Ever since I graduated with my university degree life has turned out to be a hard, bitter reality, the turbulence from which my soul cannot seem to escape these days. There is a deep yearning, a longing, an existential angst that incessantly bothers me during every waking hour.
Why am I lost? How have I strayed thus far?
It’s been months since I’ve been to Holy Mass. I am no longer involved with Regina Mundi’s youth group (not voluntarily, but more so due to the fact that the fellow youth leaders seem to have excluded me from their mailing list sans explanation…how very Christian of them!). Just today I was talking with a co-worker about how I’m not even sure Jesus existed historically speaking. After all, if he was a real man, why are there so many versions of the story of his life? We see the canonical gospels alongside the Gnostic and other “heretical” writings about Jesus Christ…and then centuries later we see certain perversions of Holy Writ such as The Book of Mormon and the mistranslation used by the Jehovah’s Witnesses. If Jesus did walk the earth and healed others and came to be our salvation, I certainly have trouble believing it now.
As of yesterday I am no longer in debt. With an original estimated amortisation period of 120 months I’ve paid back my student loans in a mere eight! It is a good feeling to have and I look forward to actually enjoying some of my income. But that doesn’t mean much to me right now.
At times I ponder why I feel so isolated, so disconnected from my fellow man. At work I often encounter newcomers to Canada as well as your typical blue-collar working man. Yet I cannot converse with these people or feel like we share the same values. I have no inclinations to cause others pain or speak using innumerable vulgarities. I know next to nothing about worldly materialistic things like cars or trips. I thought our globalised world was supposed to be one in which basic human values could be shared and recognized. If anything, I still feel separate.
Methinks this is because for the past couple of years I was so bent on becoming a monastic, he who is detached/separated from the world but connected to the world through prayer. How could such a worldview inculcate worldly values in a man?
This feeling of being out of touch with the world, along with certain self-accusations of living life inauthentically, is not the only thing that bothers me currently; it is the affections that I feel toward someone that cause me great duress as well. If I had never been promoted at work I would never have had the chance to speak to him. But, alas, it is too late to regret such a decision to enter into the abysses of the human heart.
We now speak regularly whenever we see each other at work and sometimes I even drive him home. He is a tall, dark, handsome lad two years my senior. I’ll admit it irks me whenever he calls me “buddy,” but part of me faints in hopes that such a moniker might mean something more to him…that he might regard me with the same longing with which I regard him. That by using such a term of endearment that he might simply be masking his mad, hot love for me! Part of me, however, soberly observes that he tends to err on the side of being friendly like most people, and that perhaps he is merely being civil and courteous in our interactions. Within the past couple of days he even lent me some movies on DVD, most of which are the kind red-blooded heterosexual males adore. Film noir at its worst.
Every time I see him thoughts flood my mind about the nature of our relationship. Is he a potential lover? Is he even inclined to practise the Love that dare not speak Its name? Of course, tragically, like most gay men I hope that he is a closet-case. In that matter for now I am unsure, just as I am unsure about where I want to live two years from now, or what sort of job I want to look for, or what I want to do with my life.
When I was still a practicing Catholic I never felt such uncertainty. Everything was laid out–the Catechism, Scripture and Magisterial pronouncements were my road map to holiness and perfection. I was supposed to devote my whole life to God’s work. I even spent a week in California with some Norbertine canons regular and was about to embark to England to spend a month with the Carthusians.
Only God knows what happens next in this story. For now all I can do is stumble through the darkness, groping for some sense of peace and sense.