Breaking Through the Loneliness

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I am willing to wager that you have a secret.

Your secret is a story–or many stories–that culminate in a shameful “truth” about yourself and who you think you are.  You go through life hoping that nobody discovers this truth.  It would all fall apart if everyone figured out who you “really” are.

Or maybe you’re trying to bend reality, to make the most out of a difficult situation.  Maybe if you can be strong, brave, and inspiring, then you won’t come across as hurt, damaged, and unstable.

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Am I right?  Because if I am, then I have another secret to share.  Everybody has the same secret that you have.  And it’s all an illusion.  Every last bit of it.

I used to sit in loneliness, trying to hide “who I really was.”  I had a history of fear, of sadness, of anxiety, and of desperation.  Caught in the fog of perceived unworthiness, I did not understand why I had the thoughts I had, why I acted the way I acted, and why I made myself both distant and clingy in my relationships.  

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Fear leads to more fear, and we become convinced that we are alone in our experience.  We don’t talk about it, because we fear judgment.  We are certain that we are defective, that something is wrong with us.

But the more people I’ve talked to, the more I’ve realized that this seemingly private journey through fear is the journey of all humanity.  We all have a “story.”  We have all had experiences that have left us feeling confused and broken.  Many–and I’d venture to say most–of us at some point in time have been given labels, to try and describe fear’s manifestations in our lives.

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And yet those labels are not who we really are.  The story of how we came to feel broken, is not our real story.  We don’t need to be courageous or inspiring.  There is nothing we need to overcome.

Our journey through the confusion of fear and the fog of unworthiness does not separate us from the rest of humanity, it connects us.  We are not alone in our quest to understand and to see reality–everyone is on the same journey.

So take a moment today to see beyond the loneliness.

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6 thoughts on “Breaking Through the Loneliness

  1. I liked this thoughtful post, Bethany. So true that everyone has their own story. None of us are exempt from feeling imperfect or fearful at times. I think this is the essence of being humans and not gods. 🙂

  2. Hi Bethany! You are so right that this is a universal feeling for many of us. As we struggle to find our place in the world and discover who we really are it can be difficult. I certainly felt lonely at times, especially when I was younger. The good thing is that as I “mature” I find that I am far more sure of who I am, why I’m here on the planet, and altogether I don’t feel so alone. As you say, we all have our story and maybe that story is where we go from one place to another. ~Kathy

  3. Hi Bethany — you shared truths in so many ways here. I like how you say, “that this seemingly private journey through fear is the journey of all humanity” and that we all have a story. I just wrote about something similar to this and like what Walt Whitman said in his poem, “O Me! O Life!” — “…that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse”.

    What will our verse be? Robin Williams asked this in Dead Poets Society:

  4. I heard a reading yesterday: “everybody’s got a story,” “everybody’s got a wound to heal.”
    I believe that both statements are true. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. May our Lord Jesus richly bless you.

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