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Facing the Unknown

Updated on February 26, 2013

The unknown seems bigger than the universe. She wonders what is waiting around that next turn in the road. It feels ominous, dark and – foreboding. The apprehension is holding her prisoner, not allowing the creative thoughts to push through.

She is always aware; aware of her body and her mental state. But, it is clear to her that she is off her game. She feels heavy and sad and almost lost in the shadow of all that is closing in. Again, she wonders, what is it? What is this torrential grayness that is raining down?

Over the last few days, she has used all her energy on things that seemed important. Sleep was never a problem for her but in the last few days, sleep has come in short spurts. Her mind simply will not slow down long enough for sleep to come. Reminding herself that she is strong and in charge of what she allows in her space, she makes a decision. She will change her routine today. She won’t force the creative processes that have fueled her for the past few months. Instead, she will lose herself in the mundane and take some time to just be. There must be a way to let the light in so that she can find her way back. Change, that’s it, that’s what she needs.

She always looks for confirmation of her feelings and so she turned to an old resource, her journals of quotations. They have never failed to satisfy her questions when life feels like the finely woven web of the spider. Turing page after page, her eyes sought the words that would lift her back into that place of comfort and knowing. She begins to read aloud –

Quotes on The Unknown

  • “Faith and doubt both are needed - not as antagonists, but working side by side to take us around the unknown curve.” - Lillian Smith

  • Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.”George Patton

  • Everyone who achieves success in a great venture solves each problem as they came to it. They helped themselves. And they were helped through powers known and unknown to them at the time they set out on their voyage. They keep going regardless of the obstacles they met.” – W. Clement Stone

  • "There are things known, and there are things unknown, And in between are the Doors." ~ Jim Morrison

  • “Neverbe afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” - Corrie Ten Boom

And finally –

  • “The key to the mystery of a great artist is that for reasons unknown, he will give away his energies and his life just to make sure that one note follows another... and leaves us with the feeling that something is right in the world.”- Leonard Bernstein

That’s when she knew. The answer to what she was feeling was to do what she loved – write about it.

She had made a decision not to write today. She felt she needed a break; a chance to recharge and refresh. She needed to step away for a bit, just to see this obsession from a different place. Or, so she thought.

As she started to write, it occurred to her that the problem was not within her. The problem was that she had allowed external forces to bombard her.

The Storm: There is a hurricane brewing in the Atlantic Ocean and it looks like a bad one. The news is flashing warning after warning of black outs, sustained winds, flooding and it worries her. She has friends on the coast. Some have already lost everything to these storms. Others have weathered the storms but she cannot help but worry about their safety. She worries about family. It is her job, she thinks.

Politics: The temperature of the political climate is rising. Her friends and family are divided on what is best for our country. She has made her decision and hopes it is the right one. Her heart is heavy over what she sees happening in this country she loves. Her people are suffering and worried about jobs and health care and putting food on the table. Some no longer have a table. It weighs heavy on her.

Death: It happens. She knows that. But she has reached an age where it happens frequently to people she has known and loved. In weeks past she has lost some friends she was not prepared to lose. They weren’t supposed to go first. And she wonders, why them? Why not me?

Being empathic has never been easy but she learned at an early age to accept it. Friends often asked her why she cared so much and her answer was always the same – “because it’s who I am”. Empaths care about everyone and everything and, they not only feel the struggles of the world emotionally, but it sometimes becomes a physical pain too. Even in its grip, she would not change it. She has never wanted to be the kind of person who didn’t care, even if it hurt a little to care so much. Even if it hurt a lot to care so much.

Well, “she” is “me”.

And now that I have reached into my bag of tricks (my quotation journals) and put my feelings to paper, it is as clear as the air on a sunny Spring morning. Over the past few days, I have empathically felt the division in our country. I have sensed the anger and hostility of the Republicans and Democrats and Libertarians. I have talked to friends who are worried about their next meal while millions of dollars are being spent on campaign ads and rhetoric. The worry of another large storm battering the country and leaving those who are already in pain without electricity or water weighs heavy on my soul and I wonder, how much more can they take? The loss of some friends to death is never easy. Friendships are a special gift and when we lose our friends, they leave a hole in our hearts. The hole will heal but it takes time and at my age, time has become more precious with each passing day. You see, I love life. I love my friends and family. I love this silly, empathic person I am because being her allows me to “feel” and I’d rather live one more day with these feelings than to live another lifetime without.

The unknown – is just that and so it will remain. With understanding, comes acceptance. There will always be unknowns and I will face them with as much courage as I can muster. But in the end, it is about faith and that I have. All is well. You might consider this therapeutic writing as indeed it has been. Allowing ourselves to walk through the door (as Jim Morrison describes) can bring us to that place of understanding. When the forces of the universe seem insurmountable, the power of creativity and faith can sustain us until the storm has passed. All is well.

© 2012 Linda Crist, All rights reserved.

Read more of my hubs here.


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