To Oppose the Pause


Photo taken in Angkor Wat, Cambodia, 2012

Stop. Stop right there. 
If you wish for it to make sense, the quickest way to do things is to stop. Sensibility demands precision; precision demands pause. But if you pause, that is surely the quickest way to leaving everything to non-completion. Because, as you know, once you pause, that is when the creeping feeling of fear and anxiety and self-loathing comes in, that thought wherein you wonder: am I good enough? Am I worth it? Do I deserve anyone’s attention? 

And so you hem and haw, and then you put down your pen, or turn off your laptop–and suddenly the quiet comes to be filled by the thoughts in your head that suffocate you in the middle of the night. These are the thoughts that constantly battle within you, that only once in a strange night such as this dissipate, as if a light slices through the dark and leads you to a path. 

Here. Go here. At the end is where you want to go.

And so you take the first step. One, two. Your feet like a toddler finding its way, with hesitation. You go forward, and as you gain your balance you break into a smile. I can make it! I can make it, you scream inside. The light beckons and you are almost there. You can feel the warmth of the light on your face. The morning sun at the break of dawn. 

Something new: a beginning.

But the drop falls in the middle of the silent water,  creating ripples: 

You can’t. Stop. Stop right there.

And then you remember the many times you’ve failed. You remember the many times you’ve been rejected. The fear and the worry and the anger echoes, bouncing off the walls, getting louder. You lose your balance, and you reach for the ground. You curl into a whorl going inside, eternally pulling yourself back within, where nothing can harm, where nothing can hurt you further.

Stop. Stop right there.

You’re seeking precision, a precision like a knife that cuts perfectly into fat and muscle and bone–each part identified with little pointers that tell you what things are so easily.  Where everything is comfortably knowable. 

But what you really must know is you need to learn to go.

You need to learn to let go. 

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