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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Charade (08/14/08)

TITLE: More Than I Can Fathom
By Laury Hubrich


Pain woke me early. My head was on fire. I stumbled into the kitchen to get medicine and slowly made my way back. I sunk into the wrinkled sheets of a bed that had been tossed and turned in. Tears made their way down my cheeks.

I cried out, ďWhy the pain, Lord? I canít do this anymore. Why donít you take it away?Ē

The room was strangely silent except for the fanís vain attempt at keeping me cool. Sweat soaked my pillow. I could lay for a bit more and then it would be time to get up.

I stood in the shower. The water cascaded down my head. The tears again began to fall, mingling with the water. I cried out to God and even attempted to cover myself at the same time. I then remembered He sees all and itís useless to hide anything from Him.

God knows my pain. He knows my nakedness. He knows my every weakness. My quiet sobs turned to moaning. I covered my mouth to try to smother the noise. After a time, I dried the tears along with my body and got dressed.

This day, like everyday, I had to decide how to handle the unrelenting pain. Do I succumb to it and go back to bed?

If I get up and go, do I answer the, ďHow are you?Ē question truthfully?

Do I smile and nod my way through a crowd until I can get away and be in peace? I can keep up the charade only so long. Well-meaning acquaintances have a way of asking but not really wanting to know the truth. Sometimes itís hard to discern which is which.

I managed to get through my short time away and then made a four-point landing into my rumpled, unmade bed once again. My computer rested on my upright legs. Through Instant Message, I let feelings go to a friend who lived far away.

I canít stop crying, I wrote.

Whatís going on? she responded back.

I donít know, I typed through tears. I whispered to no one. ďI honestly donít know.Ē

I got off the internet before she had an opportunity to respond. If only I could vanish off the face of the planet so easily. I wanted to escape the oppression that fixed itself so firmly in my head. So many things I want and cannot have.

My IM friend caught me with a phone call. Itís hard to run away from these loving friends of mine. She had a verse to share from Psalm 56:8 in The Message. She whispered it into my ear:
ďYou've kept track of my every toss and turn
through the sleepless nights,
Each tear entered in your ledger,
each ache written in your book.Ē

I got off the phone as quickly and politely as I could. Iím good at spilling out my true feelings in writing. Catch me face-to-face or on the phone and youíre lucky if you get a smile and a half-hearted, ďIím fine,Ē as I choke back the tears.

My friends who have been with me through most every step of this know whatís going on. Many can even discern the hurt while reading and listening to what isnít shared. In order to continue to play the game, I have to stay away. But to isolate myself from my online friends is more than I can bear. So instead, I slowly write it out, tap, tap; tap it out onto the screen. It may take a minute or it may slowly come out throughout the day or a week, but out it comes, much to my dismay, because you see: I like the game of charades.

But when I stop the game I receive texts messages such as these:

I know itís so very wearing on you, precious one.

O baby, wrapping arms around U.

And a card came in the mail that set off a fresh bucket of tears. Iíd rather play the game. Iím very good at hide-and-seek and the ever-popular charades. But instead of struggling alone, God softens my heart and allows me to share. And even though tears begin again, they are mostly tears that come from knowing I have friends who care.

The battle is ongoing, the game continuous, tears never-ending. To live this life is more than I can handle but to do it without my faith is more than I can fathom.

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This article has been read 945 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Betsy Markman08/21/08
Thanks for sharing this. I'm guessing it's true, because it sure feels authentic. From one loner to another...hang in there with Christ and His body!
Lynda Schultz 08/21/08
"To live this life is more than I can handle but to do it without my faith is more than I can fathom." Excellent note to end on. When life is more than we can handle (as it often is) then faith takes to the One who can handle it all for us. Very good.
LauraLee Shaw08/22/08
Beautiful, passionate, authentic writing. Thank the Lord for friends, for SURE, but you have found the key to it all in your final sentences. Incredible approach to the topic. Haven't we all been guilty of this, either to protect ourselves or the ones we love?
Catrina Bradley 08/23/08
Such true feelings come through your writing. This must have been very painful (emotionally) - letting down the charade to share your story. I love the Message verse- how perfect.
Joanne Sher 08/23/08
WOW - so transparent and beautifully, painfully put. I was there with you (as I am now, you know). Praying.
Patty Wysong08/23/08
(((hugs))) *tears* (((hugs)))
Beth LaBuff 08/24/08
Exceptional, masterful writing! I wish I had answers for you ...
Emily Gibson08/25/08
The Lord has laid your heart bare. The charade is over and the mask can come off. As painful as life can be, and as exposed as one feels in the vulnerability that comes with asking for help, it is no more than our Savior expressed Himself from the cross. Let those who love you, bless you with comfort.

Masterfully written and heartfelt.

Joanney Uthe08/25/08
Very powerful and honest article. Thank you for sharing. Even without the specific problem of chronic pain, we all feel the pain of hiding behind our own charades sometimes. I like the honesty of your comment that it is hard to tell who really wants an honest answer to "how are you". Love you, my friend.
LaNaye Perkins08/25/08
This touched me deeply. Well done my faihwriter friend.
Yvonne Blake 08/25/08
((gentle hug))
~~ceaseless prayer~~
Chely Roach08/25/08
This was beautifully transparent...the last line was superb. Praying for you still.
Cheri Hardaway 08/25/08
This glimpse into such a painful existence wrenches at my heart, and I join the others in prayer for you, dear one. Beautiful and genuine writing.
Sharlyn Guthrie08/25/08
This is hard to read, knowing it's your reality, but you spelled it out so eloquently. Thanks for being real. This was a good topic for sharing what you did. Even then, it couldn't have been easy.
Leah Nichols 08/26/08
Very powerful entry! I totally know where you're coming from....sleepless nights and lonely thoughts....wanting it all just to go away. Thank you for expressing it so beautifully.
Beckie Stewart08/26/08
I can't imagine being able to write as well as you do the expressions from the deepest parts of your heart. This is really good....so honest, transparent, and continues to make me sad that you endure so much pain with no relief for so long. Keep hanging in their and keep writing in your tunnel. Love you, girl. This was good.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/26/08
Your pain, your loneliness, your need for friends, your faith in God, your love for others are displayed through your writing skilled.
...You are loved and prayed for.
Betty Castleberry08/26/08
If this is true, you've shared some very raw feelings. This is bold, as well as well written.
Betty Castleberry08/26/08
If this is true, you've shared some very raw feelings. This is bold, as well as well written.
Patricia Turner08/27/08
I hope this isn't true, but you've made it feel so real I have to think it is. Hugs and prayers, and thank you Jesus for your loving grace over this hurting child of Yours.
Sheri Gordon08/27/08
As someone who has been there (though probably in a very different way), you expressed your inner feelings and pain so well. I was hurting with/for you. Very, very good writing. P.S. I'm praying.
Helen Dowd08/27/08
To live this life is more than I can handle but to do it without my faith is more than I can fathom....Perfect ending to such a sad tale. My heart was crying for your character in this story. I think depression is the most debilitating ailment, even more than physical pain. But I am sure the two go together....God bless you. This was a good write...Helen