Fear

BEDiM 2013 : DAY 7

(A Blog Every Day in May 2013 Challenge Entry)

Still truckin’ along after finally getting two hours of sleep this morning. Okay, make that four as I just woke up from a 2 hour on/off nap. Yes, I only wrote one sentence before passing out. Rackin’ in those Zzz’s yo! Let’s take a gander at today’s writing prompt:

Day 7, Tuesday: The thing(s) you're most afraid of

Hmm... well, I definitely am not afraid of losing sleep. However, I’m afraid of passing out one of these times on my late night outings. I already have the desire to sleep when in a car (like a leftover relaxation effect from when I was an infant), and the lack of sleep really solidifies my body’s attempt to make it happen.

What else...

Fraught with the Freaky Deaky

I believe I share some of the standard fears many people have: Heights, clowns (you know do too), bees/wasps, etc. I don’t necessarily fear these things from afar, but close up is no good. Like spiders and bugs, I can be pretty passive about — where some freak out just at the sight of them — unless they are on me.

I guess I’m afraid of June Bugs, though. Those suckers are creepy and I’ve had a personal battle with one that almost left my newly purchased laptop in ruins. I can already feel the fear welling up... June is almost here...

Once I used to love sharks, but after Jaws and many shark shows/documentaries, that love turned to fear. So much so that I’m not sure I’d feel comfortable going out in the ocean ever. I can look out over the ocean from the safety of a beach or plane, but that’s close enough.

There are many little things I’m afraid of, but I can’t think of any one thing that is odd and bizarre that would be worth sharing. One of my “heavy hitters” is one that most every individual faces at some point in their life. Whether in their job/career, passions, family, relationships — or any other multitude of fitting settings — it can rear it’s ugly face.

“My Fault, my failure, is not in the passions I have, but in my lack of control of them.”
-Jack Kerouac

My one greatest fear is that of failure. This fear plagues my life from the simple mundane day to day tasks, to the unknown possibilities of the future. This is a factor in my ever present anxiety over new experiences. That whatever this new thing is, I will somehow fail at it. Some examples of the day to day would be:

Trying a new gas station. Are their pumps set up the same as the ones I’m accustomed to using? If not, am I going to be standing outside at the pump looking like an idiot?

Driving anywhere new. Just afraid of getting lost and stranded somewhere, especially if low on gas being the above fear has stopped me from refilling HA! This fear is one of the easiest to override. Most fears associated with going somewhere new involve the actual experience waiting for me at said destination.

These type of things seem silly — even to me — but they are real.

Then there are the things I am afraid of failing at on a larger scale:

Failure of my passions. This would involve my writing, first and foremost. That I won’t ever get around to actually writing the stories in my head. They will remain locked up, imprisoned and left to rot — to be forgotten — in the darkest recess of my mind.

Associated with this is the failure to accurately tell/share said stories. Will I be able to articulate all the things I see in my imagination? Enough so that others see what I do? I understand this isn’t always  the reality when it comes to writing. In fact, A lot of my writing — I think I’ve found — leaves a lot of room for interpretation, so that the reader can “fill-in-the-blank” with their own imagination. I find it to be an important aspect; to not completely overly define/describe anything and everything.

Then I fear I can’t describe things even on a simplistic level...

What if I do get it all out? What if, by chance, I do become published and my work is out there for the world to see? What if the world rejects it? While I don’t want to write for money — though, to be paid for doing so wouldn’t be brushed off — I do hope it reaches some sort of audience. That there will be some that will be touched by my story.

This directly conflicts with my struggle to accept that I’m writing for myself. If nothing more than to just get out the overabundance of ideas assaulting my creative vein. I can’t control who likes my writing, subject manner, plot/story,  or my odd, disjointed sense of communication. But yet, I fear it. It may be irrational, as I’m unfamiliar with any piece of work everyone simultaneous hates on a unanimous level, but I do.

