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My Self Loathing

No lectionary today. I have been enjoying writing about the story of Joseph this week. It is one of my favorite stories from the Hebrew scripture and I continue to find inspiration in it, but that’s just not where my head is right now.

I have been having a really rough few weeks. I lost my job a few weeks ago. I won’t go into detail (I signed something that said I wouldn’t) but it felt unfair. I didn’t love the job and I’m sure at some point I’ll look back and say “that was the moment was I was released to become what I am supposed to be in the world”. I’m sure that moment will come, but that ain’t where we are right now, kids. I feel like a failure. I haven’t held down a steady job in years. I feel like a screw up. As unfair as I felt the circumstances were, I know I wasn’t giving my best. I haven’t given my “best” to any work in about five years.

In the midst of this, I was informed that someone was saying pretty awful things about me online. I hurt this person, and I get their anger, but it felt like a cheap shot. It reminded me of all the harm I’ve caused and won’t be allowed to forget.

I’ve been hesitant to just take a job for the sake of having a job. I fear I’ll end up right back here in a year. I need to invest myself in something, something I care about and something that feels deeply meaningful to me. I feel like I’m probably going to need to build that thing. That takes time. It’s terrifying to me.

The church has basically written me off. Not the individual members, but the institution. I can’t serve the church and I can’t seem to take any positive steps to rectify that situation. I’ve been volleyed back and forth between governing bodies like a hot potato that every once to keep away from their parishioners. It’s hurtful and maddening.

The biggest blow on the income front is having to cut back on support to my kids. The bulk of what I’ve made over the last year has gone to them. There is enough in my life reminding me that I am a substandard dad, now the little I am able to contribute has been taken away. I hate that I cannot do more for them. They deserve so much more than what I have to offer right now.

In the midst of all of these things, and to some extent because of them, I have been very depressed. I have been lethargic, unfocused, and unmotivated. I feel like a waste of space. Of course, all of that is my brain talking and I know that I can’t trust my brain. I know that there is an opposite reality out there, one where I am making slow but steady steps toward new goals, making new contacts, and handling the things I can handle. I know that I should focus on that narrative, because it’s just as true as the one that plays in my head most often. But it’s difficult to keep my attention on the silver lining.

The greatest sin, I believe, is when we can’t see the Divinity in the face of another human. That includes seeing the divinity in the face in the mirror. I know it’s there. I can’t see it right now. Right now, I see a loser. A failure. I confess my inability to see something of worth when I look at myself right now. God, forgive me.

About derricklweston

Father of two. I co-host God Complex Radio, a show highlighting progressive voices in the faith community. (godcomplexradio.com) I am an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church USA. I like lots of stuff. Sometimes I write about that stuff.


One thought on “My Self Loathing

  1. I know we haven’t talked much in the last several years. Much has changed in both of our lives. As I’ve read some of your posts, I find myself wishing I could help in some way. I’d tell you I would pray, but that would be lying. In honesty, I stopped believing in God or anything several years ago. Maybe I’m wrong, who can honestly know. What I do think is ‘If there is a God, how could he let this happen to someone deserving of so much better?’ It makes me angry. Even without any belief, it makes me so angry. I’m sorry Derrick. If there’s ever anything I can do, let me know. You have my best wishes, and know that I’m rooting for you.

    Posted by zmpinqc | February 28, 2016, 2:39 am

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