We're not meant to be half. One of the worst sayings in the world is, "you complete me." Thanks a lot Jerry McGuire... and just so you know...no one can complete you. You're meant to be whole on your own. I believe everyone wants to be whole. No one wants to just be a half, or be just enough, or 2/3 complete.
I don't think everyone desires happiness, I think everyone desires wholeness.
I just finished reading the book, Learning to Walk in the Dark, by Barbara Brown Taylor and it's a great read. [I highly recommend all of her books] Taylor helps rewrite the narrative around darkness and our misconceptions and tendency to only associate what is good with light. She encourages readers to see what God could be teaching you "in the dark."
You can't have dark without light and light without dark. They're half of a whole. You need one and the other. You may not always want to acknowledge the wholeness that comes when there's light and dark because of fear or anxiety or uncertainty, but it's true.
Too often we try to be a half. We try to only accept the good. We try to only feel the happy things and push away the sadness, the anger or the unhappiness. We ignore that shadow side of ourself because maybe we don't want to deal with it or maybe because we were told it wasn't okay to have it. But, when we refuse to acknowledge that the hard times are just as much a part of us as the good times or don't take the time to realize that the sadness we feel is just as important as the happiness, we aren't living in wholeness. [Sidenote: Please watch Inside Out for further evidence of why this is important]
Barbara Brown Taylor has this to say:
To be human is to live by sunlight and moonlight, with anxiety and delight, admitting limits and transcending them, falling down and rising up. To want a life with only half of these things in it is to want half a life, shutting the other half away where it will not interfere with one's bright fantasies of the way things ought to be.
To be whole we have to accept the sunlight and the moonlight, the anxiety and delight, the light and the dark. To be human is to realize we can both fail and succeed, we can be happy and sad, and we can have limits and transcend them.
To be human isn't to be half...it's to be whole. And to be whole isn't about just "good" things or just "light" things...it's accepting all of who we are, all of what we've experienced and remembering that we live by both the sunlight and the moonlight.
Photo courtesy of pxleyes.com