In some respects, I am far from where I need to be. Financially, my life is a mess. Although, it’s still an odd feeling to have the money available every week to be able to start to tackle the mountain of debt following me around like a bad habit. I keep thinking I will wake up and he will be there ready to snatch it up and blaze his way into the night. Emotionally, I am nearing the end of an old rope bridge straddling an abysmal gorge to link two peaks. I have managed to navigate around the missing boards and those about to give way. But I still have my eye set on that frayed rope on the tethers.
In terms of independence, I would probably liken my condition to an adolescent who insists to their parents that they can be home alone and manage just fine. Yet their parents doubt this and arrange for “help.” Or better yet in my case, I am made to feel like I am being toted around like a chihuahua under someone’s arm, lest I be left alone to make a mess on the kitchen floor. I have lost my privacy, my own space, my sanity. I am pretty much shuffled around as things need to be so as to accommodate others, at my inconvenience. Some days I know I can handle being on my own just fine. However, other days I would guess that I would be too afraid to be alone at night. Sad confessions of a grown woman!
Work… I have plenty of that. Some days, I feel like I am being buried alive by paper and envelopes. On others, I find myself burning through it like there is no tomorrow. (I guess that all depends on Dunkin’.) Generally, though, I find that my work multiplies like rabbits and I wish there was a way to slow the paper tide. This is 2013, after all, and I must be off on my interpretation of “going green.” I thought it meant a reduction in paper use, but with forests being bulldozed and burned and sawed down every day, who, apparently, needs to save on paper?
I am also in a position where I can finally help others out when they need it. Four long years of not being able to have put me on edge and made me cranky. Those who know me personally pretty much know that there is no way to curb this or refuse. I will pretty much do it no matter what. What could I possibly get out of it? I am the obnoxious sort who loves the warm and fuzzy feeling of knowing that I made someone smile or gave them some relief from a burden they couldn’t carry on their own. That’s all I want out of it, to help others and make them happy. Now, at this point, the few who know me best would start lecturing me about doing stuff for myself, blah, blah, blah. By the way, this is also the time I will ever so quietly reach up and switch off my hearing aid with ninja-like stealth so I do not hear the aforementioned nagging. (Sometimes having “non-selective” selective hearing is the best!) Strange as you may see it, this is doing for myself. It is ingrained in me, and for me to be happy, I have to oblige it. So suck it up and handle it.
Spiritual matters… now those I have a hold on, and I am not letting go. Not too long ago, I had a speed bump in this respect. He would be supportive of me studying, attending the meetings, making friends with some of the sisters on the congregation. This was, of course, until he discovered that I was intent on applying what I was learning. Silly me, using knowledge of what Jehovah expects of me instead of hoarding it? What was I thinking?
This became a major issue of contention. (Who am I kidding, everything was a major issue of contention with him.) He would still try to talk to brothers and sisters in the Hall about how proud he was of me, but little he became violent in his attempts to keep me at home. Little did he know that dragging me around by my hair, slamming my head into the door frame, punching me in the head, denying me sleep for several days, and hitting my legs with the metal bar was not consistently preventing me from attending my meetings. I say it wasn’t consistent meaning sometimes it did keep me home, but this depended on where the marks were and how tired I was from the sleep deprivation. It never kept me from doing my study. And I had literature and Bibles stashed in places in the apartment he never knew about, just so when he started taking my books from me, I could get up and pull a seemingly never-ending supply of them out.
He would be absolutely infuriated when he didn’t get his way. What was I supposed to do? Give in? Relent? This wasn’t my paycheck! This was my relationship with Jehovah, which he was trying his very hardest to make defunct. Since he didn’t learn this when he had me walking with a cane, he was never going to get it. I only did what I had to do for me, because it was the right thing to do.
As soon as I was out his reach, I got right back into the meetings and studying. In the two and a half months I have been going, I have not missed a single meeting, and I study twice a week. And this past week, the best thing yet has happened. I was approved as an unbaptized publisher in my congregation! A startling thing happened, though, at the end when one of the brothers prayed. I started to cry. All the pain and anguish I went through to get to where I am… No one but Jehovah and I will ever know. And that is all that matters.