A beautiful song by Hayden called "More than Alive". A song and a lyric that struck me deeply during a difficult time.
The lyrics seemed to sing my feelings. I felt alone and isolated, lost. I too wondered what I would say to myself if I had that opportunity. I remember that person. Young but sad. Sad but still dreaming of a big world out there offering so much more. Hope lived and breathed and spun through his imagination. He could be anything, do anything, he would escape, he would find his love and happiness out there somewhere. He did escape, or at least he thought he did. It seems we are bound to repeat the ills of our life until we accept them and move beyond. So he spun his wheels in circle after circle. Confused, unsure what he'd done wrong. How could things always be the same? He had escaped. He lied to himself. He told himself everything was okay. He set it aside and pushed ever onward, time and time again. There would eventually come a time where the push would escape him. Everything would in a brief instant in time, shatter before his eyes. Everything that he'd worked so hard to build, so hard to ignore, would all come crashing down. The single most painful experience of his life.
Would I tell him? Would I lie and say it'll be alright? Would I keep his dreams alive in that moment? I've lost those dreams. I've learned instead to live in each moment. Day by day, hour by hour, moment by moment. Doing my best to let go of the moment before and be ever present where I am. I wish I could say I've gotten here out of some inspirational and enlightened effort but the truth is it was out of necessity. The moment was all I was left with. My hope was gone, my trust was gone, my dreams were gone. Simply getting through another day was a triumph. Making it to my bed where I could curl up under the covers with my dogs was the only place I wanted to be. For that brief moment I could be free. No one to hurt me. I could choose my dreams and I could find peace as I fell asleep. Peace was all I wanted, all I needed, all I desired. A struggle that would last years. I couldn't tell him. I can't tell him.
Could he have seen his way to the realizations I wouldn't find until much later? Could I have explained it all to him? Could he have made better choices? the ones I make now? The simple answer is no. If he could have made different choices he would have. He already knew everything he needed to know. Everything I know. He simply wouldn't accept it. Nothing I could say would have changed that for him. He would have to find the answers on his own. Pain would be his silent and continuous companion and nothing I could say would change that.
But he is me. I'm not there anymore. I did escape. I could have crumbled. I could have fell to the same pieces my life had become, but I didn't. I made it through. I won't say it was easy or that I rose immediately strong and triumphant. There are still days where I want nothing more than to hermit away under my covers and never come out. They are fewer and further between now but they stay with me, a constant friend and reminder of how far I have come. I created my own little world of safety around myself. I pictured it as this invisible dome that always followed me everywhere I went. Within it were all my feelings, my friends, my safety. It started with just my bed and there it stayed for a long time. I was safe there, I was free there. I didn't care if the rest of the world collapsed around me as long as I had that peace. Slowly though my bubble grew. Not out of necessity, not out of desire. It grew on its own. I was embarking on a new journey to discover who I am, to experience me! I set no goals, no visions. I still have no dreams and my life exists only in the day, in the moment I am in. There is nothing else for me. Maybe that sounds sad to you, it certainly did to me at first. Yet there is freedom in those words, peace in that life. It frees me from all that chained me down before. Everything that kept me spinning in circles disappears, at least for a moment. If it all ended tomorrow or now I'd be content. I would know I did my best to get to know who I am. I don't need a purpose or a destiny, all I need is to feel and experience the world as me. I don't need to jump out of a plane everyday, I can experience me in all the little details of life. Each day a myriad of new experiences to feel, to discover. Good, bad or somewhere in between, I learn. All I need to do is let myself be there and feel. The next moment brings new opportunity. Some moments cling to others, some travel with me over many more, but there is always a new one just a moment away.
I would lie. There is nothing else I could do. I would smile. Likely smirk a bit at the clothing and hair style and those glasses! I'd admire the youth and the innocence and the energy. I'd smile and say its all going to be alight, more than alight. I imagine that would be more than good enough for him. He'd simply smile back and turn and leave. I'd watch, a smile still on my face. Excited for the adventure he was embarking on. Proud at how well he would do despite all that would be done to him. I wouldn't want to leave. I'd want to linger there and feel for a while longer, the warmth and innocence. But another moment is waiting here for me. My journey just started? almost complete? I don't know and it doesn't matter one bit. Where it goes or where it ends I feel I'm on the right path. I'm on the only path there has ever been. I've found it, it's me. I'll follow it, not knowing what sits around the next corner but knowing I will be alright, more than alright, more than alive.