What you may not know

James Pack maintains his own website and wrote up quite a profound and honest piece. A very honest and straightforward perception on one’s experience with feeling abandoned. And, the most gut-wretched profound insight was this:


…where is everyone else? What happened to all the people who said they cared about me? I claim part of the blame for not doing more to keep those people in my life. Everyone gets so busy, you have to schedule a month in advance just to go have breakfast with someone. Or they live in another city or state. When did the world become so disconnected? Why did I put so much time and effort into social media? Why can’t I make a connection with another human being?


These are the very same honest questions I ask myself over and over again. What you may not know is that I suffer from depression and isolate myself. I become angry, resentful, upset, and disillusioned with life. 

It is in these quite moments where much of my own personal emasculation occurs. It is a deep and reflective process of all the good, all the bad, and all the regrets. Sadness exists. Disappointment reminds. Rumination is running rampant like an out of control child. I sulk in my own mire of loneliness wondering where my pack is. 

Where are my fellow brothers? My greatest fear is that of growing old and being that one lonely old man at the end of the street. 

What you may not know is that there are many silent men out there who are afraid to show their emotional vulnerability. Men who feel the need to suck it up and deal with it. 

The conversation centering on toxic masculinity is an eye opener for many people. Regardless, I am one of those silent sonsAn adult child of an alcoholic and family dysfunction. Yet, alone to deal with my own demons and consistent castigate of past mistakes and regrets.

I threw myself into work, focusing on other people’s needs, other peoples issues, and forgetting to care for my own needs. On the other hand, I have met some good men – young and old – who struggle with their own depression and mental health issues. They suffer substance use disorder.

Recalling the death of my own mother, and the aftermath, caused some serious consternation. I drove from Seattle to Spokane to be at her bedside with family. Young daughter with me. After she passed, and time spent with my father and two sisters, my nephews and niece, I drove back to Seattle. Took some time off from work and then returned to Spokane for the funeral services. When I came back home, I spent about a week in deep mourning. Recalling that all I wanted to do was crawl into a bottle.

I also was facing an eviction because I had to spend the rent money on getting myself to Spokane and back. When I reached out to the Church, and various Churches within the community for help, I got push back or ignored. This further entrenched my belief that I am truly alone in the world and that no one fully understood or took the time to care.  

When I attempted a go-fund me account, I got private messages from family. You need to stop begging. Why are you expecting people to help you out. Are you not working? How come you are begging for money and expecting people to take care of you? 

It came down to blocking them. I had no energy, or the time, to argue with them. One of the most difficult and trying times where I had to walk alone in my life without anyone there to bring any form of comfort. 

Like James Pack asked: Where is everyone else? I asked myself what I had done wrong. How come no one called upon me. Where was the Church when I needed inspiration, guidance, comfort, and people to surround and love on me and to encourage me. I literally white-knuckled myself through the mourning process. 

I ended up having to walk away from my apartment. I have had to deal with my own personal struggles. And, every time I hear this song, reminds me of how my life has become:

I don’t know where I’m goin’
But I sure know where I’ve been
Hanging on the promises in songs of yesterday
An’ I’ve made up my mind, I ain’t wasting no more time
Here I go again, here I go again
Tho’ I keep searching for an answer
I never seem to find what I’m looking for
Oh Lord, I pray you give me strength to carry on
‘Cause I know what it means to walk along the lonely street of dreams
Here I go again on my own
Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known
Like a drifter I was born to walk alone
An’ I’ve made up my mind, I ain’t wasting no more time
Just another heart in need of rescue
Waiting on love’s sweet charity
An’ I’m gonna hold on for the rest of my days
‘Cause I know what it means to walk along the lonely street of dreams

 

Yes, to some, it sounds quite depressing. For me, it is an anthem to many of us who are struggling. Silently battling our own depression, anxieties, and issues we are facing day in and day out.

Yet, here I am, still standing, still moving forward, still wanting to influence and inspire, and share my story to other men who are struggling. To stand firm and know you are not alone. 

And, for me, what helps strengthen me is my faith in Christ. What helps me got through those times is seeking God’s guidance, comfort, and wisdom. And, sometimes, it is merely just taking that moment of loneliness and praising Him and seeking him.

