January 31, 2011

The Long, Steep and Rocky Road

It's another gray morning.

As sleep fades, my mind awakens, ramping up the swirling that has been my life for the past four months.

No one can truly understand the emotional journey that others travel.  Only the traveler can feel the heart race, the blood pound, the cold sweat and the debilitating despair that a dark, difficult season can evoke.  Very few words of comfort or counsel can deflect the anxiety and hopelessness that is the result of circumstances just out of reach of our control.

Grief.  Recently, I heard someone say that grief is a love word.  I would agree with that; deep, heartfelt grief only comes at the loss of loved ones, ones that are such a part of our identity that their leaving rips a hole so deep in our spirit that we will never be the same.  Never.

And that leads me to consider attachment...again.  Somehow, I want to think that we are in control of what we 'attach' ourselves to, but I'm beginning to suspect that we have no choice in the matter.  People enter our lives by the hand of the Almighty, and He alone determines the bonds created, maintained...sustained.  I suppose some are stronger than I to sever those bonds at will.  I have done that very thing in the past and very well know what ghosts are left behind.  Unanswered questions, unresolved situations.

Perhaps it's just my age speaking.  Being middle-aged, I've mellowed considerably from the fresh ambition and reckless drive of my youth.  I now see the consequences clearer prior to the decision, similar to the toddler that touches the hot stove after the warning.  That's not to say that the consequences are always easy to see...far from it.  As I tumble end over end from the choices made, by both myself and others, I marvel at how quickly things can become tangled, seemingly unfixable.

Words bounce around in my head.  Words like choices and motivation.  Apologies and repentance.  Loyalty and honesty.  Intent.

A long road.  And, what is it that drives the hiker to continue up the steep, rocky path?  I suppose it is the hope that at the top they will be rewarded with a sweeping, breathtaking view of creation that few get the privilege of experiencing.  On the path, however, the hiker does not know how long the steep path will be or if he will be able to endure it - taking the word of others that have gone before as to what awaits them at the top.  Taking it on faith.

Would it be too cocky to get my camera ready? 

Perhaps.



6 comments:

Ari C'rona said...

I'm once again on that oh, so difficult trail struggling with every breath to make the next step, not knowing how much longer or if I'd even be able to put my foot forward just one more time...

I hear your voice behind me gently urging me on, encouraging, speaking metaphor after metaphor as my mind screams 'I hear you! Stop!'.

Then, we turn around, not having reached the end at all... but sweet relief and hope propel me back down to a place of rest...

YourBrother said...

You write so beautifully, I'm envious of your ability to choose words to match your thoughts.

I can spout ideas and try to match them to elementary things so others can grasp them. But it would be easier if I could express them in a more literary way like you.

You help me to understand your feelings. I'm grateful whenever there is something I can offer to help in your relief. So here goes.

Heading in the right direction in life is not hard to determine. When you find yourself "cruising", by that I mean everything seems to fall into place or too easy, then it is time to look for what is not happening to add to you as a person. On the other hand, try not to despair when things seem difficult or inhibiting. This is usually a sign that you are improving your life and learning new ways. Like the health gurus are always saying, "No pain, no gain." That is basically a right idea.

Don't get me wrong, I don't mean that everything is life is meant to be a struggle. I do feel though that we should be meeting some emotional resistance every day to know we are moving upward rather than sliding backward. Who knows, maybe part of that forty days Moses spent on Sinai was just getting to the top and down again. :-)

The Buddhists say that to draw pleasure from life we need to pause frequently along the upward trail and take in the surrounding beauty. That is what I'm doing here today in your blog. I invite you to do the same.

Peace, my friend!

Mama Cache said...

I've told you before that sometimes I make it to these comment boxes with so little words though my heart is so very full. This is one of those days.

Happens when I pray at times. I think, "Lord, thank you for knowing what I can't even say."

Thank you, too, my friend -- because I think you know those wordless thoughts of mine today.

Jedi-J said...

I would like to say...I am totally out of the loop here by missing all your blogs! I click on your name and it says the last blog was weeks ago. I didn't believe this to be true so I came here to investigate myself and sure enough the feed was wrong! So yeah...I am being driven nuts LOL.

Anyhow...I'd like to say my office door is open any time you wanna talk! I sure could use some counseling from you oh wise master! Remember the carrot has been hanging for a while and probably isn't going to taste good when you are allowed to finally eat it. ;-)

Jedi-J said...

One more thing...that rocky passage way kind of looks like a former brook to me. Was it?

Hendel D'bu said...

Since I got this photo off the web, I'm not positive if it is a dry creek bed or not; however, we have a lot of trails around here that look like that. They certainly become little creeks when the rain is especially heavy :-)

I'm thinkin' it's is not a creek bed due to how the sides appear...there would be silt and other debris if it were. *shrug*