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Recently, my dreams (the sleeping kind) have been peppered with remembrances of my failures. Walking home this evening, I realized, for the first time in totality, that there's no shortage of material from which my subconscious can draw. It is no exaggeration to say that I've left every stage of my life in some sort of disgrace. Couldn't return to a single professional job I've held, even though I often did outstanding work and made a difference. There are also failures I alone remember. All my endings are variations on a theme, one that fills me with fear, shame, and regret. The path behind is littered with broken relationships, unmet expectations, and burnt bridges.

Said it until I'm blue, yet every time it sinks in a bit differently: my hope can be in God alone. A poem seraphimsigrist shared in his journal touched this part of my heart, once and freshly broken:

Guardian Angel

I am the bird that knocks at your window in the morning
and your companion, whom you cannot know,
the blossoms that light up for the blind.

I am the glacier’s crest above the forests, the dazzling one
and the brass voices from cathedral towers.
The thought that suddenly comes over you at midday
and fills you with a singular happiness.

I am one you have loved long ago.
I walk alongside you by day and look intently at you
and put my mouth on your heart
but you don’t know it.

I am your third arm and your second
shadow, the white one,
whom you don’t have the heart for
and who cannot ever forget you.

—Rolf Jacobsen, from North in the World (translated by Roger Greenwald)


You dwell a lot on your failures and seem (from where I'm sitting) to expend a lot of energy beating yourself up. I'm not sure why you do it but it can't be helpful to be down on yourself so much. Examining your conscience honestly is one thing but I bet you're not as bad as you think.