It has been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. To me, this one is at least that – perhaps, it is my whole life story captured in an open mouth gaze at something I couldn’t keep my eyes off of which totally stunned me. It is not an emotion that is lost on me to this day. It is the very thing I seek in every moment of life, and quite often find. I want to be stunned, wrapt and totally in awe.
I have been pondering lately about what I would say if I could ever go back in time and tip myself off, knowing what I now know. It is, of course, a ridiculous notion, because no one in life gets that chance. It is silly, but I always tend to ponder the more obscure things in life. Maybe at some point it is worthwhile, because somewhere inside, that same person still lives. In my heart I believe that is the only person I want to be when I grow up. I like to believe that is true for almost everyone.
Life fascinates me. It fascinates me that at a very early age, you truly know yourself. You have no doubt in your talents, your abilities, or the things you love. You do not question them. You are not ever made to feel ugly or insecure about them – none of them feel strange. They come from what is inside you – a desire to express, understand and create your own identity as a human. Somewhere along the way, though, everyone else intervenes. Life isn’t about you, after all, you discover – it’s about you being purposeful and scoring well on tests and being compared to others. It’s about finding a direction, fitting into a mold, shrouding yourself in a title and taking on responsibility you never wanted and find no particular joy in. It’s about putting away your crayons and blank papers on which worlds wait to be created, instead to take notes in cursive form of a lecture on a topic which you struggle to find significance in.
I’ve always viewed these moments along the way as tasks, chores, to be completed so I can get back to being me. Something tantamount, perhaps, to an obstacle course which must be waded through for some arbitrary reason… I always thought that these things were merely that – impediments to be dealt with as expediently as possible, then brushed aside so you could get on living as yourself. It implies they are finite and have endpoints. I realized a while ago – they do not. Life is not designed that way. It is not intended for dreamers to have safe and quiet spots or artists to idle away hours looking at clouds and marvel at finding that dogs really do smile (and beautifully). Life has been engineered to a completely different wavelength. You aren’t meant to ever get back to being you. I’ve made it a point to buck that trend. I have clung with every fiber of strength, my entire life, to the one notion that I am not giving up that part of me, ever. I am not going to get lost in a shuffle.
Life is funny – I believe we miss so much about what we exist in – in addition to what we are. Everything has a frequency – a tune it vibrates to. The Tacoma Narrows bridge is a great example. When it failed it was because the wind caused it vibrate at its natural frequency and the bolts and cables weren’t strong enough to hold it together. It got so excited it just fell apart… Architects look at it as an example of a failure – I think it’s a brilliant illustration of why we live and the way we should seek to live… All of life is energy and vibrations, divine music. It is not silly or insane to feel a rapport or an incredible attraction to a stranger, a color, a scent, a breeze, or a daydream. I think they’re all the same at their essence. We’ve been slowly and purposely taught to dismiss these things and deal in ‘reality’ (which as best as I can tell, consists of mostly made up rules, regulations, expectations, ideals and a very, very, very minuscule band of visible electromagnetic radiation).
I have walked many strange paths in life, lost many things I’ve loved along the way, but none of them pain me in the way that losing myself would. I’ve learned so much, and so little. I’ve been amazed at how little you really need to know – you just need to listen, and watch and wonder and be awed, and never lose yourself, is all.