I blind my eyes and try to force it all into place,
I stitch them up, see not my fall from grace.
I blind my eyes, I hide and feel it passing me by.
I open just in time to say goodbye.
—from “That Was Just Your Life” by Metallica
The New Year finds me at or near the end of a long, underground tunnel where I’ve spent months digging through muck, gathering nuggets and gems, and seeking the light that I hoped I knew must be at the end.
It was both an exercise in faith and a lesson about faith. It sucked, horribly—but it was a profoundly meaningful experience for me. I recently arrived at the end of that particular tunnel, and it takes a little while for my eyes to adjust to the newfound light again.
But it isn’t all about me. I’m just the guy writing and sharing, the guy who has gone inside and plumbed his own depths a little and told others what he found down there. I’m not a bottom-dweller, but I think that to ride the river it helps to know where the rocks are. You can see them a lot better underneath the surface.
If my words seem to be loaded with heaviness or melancholy or “sludge,” it’s only because my time below has been so recent. Like a miner who emerges from a long day’s work, a nice shower and some rest makes everything better and shinier again.
I don’t intend to live in the darkness of pain and suffering. In fact, I’ve emerged from it now anyway. At this point, I’ve reformed my inner world so that it’s more in harmony with Life. Now I’m taking steps toward celebrating life again.
And I’ll share that part of the journey, too. Why? Because I don’t see anybody else doing it in quite the same way.
Like I said, it’s not about me. It doesn’t matter what I have endured to reach a point of greater understanding. All that matters is that we learn from our experiences and don’t get dragged down (emotionally) by life experiences we can’t control.
My life is the same as yours: a function of the Universe, a point of Consciousness, a lesson, a wave to be ridden for all it’s worth. And to go back out and ride again and again and again.
I’m not special. I just learned in 2008 to surrender to the Will of…Whatever You Want To Call It.
And you got to have a ringside seat.
(written in 2009)