Tag Archives: blindfold

Dropping a Rope Ladder into the Dark

Sometimes the loudest cries don’t make a sound.

Sometimes a helping hand gets slapped away.

Sometimes the reluctance to engage should be ignored.

Sometimes people just need to feel heard.

Sometimes it gets dark…very dark.

These days I have found myself at the base of a conundrum. There are a few vitally important individuals in my life who appear to be struggling with weighted shoulders and bleak prospects, whether concrete or concocted, and I’m not exactly sure how to be of service.

Everyone possesses a unique web of mental wiring, and this is certainly not a “one-size-fits-all” situation. Whatever has caused the drop—situational/lifestyle circumstances, chemical shifts, etc.—is something specific to the individual and should be approached with care, concern, and respect.

It is difficult to see the light when you’re drowning in the dark, and no amount of positivity or forced perspective about future prospects does much to impact the present. There’s no value in describing the colors of a sunset to someone wearing a blindfold. The goal must be to meet them where they’re stuck, grab some shovels, and start digging. Eventually, a few rays of sunlight will penetrate the cracks.

It hurts my heart to know that my friends are suffering. We live in a world where it’s easy to feel bombarded by expectations or to sink in the mud of unrealized aspirations. We are shown a picture-perfect, Photoshopped world of flawless smiling faces and successful peers knocking one feat or adventure after another off their carefully curated bucket lists while we look at old photos and wonder where the last decade disappeared. But when feeling bummed becomes feeling lost, it’s time to intervene.

There is not a manual for this sort of thing, and it may take stubbing some toes into bedposts before we find the clearest path. But our loved ones who have drawn the curtains and pulled the shades are not being subtle…even if they think they’re wearing a good disguise. We see through the slits on the side of that molded mask and we know it’s not your face.

I’ll bring the shovels. Please let me help you dig.

Adolescence Interrupted

Advertisements

Pendulum Swings

photo (5)We are all walking on a wire.

There is an overarching sense that we are safe and secure, our affairs are in order, and those we care about are sliding through life unscathed. We tend to the duties of the day, accepting that sunsets follow rush hours and cars quietly return to driveways. We view health as something in stasis, and radical deviations from these anticipated paths sit just outside our realm of belief.

Locked in the microcosm of immediate thoughts, results, and gratifications, we blindly throw darts and hope for bullseyes.

But, as Mr. Newton noted, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Now, if we bowed under the weight of this awareness on a daily basis, we’d be fast-tracked to insanity. We can’t sit in the car thinking about what happens when the driver in the opposite lane spills hot coffee on his lap. It would make life impossible to live. We would be reduced to gun shy shut-ins, compulsively petting cats and studying DEFCON levels.

But, that doesn’t mean we should strap on the blindfold, secured with a Palomar, and start stumbling into walls. As with everything, a careful balance needs to be found. It’s part acceptance and part defiance, and these two opposing forces don’t normally play nicely in the sandbox.

The world is not built on level roads. Aim for greatness, but keep an eye on the edge. Even when there’s room to fly, winds will inevitably change. Build a safety net before you leap, or someone will have to catch you when you fall.