I believe I’ve spoken about it before, but I seem to associate my getting published with making people proud. That I’ve actually amounted to something. I know, and tell myself on occasion, that friends and family are proud of me regardless of my accomplishments. So, I suppose I directly link it to my own self worth. That — to me — becoming published will signify to myself that I am indeed not a failure. As mentioned, though, I would then be attributing arbitrary factors (people liking my work) to represent my success.

So all of this tumbles around in my mind, day in and day out, as I try to quell the fears enough to just get my foot in the door. Past that point, rather, because it is in the door. I consider the blogging and fiction pieces I have up representation of that. But, this fear of failure is constantly attempting to crush my foot in the door. Applying pressure at exponential rates, to make quick work of me. Make an amputee of me, before my nonchalant take on Diabetes does. They are involved in a neck-to-neck race.

But Also

I have a deep-rooted fear of success.

OMN & FML

Do you happen to share any of the same fears as me? If so, which?

A to Z : SCARE TACTICS

(An A to Z 2013 Challenge Entry)

Lately I’ve been writing about some of my encounters with ghosts, haunted houses, and/or just creepy places (and situations) in general. Then I read about some rather elaborate pranks/lies some fellow bloggers have endured from family and friends. It reminded me of a time I blended both of these elements together.

Having grown up with three brothers, sometimes the sibling rivalry ran deep. What better way to pass the time than to argue, wrestle, and scare the hell out of one another? What was my mother thinking having four boys? The odds were definitely not in her favor.

Now, we never really had any major pranks pulled on one another another to any large extent. Sometimes you hear of families where this is the case, and they each try to “up” the last to get even. I’ve always been fond of pranks — sometimes initiating them now and again — but usually kept mine around obvious dates like April Fools Day. They sometimes lose flare that day, being most expect it, unless you do it right.

Run, Run As Fast As You Can

Back in the day my pranks were more cruel, in the sense I would try to scare people. I think attempting to scare one another is just something many people enjoy doing. People obviously like to be scared on some bizzare level, otherwise horror movies/novels/etc would hold no place in our entertainment field.

One of my most memorable attempts at this occurred way back at the Stanchfield House (site of those hauntings) when a teenager. During the Summer, I was sometimes assigned to watch my brothers while my stepfather and mother were at work. Mainly, I was to watch the youngest of the bunch. At one point our youngest brother fell asleep in his room, and I had an idea come to mind.

I would scare the hell out of him.

That’s about it. Sounds pretty solid right? I thought so too! So how would I accomplish this? I mean... our youngest brother was maybe eight or so years old. It isn’t really hard to scare a kid. But, sometimes you just want to do it right.

So the prep work included getting some fake blood (from Halloween), and applying it to my other two brothers and a fake plastic cleaver. I believe I applied a handful to myself, as well, for some added effect. Then there was the positioning of the “bodies”. One brother was sprawled out on the stairs (our bedrooms were on the second floor), while the other was placed in the doorway; half in the room, half in the hallway.

Once the scene was set, I put on my game face and got to work. I jumped on the bed screaming — channeling Christian Bale’s Batman before its time — waking our brother up. I was hovering over him with the bloody cleaver in one hand, and told him I had killed his brothers. There was a little resistance at first, even though he was clearly afraid — eyes wide — still fighting off the grogginess of his deep slumber.

I told him I was a demon and had possessed his brother’s body. He said my name and I responded with, “Jak isn’t here anymore. He is dead like the others!” I think when he got out of bed and saw one of our brothers laying on the ground it started to register more. I grabbed him and said, “You’re going to be next. You better run.” Paused and then yelled, “RUN!”

And run he did. He took off out of the room, into the hall, down the stairs — past the “bodies” of his brothers, now deceased — and then the front screen door slammed. Then he was gone. My brothers got up and we all laughed and had a good time with it.

At this point, I don’t recall if we ever thought or wondered about what exactly to do next. Maybe we thought he would just eventually come home. What I do know is that our mother was on her way back home from work and picked up our crying, traumatized little brother who was still making his way down the dirt road.

