Sunday, September 05, 2010

Via Dolorosa - Scourging, Crowning And Falling

Someone I look up to once told me that everyone has crosses to bear -- how there are one or two life-altering events in our lives that we must go through in order to learn from and become better people. A purging of sorts, if you may.

It made vague sense to me so I asked him what his crosses had been. He mentioned that one of them had been his journey through his survivorship of clinical depression. He was twenty four when he got diagnosed with it and the eight years to follow were the most difficult of his life. He went through an insane whirlwind of emotions with people coming and going (though most of the latter) in his life. And this was on top of having to experience a life so tumultuous as it already is. He scraped himself together one day and fought the depression with every ounce of strength that he had. And he was blessed with a partner that saw him through this. "She was my light at the end of the tunnel," he told me with unmeasured fondness.

I became thoughtful after that. I brought up the subject matter with my mother one evening that we had dinner together. She readily agreed about her concept of crosses. "As a matter of fact," she said, "You should be slightly wary of your pending cross. That as much as you're very blessed with many good things, you will get tried one way or another." I then asked her what her cross had been. She furrowed her eyebrows and picked on the pasta on her plate.

"Your father and I have gone through so much together," she began. "One of the more difficult parts of our life together was when we had to help each other through financial difficulties. We had marvelous plans for you kids, and failing wasn't an option. But we were a team and we'd be there for each other when one collapsed. It was hard, yes, but it was worth every bit of it. And if things came easily to us, then I don't think we'd appreciate where we currently are."

She looked at me in the eye. "I just hope that when it's your turn to carry your cross, you'd be strong enough and have enough faith that you could get through it. Because I know you will, but it's all up to you."

That conversation took place some five years ago -- but the idea never left my head. I am aware that no matter how invisible to the naked eye, we all fight some internal battle within ourselves. Some do a better job masking it from others while some just can't. Either way, we're all struggling with something.

Then one day, it hit me. My cross. It had been there all this time and I just didn't realize it. My cross consists of my collection of relationships that I can't seem to fully realize -- that I couldn't seem to be with those people that I truly love and care for.

My family -- a prime example. They perhaps make up the majority of my support system. And every single one of them live oceans away from me. Then there's my best friend whom I've only had the pleasure of sharing the same time zone with a couple of years ago. Not to mention all my closest friends and members of my extended close-knit family. They all have the same story. They are all anywhere but here with me.

And there were also my past relationships. They both had to end partly because of the distance. No matter what type of effort I had to put into them, I almost always had to pull the plug because I couldn't seem to bridge the growing gap between us. On my second one, I thought it was going to be different and that I was finally given a chance to rid of the constant gaping hole inside of me -- only to wearily watch the relationship suffer a slow and painful death at the end for the same reason as the first one.

That's when I stopped trying. I was convinced that I could only seem to love people whom I can't be with. Physically or otherwise.

The cross I bear isn't a particularly outstanding incident that shook my world once upon a time. As they say, God gives us burdens that come in different forms. Mine just happens to be the sort to travel with me and to constantly weigh on my shoulders. And only God knows how long I'd have to carry this. In terms of magnitude, I know that it pales in comparison to what others have had to go through, but it more than makes up for the length of time I've had to bear it -- and moreso, the uncertainty of the time when it would stop being my cross.

I've learned to deal with it though. And in exchange, I've become a stronger and a more emotionally self-sufficient person. I've become a person so vastly different from how I was before. But most importantly, it taught me to never take for granted whatever time I am allowed to be with the people who matter to me. I could only make the most out of it and then fervently hope that the next time wouldn't be too far away.

This is why I enjoy the happily boring events with the right people just as much as any world-class memories I've ever had -- simply because both don't come by that often in my life. And when they do, they're mine and mine forever.


Blogger Prasoon said...


4:13 AM  
Blogger Nasia said...

You should change your blog color. :-(
About the cross,what I believe is, its not really necessary that we all have to HAVE a cross, if we learn what God wants us to learn without too much of hassle, I am sure, He will spare us. And some of us, are also plain blessed than others.
So maybe this is not your cross, its just your independance. .

12:32 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home