There are no guarantees in life.I know this the same as I know that tomorrow will come and so will the next day after that. I know these things are on the way, but yet, I have no idea what they will bring with them.
I have no idea who I will meet or say goodbye to. I have no idea what successes are in store for me. And just the same, I am not sure what failures I will have to overcome. All I know is I have a path to travel. I won’t know where the wind will come from or which way it will go. I just know the wind will blow in whichever way it chooses.
And if I play my cards right . . .
I will live this way too.
There is something else I know with all my heart. I know that life changes whether we ask it to or not. I know that life is more than we think it is.
I believe in the lessons of the soul and that we all have our own lessons to learn. Therefore, in the interim between realization and life, we find ourselves (at some point) at an impasse, in which, there is no outlet or escape. And we wake up one day (if we’re lucky enough) to find ourselves aware this.
I have this memory of a warm sunny morning. It was the first of June. I had walked away from my dead end life and my dead end commitments. I pushed myself away from the proverbial table (so-to-speak) and as simple as that, I chose to stand up and walk away.
The problem was me. It wasn’t the dead end job or the dead end life with a dead end wife. The problem was me and my resentment with the world.
This was my choice, It was me that chose to settle. No one else. It was me that took the trade, and why? Because deep down, I never thought or believed I could ever do or be anything other than what I was.
I was stuck in the aftermath of regret and caught by the snare of my own misconceptions. It was me. No one else.
I took the trade and settled for less than I was worth because I never thought the life I wanted could ever be possible.
I chose to settle because I was afraid. But more, I was unaware of my worth and unaware of my abilities to live my life to the best possible ability. The problem here, however, is the casualties that were left behind. The problem here was the co-dependent, voluntary hostages, which are the accompanying kind, the caretaker, and the enabler.
See, the truth is I never understood much about how my world affected others. I only knew how I felt. I only understood how things affected me and from my point of view, which means I used this to excuse me and y behaviors. I used this to rationalize my interactions with others. As well, I used my fears and insecurities as an excuse because I responded to them frequently and habitually.
I never thought there was hope for me. I never thought there was a light at the end of the tunnel. As I saw it, I had to make it to any port in the storm. Otherwise, I would be forced to feel, deal, live alone, and be lonely.
I was too deep in my past and too petrified of my future to enjoy the moment. I was afraid to smile and afraid to let go of discomforts. As best as I can describe this; I was too afraid to let go of my discomforts because what if they come back again? What if I smiled only to have the anger return?
This is why I always explain that fear, shame, and guilt are the main ingredients of emotional quicksand.
I remember that morning on the first of June. I remember the way it felt to not be kept in some uncomfortable place.
I was free, but not completely. I had work to do. I had to fall hard. And fall I did.
I had to feel the depth of my pain in order for me to realize that I never want to ever feel this way ever again as long as I live.
I recall a desperate night. I recall the thoughts in my mind and how the moment felt like everything was slipping away from me. I believed I was a failure.
I believed there was no hope for me and no such thing as redemption. I was brutally beaten, but not physically.
No, I was simply broken down to my least possible self.
I was tired of living this way. I found myself on the couch of my small apartment, alone in my sadness, and trying hard to strike up a new deal with God as I understood him.
I tried to negotiate a new contract, maybe figure a way that God and me could create a new path for myself. I was tired of regret. I was tired of living with anger. I was tired of depression and more importantly, I was tired of entertaining the wrong people in my life.
It became very clear to me that everything in my life was a lie. Everything was about me and my image, Everything I did was a response to my fears and insecurities.
One day, I was lucky enough to wake up (so-to-speak)
I opened my eyes and decided I never wanted to see the things I used to see anymore. I decided to feel inspired instead of ashamed. I wanted to feel redeemed instead of damned.
Partly because I wanted to be better; partly because I wanted to prove the world wrong about me, and partly because I wanted to rebound from my failures, and partly because I was a father and I wanted to learn how to be a good one, and partly because I wanted be good at something, even if it was just one thing, and above anything else in the world; I wanted to feel empowered because I was tired of feeling beaten, broken, weak, and winless.
I came to a turning point. I sunk to my lowest point possible and then I swore to myself, “I will never let myself get like this again.”
And no, life is not easy. Nothing is. At least, not really. But of all the things I know; I know that I am capable of getting up after being knocked down. I can endure. But above all, I can recover so long as I choose to.