She looked out from behind the Local News section of the Bergen Record. “It will work out… don’t worry.”
“But what if…” “STOP,” she begged in her calm voice. “You don’t have to worry about it. It will all be taken care of. Sometimes you just need to have a little faith.” She turned to find page B4, where the story continued.
I slowly walked away, wanting so badly to ask again… to find out if maybe she would know or could find out when… If maybe she had known something I didn’t, causing my doubt and worry to creep in.
I did not want to miss out on a thing… I wanted to know. When my shoes would arrive? When dad would be home with the car? When we were leaving to go to dinner so I could make plans around it? How I was getting to practice? What did I need to do next weekend?
I carried that worry and the constant need to know what and how into my adult life. It became an anchor I would soon identify as my very own. It was a part of my perfectionism. I needed it like Linus’s blanket, or more like a long fall from a short pier. I needed to realize quickly that I didn’t really need it at all. The letting go was like pulling a bottle away from an infant who hasn’t eaten in 5 days. I clung to it as if I wouldn’t breath if I somehow rid myself of it. Letting go is sometimes the hardest thing we ever do in life. Even if it’s letting go of the very thing that is building the wall in front of us.
I found that wall pop up again as recently as a few months ago. In a very dark and deeply saddened few weeks, I allowed myself to watch as despair, failure, desolation, worthlessness, and fear laid each brick, piling higher and higher right in front of me. I watched and didn’t say a word. I let it build. Almost as if I was cheering on those very bricks that would soon be my cell walls. I certainly didn’t stop it.
And then I was reminded in one moment by one voice, that I was stronger than that wall. I was reminded that I didn’t need to let the cell close me in. There were only three walls… I could certainly retreat and go back out the way I came in. BUT… I tried to argue with failure by reminding him that I came from that way and if I go back I MUST be doing it all wrong. I tried to reason with despair, telling her that if I could just one time get it right, I may feel ok about myself.
Stress, worry, failed relationships and hurting friends and a difficult family situation is enough to set me on a path to become a professional brick layer. But that’s too easy. That’s where my belief could have led me. I could go down a path and built walls. Wondered what and how and when… and been happy on those so called “stressless days” and spent the rest of my time chasing my worries around the cul-de-sac of the next dead end road.
But belief won’t write my story. At least not the way I want it to read.
Faith is stepping out into the darkness and knowing, without question, that things will fall into place when you need them to the most. That the bricks will not know how to fasten to each other. The world ran out of mortar. And when the time comes to go over, around or through those walls, there is no question. We choose the roads without worry. We walk our path without fear. Despair fell after the last strong wind, and failure never even made it to the road the wall was on.
We choose our path.
We know life will give us one hell of a ride.
We have faith the ride doesn’t have to include a crash ending.
Faith is in the knowing.
And I don’t really have to explain it anymore…