A's -- I never really had much of a problem with them. If you listen to what the professor is saying and you give it back, you get the A. You don't always learn, but you make the grade.
Aches -- Longing has been my longtime companion. When I was a child, I wanted nothing more than to be in the land of luxury "as seen on TV" rather than the rural reality imposed by Greenfield's city limits. In college, I missed my father. I used to hold my pillow tightly to my chest and weep at the loss of him (even though that loss had actually occurred ten years prior). Perhaps it was because I was on my own in so many ways and the idea of someone to take care of me was incredibly alluring. In my marriage . . . well, let's just say I longed for something I finally realized I'd never have. And now, I ache again. I'm angry at that because my life is so full. I'm reminded daily of people who support me, ideas that challenge me, work that satisfies me. Still the ache comes when catching a glimpse of what could be, when the image vanishes vapor-like and I'm left empty-handed. I want a hand to hold that can carry part of the load, who understands my language, desires, and delights. Yes, there are possibile candidates but thus far, the ache remains.
Answers -- For the most part, I'm ok with not having them. Questions regarding faith, life, the best way to slow cook a pork tenderloin and whether I should color my hair yet again ABOUND! Except for the pork one (I cooked it yesterday), I'm good with the waiting, even (as with the faith one) if that translates into eternity. In fact, with the faith stuff, I'm pretty well convinced that waiting is first line of defense. God doesn't appear to be in the immediate gratification business. However, I sometimes act as those God is. So recently, I prayed. An answer came. I celebrated . . . and then ached all over again. Why is it that doing the right thing doesn't always take the ache away? What makes us long for those things that too distant, too complex? Why isn't the here and now good and enough?
"Juxtaposition" is one of those words that suggests an education might be in effect. I got A's in English. I may have learned a thing or two as well. Seems I'm smart enough that the irony found in the juxtaposition of my answered prayer and the continuing ache isn't lost on me.