The world is a much different place when you’re young. Then again, everything is different when you’re young, crazy as ever and willing to dare it all on a whim. The world is so big and new, yet so small, consisting only of you, your friends, your family, the town, the same places you go and the same things you do. I knew there was more for me out there. I knew where I stood. Or, at least I knew where I was trying to stand. There are so many unspoken components to our youth. There are impulses and changes, which we cannot understand. There are different pressures to young life; pressure to fit and belong; pressure to perform and to produce.
I knew there were more things to do and more places to see. Like anyone else, I had a drive to be elsewhere. I wondered what it would be like to live somewhere else or be someone else.
There are so many things that I haven’t seen. There are so many places I haven’t been to and things I haven’t done. But I’m here. I’m waiting. I’m ready, Mom.
I’m looking to experience, smell, touch, taste and see new things. I swear that I’m ready this time. I think age can be a problem — not to be too young or too old, but either can be the culprit of why we cease or desist. I think this is a mindset. You know?
I think this has to do with the way we see things. I think this has to do with our fears, our concerns, our wants and needs. I think what holds us back the most are obstacles in the mind. It’s our thoughts. It’s our ideas and our worries that the worst will come true.
There is a way things work. Everyone knows this. We might not always know or fully understand the science behind something like a light bulb or the way electricity works. But at minimum, we know that if we flip the switch, the light goes on. The same can be said about a car. We might not fully understand the work behind auto mechanics, but, it’s safe to say that we know what happens when we turn the ignition, start the car, step on the gas, and go. I simplify this, not to be silly, basic or to insult anyone’s intelligence. Instead, I simplify this to create an easy example.
I have been part of the regular working world for about three decades. I have worked as a salesman. I have had easy jobs and tough jobs. However, for the last 23 years, I have what I call my “Day job,” which is what I use to feed my family. Over the last five years, I have been working an extra job to feed my heart. One job feeds my family and the other job feeds my sanity. For me, it’s that simple.
When I was a kid, someone told me that when it rains,
it means that God is crying
I figured, “This must be where the sea gets its salt.”
Maybe this is why I find comfort in the tides.
Maybe I come here to weep too.
Maybe this is why I love the anonymity of the shore:
each wave comes in to wash the sands
and each wave goes out
(to take away our secrets).
I am writing this ti empty my thoughts. I use this as an exercise and write my words without direction or coercion and without any force, except this, to free myself, — to breathe, to live, and to excuse myself from the mental congestion, which does nothing else but hold me back.
Are you ready?
Good, because here it goes . . .
It rains today. The sky is gray and the morning is quiet. The streets are wet and the blacktop on the street in front of my home is sort of glistening beneath the morning light. The white lines on the side of the road and the double-yellow lines down the center are a stretch down the country road where I live. Spring has sprung so the trees are exceptionally green where I live now, which is up in the mountains but not too far from the streets of New York City. I’m just over a bridge now and farther north. There is something peaceful about this morning. The grayness and the rain is fitting and comforting and yet, this is sad as well. Perhaps this is an acknowledgement of what this day means. Maybe Mother Earth knows. Maybe this is why she rains sometimes because she weeps too.
I recall the sunrise on the beach in Fort Lauderdale. I remember the warmth and the breeze that moved through and palms in the palm trees. I made sure to be up early to watch the sunrise. Ever see this before? Ever watch the sun come up in the sky with the ocean below? The horizon starts with a band of orange, which grows and eventually overtakes the sky.
There was a somewhat old man with tanned skin. He was a little more than middle aged, wealthy, spoiled in some ways but mainly drunk and someone that always seemed to find me in the mornings. I didn’t know the man per se. I only knew him because he was staying in the same motel as me. He would drink all night and sleep most of the day.
I have a strong belief in the visualization process. I can put this as simply as this; if you want it then you have to see it. I believe in the value of our visions but more, I believe in the hunger this creates. I believe in the need to see things to whet the tongue and have the taste for more. I have to see my dreams. I have to detail them. I have to know what they look like so I can build them. Otherwise, what am I looking for?
Another thing I believe in is the need for support. I believe in the cheering section and how this needs to begin with one. namely me, or you, or us. I believe that in order to find motivation, we have to create movement. Otherwise, there is only stillness in which case, where do we go except for nowhere?
I am older now. I am out of range from my past. So are you, by the way. Older. Out of range. We are out of reach from yesterday’s grip. No matter how close this seems. Yesterday is still gone and neither of us live there anymore.
I am far from the time when I was lost but yet, there will be times ahead where I will feel lost again. And consequently, there will be times when I am found once more. There will be days when I am enlightened and delivered. There will be days where I am confused and burdened.
There is of course, this journey we call life. There is the search for “Self” and the drive to achieve or “Arrive” so-to-speak. There is the need to fit and the need to understand and comprehend. More to the point, there is a need to achieve balance. There is a need to find that station in life, in which all is stable or harmonious. And too, — there is the misunderstanding that balance or serenity is the absence of adversity.
I suppose the reason I began to write is simple. I began to write about my thoughts because I never thought I could tell anyone about them. How could I tell someone?
Besides, writing is writing and telling is telling, which means I am safest here. There’s no judge or a jury. There is no one around to reveal or expose me or worse, there is none here to humiliate me. Plus, who would care to read something written by me? Who would care? I was too scared to dance and scared to sing. I was too scared to share myself in any way that might unmask my deepest vulnerabilities. After all, I was just a kid, right? I am still a kid at heart, yet I have grown. Or perhaps I should say I have outgrown the old layers that buried me deep beneath my life.