I jerk my eyes open. Sun glaring bright into my face but for the first time in weeks I am thankful for it. Thankful for the intrusion that this time isn’t an intrusion, isn’t an annoyance. I let the sun lay there, on my skin, it’s bright, sharp light burning into my not quite ready eyes. It was a dream. I can sigh. It was a dream startled awake by light. It was a dream, an untruth, an imagined reality.
“It’s not real” I hear myself grumble with morning voice. As if the encouragement will make the ache lessen. “It wasn’t real. No matter how real it felt.”
It felt real. It felt much too real. Driving to see friends, my mind imagined a place in which I was no longer welcome. Walking up the drive, anxious to see them, I hadn’t seen them in so long. But rather than walking into a hug, I walked into isolation. They had replaced me. They had replaced me with others. Those who were less of a mess than I. In my dream, I watch as they gather together, enjoying one another, and while I am there I am no much more than a bystander. They hardly even noticed me. And then, without a word, they leave. They all left together, leaving me there in that house, alone with the sun. The setting sun. And as I looked up into that sun that was sinking into earth, catching the last of its rays before it, too, left, my mind disconnected and woke up to a rising sun instead. “It’s not real. It was just a dream. I never saw them. They never left me.”
So why then, did it feel so real?
I’ve been detoxing for the past five days now. I thought this was going to be a physical thing. This has been so much more than a physical thing. Yes, there have been cravings. Yes, there has been a lot of cleaning out. Yes, there have been some breakouts. But this has not been a physical thing. It started with cravings. Cravings for things I thought I had more control over. Forget sugar, these cravings came from a deeper place. Cravings for people, those who rejected me a long time ago, rejections I apparently never got over. Cravings for things God put in the past to keep in the past. Then there was the cleaning out. Cleaning out of old thought and old ways. Cleaning out of a mindset that continues to agree with the put me downs and keep me downs. There is so much to clean out. I didn’t even know it was there. He said we were going deeper…We’ve gone so much deeper. And now, there’s these breakouts. Breakouts I can’t seem to remedy no matter what concealer I try to use. So many breakouts. Little forest fires of the heart, suddenly engulfing emotion and mood, thought and desire, leaving me in a flurry of action, fighting with buckets of tears, desperate to put the fire out, desperate to put the mood out.
And so was I, waking from that dream. That all too real, but not really real dream. Why do I dream this? Why do I think this? I thought we dealt with this. I thought I handled this. But all to often I do not handle, I simply move on. I find a band aid that fits and sticks and I think, “There, its all done.” and so I move on, left with a wound that was on its way to heal and yet, was not quite healed. I forget that aid implies helping. Not taking over. There was still work to be done, mending to attend to, and yet, I once again choose to see other things. Why go to the murky and the mucky when I don’t have to. We are a culture built around the beautiful, after all.
And so here I am. Five days later detoxing. No, five plus many more years later. Detoxing from all these poisons I left in my body. Detoxing from all those wounds I left to fester. Detoxing from all those lies I chose to believe, to let sink in. He told me we were going deeper. I sat there in that hospital room, eaten alive with disease, and in a whisper God told me we were going deeper. We’ve gone so much deeper. I didn’t realize how sick I was. I didn’t even realize how many toxins were poisoning me, body, mind, and soul. I didn’t realize how much I needed it, this detox. But here I am. Dealing with more than just green juice. Dealing with more than just a diseased body. Here I am dealing with a diseased heart, a diseased soul, desperate for the remedy, desperate for truth. I’ve listened to untruths for so long, spiritual propaganda that has sunk into the deep places of my heart.
I thought this was going to be a physical thing. This has been so much more than a physical thing. And so we go. On to the next chapter, on to the next day, on to the next toxin. How often do we let ourselves detoxify? How often do we awaken our souls the lies that have sunk to the deep places? How often do we sit and listen, letting The Still, Small Voice speak into the pain, speak into the disease, speak into the atrophied heart. And when He speaks, how often do we respond, choosing to believe His truth over those we have built our life on? How often do we believe love, believe in the power we so desperately want to be true. It is a journey for the faint of heart, the faint of heart that is ready to become strong. And so I carry on, drinking this juice, hearing His voice, and going deeper.