Friday, October 17, 2014

The Reflection of Shadows: Despite the Walls You've Built

The Reflection of Shadows
A collection of moments

There's a certain wisdom that comes from living day after day, year after year, experience after experience. You cannot skip ahead to this place of knowing. The only path to it is a slow one, filled with the stepping stones of this thing called Your Life. The path moves forward as your knowledge continues to expand. As soon as you learn one lesson, it'll be time for you to learn another...and another...and another. 

From the time I was a teenager all the way up through my young adult years, I had to learn the art of Letting People In. If someone hurt me or if something went wrong, I knew all too well how to build a wall to keep them at just the right distance. This, I found, worked as much against me as for me. Over the years I can see the change in myself. The fortress collapsing, the walls coming down, the hope that others will bring down their walls too.

The Fortress
I live in a fortress, strong and powerful. Nothing and no one can get through its walls.
I have been here a long time.
I sit high up in a room with one window.
From here I can see for miles.
Below my window is a moat filled with venomous water snakes that circle the waters, day in and day out.
Surrounding the moat is a wall, thicker and taller than any wall created. A wall not meant to be overcome.
Beyond the wall is a field, long and wide, filled with invisible yet deadly mines.
Past the field is a fence, electrifying for those who dare touch it.
Outside of my fence is the world.
I see blurred images of people, love, hopes and dreams, fear and failure, waiting for me to let them in.
From my window I can see all of this, yet I do not want to leave or to allow them entry.
From my window I am safe from everyone and everything.
No one can reach me.

I live in a fortress, dark and cold. Nothing and no one can get in.
I have been here a long time.
I sit up high in a room with a window that has a view.
From my window I can see for miles.
I see a moat, murky and black. The snakes have drowned in its pity.
I see a wall, old and crumbling. The green of the vines breaching its cracks stands out against its dark palette.
I see a field overgrown with daisies.  The mines are old and rusted, weary from waiting to be set off.
I see a fence bending over, tired of being on guard. Empty of energy for shocking all who were brave enough to touch it.
Beyond my barriers I see the sun rise and fall.  I see colors. I see life.
I see chance, opportunity, dreams.
I see people.
They are waiting for me.
Even after the shock, the pain, and my determination to keep them out, they wait still.
From my window I see all of this and my heart aches.
No one can reach me.

I lived in a fortress where I grew lonely and bored.
Nothing and no one could ever get in.
So I had to walk out.
I lowered my drawbridge to cross over my now empty moat.
I climbed over the broken stones of my wall that had crumbled.
I walked through my field picking daisies, burying mines, covering
them with mounds and mounds of flowers.
I walked to my fence that was no longer whole, no longer intact.
I saw the people outside waiting for me.
I felt the sun on my skin, the wind in my hair.
I took a breath and I climbed over, walking to them and to everything I had kept out.

I once lived in a fortress, big and tall.
I sat in a room with a window where I looked out at the beauty of the world, the adventures of life.
I had walls to protect me from this beautiful world because I was afraid.
I let my passion be overcome by fear and I let fear take me.
I longed for the golden rays of sunshine on my skin, the essence of flowers in the air, the feeling of being alive.
I began to fade away for the lack of living and I became a shadow in my fortress until one day, one day, when I finally realized…
I had built myself a prison.

I'm Here

Despite the walls you've built, I'm here.

You don't have to disappear.

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