Then it all changed.
I’m not quite sure when, but it did.
We were all suddenly left bare in front of our limitations, of whatever never really worked but somehow was disguised by appearances, by habits and by human ability to pile up all the crap somewhere deep inside where hopefully it’ll stay ’till our last breath.
We must have buried so much of it and at such a depth that it’s literally exploded right in our faces with great violence, leaving most of us on their knees, crushed under the weight of so much pain.
Where did it all come from?
How do we raise back up, clean ourselves and move forward?
And mostly, can we get up and go back to what was familiar?
Life as we knew it will never be again and we have been dropped in front of the vastness of an unknown future we can’t even start to imagine because we have lost our certainties, structures and reference points.
In front of such emptiness we are lost.
Before our very eyes we have seen crumble the truths passed down from generation to generation leaving a desert of confusion and anger into our souls.
We never liked those truths, but they were what we knew and they made us feel safe.
They made us “belong”.
It didn’t matter if we felt that we didn’t fit in with our family (do you remember the times you thought “How on earth did I end up with this lot?”). Nor did it matter if we got stuck in a job that we hated with passion, or that we numbed ourselves with whatever was available in order to endure a tedious life.
We sensed that the dynamics of the structure our lives were built on were extremely unhealthy, still we chose not to see because we needed to be part of something bigger than ourselves.
And in our choice to belong we often felt the deepest loneliness.
No, we will not be able to go back to those truths but we can make new ones.
While we frantically look for a new meaning to our life, we are unable to find it because we are looking out there where our soul becomes empty.
Within ourselves our soul is full.
Full with a stillness, a silence so deep and so different from what we experience as we move through our day, a joy our exhausted mind struggles to comprehend.
So do we choose to be “Kings of pain” believing that meaning will never be found and that we are destined to be perennial black spots on the sun, obstructing the light we naturally are?
And if so, is our choice dictated by the distrust of a cruel life that gives us beauty while tearing our eyes out, preventing us to see the riches around?
Or do we pause and feel that silent stillness which belongs to our soul and which is what will lead us to a new way to be?
Do we choose to stop and smell the roses just because we can, or do we carry on showing our sorrow off to the whole world, almost proud of it because it became our second nature and…why trying to imagine a better future that may never be anyway?
And so, while you decide if this new life is worth living, look for that pain that is keeping you out there, where all the noise, the fears, the ugliness are and look at it straight in the eye.
Look at it and give it a name.
Look at it and tell your pain you don’t have answers because you don’t need questions.
And while you do so watch it to start looking different, like an old warrior too tired to fight.
This is the moment when your battered pain deserves your crown, for it brought you to where you are today.
“Yesterday I cried. I cried because my pain has left and I’m not yet used to its absence”
© Antonia Lyons
Art by Serge Solmoko & Christian Slo.
Antonia Lyons is a regular columnist at Being through balance and bliss you can check out her Holistic Life Coaching service on her website. Antonia also runs the fabulous blog ‘Bliss in the city’ and you can also follow her on twitter and facebook too!