Last night, nothing seemed to go right for you. You missed your bus, your mind started to race the way it does when you have too much on your mind. You didn't want to think and you didn't want to drink the thoughts away the way you used to. You walked at a slowed pace up Fifth and, somehow, the people in front of you still managed to crawl towards their destination slower than you.
And that's the thing. You didn't have a destination, not yet anyway. You had time to kill and you didn't know how you'd do it. You thought about that turn of phrase for a second, why is it that you always have time to kill and yet, you feel like you don't have any time to do anything at all?
You felt like a cloud had formed in your skull and you wanted something to clear it out. You needed something other than yourself or your friends for once. And right when you felt like you didn't have any options left, you heard your father's voice in your head. He told you to walk into that Church for once, he said you owe it to yourself to walk in there at least once in your life. And even though you weren't that person anymore, you figured you might as well try. To see what happened. Maybe you'll find what he found. Maybe you'll get some sort of guidance.
You sat down in one of the many, empty pews. It was cold. It wasn't comforting. You felt out of place. Something inside of you screamed at you. It told you to run out as fast as you could but like clockwork, there was your father's voice again. It was deep, calm, and reassuring.
You knelt down and clasped your hands together. You shut your eyes tight and muttered a prayer* you made up. You were never good at remembering lines from prayers or bible passages. Even when you heard other people reciting prayers you couldn't follow along. And growing up, you always felt like you were out of place in the church.
You still remember the way the bullies picked you and how you went home and cried because you didn't understand how people who believed the same thing you did could hurt you because you were somehow "different" from them. And when you reached your teens, you distanced yourself from anything religious. But now, here you are, older. Maybe wiser. Probably, not.
You took deep breaths in and out. You let the smell of the wood finish enter you lungs and sit there like cigarette smoke except when you exhaled. You felt something better than that feeling of death. You laughed in your head because you know how scared you are of dying but you still take long drags from cigarettes like you are chasing it instead of running from it.
You felt good. And the cloud in your head cleared up. As you walked out of the Church. The one your father's voice guided you to, you smiled and promised yourself you'd never tell him that you spent 30 minutes praying.
*[This was your mumbled prayer] Hey, uh, Jesus or God or whoever I'm supposed to be talking to here. I know, I haven't been here in a while, I'm just, I don't know. I don't expect to feel anything, really. I'm just looking for understanding. I don't know what I'm supposed to be doing at any given moment at any time during any day. Does, does that make sense? I'm in a constant state of confusion and I really wish I wasn't. I'm feeling more alone than I ever have but at the same time, like, I'm feeling like I've finally got a good support system, you know? Of course you know. You're supposed to just know everything. Omnipresence and all that. Is that the right word? It doesn't matter. You know what I'm trying to say to you.
I don't really know how this helps or how people find answers or find solace in prayer. But I'm trying here, I really am. And I wish something was working for me. I've got a lot of good shit, shit, I mean, stuff, going on in my life and I have this crippling fear that something will happen to mess all of that up for me. I don't know what it's like to feel the ways that I've been feeling and every time I cross the street, I'm afraid I'll get hit by a bus that runs a red light. Every time I drive, it feels like there's some assh-- uh, some jerk on the road driving insane and I think, this is it. This is how I go. And, like, I used to be okay with that thought but for the first time in my life I don't want to go. I want to stick around, for a long time.
It's just like, this thing with my Dad, you know. It put a lot of fear in my heart. I don't know how to deal with it. I can't go around and turn it into anger and punch walls all day. I have to make it into something positive, I have to make my pain into something positive and it's getting progressively harder and harder with every second that passes. I just, I just really love what I got going on and I don't want to lose it and it feels like I might. I'm so used to everything crashing and burning that it's what I'm expecting. I don't know. I don't even know why I'm in here. I'm sorry, if you're out there. If anything is out there.