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.