I know you.
You think you are the only one who wakes up from a disturbing dream, and sinks back into the feeling that you don’t really want to be awake today.
You feel crazy when you start crying when fresh coffee cascades all over the counter. There is some kind of leak in your french press and you can’t find it. This faithful friend is suddenly your enemy, determined to ruin your day.
You hate it when you get the urge to check your phone, but you do it anyways. Sometimes you do it so many times you feel sick. You tell yourself you are just making sure no one is trying to reach you, a text or even a simple “like” giving you a split second thrill, only to be replaced with loneliness.
I know you get online to try to drown out the unanswered questions in your mind. You scroll through hundreds of pictures of colorful home decor and genius healthy recipes because you feel like you are lacking something.
I know you’re just around thirty and feel like that means your life should look like something else.
Like children in school, a mortgage and a career.
Like creating successful art and living independently in a beautiful, foreign city.
Like not constantly second guessing yourself.
Like not still being afraid to talk to people.
I know you look at old photographs of yourself with both a loathing and an envy, remembering the time you were so:
Then you shake your head, because even though you feel like a completely different person, the old one is in you, buried beneath experiences that have left you jaded.
But you are still yourself. You can’t escape that.
You think you are the only one who has let their dream die, just watched it shrivel up in front of you. You could have resuscitated it, but fear got in the way.
“No… it can’t be mine. It can’t be real. It will never happen anyway.”
Sometimes, you feel the ghosts of those dreams hitting your gut from the inside, a pregnant flutter that comes from a line in a TV show or a billboard from a travel agency.
You know resurrection is possible, but not yet.
I know what you’re waiting for:
The Next Best Thing.
A Spiritual Awakening.
A different situation than the one you’re in.
I know you believe 90% of the time that’s where your happiness lives, and I know that the other 10% is spent with your internal eyes open, screaming at the rest yourself to WAKE UP.
I know you don’t want to spend your life distracted. You want meaningful relationships, you want to make a difference, you want to love yourself, love others and love God.
I know you’re tired of the formulas to achieve these things, the step-by-step instructions from people who seems to have all this and more just dropped into their lap.
I know your jealousy for these people keeps you from seeing what they are really saying. You either vilify them or put then on a pedestal.
But in the end, it does nothing but drive a wider rift in your “us vs. them” mentality.
There is NO “us vs. them.”
I know you, because you are me.
You are all of us.
The greatest lie is that you are alone, that what you are experiencing is unique to you.
We are conditioned to think of ourselves as separate, and so become emotionally vacant.
This is the human experience.
We grow up, lose our wild eyes and become slaves to worry.
We always want what we don’t have.
We compare, we criticize and we think we are different and alone, not good enough, too emotional, too fat, too weak to kick our addictions.
We search, we run away, we stay put out of fear.
We love, our hearts break, we question God, we stop faking it.
We’d do anything to see our dreams come true, if not in our lifetime then our children’s or grandchildren’s.
We want our time on earth to mean something more.
More than our years spent here. More than our words. More than numbers or old photos.
And somewhere in-between all of our experiences, all our pain and joy and “figuring things out,”
We come to see, Life itself is grace.
and when we are really awake, that becomes enough.