Some time in the late nineties I was going through one of the worse depressions of my life. It wasn’t one of those depressive episodes where you try to hide what is going on. I had a resigned sort of exhibitionism. Why not spill all my beans? Beans just end up getting spilt eventually anyway… It was dark. People would walk by and ask, “How are you today Doug?” and immediately regret it as I answered them honestly and talked them through the vast landscape of my existential angst. It was usually met with one of four responses, that were for me both a source of dark entertainment, my own…
When the Bough Breaks: A fallen limb in a friendship is not a dead tree.
Its is the second worst storm I endured since I moved to Texas, making it the second worst storm of my life. I had been praying, trying to center, and needing to be present. The storm hit my house exactly within the first five minutes of sitting down with someone for spiritual direction. The wind was rattling the windows and tossing bits of the back yard around. The whole house chilled. I considered ending our time together because I was able to give the moment only 99% of my attention. I was being tugged away by one haunting thought. Will the tree hold?
Welcome. Let us Work Toward a Hard Goodbye. — Living well in the discovery and the loss of friendships.
“Well,” Fr. Francis said, “That is a relationship and relationships go through transitions.” Of all of the things I have been mulling over in trying to make sense of a painful friendship, this one made the difference. It was so simple, and apparently truthful because it made my gut ache.
Help Me Get This Sadness Out My House. A Story About Rubber Gloves and Grace.
Years ago I got caught in a pretty debilitating depression. I let things snowball to a point I felt I had little or no refuge left. Every part of life looked bleak including my own bedroom. On weekends I would lie in bed all day and look at piles of laundry, fast food wrappers, stacks of unopened bills and just junk. Blech. It literally made it hard to get out of bed in the morning (or sometimes in the afternoon). One could sprain an ankle on the way to the bathroom. At one point it became difficult for me to imagine that the room would ever be…