Rising from beneath: April 2021 NaPoWriMo, Day two

Today’s prompt is inspired by Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken.” It’s based on our own personal journeys. What might our experiences be if we took a different path?

No matter how many times I wanted or tried to veer from the path I was on, I wasn’t able to. Having travelled this far, I realize I don’t want to have taken a route other than the one I’ve been on.


People. My children and my grandchildren might not exist. Or, if they did, they wouldn’t be who they are. I wouldn’t have or know the people in my life, not the way they are now.

My life has always been challenging and full of stress. It’s made who I am. There’s more work to be done. I like who I’m becoming.

Rising from Beneath

I was told I could be anything I wanted…
But I wasn’t taught how and
I never met anyone who was.

I was told that if I had knowledge I would have power.
Helplessness was all I knew…
despite my accumulated information

I was told, “Aim high! Shoot for the stars.”
From my depths my aim was as high as other’s low.
I shot just to see the stars.

Years of climbing, fighting, struggling
Always landing back in the hole
Anchored by the trauma of my past.

Cycles of poverty and neglect,
Generations repeating the past.
Lord, let me be the last.

Breaking through, crawling out
Eyes blinded by daylight
Skin scorched by the sun.

Someone (not Churchill) admonished one and all,
“if you’re going through hell, keep going. It’s no place to stop.”
no longer energized, yet, here I am…still going.

I think it’s a good fight. It’s been a hard one.
Redemption, restoration, rebuilding
Self and relationships once lost.

Constantly feeling weak and lost
Continually infused with life’s breath,
Molded by refining love.

But wait, there’s more…so much more
Five decades to grow up.
Here’s hoping for another 3-5.

New battles rise up,
New fears to face.
The war against self goes on.

More to see, more to be.
My future resides with me.
My path lives in me.


Holding pattern or avoidance?

I think I’m in a holding pattern, a pause in my cycle of depression, contemplation, activity, and frenetic thinking.  It’s only taken me 42.5 years to recognize that it is part of who I am and how I’m wired. Go figure.  I’m the person who’s always caught off-guard when the same thing happens around the same time of every month with the same preliminary signs that I failed to observe, recognize, or comprehend.  And people have called me smart, intuitive, and wise. Ha!  So, for me to actually identify this phase, for lack of a better word, as a pause in my cycle of being me, seems like progress to me.

What’s different?

Well, writing in this blog for starters.  My first posting here actually occurred on December 15, 2011 (Any posts dated prior to that were previously written elsewhere and imported with the original date/time they were written).  The first two weeks were consistent, prolific, and timely.  There was a missed day, but quickly got back on track.  Then there were a few days when I was dealing with emotions, thoughts, and relationships in the “real” world and didn’t write at all, kind of stalling out.  Followed by a brief stutter, and then there’s been an absence for the past several days.  Not exactly a void and certainly not “nothing,” but more like a cessation of movement on multiple levels.

During this pause, I’ve been reading some writings of others – personal & anecdotal blogs of others journeying through recovery, mental/emotional/physical health issues and trying to make sense of who they are and what their experiences have been, as I am.  I’ve also read some therapeutic and informational blogs and articles about those same subjects.  I even read an actual book – nothing profound or literary, just innocuous, generic, and g-rated romantic fiction.  All the while, simmering in the back of my mind has been the last meeting my son and I had, where he was sharing his recent “conversion experience” (again, for lack of a better phrase) and offering his experience, strength and hope to me.  Meanwhile, the difficulties and challenges in my day-to-day life: relationship, parenting, physical/mental health symptoms/ailments, have been continuing along, as life tends to do.

After being deep in the throes of depression, anxiety, and hopelessness, this place where I’m at right now seems kind of pleasant, almost idyllic…but that isn’t the correct word either.  I think there may be a couple of things going on here.

1) Absorption – I think I had done a lot of “navel gazing” and “facing the facts” about myself, my motivations, and my character defects, along with a lot of information gathering about various diagnoses, disorders, addictions, and compulsions, and that my mind/body have shut down into a “digestion” mode.

2) Avoidance – As much as I want to be changed, I’m not sure I’m fully ready/able to make the full-on commitment and I suspect there’s an unwillingness to take the risks necessary to do the things I suspect I will have to do, and make the sacrifices I will need to make in order to affect the change that’s needed in order for me to actually progress beyond this point.  I hate admitting that.

I think I’ll leave it at that, for now.  I know there’s more to come and I also know that this phase, be it holding pattern or avoidance or both, won’t last forever.  So, I’m just going to breathe and trust that God is carrying me through this, just as I’ve been being carried through the rest of it.