Wrote this during the last 4 months of traveling »
We create the path where our minds wander.
Where they go, our actions follow. What our actions create, or don’t create, is what our lives become. So I try to take the time to explore my landscape. To walk inside the boundaries that I built for myself.
I pass hill after hill of easily accomplished goals, built on shiny rewards that never seem to satisfy. I pass should haves holding hands with the perfect excuse for why they must remain in this land of missed opportunities. I follow them towards a landfill of ideas that were never executed and watch as they fall in like lemmings.
Staring at what might have worked turn into you’ll never know, I get a new type of worry – am I just moseying through my story without ever reaching the climax? The unfolding plot of my life is feeling a bit boring. Maybe I should stop reading this book and start a more interesting one.
I feel like my brain has no reception here. It can't receive the messages my heart is trying to send to it. I need to find a place with a better signal.
This thought sparks a flame casting just enough light to reveal a new trail. One that ends at the massive walls that surround this entire landscape.
The first step feels like a relief.
I don’t hate this place, it just got old. Like the repeat button got stuck on a song I used to like. I hear it all day everyday and now I’m just numb to it. I think of it as the familiar melody that protects me from the countless horrible songs that could play next if I hit shuffle.
As I get closer to the edge, I hear the echos of a new tune in the distance. I feel my curiosity taking over and a frenzied desire to go to the other side of the wall. To reach for something that I’m not sure I can grasp. To live where I’m breakable. Where I have less control, less comfort, less support but more passion, more surprise and more possibility.
Standing face to face with the wall I can see it’s made out of doubts, fears and insecurities. Held together by a need to preserve this psychological dome that protects me from having to feel these emotions.
This need is fading. And the more vulnerable I am, the weaker the wall becomes.
I lean down to read a tiny sticker on the edge of the wall – “Break in case of emergency”. A nice little reminder that I created these boundaries and therefor I have the ability to destroy them.
As this awareness sinks in, the walls begin to crumble. I can see lifes endless possibilities emerging on the other side. I know that it’s time to leave the hills behind and head for the mountains. It’s time to go beyond my will.
As I step over what was once an impenetrable wall, the pain in my stomach turns into a tingle. My entire being is awakened. I feel like I’m in the heart of a wild but surprisingly pleasant storm. Like unexpected torrential downpour on an unbearably hot day.
Looking at the mountains in the distance, I feel like I’m staring deep into someone’s eyes. It feels intimate and intense. Like behind the horizon there is something living and that something is staring back at me.
I can sense there is risk ahead. I wonder why am I here? Why not relax in the comfortable life that I built? I guess it’s because I know that what lies ahead holds the answers to much more important questions. Questions like, “what do I want to become?” and “am I capable of becoming that?”
My only plan is to avoid the urge to make a plan. I threw away my to-do list. I loosened my grip on life. I'm letting go of what I don’t believe in and grabbed a hold of what feels right. What makes my heart race and my eyes light up. I no longer feel guilty when I do nothing. And the tired notion that I’m falling short of something has finally left the forefront of my thinking.
My future is now shapeless.
Life is beginning to feel like a long boat ride in the middle of the ocean with no compass. Unanchored, always in movement, always in transition, completely detached from the invulnerability of a shore.
As answers slowly break into the locked portals in my mind, I feel certain about one thing – the quintessential future I’ve always been after would have never been as radiant and exciting as my current life.
Photos » @iamyali