So I haven’t had much time this month to devote to blog writing. I know, one blog post a month isn’t all that much, but I like to chew on ideas before I write them down, let them marinate before they’re exposed. This isn’t all that revelatory, but it means that this month Brad lets you into the recesses of his mind, into the things hanging on by threads in the corner. Or maybe here Brad lets you into the core of who he is, the center from which he truly lives and breathes in this world. Or maybe this will only be jibberish, the tired whatevers of a tired mind, ready to rest but aching for some real finality to the day first. In any case, this will be weird.
As I write this, my computer battery fades quickly, all too quickly, and the fan breathes like a thing possessed. Deep, constant breaths interrupted by short squeals that make me think the thing will fall into pieces any second now. A rabbit scampers around my apartment and attempts to sneak a nibble off the corner of a record sleeve leaning against a speaker. I type a few lines, wonder what to write next, make a scurried sound so that the rabbit jumps away from the record sleeve, and then turn back to the ever-blinking cursor.
Stress leaves me like this—scatterbrained and unprepared, tired and short-winded. Schoolwork has piled up, and though I leave in a week for Florida, that couldn’t seem farther away. My grandmother lies aching in a wilting hospital bed in Grand Rapids, awaiting a blood transfusion on a cold night, and my thoughts are with her. What’s done and finished feels undone, but I cover that feeling with busyness and a move-on-to-the-next-thing mentality. Right now, peace does not come easy. It takes effort, the sort of grind it out, every-second effort that tears into the energy reserves I’ve so carefully developed over the years.
sThat computer fan breathes so loud now that I can’t ignore it. My mind fixates on the sound and won’t let it go, an act pretty typical of my mind in the midst of anxiety, and in the middle of the night.
But isn’t all this why we write? Isn’t this anxiety and uncertainty and restlessness and uneasy pause why we put things down and then why we share them with other people? Isn’t what’s happening now—in my mind and heart and space—really the epitome of a blog like this one? What is life like for you, a Calvin College graduate under thirty years old? This is what life is like, and sometimes it doesn’t make sense. Sometimes it comes fast and produces a kind of blur that leaves you with a dull headache. And sometimes it screams from a rooftop and then smiles. Sometimes it pays attention to a particular crack in the cement. And sometimes it glides on, like those moving walkways in airports, and you’re content to stand still, look around you, feel whatever it is you’re feeling (really feel it, so that you don’t feel much else), and write about it.
Brad Zwiers (’12) graduated from Calvin College in 2012 and Western Theological Seminary in 2015. He will not be graduating from any more schools. He often stares at books he wishes he could read but knows he will not finish and goes for long walks with his wife, Gwyn. Sometimes he plays basketball and always he follows the greatest sporting club in the world, Liverpool F.C.