How do you make sense out of life? How does one figure out the pattern behind all of life’s ups and downs? You start out as a kid with wide-eyed hopes and dreams and as you group up, those same dreams seem to become nightmares. You can’t seem to fix them, so you make new dreams, new plans. You heap on one goal on top of another. But in the end, you still hold on to those original dreams you keep so small and hidden that barely anyone besides you (and perhaps your closest friends) know.
What’s funny is how the nightmares creep up on you in the middle of the night when you least expect them and are the least prepared to resist. What’s perhaps least funny is how those nightmares remind you of the dreams you once wholeheartedly held onto and now fear will never come true…. A song, a saying, a scent, a room: they all seem to grasp you at different times and take you back to those dreams. One place can be forever changed by the presence of one memory made.
Of course, not all those memories are bad. Many are wonderful. Both the good and the bad memories work together for a greater plan. But how do you rid yourself of the ghosts?
You move on. You forgive. You let go. You make new friends. You hold on ever so tightly to the old true ones. You explain things to yourself by telling others. You lock certain things away for only the dearest and closest to hear—maybe even just yourself and God. You beg for forgiveness and cry for guidance. You do better. But how do you rid yourself of the ghosts that still haunt your dreams?…
This is my home. I love it here. I love my family and my friends. Why can’t I rid it of the mark from him? I try to move on from the stain of the past—I do move on from the past. But why does the failure in my relationship with one boy spark the memory of someone else? Why does what this boy claims I am unable to give rest on an ability someone else taught me I should rarely use?
I can be honest: I told the boy my story. But what does this do when the boy doesn’t work to build the reliance needed to make things work? The boy says I don’t trust. But how can I trust a boy who won’t prove to me I’m wanted? How can I trust when someone else took my trust away? How can I trust when my nightmares remind me about the innocence I’ve lost?
I’m self-reliant. I trust myself. I trust my family and a few close friends. The number I trust is probably too small. But how can I trust a boy who has left me too many times? The proposition, the request, doesn’t seem fair. But then life isn’t fair.
For how far I’ve come, I’m not sure I trust I really have come very far. The pain is still hidden away there. It’s lighter because I don’t entertain it as much. But when is it replaced? When will the trust—taken away—be given back to me to give to another? I see now that this boy in front of me can’t give me the trust back that was lost; at least not now as he searches for his own answers as a young man, a young adult– but really as a boy. My own story is too much for me to hold at times, much less a boy who has his own life to figure out. But the growing up he needs to do is why I can’t trust him.
It’s not about a lack of passion or romance by the boy or myself. It’s about problems that can’t be fixed without the trust that is still lacking on both our parts. So, I have to find my trust in others. He has to find his trust in himself. We both need to find our trust in God. I trust God. But not nearly as much as I should. That’s probably where most of my problems start.
Someday I won’t have any more nightmares. I fear that day won’t be for a long while. But that’s okay, because we all seek answers and build new dreams until the day we die. All I can do is make my life worthwhile. All I can do is let my life positively touch as many as possible. For, other people with other problems will come after me- after us all. We have to trust that God will create a pattern to the ups and downs. I feel lost and haunted at times. But it is not always that way. Hope can sometimes pull us through when trust- when faith- can’t.