The space that is twenty-five

Sunday, April 8, 2018

I am often very glad that most of my early twenties does not exist on the internet--that the deep nights of loneliness, the most vulnerable bits of my soul-searching during college remain safely hidden in drafts and pen-and-paper notebooks.

Only now, breathing into this space that is twenty-five, do I begin to feel comfortable with sharing words and blurred images of this life I'm inhibiting.

I'm a firm believer that we all go through some form of shit--pardon the French--and even more so in not writing about said shit until coming out the other side. I look back on the past five years now with no small amount of awe that I have made it out of the end of a very long shit tunnel...to speak frankly, of course.

If you were to tell me at twenty that sociopaths exist, that people can inherently be not good by continuous choices and actions, that in contradiction some people can be good and lovely and mean well yet cause just as much damage as the not-good people, and that men will almost always let themselves be chased to no emotional distress on their part and all sorts of damage on yours...

Well, I'd say that was wrong.

I know better now. Thank God. There but for the grace of God--one of Ryan's favorite sayings. I am quietly reminded of it now and then.

I knelt in a hushed church today after Confession, the pews dim in the grey winter light, and gazed down the long isle. Thank Him for all your blessings, the priest told me in addition to my penance. Simple enough and yet I knelt, held in the silence of the moment, as I looked back five years and marveled at the things and people from which I'm now free. The men I could have ended up with. The futures I could have had.

It's humbling and inspiring, and I caught my breath with quiet, heartfelt gratitude.

There but for the grace of God.