It is possible, that the answer to a question of what to do, has a simpler, easier, almost impossible answer of what not to do, and that is why it is harder to hear. For any decision there is a risk to be wrong, to be clouded by the judgement of the voice in our head that was not spoken by us, but by a chorus of other voices along the way that believed they knew that what was best for us was the same as what was best for them. The choice becomes less to choose and more to convince–to right the path of someone who believes they can see ahead of you, and in doing, fail to see you at all.
I have been guilty of this, as we all have perhaps, with my children, my friends, the people I work beside, those who I have taught in front of classrooms and over internet lines, and for that I feel regret, and am sorry. I have seen what is behind me, and told them it was what was ahead of them. That is just not true. The truth is I knew nothing and yet believed everything.
What I have been doing in this life is just enough to do what I dream of, and just not enough for it be a risk, to avoid humiliation–to walk that thin chalk line of who I hide in order to be who I have always been. To move forward bigger, to dust that chalk line out with the scuff of my shoes would be to risk it all, the carefully drawn map of where I can be found–to risk someone saying I need to pick up my feet.
I have taken the key to opportunity, ran to the door, looked in and then leaned away and waited to find the voice that tells me to step back –that’s not the way. Do what you must, but do just enough, do not do it all.
It hasn’t been what I have been doing, no–I am too skilled at checking my steps, watching my words, never promising too much, too fast. It is what I have not done. Not risked. Not said. Not dared.
Until now. Now when something is ending I can sense it, and I do not need to convince anyone, not the voices in my head, or the voices around me. Now when something is beginning I can sense it, and I can wait on my own, knowing that what is coming, is coming for me, not us. Not together–just one life, living one day, saying yes and no in measure, without predicting what might happen because of what has happened. Knowing that I do not know for you, and you do not know for me.
I can’t let what other people want be what I want. I can’t let someone else’s truth be mine just because I can see their point. I can do both, see and be seen. Say yes and say YES! Walk to the door, and walk through.
I write because I love to write, and I don’t write often because I don’t want it to be annoying, for me to be annoying. I don’t want to be misunderstood, unclear, clouded by questioning. For me to be humiliated. Now that is true. What is also true is I do not need to believe that. A voice is just a voice, but my life is real, and it matters, it means something.
To walk through that door, to see beyond the frame, is to not only do, but to stop doing. To write, and stop not writing. To maybe be humiliated, but to do what I want to do, anyway.