I sit tonight, eyelids drooping, as I ponder the week this has been.
For those who have reached out to me in love and in concern, here is an accounting of my life as I’ve lived, and died. My life as a being reborn.
A very important collaboration with a fellow writer, one aimed at (hopefully) beginning to heal the weight of pain between the distrust and hate between the countless factions of Catholics—this holds the strongest pull on my heart.
A psychotic, obsessed, horror-movie-villain-esque female stalker—she has the deapest pull on my fear. Fear for my family, fear for my friends. None for myself. I’m ready for her.
The countless victims of abuse who have come to me in a ceaseless, beloved, cherished procession, radically humbling me by so fully entrusting their stories to my heart—beginning 2 years ago when I first came out publically on my Patheos Catholic column as a survivor of Catholic abuse—have honored me this week as they’ve radically exposed their deepest pain and trauma to me, in what seems a tsunami wave of healing—these beloved ones possess my deepest love, my zeal, my protective wrath, and my strength.
My utter exhaustion has hold of my body, as this week in which the threads of every subplot in my story thus far have wound together into one giant whole, like a crescendo of self awareness, of love, and of my newfound radical veneration and respect for the validity, the factual reality, of my truth.
My passion for activism and advocacy holds a total monopoly over my mind: having, for the first time, stood guard and witness as I yesterday recorded, for the first time, a terrifying and heart-shattering encounter between 2 white ego-obsessed police officers and 1 large, unarmed, nonviolent (biracial) black man—he solely wanted to take his 5-year-old daughter to the playground on Father’s day—but his white mother, my neighbor, forbade him from seeing his daughter on Father’s day, and she called the police on her POC son…..
This last, the deep racism and violence faced by my brothers and sister daily, holds all my grief and my rage.
My hope and peace together breathe life into the newborn dreams for my future—that I shall one day share my deepest self, all of me, in a profound body, mind, and spirit gift of myself, expression of God’s love, to one I love like no other.
My knowledge and prophecy together speak life into this new life I am living—life of writer, soeaker, unwanted-soul seeker, truthteller to the hateful, the wicked; educator, advocate, and protector; lover, and radical co-creator, to a new life of love for this Church.
My joy overwhelms me, for just yesterday, I returned audaciously to receive the exotic kiss of the divine, present to me body and spirit in the eucharist, and the peace, healing, and radical self love of confessing my single sin: I allowed, like my mother Eve before me, the domination of man to come between myself and my God. I permitted the fear, ignorance, and hatred of other humans to define my being as freak—as inherently depraved, unworthy and incapable of divine love. I submitted to the words and the dictates of power-hungry, feeble men to define my existence, my being, and to bar me from the kiss of my deepest love.
I took them at their word: they represented the incarnate God to me. And their representation was one of hatred, abuse, control, shame, judgment, and condemnation.
I doubted myself and my truth. I trusted their words over the moments of love and presence with my God, moments in which she assured me that I am her beloved daughter, in whom she is well pleased.
Never again will I allow the lies and the abuses of men to bar me from the embrace of the divine. I am daughter, beloved, whole, and intrinsically good and holy.
None shall bar me from His kiss again, not until the day I draw my last breath.
I join Esther and Mary and Joan and Flannery in my transgressive freedom and autonomy,
In living my love for my God.
My brother priest, he who welcomed me by name, as he administered the holiest kiss of Christ.
He too granted me absolution.
I sat in my pew and wept, wept and wept with joy
wept for reconciliation
For consuming fire of love.
Image credit: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Edvard_Munch_-_Madonna_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg