Tuesday, December 20, 2011
The hidden storm
How was I to know? How can one possibly know what is normal. As far as I knew all the pain I was feeling was the only way that life could be. I didn't even know that there could ever be a point where the pain got so bad, that it would force me to rethink how things were and how I could possibly change them. I was numb. The only thing I knew was that if I wouldn't think, there was a chance I'd survive. If I started thinking, the dreaded possibilities were endless. I didn't know what kind of feelings and thoughts lay inside because I hadn't thought and felt for so long that I forgot what it would be like. I didn't know what to look for so there was no hope that I would ever find it.So for now, I just hid, safely and snuggely, behind, under a huge volume of the talmud. I did know I was hiding. I knew that much. I also knew that this was my only hope. I tried to swallow myself...allow my being to melt away inside, beneath those ancient thoughts and lines. they brought be so much comfort. I knew that the closer I got to those words, the more they were in my blood, in my neshama, the more hope I had that I would achieve peace. After all, faith brought peace. If I was one with hashem, how can I possibly suffer, if all I had in my heart and sole were his holy words, how could I possibly be far from him. So I kept learning. I actually liked the protection of the huge volume of gemara. It was tall and strong and I needed something big and tall to protect me. Occasionally, of course there was an inner dissonance, a subject would come up in the talmud, perhaps the killing of a whole city, or the details or a divorce litigation, where my mind would wonder what was the connection between these words, and the peace I so much yearned for? but of course, there was no answer that could ever resolve that inquiry. Here I was there was no other life I knew and I had to find the solutions here. What I also knew was the secret that I carried inside was so dark, deep, and disturbing that I needed to keep everything silent and well locked in order for things to be OK. If I had even known what I was hiding, perhaps I would not have been as scared but since I didn't know, the only way to justify not looking was by having another endeavor in who's involvement I could totally lose myself. The other nice thing about being behind that gemara was the fact that I could hide away from people. I hated people. No, of course, i wanted them to like me, hold me cherish me. I looked out from the holes in my heart at all the happy bachurim in the yeshiva and wondered, "what the hell is going on?" "how do I get out of this mess?" "what is wrong with me?" Will I ever find out? will I ever be able to tell anyone? Will I need to die with this great secret hidden in me? Will I ever be able to connect to another person? so for now, I just suffered because somehow, although I did not know the secret, I had this instinctive feeling that should I ever open my mouth, and allow the secret to speak, it will be so ugly and repulsive that there would be no way that anyone could ever like me. Not that I felt liked, now, but, for now, at least I could imagine that there was a possibility. I remember sitting next to a really kind and sensitive bachur in the yeshiva. He was like a mentor to me. I remember thinking this thought, "I know that he is probably kind enough to listen to my pain but, I don't even know what to say, and even if I did, I know for sure that I will not say anything", so for now, I just kept it inside, always with a big smile, always with a "seiver panim yafos", always suffering, and making sure that my outer world was perfect so that no one would ever suspect the angry storm that was brewing inside.