Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I Don't Know What to Tell You. I Want to Tell You Everything.

It's been awhile since I poked my head up and said hello. We moved and it was hard. The semester started and it was busy. We went whale watching (!), and that will be another post.

It's late. I taught the third week of my night class tonight, during which this grown up accountant man said, "This class is like going to therapy!" I think that was a good thing, but I can't be sure. We were talking about childhood and identity and innocence and experience.

And out of all the things I could pluck out of the hours of my life to tell you, it seems most important to say this: I am, finally, happy. Really happy. Pleased as a peach to be in my life, not really longing for anyone elses'.

I can't explain this, really. I was depressed last year, and sick. And all of that seems so clear now: that I simply wasn't okay. Depression makes every moment into a brick; they weigh so much and take so long to stack up and once they're stacked you feel trapped and very tired. And anxiety makes you feel hunted, like everything you do must be wrong and everyone knows it and how does anyone manage to get out of bed anyway? My co-workers and students and the other drivers on the road and my family and my friends and men walking down the street and my husband and people at church and editors and God, everyone was filling up their days with watching me, waiting for my next mistake, and I was making so damn many of them. That felt absolutely true, like I couldn't remember when it wasn't true, like there simply was no room for error.

And now, I'm healthy. And I'm beginning to trust that feeling of health, which is a strange feeling. Suddenly, I can make plans with people and commitments to do things because I trust I'll have the energy to do it. I'm beginning to really love my job, to adore my students and their sweet insightful brains, the way it feels to stand in front of them and smile and nod and say yes-yes, the way I get paid to talk about this thing that's so important to me, this thing I really love. And the department's not perfect, but I don't care anymore. No one's hunting me or posed to fire me. I just do my thing and do my thing and do a little of their thing and then my thing again.

I had to teach for an observer today, someone who was assigned to watch me as they do all new teachers, to make sure I'm not a total flop. I was terrified about it because I had a big deadline yesterday and after I met it I locked myself out of my house and apartment for five hours, and I was so so tired this morning and the class to be observed was (is) the toughest teaching crowd I've ever had. But I prayed, and prayed hard. And God answered me. I didn't have a word written down before class, no lesson plan to speak of, but when it was time to talk, I knew what to say, and my students talked. It was as if He whispered in our ears. I don't know what the observer will think, but when I finished I felt wonderful. I felt like could do anything, and God liked me.

I didn't deserve this. There's nothing about me that particularly obliges God or anyone to help me. He could have left me sick and sad indefinitely. But I think, for whatever reason, He's decided to give me respite. I'm so keenly aware of it as an undeserved blessing right now. So grateful.

14 comments:

Annie said...

I'm so happy for you. I know well the feeling of being covered by bricks. Congratulations on breaking free. Good luck with everything!

Tia and Amara said...

Isn't that wonderful? That you don't have to EARN the kindness he gives you? There are times when I know I push blessings away because I feel I'm not ready for them --I don't "deserve" them yet. He doesn't work that way and it constantly amazes me.

Genevieve Beck said...

This entry makes me very happy! I'm glad to hear that you are feeling better and especially that you're enjoying the job situation more. You are an amazing person and definitely deserve to be happy.

David and Melanie said...

good job! You've always been amazing. I'm glad you are finally seeing what the rest of us see in you!

Mike and Emily said...

Lovely lovely lovely. So so glad, dear brain!

eden said...

dej! i'm so glad you're back on your blog again! and i'm so, so very glad that you're feeling better and things are going well!

Elise said...

I love your posts. This one is beautiful. As they all are.

belann said...

So glad Deja is back.

Terry Earley said...

So nice. So nice. It is so true that we never "deserve" our blessings. God shares so freely.

Sam Ruddick said...

i don't know. i think you deserve it. i think you deserve all the blessings you've got and a few dozens more.

but i have to tell you about last year: you're right, i was watching you. i was watching you then, and sometimes (when you're not looking) i watch you now. i watch you all the time. but not the way you think. i might be hunting, but not for error. if you know what i mean.

meow.

Meeshab said...

you are the most inspirational blog to read. And then Sam's comments top the charts too! It is true, I couldn't have said it better myself. But....if you take a poll, I bet that EVERYONE you know would say that you deserve every ounce of happiness that you receive. It is going through those hard times that make the happy times deleriously (sp?) happy. Your the best, and when you are sad, it confuses me because you are so fabulous!

k. double-u. said...

I'm happy you're happy.

Bryson and Tara said...

Deja,

I'm so glad to hear that you're happy! I'm singing a song in the fireside group that I'm in right now, and your entry reminded me of some of the words: "For a little while, have I forsaken thee, but with great mercies will I gather thee. In a little wrath, I hid my face from thee, for a moment. But with everlasting kindness will I gather thee. And, with mercy will I take thee 'neath my wings. For, the mountains shall depart, and the hills shall be removed, and the valley shall be lost beneath the sea. But know, my child, my kindness shall not depart from thee." I am so grateful that He loves us, even when we don't deserve it. Now that I'm a parent, I understand it more, though I know I'm still only catching a glimpse.

Best wishes, friend!

Mackenzie said...

I needed this post. Thanks, and I'm so glad you're happy. :)