Saturday, February 2, 2008
Musings on Career Fest #1
To grow old with those we love is to see the death of a million potentials. Little corpses scattered along the branches of the straight trunk of a time line of what really was, spreading out infinitum. Bitter fractals bearing fruit, yet to be picked, grown overripe and soft. I don't just mean the famous zoologist waitressing at Denny's, although maybe that's part of it. But it's more than that. It is the kindness we did not do. Little moments that could have sustained us if we would have lifted our heads to look. The relationship we beat into a pulp, even when we were graciously given a hundred second chances. And sometimes I don't know what to do with all these things I could have been, all the beauty I could have found had I not taken the easy road. Like so many of us, I have shorn against my ruins a host of resolutions. I beat, whip, pull, bind myself with the stretched out leather of my bootstraps, limp and thin. It is not enough. So I reinvent myself in the image of the ideal bait. The one that will attract the boy, the job, the future I want, the approval of God. I cannot earn what I long for so I have set about to seduce it. And what is seduction other than the desperate attempt to take power away from the one we desire to want or need something other than us? And how often has my "love" taken this form? It is embarrassing to say. But perhaps I've found a morbid solution to match my morbid state. Some blood soaked ground in which to kneel. The tree of time has been a crucifix for the one for whom there was no other possibility, no other cup to drink. And all my corpses, potential selves, those of my friends who sometimes fail me, have been redeemed by one. I cannot tell you the satisfaction of feeling that I am allowed to come unafraid to the True Object of Our Apologies. I am not going to pretend that I do not have doubts about my faith or that I am not a pretentious fake at times. But I have attached myself to Christ fully. If He has died and that is all then let my dust mingle with His. But if he has risen, let me go with Him. I guess my solution to missed opportunities that time provides is found outside of time. Perhaps that is a cheap answer, or maybe it is the answer. Whichever it is I know that it that this earthly life matters. Because His time has broken into ours in the Incarnation, there is meaning here and now. I have put all my eggs in His basket, but He has given them back and hidden them here. However, an Easter egg hunt is so much more fun than a landmine field. I might become a famous psychologist or a newspaper editor or a waitress. Maybe I will dance with my great grandchildren on my 50th wedding anniversary. Maybe not. But I know that ontologically, and in the deepest sense, I will be and am OK.