|Image courtesy of dan FreeDigitalPhotos.net|
I used to see my future laid out ahead of me, as far as the eye can see, and still, somehow I knew it extended far beyond that. It was a long, wide path, filled with possibilities. But lately, visibility is pretty hazy and I’m having trouble seeing any farther than the end of the day; sometimes even seeing that far is a blessing. The path I’m on was once so certain that I dashed ahead with little thought or concern, simply following the road, oblivious to anything other than reaching the prize that I knew awaited me at the end. At times, this singular focus made it difficult for me to see and appreciate the gifts I was being given along the way or to take heed of the obstacles being placed up ahead.
Now the path has narrowed and there are so many twists and turns and dark stretches of road that I tread cautiously. There was a time when I was surrounded by so many people, traveling along the same path, but little by little, they branched off and now, quite often, I find my path deserted; devoid of any signs of life, of humanity, other than my own. It can be difficult to convince myself to carry on, but somehow, I always manage to continue trudging forward. Deep down inside, I know that eventually, the path will once again become smooth and easy, even if I can’t see it ahead of me. It is how I handle this treacherous stretch that defines who I am and shows what I am made of. I will not let myself fall prey to the creatures that lurk along the edges, waiting for me to falter, so they can pick me apart like vultures. I refuse to give them the satisfaction.
With my head held high, I put on a brave face and try not to let my fear or sadness show. But if anyone bothered to look closely enough, they would see the tiniest quiver of my lip, feel my heart pounding in my chest and hear the unsteady rhythm of my breathing as I gasp for air to keep the tears from running down my face.
No longer thinking, I just put one foot in front of the other, letting the momentum of years of motion guide my limbs. Well worn and weary, I feel older than my years. The stitch in my hip, the ache in my knee and the heaviness in my heart; all reminders of the trials I have already survived. Like battle scars, they are my badges of honor, yet they feel more like evidence of my past transgressions. Sneaking off the path in search of momentary joy, has its consequences, but has provided valuable life lessons to hopefully keep me on the straight and narrow from here on out.
The forecast calls for clear skies in my future. Until then, I will just continue to use caution while navigating with limited visibility.
I almost didn’t write a blog entry for today. Instead, I almost wallowed in my emotions and let myself be controlled by them. Then I had a small moment of clarity. Rather than sinking into the despair, I chose to pull myself out and use those emotions; to create, to write, to purge the demons that were threatening to drag me down into darkness and put my heart on display.