Courageous or cowardly.
Free or enslaved.
Unique or generic.
Truthful or false.
Hardworking or lazy.
Celebratory or covetous.
Supportive or envious.
This list continues to the horizon and wraps itself around the earth infinitely. We are always choosing. How you choose to be will follow you no matter where you go, no matter how far you run. We make our beds and then we lay in them; we sleep soundly on the smooth spots and feel our hip bones dig into the rumples as our legs stretch and cramp to span the rifts.
We sow our seeds and watch what grows.
And each of us lives with consequence and we all bear the burden and bliss of lessons in our hearts.
So much murk is coming clear for me in work, in my relationships, in my conscience. I am learning. Slowly and surely. I’m old enough now to recognize there is a lesson in everything if you root through the details enough, if you take the time to earnestly seek the truth. I’m not so much a coward to disown my wrong living and wrongdoing in this life. I try to turn around and face it as courageously as I can, fix it if I might, forsake the actions and thoughts that led me to a bad place or to hurt others. I do my best not to run, not from anything.
I have a firm grip on the concepts of justice and compassion right now. These two things are vastly different from revenge and pity. I’m thankful I chose one path and not the other, as hard as that choice was, at times.
A notion that surfaces daily here is the idea that we are all responsible for the state of our own souls. We all have a metallic compass spinning round in our hearts and minds, we act according to our conscience, or against our conscience, every moment of every day.
People cry out, “Do not judge me!” But the truth is, we have already judged ourselves; the guilt and shame lays waste to our hearts and minds. Why not be free of it? Why not own it all, your successes and your failures as a human, so that you can move forward and do your very best once more?
Is there something about yourself you cannot stand, something you feel shameful about? Own it. Fully. Walk away from it every moment of every day. Choose to be differently. Watch yourself change and feel yourself grow.
I want to cloak myself in light which means I must peel myself away from the darkness, again and again.
Big things happen in life, in work. Sometimes I feel afraid, I wonder if I am in over my head, I wonder if I am worthy of it all, I wonder if I am capable of excelling brilliantly at the jobs given to me. I never pretend to know what I am doing. More often than not, I say yes and then I wing it — figure it out as I go along. I’m never too proud to ask for help. I’m never insecure about the degree of my experience, I am upfront about it, believing with all my heart that if I wasn’t truly wanted for the work, I would not have been chosen. I trust myself to find my way and when I feel lost, I look to the light, walk out in the dark of morning to remember the North Star where it sits spinning on the just fingertip of God.
I tell my friends my fears and they remind me of everything I know I am, deep in my heart.
We all know what we are, deep in our hearts. Sometimes we aren’t able to voice the truth of the matter yet, or we have forgotten ourselves, or if it’s an awful part of ourselves, we’ve repressed the thorny truth in some dank corner of our minds, but it’s always there, the knowing.
We improve ourselves or we don’t; we grow, or we don’t.
I trust in the work of my hands, in the place it comes from.
I trust myself.
I will never feel the need to wake up in the morning and crawl into the skin of another, to proceed pretendingly, to waste myself. There is no meaning for me in any of this if it doesn’t truly come from me.
I will use my own sight, I will use my own thoughts, I will use my own words.
Even when I feel scared, I will work my truest and hardest, clear my throat, lift my chin and allow that bright thing that is only mine to share to rise up from me, ride through the tunnel of my chest and mouth into the sky and rest there like a constellation and not fade away.