26 February 2012

Phantom pains of homesickness

The word home-sickness 
was coined in 1798 to describe 
one’s feelings of near depression 
when they are away from home.

So then, what did you leave
 behind at home 
that makes you feel 
this way?

The family room, the back yard,
 the home cooked meals at the dinner table,
the fast food runs your mother introduced 
to you while she pursued her masters?

There is no medication
 for this and there is
 no know methods
or preventatives for
 such an emotion.

In fact, we don't even know
when it will "hit" us.
It just comes in our mind like
a river and soon we
are swimming in the flood.

Before tonight, I thought
Home sickness for me 
is a result of separation 
from my parents and siblings,
But more importantly, 
the environment we create
when we are together.

The world, or the views of 
the world may deem homesickness
as a character flaw, 
as a sign of weakness. 

But how could this be, and why
would other people be so worried about
the emotions we are feeling, especially
if they didn't involve them.

So homesickness can be directly
related to people that we love.
To love those around you and 
recognize the absence thereof
does not resonate with me as being weak,
yet it is a bond that has been stretched
cross-country and for some,
 even to the heavens.

I believe that homesickness
is not a singular syndrome, meaning 
an illness or disorder 
rather, a means unto an ends.

In Philosophy, the term
means to an end refers to 
any action (the means) that the 
sole purpose of it is to
achieve something else (an end).

So how is homesickness a
means to an end....?

And as I was reading 
The Book of Mormon this evening,
I suffered an unrelated experience.

Or was it unrelated.

I became homesick.

All the sudden I was swimming
in the flood of thoughts and
desires to be married, to
be a wife and a mother.
There was nothing in the
Book of Mormon that 
I was reading that could
have clearly taken my mind to
entertain these thoughts,
except the fact, 
that The Book Of Mormon
is all about families.

I was humbled 
in that thought alone.

A wise man wrote a book once,
it was about transitional phrases
that all humans will go through.

“It's like being between Trapezes.

(William Bridges)

Yes, I felt this way, just someone 
in between.
Yes, I was suffering
 all the signs
and symptons
of homesickness; 
you know the ones:
sad, lonely, hungry.

Just kidding, I don't think
hunger is a sign of homesickness.

You see how I can crack a joke and

still smile through this homesickness??

It's been brought to my attention,

that the things and people I am most homesick

for in my life, actually do not exist.

At least not yet,

or I do not recognize

their existence.

 I am feeling these 
emotions of homesickness

as I thought about my desires to raise

children. To be a happy mother.

 To be a good wife and 

even a fun girlfriend.

None of these titles

define me....yet..

or currently..

Then why do I feel

the Phantom pain for them.

And then it hit me,

it is in my nature to want 

these things and my potential

to become it, is the driving force

of the choices I make,

this homesickness is a reminder

of things that can become.

The phantom pain is 

there to awaken me to 

the reality that God 

sees me in this light too.

While I served a mission in Arizona.

I was invited to eat dinner with a family.

The father was a doctor, a sugeron.

Before he learned about The

Church of Jesus Christ

 of Latter-Day Saints,

he had an experience

that would later lead him to

the restored gospel and truth.

He was with a patient, that had lost a limb.

Yes, his arm was gone.

Yet, he complained of the pain

in the arm.... that was not attached to his body any longer.

In that moment, he knew

that a body was not just a body, 

that a spirit was real as well,

and perhaps the two of them combined

was really a human soul.

So by definition we know that

Phantom pain sensations are described

 as perceptions that an individual experiences

 relating to a limb or an organ

 that is not physically part of the body.

As I am making these connections,

peace comes into my mind,

that my opportunity to

fulfill these roles,

has not happened yet,

but they will.

And if I continue 

to suffer these phantom pains

of homesickness,

they will serve as a reminder,

what want I want,

and who the Lord needs me to be.

And the pursuit where both of those

paths will cross and become one.


Kimberly Kaleonani Kitto said...

Jenny, you expressed this with perfection!! I've been feeling very very similar, but you used words and connections that I ne'er would have and I deeply appreciate this post. You are amazing!!