“Well—I have to say I personally have never drawn such a sharp line between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ as you. For me: that line is often false. The two are never disconnected. One can’t exist without the other. As long as I am acting out of love, I feel I am doing best I know how. But you—wrapped up in judgment, always regretting the past, cursing yourself, blaming yourself, asking ‘what if,’ ‘what if.’ ‘Life is cruel.’ ‘I wish I had died instead of.’ Well—think about this. What if all your actions and choices, good or bad, make no difference to God? What if the pattern is pre-set? No no—hang on—this is a question worth struggling with. What if our badness and mistakes are the very thing that set our fate and bring us round to good? What if, for some of us, we can’t get there any other way?”
The Goldfinch, Donna Tartt
The past few days have reopened wounds of the past that I’ve sought to heal. These are wounds that are self-inflicted. Brought about changes to my personality that I thought would bring me to the worldly version of the “promised land”. It took repeated blows to what I truly held dear to my soul for me to realize what I was chasing was nothing but a vapid joke.
And yet somewhere over the past year and a half or so I’ve found that the distance I’ve put between that old self and who I am now becoming smaller than before. Pinpointing with accuracy where that slow beginning of a U-turn took place is difficult. The foot is on the break but I don’t know if I can stop in time before the crash.
And so I often find myself questioning whether it matters who I was or, who I am now at this point in time, or is what truly matters the destination you are headed to – or at least trying to head toward with every ounce of energy.
What defines me? The intention and effort, or the outcome?
Questions swirl, and I feel disheartened by my slips and trips. By my being unable to fulfill the promises I make to those around me, and to myself.
But I refuse to give up. I refuse to cow to what is easy.
I will stay and fight this fight for as long as it takes.
Even if I never win, I will stay.