Soul Searching... in the dark with out a flashlight.
Soul searching... something I believe everyone does from time to time. It is normally brought on by an event or situation that has left one wondering who they are and perhaps, why they are even here. When you soul search, how far and how deep you look is a choice. You may find yourself going back to the origin of your darkness and opening doors you had shut for a reason. Opening them might remind you really quickly Why you did close them in a closet of your soul. Be careful which doors you open because they do not always re-close as easily as they opened.
I stood outside, a very slight breeze blowing, and I looked up in to the darkness. The only light was that of the stars the peppered the sky. A mist stretched across the half-moon, blanketing the moon as if to keep it warm. Somewhere in the distance I could hear an owl, it's sound echoing in my ear, asking me "Who" I was. The train tracks, less than a mile away guided the midnight train in to town. Three blows of it's horn, one long and two short, told me it was passing through town, not intending on stopping. The sound of it's wheels riding the track reminded me of machine that punched out metal stars, soon to be Sherriff's badges for a young boy, dreaming of being the quickest gun in the west. The brakes on the train, as it slowed down, sound like a steel grinder, it's welder grinding the edges off of a metal sheet. Ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk went the wheels over the tracks.
I took all of the sounds in and memories flooded my mind. Some of them were of happy times, when as a child, we stopped at a motel for the night. The then neon lights flickered as if they were going to suddenly go dark and the sound of a trains whistle resonated through our room. I smiled as I listened to the lonely call of the train and watched the neon sign proclaiming there was room at the motel by illuminating the room with the word "Vacancy." I thought about past loves and people that had come in to my life, some only for a season, yet they left a forever impression in my soul. My life has been good and yet, here I sit, inflicted with a disorder that drags me in to an abyss that few see and fewer can imagine.
The owl's question comes back to me. "Who" am I? What kind of a man am I? I love with a passion and give all that I am to anyone that needs a smile. I know that I would go without that another could eat or be warm. A man that has been blessed more than any man deserves and seen love deeper than the deepest ocean and still, the darkness has it's way with me. I open a door, locked for a very long time and it is like a painting being created piece by piece in front of me. I do not see the artist but know in my heart that it is me that welds the brush. Things I have done, people I have loved and hurt, moments of selfishness and times of pure selflessness, coupled together as one. I think of the "bad guy" dressed in black from head to toe, his pointed boots dusty from a long ride. I see him and somehow know that inside of him is good. The circustances of life hav clothed him but not taken over his soul. He walks slowly, the sound of his spurs jingle, and he knows that people see only the outside of him. This is my world of soul searching.
I have loved and been loved, hurt and been hurt but my heart stays ever true to giving what I have to give. I see the skeltons that hang silently in the closet of my soul. I turn away, tears in my eyes, knowing that they hang there because I made them. I look up to the sky and whisper "I am so sorry I hurt you" to a love that knows no sorrow or darkness for she is now in heaven. I pray that she hears the sound of my whispers and that in heaven, she has found forgiveness for hurting her. I watch as the painting becomes a book. The book contains everything that is me and cries out to be read. The day I lost my focus and cheated on the most beautiful lady in this world explodes on to the canvas. Sadness and frightening thoughts invade my mind and I close my eyes tight, trying desperately to see no more. The sadness and sorrow I have caused most anyone that chose to love me I carry, like a sack of potatoes, weighing me down, heavy enough to pull me deeper in to darkness.
Was I a good father? Was I a loving husband? Does the wrongs I have done in my life cancel out the good I have done? Soul searching, deep and dark, hoping to find a glimmer of light that will whisper to me, "You are a good man. You have given of yourself and placed others before you time and time again, without want or need of recognition or return." As a chill runs down the back of my neck, the breeze now more than simply gentle brings me a little closer to light. The stars twinkle as if the sky is winking at me and as I wipe the wetness from my cheeks, I smile a little.
The night was long and I tossed and turned in my bed. Thoughts of a thousand dreams and failures and successes bombard my mind and I sigh heavily as the clock shines it's bright red 3:00 a.m. at me. 3:30 and 4:00 o'clock the same color.My arms feel heavy and I cry for loves I have hurt. I sob quietly in my bed for maybe taking a love and life from someone that could have found another. I pray, my heart pounding, that God and all those that have hung in my closet for so long will find forgiveness for this man. A man that know love and blessings and has lived a life filled with more happiness and laughter and love than I ever deserved. I am thankful for all that has been bestowed on me and ashamed that I took what I may not have deserved.
Morning, and the promise of a new day, sunshine and warmth flooding my face and body. Better than last night but still asking if I am worthy to be loved. "Who am I?" the owl asked. I am me and I am the best that I can be. I will reach out in this darkness, no flashlight to see where I am going, and ponder the thoughts of last night. I will smile and laugh and let none that see me know of the darkness I feel. I will pray that a light guides my feet so that I can find my way back to where I belong. I AM a good man and I love with all of my heart and soul. I know how to do it no other way. I will be who i am and hope it is enough.
Soul searching... a sometimes healing process and sometimes a cleansing. When you go searching, be aware that you may find the very answer you were looking for.