Lately, I really seem to be experiencing something that’s called the “dark night of the soul”. Ever since my spiritual teacher asked me back in May to start working on healing myself without her help, I’ve found myself struggling immensely. The truth is I’m so used to someone regularly holding my hand and telling me it’s going to be ok. So now I frequently just feel quite lonely, lost, and confused because I don’t have anyone doing that on a consistent basis. But even harder to deal with than that is the reality I haven’t had any clear answers to any of my prayers about my health as of late either. It’s almost as if I’m wandering in a desert crying out to God and hearing and seeing nothing.
That’s why I have to say this is probably the most challenging place I’ve ever been in throughout my entire life. It’s far more overwhelming than even when my father killed himself or when my mom fell down the stairs drunk and died with a broken neck. It’s more difficult than all the days I engaged in any of my addictions as well. Because what I feel more than not on most days is a large amount of emptiness and a void within me.
It’s been so frustrating that even when I’ve been in social situations recently, I’ve had to place a smile on my face as best as I can, all the while I cry within. The only thing I truly desire in life is to feel God’s peace and joy within me, but as the days continue to pass by one after another, with my body aching, with my mental and emotional state feeling frazzled, and with no real sense of whether God wants me do something different, I’m left feeling nothing but this “dark night of the soul”.
Does God truly exist?
Is anyone really hearing and answering my prayers?
Were all the signs I thought I received over the past few years just mere coincidences?
Of course these questions are coming from my ego because I know what it ultimately wants. It wants me to give up and return to any one of a number of former addictions so that I may receive some temporary ease and comfort. But I know where each of those will eventually take me, so I find myself in a quandary. I can stay on the path I’m on, with blind faith, trusting that God does exist and is with me right here, even as I write this entry. Or, I can give up and check out early like my father did or do it more slowly by sabotaging my sobriety like my mother did.
Thankfully though, there are people in my life like my friend Steve who remind me late at night when I get into thinking like this why I need to keep going, to keep seeking the light. And thankfully there are people like my sister Laura, my friend Cedric, and my partner Chris who continue to believe in me no matter what, as sometimes it’s their reassurances that have helped me to make it beyond another day of this.
So God, while I may be experiencing this “dark night of the soul” these past few months that has surpassed a level of emptiness I’ve never felt before, I want You to know that somewhere within me, deep within me, I still believe. I still believe in You. And while I long to come home and be one with You again, I trust that You still have a purpose for me here on Earth so I wait. I wait expectedly, lovingly, and trustingly. I wait on you for a brighter day to come, one where I will truly know your joy and peace as I have never known before. I love You God.
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson