When a person doesn’t show up, those who wait are usually predicting what happened. The results are always stories of destruction, loss and tragedy, a streamline of fear and worry. It is almost an automatic thought to assume the worse. What’s funny is how comfortable people are when it comes to worrying rather than accepting the unknown. Maybe worry is a way to feel safe, a simple prediction that one can control, or maybe people have been robbed of so much joy that they no longer know how to replace their fears with noble thoughts. Whatever it is, the outcome is still lingering in the unknown, and maybe that is where one needs to go in order to find who they are waiting for.
I used to look in the mirror and say to myself “when are you coming home“? I was lost and felt as if I were living in my own world. I was on a never-ending search for myself, waiting for the day that I would finally find myself and know that everything would be alright. I searched high and low; I stumbled through valleys and dragged myself through the harsh rains. I fought, I ran and as I sprinted through life I had to fight battles along the way. As I navigated down my path there were obstacles on every corner, there were people who tried to knock me off track and there were multiple signs ahead that signaled my failure was expected.
They say not all who wander are lost, but I indeed was a lost wanderer. I didn’t know myself enough to trust my own direction, so I never knew where I was going. I was so lost I began to develop everyone else’s identity except for mines. I began to experiment and played dress up with personality traits. I was never comfortable enough to sit in my own skin, no matter where I went I always had a hard time finding myself. I was simply wandering through life with no sense of self and felt disdain towards reality, because the fact is I never had gotten a true grasp of reality, I was afraid of it because in my head I was afraid of the person I would become. I could only think to myself who am I? And will I like the new person that I will one day see in the mirror?
I found myself waiting for me to show up, for the day that I would embrace me for me and fall in love with myself. I waited for the day that I’d be able to tell myself that I am beautiful and worthy of love and compassion. I waited for the day that I would stop looking at my slim body and called myself fat. I was waiting for the day that I would be able to hold myself and realize that I didn’t need a man’s arms wrapped around me in order to feel special. I was waiting for the day that I would be able to look myself in the mirror and say “welcome home”.
I felt like I was waiting for the guest who never showed up. My soul felt as if it were no longer with me, but had departed to someone else who appreciated it better than I did. I lost all hope in myself, and I truly thought I’d be lost forever. The truth is I was afraid of the unknown, so all I could do was worry since worry was such a familiar friend to me. I lived in fear at a point in my life because I was so lost I never thought I would find my way back home, and what I was more afraid of was who would I be? Would I end up worse than I ever was before, or would I conquer this battle and come out the fire refined?
Will I wait to see where fear brings me or will I accept the pure unknown for what it is and embrace it? Indeed I did. I accepted the fact that I can longer control my outcomes because of my belief in fear and worry. I was waiting for myself and as I waited I pictured doomsday in the midst of it. What’s funny is as I waited those around me waited. And as I imagined destruction and loss, they too imagined destruction and loss. And as I wandered I realized I needed to let go of those around me, because they too were awaiting my failure just as much as I was. I had to learn how to accept myself for who I really was, and the truth was I knew I was lost, but I knew I would be found.
The Lord found me at the right time, in the right place and at the right moment. I was bruised, my heart was heavy and depression had poisoned my soul. I felt as if I were unrecognizable, how did I get this far? Is all I could ask myself, how I could have wandered off so far in what felt like time and space. At the point of my rescue I realized the answers to my questions no longer mattered, because I was right where I needed to be and at the right time.
Throughout my time wandering I fell into the arms of depression and though I was lost, I found myself to be truly present. I was aware of my surroundings because I was so eager to adapt to them, I was truly living in a world of uncertainty, and that is where I believe I needed to be. Tomorrow is just another day of the unknown, from today’s point of view tomorrow hasn’t been birthed yet. Though I was lost, I had the value of perception and realized I was in the middle of carving out my path as I wandered into the spaces of dangerous territory. Once I was found I knew of the places where not to go, I remembered those road maps that would lead me back to a path of destruction. Being lost in the unknown gave me insight to have faith in the things that were still unknown to me. What I found was me, I was birthed into the unknown and where it led me gave my life richness and abundance, for I couldn’t have been found if I were never lost.
And you too will be found, you too will stumble into the unknown and it will be your path. You will no longer wait with fear or worry but you will wait with expectation, with eagerness to see you come out the fire refined. Being lost is a matter of dwelling in unfamiliar territory; it’s about turning the unfamiliar into familiar. Those who are lost will always be found, and when you are found you can finally say to yourself “welcome home”.