I believe with all my heart that we as creatures on this earth, whether bound my the notions of propriety, religion, politics, or even the simple belief in truth, search for answers. We search what we believe to be our hearts, our souls, even our own minds and bodies, for some answer to the unanswerable.
Many of these questions are brought about by the unfathomable understanding of agony. Many of these questions don’t begin in the beauty of the earth’s greatest masterpieces, but in the horrific realities that life thrusts upon us each and every day. We are required by our lives and our own consciences to understand that which no one taught us, and that which God refuses to discuss.
These questions range from those that are so predictable as to be honest to the type of questions that destroy while they rebuild the very life that we are leading. The questions are the point of the exercise, never the answers; for to depend on the answers would be to depend on our own minds to create the life that surrounds us. And our minds can’t create life.
I once wrote a powerful quote that I was quite proud of. It stated, “After years of angst and purposeful disappointment, I finally opened myself to the possibility of contentment and found myself finally home.” I thought it was a fitting question to the answer that I am beginning to understand. The understanding that there was once a time that I quit listening to my own soul and instead listened to the world around me and found myself lost. I found myself in agony living in a world that wasn’t one of my own making, the making my soul demanded. Instead I was living in a world determined by expectations that I could not possibly live up to and I could not possibly accomplish. And it was a hard fall to realize that I don’t have the capability to live up to the expectations and the fierce beliefs in my own self that others seem so easily to find. Instead I found that I was nothing but a puppet, trained to be the answer to others’ questions and the ease for others to bask within.
I have lived my life in the inescapable truth that my life is built within walls of others. They created the life, they created the emotion, and they created the final disappointment. And I allowed them to do this because I couldn’t see the truth that was so powerful as to be almost invisible. I allowed this world to create my life because I couldn’t handle the fact that there was a great possibility that who and what I was and who and what I am is much different then what this world could accept. I wasn’t going to allow myself to hear the gong of truth but instead concentrate on the musical notes of someone else’s great discourse.
I have failed in my life in so many ways. I have failed more than I have ever won; even when the corner office was mine and the praise was being thrown my way. I failed because I was so interested in believing that the deafen noise was the truth that I needed to face.
And then one day I found myself at a different place. Not a crossroads, not even a place that had roads showing me the way, but a place of my own choosing. A place that was quiet except for the voices that kept me company and the strains of music that I had written long before I was able to recognize the note being played. One day I woke up not to the same but to a different pattern that looked so similar to the truth that I had been living but contained so many new patterns, so many new words, so many new truths that I felt simply lost.
I struggled in this new place, denying that it existed and fearing its rejection. I kept myself busy with the truths that I had been living not ready to discover that there were going to be times when the truth was nothing but a lie. Not ready to understand that the lie I was existing, was the truth I was denying. Because for the first time in my life the truth was not something that I could trust easily, but rather the open ended belief in the possibility that there was more.
When one is faced with the possibility of more than amazing things can happen. But they don’t happen immediately. Because so rarely are we ready to face the possibility; so many times we are hidden by our own fears so that the truth is left as is and the openness that we once believed we were on becomes less than the road that is laid before us. So we hesitate. So we delve back into what we know and try to stand at that spot for as long as our fingers will bleed as we hang on with all our hopes and dreams.
Change requires that we lose hopes and dreams. Different lives require that we fall down on the ground and weep with the angels that are broken, and destroy the world that we know and build something new. And this change requires more courage, more strength, more faith, more love, than can be found in the basics of a simple life such as the one we believed was ours.
But slowly we understand that open means possibilities, and possibilities means being open. Open to the earth, open to the universe, open to the courage, strength, faith and love that makes up our true selves. Open to the idea that we are more than those expectations, even the expectations of our own self, and open to the idea that there are those in this life who can not stop answering the questions that were never meant to be touched. Being open means we stop concealing the truth not from the world but from our own selves. We begin to live in the truth that does not make it easier to live but rather so much harder. We begin to open to the realization that we can’t continue because those broken angels won’t let us become them.
So we sit quietly and we wait for the openness. We sit quietly convinced that we are ready for the truth; convinced that we have the strength to fight the battle of everyone else’s truth. And it comes. And it comes. And it comes. And we are staggered by all that we have forgotten from the moment that we are born and we are lost in the chaos of so much possibility. We become drunk on the nature of our own dreams and we realize that what we were born to be was lost in the cradle and the mindless determination of a society that can’t see beauty even in the dark. We get lost in the realization that we have spent years being someone that we can never be. We get lost in the realization that we gave up before we ever begun.
And the sun dims as we realize that the truth isn’t about someone else’s world, or someone else’s beliefs. The truth is only about what we believe and what we have faith in. The open door that we are finally standing in front of only stays open if we give to the universe that which we have kept secret for so long. And so the depression of the mind destroys the happiness of the possibility and we once again turn to what we know and have known for so long.
Then, one day our world gets tired. Our life looks bleak and shapeless and we realize that if we are ever allowed any happiness than we have to open to the possibility that it isn’t going to look anything like the life we have built. It is going to change – and we have to come to terms with that. It is going to evolve – and we have to be willing to move in the same direction. We have to be willing to listen to the voices that have been screaming for so long. Otherwise, we will scream in mindless pain at the end of it all without ever knowing where that door actually led.
Being open means being free. Being open means understanding disappointment and failure. Being open means expecting the beauty and being able to recognize it in the ugly. Being open means that we have to take this journey, turn it up on its head and push the envelopes of our fear and our nightmares. Being open means that we have to live the nightmares as easily as we live the dreams. Being open means we have to breathe not for others but for our own starved souls. For that is the only way this works.
