I’ve lived my whole life thinking that the world is dark. I fought in the dark. I fought the darkness. Then I got used to the darkness. I made lemonades out of the darkness by learning how to see in the dark. I succeeded in the darkness.
But there is only as much as one can see and do in the darkness. So I asked for help. Just for the deity to open my eyes. My world wasn’t dark. Its just that I had my eyes closed.
Sounds simple? Well, that’s how my last few months have been. Specifically how my January has been. I heard someone say, that illiteracy among adults isn’t being unable to read a, b,c ,d but being unable to unlearn ,learn and relearn.
Its sounds easy. And it is in a way. What is hard is giving myself the permission to start unlearning, learning and relearning.
And its been an interesting journey. For someone like me who was forever chasing after life, pausing to reset and refill has been the most tranquil thing I ever did. I’ve realised that it wasn’t life I was chasing after, it was myself that I was chasing after.
I thought I would find me in my career. Or in my profession. And as much as I love what i’m skilled at, I didn’t find her there. I thought I would me in my family. I got lost in other’s lives in the process. Then I thought, surely , I would find me in the eyes of a lover. Love is the greatest. Love can’t be overemphasized. Just to find strangers in the eyes of my lovers. I never found me. And the worst part is, I didn’t know what I was looking for.
I just had this void in me that didn’t seem to be filled by anyone. I had this thirst that wasn’t allowing me to chase life the way I wanted. I had this heavy heart that wanted what I didn’t know, but it wasn’t agreeing to beat until I brought it what it wanted . I had this mind that was restless, that was fidgeting. It lacked a foundation. Somewhere to stand on. I was in lack. I needed something. What it was, I didn’t know.
I travelled. I read books. I did what I thought I loved. After all, they said if you do what you love you’ll feel better. And I did feel better. Just not for a long while. All pleasures were temporary. All satisfactions only lasted me till the next thirst.
Then I thought, why not go to the water of life? He must be able to ensure that I thirsted no more. And on top of that, the bread of life would fill me for life.
So I gathered my now broken heart, my disoriented mind, my shattered soul, my heaving body and took them to God. Surely, my creator would know what to do with his creation. How, I didn’t know. But somehow I trusted this guy. Somehow I knew He was able.
So I immersed myself in His word. I even preached His word. I believed His word. I fellowshipped with His people. I hang around them. I agreed with His people’s version of what is wrong and right. I tried my level best to be His good person. An example to be looked upon. I did my level best in what I thought I was to do. God knows I tried.
What I expected in return, was for my thirst to be no more. For my mind to find a foundation. For my heart to be light. For my soul to be mended. For what I was looking for to be brought to me. It was like a bargain. I do God’s business, He’ll do mine- that’s what they told me. And I believed them. After all, they looked like they had their thirst quenched.
But no. Not even God gave me me. I didn’t get what I was looking for in Him. By then I didn’t know what I was looking for, but I felt shortchanged. This God who gives people mansions through faith and makes barren woman sing in joy, didn’t give me what I wanted. Yet I wasn’t even asking for much. Just for my thirst to be quenched. For my void to be filled.
And after a restless search of looking for what I didn’t know, I finally found it. But it was the other way round. Instead of finding the everlasting water to my thirst, I found the source of thirst.
All along, I had been looking for me. All those years man! All those marathons I did chasing after satisfaction. All those hikes I did, looking for peace. All those books I read, searching for rest. All those people I shared my heart with, looking for happiness.
Yet, I had been looking for me. I was missing in action. And my being couldn’t survive without me. Who am I? That person is who I was looking for in God, family and lovers. And instead of finding me in them, I found me in me.
The me that I’ve found is badly malnourished. She was on the verge of death. She’s sick. Tired. Unlearned. Filled with some toxic things in some areas. Beautiful. Broken. Scarred. Empty. Happy. Melancholic. Intense. Difficult. Stubborn. Interesting. Weird. Amazing. Strong. Frail. She is all that and a lot more.
So nowadays, instead of chasing life, I nurse me. I laugh at my sister confusing that verse on being unequally yoked with unbelievers to mean the yoke of an egg. I teach myself how to find pleasure in life. I go out of my way to ensure that I have no way that can be said to be mine. I am free. I can be anything and anyone. I watch people’s stories on Engage Talk Kenya and I relate to stories that are way different than mine.
I look into my world nowadays. That dark world that I was once a pro in. And I can’t recognize anything. Everything is the same yet so new. The cups I thought were cups have now turned to bells. What I used as rags were the most beautiful clothes around. And while I thought I was fully clothed, I was stark naked.
So I unlearn, learn and relearn. And its the most amazing journey I’ve ever been in. Every single day a burden gets lifted. And in its place are beautiful things. My heart is enthusiastic. It isn’t light yet, but we seem to have hit the right spots this time round. My mind is busy working, not to set a foundation, but to demolish the buildings we had made to survive in a dark world. Sometimes the light illuminates dirty corners. And me, myself and I arm ourselves and clean them up.
I have been in the land of the living for two decades now. At some point I saw no point of living. I have died inside there. And I have been in comas and semi consciousness. I have prayed to the Almighty to not let me die but to live. I have tried all kinds of life giving things I could think of.
And for the first time in my entire life, I am alive, I feel alive, I want to live and I fear death.
Some people reach this point automatically in their lives( they’ve just always been alive and in touch with themselves), others reach it after countless decades and experiences, while others like me are forced by circumstances to come into life. I just hope that you get there if you aren’t there already. If you don’t know what i’m talking about, just like me a while ago, your eyes are closed, but you think the world is dark. And if you are already there, I have nothing for you..after all you are already enjoying life in its ups and downs.
I thought my world was dark, while I was the one with my eyes closed. Now I see the light.