Sunday, May 31, 2009

Do You Feel Wanted

This week, I took a nap on a couch with a guy. That’s not a metaphor for something more physical, it was an honest to God nap. It wasn’t planned, it just kinda happened.

And I’m very sorry to say, it was f’ing wonderful. I had a stressful week on a number of fronts, and I needed some kind of escape, some kind of wish fulfillment granted, SOMETHING that went right.

And this went right. The couch was a tad wider than a standard couch, so it could accommodate both of us, but required snuggling of the first degree. And we all know how much of a sucker I am for an honest to God snuggle. I’m a snuggleslut. I’m a chick, I make no apologies for it, but knowing that snuggling is such an Achilles heel of mine, and knowing that most guys endure snuggling rather than enjoy it, means that I’m hypersensitive to the guy, if he moves, does that mean he’s annoyed, have I become a clingy wimp, is he uncomfortable, is it too much for him, am I destroying all chances of a second snuggle encounter.

But there was none of that here, because we were both exhausted (No, Mom, not like that. All clothes remained on.) Arms went around each other and stayed that way. I heard the steady thump of his heart through his chest, felt his chin on top of my head, heard the occasional snore (we all make compromises, ha ha ha.)

This is the feeling I chase 24/7. Even the last dogsitting gig with Howardina filled it in a small way. This is why I’m always insanely jealous of anyone who’s got a significant other. Because you have access to this feeling, and I have to hold my breath for MONTHS for an opportunity. If I go too long without a cuddle, my guy friends are doomed as I force my hugs on them, my heads on their shoulders, my arm linked through theirs, and they’re all going, “Um….what’s up?”

I want to be held. It feels safe. I feel protected. I feel…wanted. In a very basic sense. His arms are around me. They don’t let go. If he didn’t want me, he’d move. He’d push me away, like that one guy early in my dating career that traumatized me forever.

This is exactly the feeling I DON’T get from God.

Maybe it’s the question that everything boils down to. Do you want me? I think John Eldridge defines it for women as “Am I pretty?” and that feels a little superficial. You can still want a person without them being attractive. (I’m sure my friends who have several Eldridge books will be sending me emails saying exactly what the question is.)

But seriously. Have I ever felt like God wanted me? Sure, I read the Bible ever damn day (Proverbs isn’t doing it for me currently) and I can read the verses that say I’m a Daughter of God, and Be Good And He’ll Bless You, and I can go to church every damn week and hear over and over again the theory that God Wants A Relationship With You, God Wants To Be In Communion With You. But do I feel WANTED by God?

And honestly, no. No I don’t. I feel like I live my life as a series of tests and challenges to be good to an All Powerful Being who only cares if I pass. Like a teacher in a classroom, monitoring things, watching out to see who’s gonna act up, to make sure everyone stays in line. That’s about order. God wants a relationship with me because he wants me to obey him. It’s not about desire. It’s not about want.

Can you make the conclusion that God Blesses Me Because He Wants Me? It’s not logical. It’s like the teacher analogy again. If You Finish Your Homework, You’re Blessed With A Gold Star. Your teacher wants you to do well so you’ll excel in life. But that doesn’t mean your teacher wants YOU.

God blesses me. God wants me to succeed, probably in an Advancing His Kingdom kind of way. But does God want ME. Does God WANT me? And how do I know, how can I tell, what does it feel like? I know what being wanted by men, or people, I know what that looks like, what that feels like. But what does it look like in a God way? It’s more than Order and Obedience and Blessings, isn’t it?

If God is ever offended that I chase human interaction instead of going home and meditating on His Good Word, THIS is why. I can FEEL a cuddle. I can’t feel God.

I’m sure God’s pissed off now. I wouldn’t be surprised if I don’t get an opportunity to cuddle with a dude for like, three YEARS now.

I just had to note for the record that I did feel wanted. For a few hours.

