The New Logic

Ghost Stories

June 29, 2018

It’s the first one that’s the most disorienting. It’s like waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to tell where you are. You don’t know what was going on, whether or not you should worry or even how you got there. It takes a couple of blinks before you realize that you’re alone, that nobody has swept you away and that you are in fact, exactly where you started – that he’s not here.

I meet him in the afternoon when the sun is a dusty gold color, and everything looks like a fairytale. He’s handsome and kind. He looks me in the eye when I speak and stands protectively between the crowd of unruly men and me. He is eager to take care of the smaller, more vulnerable things around him and there’s something about that that liquifies me. He is my quietest dream come brilliantly to life.  

We see each other until the flowers bloom, but in the end, I lose him, like I lose my favorite sweater. One day he’s just nowhere to be found – up and vanished. I feel the weight of something promising missing from the crooks of my arms. All the possibilities and the excitement feel as though they’ve been snatched from the middle of me. And it’s soft, but I hear You whisper, “Not that one, Beloved.”

It doesn’t make sense at the time, but I trust you so I let it go and I let it hurt.

We see each other until the flowers bloom, but in the end, I lose him, like I lose my favorite sweater. One day he’s just nowhere to be found – up and vanished.

Another one barges right into my orbit. This one’s smart, and he hits me close to home. A gorgeous, compatible, enchanting young man with eyes that cut and a mind that bends. And I have to admit, he isn’t everything I want, not even close, but something about the way he doesn’t want me stings a little. Like a test I should have passed but didn’t. He takes me to dinner, he buys me a drink, he pretends to be interested, and then he is gone.

I start to question what it is exactly that gets me this result so often? Am I boring? Too much? Did he notice the weight I’ve tucked away since we saw each other last?

I have to admit, he isn’t everything I want, not even close, but something about the way he doesn’t want me stings a little. Like a test I should have passed but didn’t. He takes me to dinner, he buys me a drink, he pretends to be interested, and then he is gone.

I’m confused, and a little embarrassed, but this time You surround me with friends who remind me that I’m not unwanted. You show me what acceptance looks like, despite everything inside that tells me I’m a reject. You defend me, protect me, even though I feel discarded and worthless. You are loyal, and I’m a little bruised.

But then I find one who comes storming in out of nowhere, and he is my favorite. He’s beautiful and charming and makes me laugh that insatiable laugh that can’t cover the joy I feel when he looks at me. He’s smart, and he is irrevocably in love with You. I’m cautious, but I’m taken with the idea that there are beautiful men who love you like I do who find me a worthy recipient of their time. We connect. He leaves room for me. He is a perfect gentleman.

He makes plans, something I learned to stop doing a long time ago. He uses words like “we” and asks me for my number. He asks me for my number twice. I warm up to the idea that maybe he’s for real. Maybe he does want to take me out, and maybe he’s feeling what I’m feeling. But then the silence creeps in, and I know he’s gone – run off with the rest of them, without so much as a reason why.

I warm up to the idea that maybe he’s for real. Maybe he does want to take me out, and maybe he’s feeling what I’m feeling. But then the silence creeps in, and I know he’s gone – run off with the rest of them, without so much as a reason why.

This one makes me think more than the rest. What the hell is wrong with me? Am I single because I choose to be, or is it because no one ever chooses me? I try to be honest with myself, but the truth of the matter is, I have no information. I don’t know why and I don’t know what. Maybe I talk too much or have too strong an opinion. Maybe they want to be single. I can “maybe” forever, but You don’t let me. You still my racing thoughts and remind me of who I am.

What the hell is wrong with me? Am I single because I choose to be, or is it because no one ever chooses me?

You tell me You love me, that You’re pleased with me. That there’s no height, nor depth, nor anything in this fallen universe that can separate me from Your love. I hear You rejoicing over me with a song, and I wonder if like any parent, you only love me because I’m Yours. And then You remind me that I. Am. Yours.

You, the Creator. You, the Almighty. You the Beginning, and the End. You, who would tear down the temple and built it up in three days, You, who put the planets in order and threw the moon into rotation. You, the righteous one, claim me without shame and without hesitation. I. Am. Yours.

You, the righteous one, claim me without shame and without hesitation. I. Am. Yours.

I don’t know why they never call, but it doesn’t matter, not anymore: I am free. Yours is the name I wear and it comes with all legalities and every official seal in Your arsenal. I no longer have to live a convicted reject, an indicted nuisance. I am no longer dubbed Regret or Mistake or Unworthy because You bought my naming rights with the blood of high heaven and You, with all authority, in every corner of the universe, call me Beloved.

I am no longer dubbed Regret or Mistake or Unworthy because You bought my naming rights with the blood of high heaven and You, with all authority, in every corner of the universe, call me Beloved.

I am free to bask in love despite the verdict someone else gives me.

And while the ghosts still haunt me, they have no power over me.

That is good news.

 

With love and no man,

Jess

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