I have a fondness for cemeteries. Most people don’t know how to respond when learning that fact. I imagine images of cloaked figures or old-timey grave robbers flash across their minds’ eyes. What good could I possibly be up to in a place like that? Sure, people visit graves of loved ones and meander around for genealogy research from time to time; that’s understandable. But those of us who stay for hours at a stretch, not there for anyone in particular? That’s just weird, right? Off-putting at least.Read More
Filtering by Tag: life
by Jonah Ven
Late last summer, I finally did something I had told myself I was going to do for a long time. It didn't feel particularly profound or significant at the time. In fact, the only significant part of it was the thought that it would take *at least* a few months for it to all grow out again in the event I didn't like it. And if anything, I think it even felt a little childish. So, no, I wasn't running around with lofty philosophical ideas in my mind at the time, but I went ahead and dyed my hair silver/white anyway. I didn't know dyeing my hair was going to change my life.
Maybe that sounds melodramatic. Maybe that is melodramatic, but I really believe the last 6 months of my life might've played out differently if I hadn't decided to dye my hair white. It's funny, you know, how you find those small sacred things that have a way of needling their way into your soul and so drastically changing you that you're not even fully aware of it until months have passed. That's what I've been discovering about my white hair.Read More
Note: This is a piece I wrote as I was leaving Portland, my home for two years, to move to Indiana for seminary. It focuses on my experience with depression and what it was like to leave the community that held me.
and I weep
not because I don’t want to go,
it’s so hard
Living with depression this past year was like wandering in a cave. I wandered for so long that I eventually got tired and, rather than using all of my remaining energy to find the way out, I just…sat down. I sat there for so long that it felt like home—but I wasn’t warm, or dry, or happy, or safe. I couldn’t even rest.Read More
I don’t know how to tell my truth without telling this part, but it’s one of the scariest and hardest ones to tell.
CW: sexual assault, description of feelings/affects post assault
I don’t know how to start at the beginning, so I’ll start with the second poem I wrote after it happened:
I heal through
through a thousand
words written by
someone else about
splashing on poetry
put down on paper
by gods in human
I grew up in purity culture (Here’s an article that looks helpful after a quick look, for anyone looking for a definition/examples of this). From a very early age in Fundamental Evangelical Christianity, I learned things about my body that I’m still struggling to untangle. This could probably be 100 blog posts. This could probably be the work of my life.
Since I have yet to actually figure anything out though, I’ll start small.
From my mother I learned that cleanliness is indeed right next to godliness and now that I’m an adult I wonder HOW THE HELL DID SHE KEEP OUR HOUSE SO CLEAN? While I sometimes wish her magical cleaning abilities could have transferred to me more smoothly…as a child in one regard I took this to an extreme.Read More
What do you want to be when you grow up? I remember answering this question many times as a child, and spending hours before sleep pondering my exciting grown-up life. I wanted to be an artist. A ballerina. A doctor.
As life, and my uncoordinated limbs would have it, dancing never became my thing. And my incredible distaste for hospitals, needles, and vomit prevented my doctor dreams. Even though indeed I am an artist now (and have been adult-ing for a time), my childhood dream was a little more involved than I’ve ever lived out. You see, I wanted to live in a tree house in the woods for 5 years by myself, and once I emerged, I would be a famous painter.
Alas, my little heart didn’t yet know how extroverted I would become, or my love of hot showers. As I became a teen, I found that I loved writing, and working with people. Gearing up towards college, I decided I wanted to be a screenwriter (in Hollywood!), and change the world with my words.Read More