Since my mom decided she needed to put full shunning back into effect again (an unconscious New Year's resolution to be a better JW?), I've been ransacked by a whole bunch of emotions which have been gradually resolving into thoughts. This is only one of them:
The sense of being completely disposable, expendable, replaceable. I've never exactly felt like I was worth much anyway. Don't have a well-honed skill to contribute to any particular community, am not much of a sociable people-person, I've made a lot of dumb-ass mistakes and done regrettably selfish things, and I'm not terribly witty or humorous or beautiful...
And I don't know which came first, the chicken or the egg, but it seems to me that the JW belief system only promotes such feelings of insecurity (which can still linger long after one stops identifying oneself as a JW, especially if you're being shunned by your loving JW family). And I am not saying they are the only people with the only belief system that can have this effect, it's just the one I know best.
They write off the majority of mankind as completely disposable, and then proceed to do the same thing with themselves (all but the anointed). This leads to ever-increasing desperate attempts to prove to God (and themselves/each other?) that they are worth saving. Or, sometimes, it leads to just plain giving up, and saying, "F*** it then. Kill me. Shun me. Whatever."
I don't believe the way they do any more...but a strange and nasty residue from those beliefs still surfaces from time to time, like scum, and can be hard to wipe away again. So I cry myself to sleep for a week, wondering what matters? what does anything mean? and who's going to catch me when I fall? or will I just shatter into a million pieces on the pavement of my unlived life?
And I rage and I pray. I feel my feelings, I think my thoughts. And eventually I find myself caught up in the most amazing sensation of absolute love and tenderness...a sense of kinship and connection with everything and everyone, even all the ugliness and pain and confusion...and I know I belong, just the way I am, and I accept things just the way they are...and I hope that by doing so I will find ways to help others discover that they are not disposable either, that there is something special in each of us to be encouraged and shared, even if it doesn't measure up to the standards we might think it should. And together we can help relieve each other's pain and make things a little bit better.
Or maybe I'm wrong and this is just a desperate attempt to justify my own useless and pitiful continued existence Oh well. It's my life and I'm going to embrace it and live it as best I can.
Thanks for being here, people. I can honestly say that the thoughts and feelings of every person on this forum have become very important and valuable to me, and I want you all to know that you have made a significant contribution to my life (such as it is LOL). Thanks so much.