Untitled Past

There are moments in life when our hearts bleed words, aching to somehow express the vast expanses of what lies inside. Moments when expression is nonetheless difficult, with words jumbled and thoughts overlapping, all trying to escape at once, moments when all of existence itself desires to be known. Moments when writing becomes difficult.

Life was never supposed to be this way. This aching expressed throughout the march of minutes, the passing of lifetimes. This brokenness that has extended from the moment we set foot onto this planet. Brokenness passed from parent to child, from one generation to the next. Inescapable, inexpressible brokenness. We all hope to be different, unfettered, unlike the rest. And yet we all are slaves to its chains, crippled by its touch.

So much has happened in life, so much known by so few. So much not even fully understood by the one who experiences it. And yet marching forward, trying to understand, trying to somehow get a grasp of what has occurred. If only we were able to stop time, even for a moment. And yet, still it marches along.

Life was innocent once, hopeful before the surrounding world stepped in. Carefully sheltered and protected, a beauty insulated from the surrounding darkness. A treasure convinced that, given enough time, the good could be found in anyone, in anything. The remnants of the signature of a Creator, long ago neglected, long ago passed aside.

It was that innocent, naive hope that led to many dark days. Choosing to overlook signs of manipulation, desiring to find the truth amidst all of the lies. A lesson hard learned that not everyone wants to be known.

Someone considered a friend, someone regarded with value and dignity and compassion. Someone given power and influence they neither deserved nor respected, but given in the hopes that the precious gift would be treated with the care it needed, that it would be provided with the freedom to blossom.

For years looking past the shell, seeking to find what lay beneath, desiring to allow the person deep inside to be known. Disregarding the lies, ignoring the faults, forgiving the abrasions, nurturing the seeds planted with hope, care, and concern.

Then, destruction. Choices which put not only their life, but the lives of others at risk. Actions which could not conscionably be ignored. And with them, the arrival of many sleepless nights, foodless days, agonizing prayers, and hurting emails to friends, crying out for wisdom. And the realization that sometimes, love must be tough. That to truly love means sometimes intervention is necessary. That simply standing by is not enough.

And how to be responded to? With threats in the middle of the night, with anger, and yelling, and hatred. With answers that crushed the precious flower of compassion, the beauty of hope. Hope that love would conquer all, that love would transform. Replaced instead by the realization that not everyone wants to be known.

It is a story that echoes through countless lives, reverberating through souls around the world. It is not a story experienced only by one, but rather shared by many. Though details may differ, threads lie in common. That sometimes, the story doesn’t have a happy ending.

Love is a gift. And like with any gift, just as there is a choice in giving, there also is a choice in receiving. That just as there is a cost in giving, there also is a cost in receiving. And that it is a cost that not all are willing to pay. It is a difficult realization that not everyone wants to be known.