When a friend is suffering and you can’t help…

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord, Lord, hear my voice!
O let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleading.
— Psalm 30:1-2

The anguish Letitia Adams is experiencing as she is trying to process a whole life of pain, a lifelong sense of abandonment is more than most people can describe, but she lets loose on it at her blog, even as she declares she’s “taking a break” from writing from a Catholic perspective because, right now, that perspective is shot:

Before Anthony’s suicide, I knew what I wanted to do with my life and I knew what the purpose of it was. I wanted to go around and tell everyone what God had done in my life. I had 100% faith that God was going to take care of me and my family’s needs.

Right now, on June 27th, 2018, I do not even know if God is real. And if He is real then I am so damn mad that He has allowed this shitshow that is my life to happen, starting with my father abandoning me, a man raping me when I was five, losing two children in horrific ways and ending with the only man to take care of me dying in front of my eyes. I see other people complain about having to maintain their pools or “downsize” by buying a new house and I really want to just blow things up because if ONLY that was my problem in life instead of this crapfest that is my life which involves watering my son’s grave pretending that I still have something of him to care for.

I am not going to Mass anymore and I really don’t know if I ever will go again.

Letitia is in the hardest of hard places right now, and she is wailing and lashing out a bit in permissible, understandable anguish. There is really nothing one can do in the face of it, because no words can really answer it, as I write at Word on Fire:

We want to say, “Go to Mary, the mother who suffered the unjust, inexplicable and torturous death of her beloved son; she will understand and bring some consolation to you.”

But Mary, whose heart was “pierced by a sword” saw her son’s life remembered, and his death re-presented, by people who knew him. This mother is watching the world move on from her son, from his pain, and her own pierced heart.

We want to say, “Look at Jesus on the crucifix, and realize that he experienced everything you are feeling or have ever felt: isolation, abandonment, grief, betrayal, physical torture, injustice.”

This woman might reply, “But even Jesus had the good things I did not, like stability in childhood, a present father-figure, parents who did not leave him vulnerable to predators. I can identify with Jesus, and Mary to a point. But how can they identify with me?”

We have things we want to say — some of them are here, but right now, they cannot be received. And so all we can do is stand near, off in the shadows a bit, and consent to be a prayerful, loving witness to this pain.

If you are so inclined, please remember Letitia and her family in your prayers, and if you can hit her tip jar (see her sidebar), it’s another way to let her know you’re standing near.

Image: Public Domain

  • 54
  •  
  •  
2018-06-28T14:30:29+00:00

Leave A Comment