So as I sit here on the verge of something that will change all that I am and all that I can be, and I wonder if I have the courage, the strength, the faith, the love, to follow through. Will I falter at the start line? Will I jump so high in response to that starting gun that I never take the steps to be glorious? Will I be able to lie with broken angels, listening as they weep, and understand that they are screaming a much different song to me?
When will my courage fail? Because it will fail in this quest to open myself to the possibility that I can be greater than the expectations of this dark world. This is a truth, a guarantee, that must be understood prior to ever taking that first step after the gun rings so loudly. Being open means surviving the loss of your own self in the discovery of the truth that should only reside within our own bleeding souls.
Kathryn Celidonio said:
To the author how were u able to find ur way out of the darkness which consumes you this cut into me so deeply and you managed to put every emotion I have ever battled with into words in ways which I could never possibly do or even voice for my self part of it is because of the crippling fear of failing in being able to properly do so ao instead I stay in my comfort zone and never speak ans lwt my self be heads Im dying to be set free but I have no idea as to where to start
The truth is that you will fail. You will find yourself screaming into the night wondering if what you are will create a purpose for yourself. Stay in your comfort zone but start dreaming of the world outside of it. Slowly build that symphony of your own power by finding your truth and your path. I can’t tell you what the first or even the last step will look like; but by slowly finding the truth only you know, you will find more and more strength. And that strength will give you the peace that it sounds like you are looking for. It is called a journey on purpose and I will send all my thoughts to you that the first step finds you ready and able to absorb what your soul needs. You don’t need luck just hope and a little bit of open eyed wonder. You are worthy of so much, and that is a solemn thing.
Kathryn celidonio said:
But what if your already at the point of knowing that all hope has long since been gone. I know it’s a terrible thing to speak of or even think but I also can’t change the way I feel about that.. a part of me has given up on holding on to hope for quite sometime now because a part of me feels like there is no point in holding onto something that was never really there to begin with and when it was the world found a way to take what little of it I once had and held onto and kept putting up one hell of a fight just to hold onto it the little that I use to have left just for it to be taken from me anyways and there wasn’t anything I could do about it.. I know I’m not suppose to let things like that get the best of me but I also don’t think it useful to keep holding onto something false or far beyond my reach. How can I find my purpose I don’t even know where to begin or what steps I can try or where to go not even am I aware of where to seek for inspiration that would make a light turn on and maybe just maybe it would light the match I need to make my outpost seem a bit more clear and ease the endless uncertainty I try to keep believing that at some point thing will finally begin to be more clear but I fear that I’m just kidding myself trying to keep my self thinking that that’s true and that scares me cuz what if I never find my calling or my peace I’m terrified of never being able to not find that middle ground or balance I’m no closer to knowing any of the answers today than I was almost 20yr ago since I graduated high school
I took a day to think about your words because they are important. I get many emails and posts from others who feel much the same as you do; and it hurts my soul each and every time. I know what that pain feels like. I know how lost one can get, not because they took a wrong turn but because this is how their mind works. I know intimately what giving up feels like and how it can get into every crevice of your being. And I know the frustration of wanting different but not being able to hold onto it. Your brain, your disease is yours and there is no magic pill in all the land to fix it. But there are some things we can adopt that may give us enough breathing room to find a way. First, acknowledge it. Acknowledge the feelings you have. So many people tell us to ignore it or just change something but that won’t work. You have to come to terms that your feelings are real and although caused by a disease still there. Don’t ignore feeling tired or frustrated because hiding can’t be the answer. Then forgive yourself. Promise me you will try to forgive yourself for feelings that come from a place you can’t and won’t control. Acknowledge to yourself that these dark parts are there and real and then come to terms with the pure truth that this is a disease. Next, if it gets to you that is actually heathy. It means you are paying attention and you want something else. Passion, desire, need for the next is part of the human world.
Wanting different means you are seeing that there is different and that is powerful.
I have a thousand different things I do each day to get me through. Sometimes I focus on what I have – today my feet aren’t hurting or my dryer is broken but that means I don’t have to do three weeks of laundry. It can be something completely ridiculous (I like the ridiculous). Or you can sit for an hour and come up with a list. Doesn’t matter. But there is some (possibly ridiculous) thing that you can latch onto and begin to build with. I also go outside and pretend the animals are there to visit me. This process should not be judged by either you or anyone else.
Sometimes my days include sitting in the dark and binge watching something stupid. This is ok too. Get away from the thoughts of what you are supposed to do and be and start thinking about who you are. Having dark thoughts is annoying and frustrating but there are other thoughts to be had. I don’t know your situation so you have to figure out the starting point. But the fact that you acknowledge that where you are is not where you want to be is an incredible accomplishment.
As to personal purpose. Honestly the answer is closer than you think. But it sounds like you are having trouble seeing and finding it because you are still waiting for a star to point you in the right direction. Your purpose is there. It took well over three decades to find mine. And it wasn’t saving the world or making lots of money, it was so much simpler than that. My personal purpose is not even what gets me up in the morning, it is just something that fulfills me. Not my partner, not my friends, not my parents. My purpose is something I need that I turned into something more. If you need that purpose recognize that it might be small and without a lot of attention and Oscar buzz. It just might be something you want that you find a way to make. Don’t solve world problems. Find a way to solve that great question – what do you want?
Begin to believe, darling. Begin with small steps. And learn that your answers are the right ones. The messy isn’t going away. Stop trying to force it. Instead embrace who and what you are; and when the naysayers come calling- even those in your head- stick your tongue out at them and put your fingers in your ears. The road you are traveling is harder than anyone will ever know. But it is yours and should be celebrated for it’s uniqueness. None of this is easy or fair but start really small and just keep going. Please, for me, keep going.