I once was, twenty years ago, hitting rock bottom with depression. I had no close friends and I had distanced myself from my family. I hadn't connected with anyone relationship-wise, and when I did it ended in tragic all-or-nothing type scenarios. I had lost what I had of faith, and if I had ever found it, it was in the untested sort in which the simple living a normal life was too little for my expectations to be happy with, to cope with, or to be confident around.
All that changed with a couple, actually more than a couple, leaps of faith in my life.
The first of these most notable leaps of faith was to reach out in my first relationship around 1999. I had to make mistakes to learn from them, and I did greatly. I learned the romantic notions I had of a "perfect list" type love was ill-conceived. I learned that one cannot make someone love you, and that one should not try to love without being willing to love back. I learned that the relationship was, after all, not something to control or be a leader of, but to be a partner in. I learned by heartbreak after a six month engagement that I was too immature to handle it at that time.
Three years later I met my future wife, and knew as soon as I saw her that it was meant to be, if I could only make the impression right. The feeling, the KNOWING in the heart more certain that one knows that one is experiencing life, that she was--and is--THE ONE. I had before that made a mold for someone to fit, but this time I had the fit already, and I became the one to mold to fit it. That was in November 2002, at the Caffeine Den, in Stockton, California, at a poetry reading, in which I talked about in a previous blog post here.
In the further journey, I found faith again in the struggles of learning how to love and let myself be loved, and to compromise and still have dreams, when I was in another moment of insecurity. I had not felt I was worthy, had given up on the relationship because I had felt that I couldn't bear to argue over things that one or the other of us wasn't compromising in. The love we had was passionate and intense, but at the same time we were both proud and had our lines drawn in the sand. I had broken up with her and attempted an overdose, but not before praying for a way to resolve it whatever that way was that I could not see but God would know best, over ten years ago that was, and after a few minutes threw it up and called for help.
Since then things grew better and better gradually. I learned how to live and how to love. I learned about faith and worship. I learned about peace inside being the only thing, and the circumstances of worldly things around being seen and changed by how you see them. I became Catholic, married, and involved myself in the Cursillo. There are infinite steps on our ladders, each of us not to be judged by our place along them except by God. The steps, those levels, can be improved and we can help improve each other. It just takes a leap of faith to get past the negative side of things, and to see the light.
Donald R. Anderson. Aspiring writer. Amateur philosopher and amateur writer of Apologetics (i.e., the Catholic reasonings). Faith-driven kindred spirit.
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