Fighting to Pray

Next assessment is Tuesday. This Tuesday. Review meeting with new psychiatrist and social worker, and maybe GP, and NHS mental health chaplain, and me. The thought of meeting a new psychiatrist fills me with dread. You are always mad to a psychiatrist. And what if she doesn’t hear me? What if no help is offered till Complex Needs, halfway through next year (if at all – no more funding)? I can’t cope with another year like this, without any help. I can’t do it. I’m exhausted already. I have half an hour for her to decide what to do with me. Less time than it will take me to write and post this. I am somewhere beyond worried. Injunctions not to worry about a thing seem far-fetched: easily said, impossible to enact.


Last time I was similarly worried, I felt so warm, held, remembered. I was frightened, but I knew that God was with me, that things would be OK, and they were. I was heard. I was helped. This time, the worry is pressing in more firmly than before and, in spite of praying, I feel alone and cold, and distant. I go back time and again to the places where I have felt safe in prayer, and try to enter into that sense again, but I cannot. I whisper to God, but feel like I might as well be begging the grey-stone walls for comfort. God seems absent this time. I fight to pray, but my prayers are just words, not communion.

Maybe I am asking too much. Maybe I have had the help that I can have, and I am now expected to go it alone. That image – the one of Christ with His friend – Christ has His hand on the disciple’s shoulder – not in embrace. As someone told me, reflecting on that image – Jesus will wash your feet, but He won’t give you a shower: some things are up to you. I am frightened that I am going to be left on my own this time. I want to feel held tight by God. I don’t like it when He seems so distant.

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