And so this doesn’t turn into the mopiest blog every, check it out. The slides computer at church was having problems, so we had to run the slides program for today’s service on my personal laptop. This meant that everyone was slave to my Itunes in terms of pre and post service music. And though I really wanted to be contrary and blast NIN, I was pretty good, though I did sneak in my favorite Schoolhouse Rock song ever: Rufus Xavier Sarsparilla. Which is about pronouns, and could be construed in a somewhat God like manner:

There’s a chance I have to run the slides again from my computer next week. Everyone better watch out, heh.


Patty Jean said...

Since I'm more of a practicing agnostic, work with me here. ...

I understand perfectly what you're saying, and I'm trying to relate to my own sense of Higher All-Knowing Being.

For me, I guess I view it as I'm already a part of God, The Universe, and Everything. How can I search for being wanted from The All-Knowing, when I'm there already? Maybe it's more of be deciding to be a part of Him/Her/It, and letting myself feel that support and love and abundance. Which is scary for me, because how can one let go?

Anyhoo, I'm glad you got the snuggle on. As a Sister SnuggleSlut, I envy. I guess I have to deal with the human aspect of it all - how does one feel wanted from an Object of Affection?

Agh... this is more a topic for margaritas and yummy food rather than blogs.... Soon Ms.TheWriter, soon.

aartilla the fun said...

oh the cuddle. i love the cuddle too. one of the first things bren (my husby) ever said about me was, wow you really like to snuggle, huh? when we were doing the long-distance thing (for THREE YEARS!), the thing i missed the most was being spooned and cuddled. it is such a fundamental human need: to be held, and by extension, accepted. i think that's why bren is able to make friends with people almost instantly -- no matter who it is, whether he's met them for the first time or not, he'll hug 'em. like a big bear. a big, warm, tight hug. it's awesome.

anyway, i wanted to tell you that i know how you feel about not hearing God or feeling wanted by Him. but that's a bunch of nonsense that we're fed by this earthly realm... that we have to EARN love, we have to do the right thing, say the right thing, wear the right thing, look the right way... in order to be loved. and that's not true. that's not real love. or at least, not Godly love. He loves us UNCONDITIONALLY. if you don't read your bible tomorrow amy, He will STILL love you. TONS. i am wrapping my head around that concept too, because i think i am much more like martha, than mary, running around tons of things, rather than just sitting still at His feet, and bathing in Jesus' love, knowing that He loves me.

I think Patty Jean has something there about "letting" yourself feel loved. i definitely had to take that step.

and here's another way I think of God. I don't know about us being "part of" God, but I do believe that we're made in God's image. Which means that some essence of his character is imprinted in our hearts. So I think of him as the best Dad ever. He made me. and therefore, like most dads on this planet, He loves me a LOT. He would probably die for me (and He did). He loves me even when I don't do things He wants me to do. He's looking out for me even when I don't think He is. He will never let me down. Because... HE LOVES ME!

Bren's reading "Desiring God" by John Piper right now -- keeps talking about how it's God's PLEASURE to do stuff for us. It makes Him happy. Because... He LOVES YOU!!!

I know that God's love doesn't feel like a cuddle. But I felt it once, a couple of weeks ago. And I will never forget it.


Anonymous said...

Hey Ames,

Man - you are singing my song -

"And honestly, no. No I don’t. I feel like I live my life as a series of tests and challenges to be good to an All Powerful Being who only cares if I pass. Like a teacher in a classroom, monitoring things, watching out to see who’s gonna act up, to make sure everyone stays in line. That’s about order. God wants a relationship with me because he wants me to obey him. It’s not about desire. It’s not about want."

I think this is a universal feeling - even Mother Teresa felt it - and I therefore feel is it a spiritual warfare issue. I think we are all vulnerable here. If you haven't had a chance, you should really check out "The Ragamuffin Gospel" by Brennan Manning. That book was revolutionary for me on this concept. Whenever I get in a rut, I know I can flip through it and listen to A LOT of Rich Mullins ("Hold me, Jesus" and good to know spiritual GIANTS also felt/feel this way sometimes) and it will help. At least, that's how it is for me.