Friday, November 11, 2011

Day One (2)

It's hard to describe the transformation that went on during that month. I must say that because of this one month, I am not the same......

I chose the Gospel of John and the Epistles of John because these four books focus on the love of Jesus. Something I most definitely lacked. My anger and hate was growing out of control.  In my own defense Liam, my son, was extremely difficult. He cried all the time; the only thing that seemed to soothe him was his mother who would gently sing songs to him. I’m not sure what was worse, the seething fire of rage in my belly or the never-ending wailing of a prematurely born infant uncomfortable with being ripped from the womb a month too early. Nonetheless, hate boiled inside me and spilled out suddenly and violently. Like a volcano that's been dormant for years, pressure building and building until the earth finally gives way exploding with violent force. During these times my family were the ones who were burned by the raging fire within me. I regret my behavior.  

Day one reading the Gospel of John. I remember that day almost like it was today. My body resonated and pulsated with resentment toward my son who started crying the second he woke up. It was going to be another day of torment and tears, I felt impotent and powerless that I was unable to quiet and calm the boy.  These out of control feelings angered me all the more.

“Why won't you just SHUT UP? I just want QUIET!” I would scream at my infant son.

One of the ways I learned to cope was to sit in front of my computer and tune out the sounds by listening to loud music on the iPod. I found the “White Stripes” especially helpful at times. The clinical word for this, I have learned later is dissociation. Effective at the time, this method was not the best choice for me as I would sit and postulate in my own self talk, I would tell myself how horrible my life had turned out to be,  how difficult Liam is to take care of, and what an incredible failure of a father I was for feeling such intense antagonism toward both my helpless son and my innocent pre-school daughter. It wasn't their fault I was so angry.
It was finally nap-time. My favorite time of day. Time to put the children in their rooms, put them to sleep, and tune out the world in front of my “drug of choice,” become my version of fantasy and ignore reality. Today I had determined to exchange my time for time. I was going to sacrifice my time with my drug, for time with God. If I believed that He existed, then I must believe he will help me. If I believed He answered prayer, then I must believe he would answer my requests. I needed to find out what was wrong with me.  I opened the Bible, and began to read it was May 17th 2010, Day One....
This is the work of God that you believe on Him whom he has sent"  John 6.29
Hmmmmmm, Gods job is that I believe in Jesus. Therefore my job is to believe in Him.
"I say unto you, whatever you ask the Father in my name, he will give it you. Hereto have you asked nothing in my name? ask and you shall receive, that your joy may be full." John 16.23
For some reason these words really hit home with me. I wanted to pray but God and I were not on speaking terms. I was uncomfortable with the idea of asking for something I feared would not be answered. Instead, I wrote Him a letter.
"I am unhappy and full of darkness. If you said to ask in Jesus name you will answer me and my joy will be full. If you are the light of the world. (John 1) Than fill my joy and light me. In the name of Jesus I pray this."
I read all the Johns that day, somehow I knew I was on to something. As I closed my black leather bound Bible, I began to think...
“I am unhappy all the time. why am I so unhappy? I have an awesome wife who loves me. i have an awesome daughter who loves me, my son may have issues,  but he is not dead and will outgrow this. I don't have to go to a real job. I should be happy I get to stay at home and take care of my kids. Whats wrong with me? I scream and yell until my own teeth rattle in their sockets.”
The rest of the day I was considering all that I had read. I had made steps to becoming the man I wanted to be. Over the past years I had stopped using illegal drugs, quit smoking, even gotten my drinking under control. Yet it seemed these improvements still did not solve my problem. (I still enjoy a beer with dinner but only once or twice a month.)

Late that evening, lying in bed I couldn't sleep. Still thinking about what I had read,
“If I was successful in kicking all these other addictions and I am the same, there must be a deeper issue that I am not aware of that is causing me to be this way. There must be a "core issue." What that is, I wish I knew......”


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