Wrong Path

concept - light at the end of the tunnelThis is a response to L.E. Henderson’s post ‘The Anatomy of an Epiphany’ http://passionatereason.com/2016/10/the-anatomy-of-an-epiphany/:

Again, thank you, L.E. Henderson, for your post.

I thought about what you said about me maybe someday blogging about my own epiphany. I may try, but I think it’ll be hard to single one out. I’ve had many stages of rejecting wrong paths to find this one, which has brought me the most happiness I’ve known as an adult. I’ll have to think about it. The clarity with which you’ve described yours must have taken a lot of work and reflects your excellent skill.

But I once had a path analogy for depression, my great nemesis.

Tree with vines and grass.In a waking dream, I visualized I was walking on a lower, overgrown path through briars and brambles so thick I had to machete my way through. On slightly higher ground was another path only a few yards away. I caught glimpses of it through the thicket. I knew that walking the higher path would have been much brighter and freer, something like happiness, and yet no matter what I told myself, I couldn’t turn course. I was stuck. But the fact I saw the higher path gave me hope. It was right there!

Eventually, many tiny steps and small epiphanies added up to success. I was strong again and stopped thinking about those paths. Both of them. Maybe they cancelled each other out.

Recently, I’ve had to conjure a litany to help me deal with some difficult issues I’m facing, the sort most of us face at some point in our lives, and they’re never easy. In fact, they tend to swallow us whole for a time. Depression is addictive and self-perpetuating, though: I’ve learned that it’s very important not to stand in a dark place too long.

And so to get through, I console myself with these words: “This is not who I am. I can play this part for a while. Life requires it, and it’s important to me to do it well and with love. But this is not who I am. I am something else, and I know what that is.”

5 Replies to “Wrong Path”

  1. The forests of my life in dreams faded twenty years ago having been replaced with the tangle of city streets rather than the magnificence of trees. Yes, I used to see the occasional other forest paths which now emerge in my cityscape as crossroads. They come at me with such verosity I cannot make the decision on which to ignore … which I ‘should’ take … which will nourish … which will starve my spirit.

    Weeks, such as this one, at the beach offers an ocean of possibility. I sit on damp sand and continue to ponder.

    Thank you, Dawn.

  2. Thanks so much for sharing this Dawn! I love your description of your waking dream. Dreams, waking or othetwise, are like effortless poetry. They can do awesome things with metaphors, and yours definitely did.

    You also have an insight that I think could be helpful to me; I really appreciate your ability to see beyond your current situation and realize that it isn’t who your are.

    And having bipolar disorder, I can identify with your insight about not staying in a dark place too long or depression becomes self-perpetuating. I have been there and I never want to go back. So sorry you have had to deal with depression too.

    I wish you all the best in dealing with your current situation. I know I will have to face similar problems at some point, and when I do, I will try to remember your insights. Thanks again for sharing your experience in such a memorably poetic way. 🙂

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