week another survival technique gets unraveled.
Oh, I do this because I think I’m alone. Oh, I feel that way because I think I’m alone. Ohhhh, I burst into tears just now because I think I am alone. Oh. Ohh. It all makes sense now. Okay.
But I’m reeling, actually. Because the only steps I’ve taken all these years are the ones that wretched whisper forced me to take. I know its song, I know its dance, even though its embrace is awkward now. My hands are clammy, and I’m pulling further away with each new level of realization.
Except I don’t know Your dance yet. I don’t know how You are going to cut in and sweep me away from this straining partner. Back and forth I slide across this floor, with You for a brief moment, before I go twirling right back into the assault again. I can’t keep up with You just yet. Your moves are so new to me, and I am so unpracticed in Your ways.
You catch my eyes from across the floor. You are relentless, I think. You keep saying over and over that You are able to keep me from falling. The words might as well be in Italian, for I have no idea what they mean. All these years, I thought I had to keep myself from falling. I thought I was alone, and I didn’t even know I thought I was alone.
Yet, I am clutching to an ounce of belief that somewhere, someday You will have me entirely in Your dance. Somehow, someway a new whisper will course through my veins. Only it won’t be a whisper. It will be a robust song that syncs my whole body, soul, and spirit into Your rhythm.
I don’t know all the words to that song yet. I’m just beginning to hear the beat. But somewhere, someday, somehow, someway it will take me over.