And, yes, when I cry – I am letting go of all those heartaches that are carried deep within my soul.

 

And, the strangest thing is this. Something you may not know is that people do message me. Most of the time, it is because they are hurting, broken, and in need of counsel and guidance. I don’t turn them away. I listen, I respond, provide insight and encouragement. Then, they are off living their own lives.

Still, I know I am not alone. I know there are men out there who are too proud to admit they struggle with depression. Struggle with identity. They struggle with fighting their insecurities and feeling abandoned and rejected. 

The greatest battle we may face is to stand alone and face life and not be afraid. Instead, we are called to be courageous and strive to become better – even if it means when we find ourselves alone and forgotten.

The reason we are alone to fight our own personal battles is because that is where we gain our strength and wisdom. It is in those moments of abandonment and loneliness that we come face to face with who we are and what we desire the most.

Image result for Lonely Warrior

At the end of the day, I thank James Pack for his post. As I have commented:


I saw this yesterday. I felt drawn to reading it, however, feared that if I did, I may be confronting my own questions that are similar to yours. So, here I am having read this and saying to my self – “Holy shit, this guy gets me”. Seriously, I deal with the same thing. Wondering where people are at. I feel that I am the one who has to reach out and initiate conversations. In fact, I messages a guy from a meeting I had started attending and he asked how come I have not been around. I thought, “How come you never messaged me or called me to ask what was going on?” I ended up responding back what I’ve been dealing with and the response, typical. “Oh sorry man, I’ll pray for you. Hope it works out.” Story of my life here. It’s a real struggle. Thank you for writing this and sharing this. Forced me to confront what I really was ignoring, the truth of how I’ve been feeling lately.


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  1. Thank you for mentioning my post and for sharing your own story. My own struggles have become slightly easier to handle as I read comments from others. I’ve never felt like someone who could go out and help others like pastors or counselors, but I’m happy that sharing my story can help. I believe I can change the world with my writing and I think I already have. I wish you luck in your many adventures.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are welcome and it is a pleasure to have read your post. I appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay, we sharing. That is good for anyone to see none of us are alone, as it does feel as so. Then those thoughts flood us, and where do these come from that cause this depression, ill will and ailing from it, that brings out those physical problems, as well to be real.
    I am seeing after being dead more than once, yet am not, but am. What???????

    My story in short order

    Was not to be born, according to the doctor, my mother was 42, she had a miscarriage, already had four other children, and my dad told my mom, after that miscarriage, I guess we are not meant to have a Howard!

    Then at 43 my mother had me. She lived until 88, before death to go home to Father, Father of the risen Son, Jesus.

    At age12, I was choked to death, by a man, I turned blue in the face according to two of my friends and was dropped as dead to the ground. I lived,

    At age 12 still I got lost at a church camp, in Skylandia, Lake Tahoe, I was told to put out the camp fire, it was the last night of that week being there. I put it out with sand and found me to be without coat or flashlight, I started back to the cabin and my foot fell into a hole in the ground and I twisted my ankle. I immediately put my hands in prayer and the next thing I knew I was standing in front of that cabin. I yelled praise God, for God did deliver me there, how, I do not know. So I ran inside and apologized to all I had not done well to in my arrogance as a kid, being the top one of all.

    Then I also had gotten drunk for the first time, at my second oldest brother’s wedding reception. passed out for at least 15 hours, mom and dad put me to bed, I woke up that next day around 3 pm. I saw my mom in the kitchen, she looked at me and said I bet you have now learned your lesson. I replied yes.
    I do not say I liked it, because I had no repercussions no head ache, I felt good.

    Then at 14, my sister Sue died she was 18, died on an overdose, me did not take this well, not understanding. I was hurt inside out, and I asked mom. what good can come from this? She replied, she does not know, but assured me I would find that out.
    I was pissed, and could not accept this. Then in my own mind I heard she is not dead, she escaped from those others that want here dead. I went to the funeral, open casket, and when I saw her in it, I ran out, not accepting it. My older sister came out to console me, which did not do any good, and drinking started to take me on.

