The Story Within; My Greatest Agony
“This is a great idea,” I thought. “I’m a home body. I’ve been a home maker most of my life, so writing about home will be a breeze.” After outlining and then drafting My Strongest Conjuration, Parts 1 and 2, the breeze quickly developed into an emotional thunderstorm. Telling myself, “Heh, No worries, I like to dance in the rain” I shook off the drama.
After some days work a squall developed. Frustrated with my keyboard, taking pens and tablets, a pile of ripped or crumpled paper soon surrounded me. “What was I thinking?!” I’d dismissed my outline and ended my previous post abruptly. Oh yeah, Divine intervention. Right?
The next days flew past, while I poured myself into volumes of text. And then yesterday I deleted the entire week’s work. Shockingly captivating, it missed my point; while my journey to here has been marvelous, this is not home.
Truth: Home is where my heart breaks. In my actual history, however dramatic, my early life is a suspense thriller and at some points a horror story. You name it, I probably experienced it. And then, after feeling comfortable that the worst possible seasons were behind me, the past eight years became another series of losses.
Yet, in retrospect my prevailing theme so far has clearly been “victorious against all odds”. Much of “it” happened in or close to home, so it’s no surprise my attitude about home had become corrupted lately.
Now, weeks into this project, there is no escaping the concept.
Leaving my father’s house, an image of home was solid in my mind. With my ‘beloved’ and our children we would live happily ever after; “Where Thou art – That – is Home -*”
While that may work out beautifully in some stories, it didn’t in mine. Ten years and four sons later I had become a broken, single, working mom. After a while, and some ego mending, home was any four walls that enclosed the right person**. Or in our case, the right persons, my sons and me.
While we share excellent memories with my family and friends in several different places, their curb appeal, their aromas and their colors faded away long ago. Later on this unmarried, unattached woman with no conspicuous resources was proud buying my first houses. They were nice while my sons were close by, but once they’d all left my nest, they became buildings to be visited while not working. As Daddy often said, they were where I’d hang my hat.***
Years later, still hopeful, I married again. Convinced that God joined us together, the right persons between four walls, we set out building a life together and home. While some of the following years with my best friend were lively, spontaneous and occasionally rewarding, the marriage ended with a thud seventeen years later.
Home then became a brand new apartment with an eastern balcony overlooking a lagoon. However picturesque, it was cold and uninviting. And yet, living there taught me to fully understand that,
To be with the right person, one must first be the right person.
God loves me as He does everyone else; and to complete that circle, loving myself has now become a higher priority. For the past several years, my mission has been to be me, and not merely settle for whatever is left of me. While working through the mire, this new focus promises to lend to a far better concept of home.
“I long, as does every human being, to be at home wherever I find myself.” Maya Angelou 1928 – 2014
“How priceless is Your unfailing love, O God! People take refuge in the shadow of Your wings” Psalm 36:7 (NIV)
Title reference: “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” Maya Angelou 1928 – 2014
* 724 by Emily Dickinson 1830 – 1886
**“Home is any four walls that enclose the right person.” Helen Rowland 1875 – 1950
***”Any old place I can hang my hat is home sweet home to me.” William Jerome 1865 – 1932