I had to take a break from work for a sec and read some posts. Interesting take. Hopefully FreedomLover or I can post a similar post this time next year.
my witness friends all seemed like empty shells, blowing along the avenue of existence. i was full to the brim. i was really alone.
This is exactly how I felt. The emptiness (not necessarily shallow-ness) was overwhelming to me. I could not understand how these people could just "exist". One poignant memory is me sitting at the Circuit Assembly being told by the speaker how worthless and insignificant we all are in Jehovah's eyes, and that we needed to be at the meetings and out in service to HOPEFULLY gain Jehovah's approval. I looked around the whole assembly hall and thought to myself, "I'll be damned if I am gonna sit here and be told AGAIN what a piece of SH*T I am (essentially) by these know-nothings!"
that feeling of being betrayed by jehovah has slipped away at some point in the pervious months.
That line resonated with me. I go back and forth between betrayal and just brushing it all off. I think that may be because FreedomLover and I have not actually "left" yet. We still have ties - and depend on some ties - to our JW social structure. Last night some JWs had a going away party for us. Yet these were JWs that we would actually have been friends with if none of us were JWs. They gave us a really nice card that had no JW-isms in it - just gratitude for the last 10 years of close friendship and growing together. It brought FreedomLover to tears. The reality of what we are losing is beginning to be more real.
i want to say to all you lurkers, on this xmas day, that if you let the pain of leaving the truth get better, it will get better. but you have to be brave, and have some spare brain cells, and a little recklessness to get through it all. but you can do it. we all do, here in the world. this big scary world. it seems there is a lot of barking, but not much biting going on.
I would say on of the greatest feelings I have ever had in my life (and can still recreate in my mind) was the feeling that I wasn't going to DIE at the hands of JEHOVAH for not being at the meetings or out in field service. That feeling is STILL something that gives me comfort as we stand at the edge of this big life-altering move and change. For a good 6-8 weeks last March I was in BLISS knowing that I was alright ... dammit ... I was OK!
For you lurkers it can be OK too.