    Also I went off a bridge in a dune buggy with three others in it, and a song that was playing, called stairway to Heaven. We all four lived and made it back home and yes we all had been drinking.

    It was reported that the dune buggy had to have been pushed off that bridge, no one would have lived, put that way in the police report. So according to them I saw me as dead again.

    Then at 17, my dad died at 63, he died of sclerosis of the liver, heart attack, and water on the knee, I was dating a girl then and we later when I turned 18, got married, and together we decided I would join the military, I did
    In March two months later after married in January of 1975, I went into the Marine Corps.
    I got abused there, badly, another story in itself. I got home from boot camp, after graduation, which my wife was not there to see me graduate, my mom and older sister were.

    I got home and found my wife in big trouble with drugs and alcohol, We tried to get it together, I even went AWOL for a short while, saw a counselor when was AWOL, and decided to return to face whatever charges I was to face. I got put on restriction, and finally told them of the abuse I went through in boot camp.

    What did they do, but put me out under honorable medical release, saying my troubles where a pre-existing condition, which was not.

    I filed for the abuse and the troubles I was having after discharged medically under honorable conditions and not service connected, which it was,

    So I got told by my mom and others to let it go, after they denied me from that file of what happened to me was not a pre-existing condition.

    So I did let it go, and handled it to the best of my abilities, then about two years after that discharge my marriage got the divorce and she was with Child now, for about 1 and a half years then. Which I was told that this child has my name as the dad for we did have sex when I was home from boot camp. And I was told she was mine. In that divorce proceedings, I had to take a blood test, that according to them the child was not mine biologically. Which is not or rarely ever confirmed as so. but it was so.

    Then about a year later after that divorce, I got a letter in the mail, from the district attorney’s office, that they wanted back pay for three years in child support, I reacted angry and upset, since it had been proven I was not the dad. So I went to the court house in Sacramento, CA. to get a copy, and did not find it there. It just so happened I ran into the attorney I used when got that divorce, and asked him about that copy. He looked too, and could not find it. He then told me to go to his office, and get one, he had a copy of it.

    I went and got it, I went to the District Attorney’s and presented it to him. He apologized as I told him who the dad was as I believed was. I left there in praise and worship over not having to pay for what I had not made happen. I was on my way home then when a bee flew into my mouth and stung me. I was riding a motorcycle then, no face shield.
    I was praising God still and I spit out that bee that stung me and praised God anyway. I got in front of the mirror, and with tweezers pulled out that stinger in my mouth. My skin did not swell, as it did die all inside and shed there.

    Now I had been drinking g a lot then, and did not see me as an alcoholic.

    Now also later on at 21 my Brother John my oldest brother died. He was 31, he died on Campus Crusade for Christ, leaned against a boulder he was found as dead, with a Bible in his hand. Hikers found him this way, as they were hiking on a Sunday. He was two miles above the sanctuary there.

    I got told this via phone call from the Autopsy persons. The same thing happened to me when my youngest sister died also. I was the first to find out in my family.

    After this, I went to Lake Arrowhead in San Bernardino to get my brothers personal stuff, such as car and wallet and things of personal possession. I was to go t a certain address that happened to be the Autopsy people. That when I was there they told me they had already done three Autopsies on my brother’s body, and have not found a cause for his death. They wanted to do more. I rep[lied do as many as you like, I am now convinced Jesus Christ is alive, and I see to not give up on belief to this.

    Then I went on forward in my drinking a lot, having the attitude why not, tomorrow I may die, so what the heck. And I was a functioning drunk, also did Maryjane too.

    As I was going on I remembered my oldest brother that died him saying to me, that all my drinking and carousing was not good for me.

    I then saw me as a drunk, Terr I still did not care, my sister, dad and him dead, what is the use.

    I then at age 21 had another accident that happened to me at 7:45 AM in Davis California where I worked at a gas station then. I came to work that morning in Davis CA. And I saw a tire on the tire machine, that had not been fixed yet. So I went after it, I did all the procedures I was t do and was filling it up with air, and the tire did not bead against the rim as should have, I let the air our, being safety to not fill it up too much, I even pulled out the inner core of that tire to let air out fast, seeing it still not bead on the rim as should have.

    I saw it about to do it, excited I leaned over it, and it exploded in my face, it broke from the machine and hit me in the Jaw, broke it top and bottom, knocked out my teeth three of them one by the root, and was shoved into my jaw. The tire got taken off my face by my hands, which per the doctor’s saved my life, if I had not gotten them in the wash, I would have been decapitated. I was seen up, and hands put in bandages, I had someone t look after me. I went home with her in a relationship then.

    I healed quickly within three months. I went forward, carrying on with the drinking still, knowing I should leave it behind, but with all these things, I just could not.

    Then at age 27, I had met my now wife, I met her at 26, as I was a partier, care free, functional drunk and druggie, Mary jane only then.

    At a party at age 27, I had been drinking there in that Apt. and I got an Epiphany. I was down on my knees as I heard from within me, I am a drunk, and the reason I am is because I have not accepted my youngest sister as dead. That is what I heard, and I stood up and admitted this to the crowd at hand then and there.

    Also not long before this, I had an accident in the truck I was buying at the time, I got drunk and was carrying my now wife and a friend of hers with me from the bar, I was in thought of getting lucky tonight, not!

    I got in a wreck, I went through a T in the road, and in a ditch, bent the A frame on that truck. We got home after I got out of that truck, I said outload then What a fool I have been, drinking and stuff.

    I think this was that lead up to have that Epiphany I had, about not accepting Sue my sister’s death. I also saw me as what I was now doing in not being conscious of this, I left Sacramento CA to find Sue.

    I finally accepted Sue’s death, I lost all desire to drink again, and stopped Mary jane too then, It was instant after out loud admitting to what I had not accepted as dead, my sister, I never for the life of me wanted to believe she was dead. She is, yet alive I hear also from God Father in my Spirit safe and sound in belief as she did that before her death, repented to belief in him and was in the process of quitting the drugs she got hooked to, that killed her on an overdose then.

    I for the next three years in a row celebrated this quitting being a drunk and druggie, by each year, I would get drunk at home, and wake up the next day with a thank you. This went on for three years. Then on the fourth I stopped that too, no need to drink at all anymore or do Maryjane anymore either.

    So being married now, my new wife and I left Texas, and went to Alabama, to start over. We lived there for about a year maybe. We lived in a trailer that was on a pond that had fish in it, we were put there to guard it. as I was a part time garbage truck driver then also.

    We one day were in talk and I saw I was going no where, so we decide to pack up and hitchhike to CA. I was going home. After 6 years being gone. Wanted there for drunk driving. I left before that sentence I was about to get, that would have put me in jail for at least one year. along with a fine. So now headed home I saw I had to face this charge, that I now found expunged after five years had passed, being a misdemeanor then.
    As that happened at the end of 1980. 1981 is when drinking and driving became a felony.
    And this was my third time being caught drinking and driving. I left after I went to court and asked the judge there then t give me more time, and so he did and I left. It was 1983 when I met my wife then and is my wife to this dat ever since.

    So we went to CA.. I called my Mom and told her I was coming home to make something out of my life as I had not been doing that, carousing around and drinking all the time.

    She asked are you sure knowing I was wanted. I said yes it is time to face up to all.

    So my wife and I got there and started building this new life for us. We made it, I got my electrical, HVAC, and building license I had my own business going then too. We had been buying a home there. I had two employees, my wife had her own business going too.
    We even became foster parents, and I preached at a Church then too. My house became a safe haven for all dinners in troubles, even prostitutes.

    Oh boy what another story that is, in itself, where I also attempted a Baptist Church also. That to me turned out to be corrupt, IMHO. However though Christ is preached Amen to that truth.

    Then my Mom died got to stop for now,

    Thanks so much more to share in short story form

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    1. It sounds like you have overcome a lot of difficulties in your life. Dealing with tragedy and near death situations. How has this helped you become a better person? How have you drawn close to Christ and our Heavenly Father?

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      1. AS Job, not denying or cursing God. The next last part is the most of all

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