He was crying and telling her how everyone was dead. Needless to say, she was pissed off — more at the fact he was walking down the country road all alone — and laid into us when she got home. More so me, being I was the oldest and on babysitting duty. Thankfully, I wasn’t grounded or punished much. I can’t recall how our youngest brother reacted after the fact, but I’d imagine he was really upset as well. It blew over fast, though.

I thought our mother even laughed a bit about it soon after. We certainly all do now, years later. It makes for a good story from time to time at family gatherings and the holidays.

Have you ever pulled a prank on (or really scared) anyone? If so, what? Ever have one done to you? If so, what?

A to Z 2013 : PARANORMAL PARANOIA

(An A to Z 2013 Challenge Entry)

T-minus 3 hours and counting. I best get this down while the gettin’ is good. As I type, Winter has decided it isn’t finished toying with me yet. The snow is keeping me from Best Buy and my friends, but I won’t let it stop me from writing! When part of your job descriptions includes tending to the property, Winter becomes a very sketchy season (leaving me homebound often). At least the shoveling is a good workout.

Working out is what this post was originally meant to be about, but I think I will touch on that later. I was thinking of my post HAUNTINGS the other night, and thought it sucked I didn’t have time to add another story. So, I thought this would be a good spot to interject it.

The Black Tower

The earlier stories I gave about paranormal activity all took place in the Stanchfield House I lived in. When you live out in the country, with properties covering vast acres of land, you tend to find a handful of nifty places to explore. Some fun and exciting, others dangerous and scary. For example, the next house down from us had been abandoned for who knows how long. My brother, friends, and I would venture around that property often.

The first time there, we were hesitant to go inside. When looking in the windows we could see a mattress and leftover cans/wrappers of food and drink, in an otherwise gutted room. Naturally we took this as a clear indication someone was possibly inhabiting the house. When reporting back, we were told it best to stay away from the property — trespassing and all — but that it was empty.

Telling a child to stay away from something they are fascinated by is like leaving a cupcake in front of a starving kid and telling them not to eat it while you then go about your business elsewhere; leaving the two of them alone. Someone always dies. Not really, but in this case the house was like our cupcake.

When we built up the courage, we returned to the property, entered the house, and scanned the property. There was plenty  to see. The house itself was completely empty with exception of those items, but the land — grossly unattended — held some gems. There as a silo, a shack, and I had stumbled upon a bomb shelter. That is what we determined it likely was (I guess to this day I don’t know). The entrance was caved in some, but we investigated. Actually, I sent my little brother in to investigate first. In case there was a bear, or something, in there.

Everything checked out and I eventually dubbed it: The Black Tower. Now, this may have been a Wheel of Time reference. I just know it didn’t make sense, being it was an underground shelter. No one cared, though. All our friends (my friends) loved it! It became our secret hideout. One day me and some friends even managed to shove a couch — one we drove past that someone was getting rid of for free and we thought: that’s perfect! — down into the bowels of that shelter. That took a few hours involving digging out the entrance more. Once we got it in there, though, we celebrated with some ice-cold be... Kool-Aid... We celebrated with Kool-Aid.

To be honest, I wouldn’t go into The Black Tower alone. The entire property gave me the creeps. I think had we hung around there more we would have eventually encountered something menacing. Eventually, the house and shed/shacks were burned down, but The Black Tower remained. I imagine it is still there today.

While nothing paranormal happened there, it's those kinds of discoveries that fueled our adventures even further. In doing so, I came to find a location I found even creepier. In fact, with the occurrences and feelings I described at my Stanchfield House, this place gave off that same “evil” negative vibe.

The Hand House

So, our explorations expanded well beyond any close proximity of our house. One Summer, while walking down our dirt road we saw a driveway, but it was overgrown in between the tracks. Know what I mean? We decided to follow it (I believe I was again with my brother... this lack of memory is killing me). We happened upon another abandoned house. This one was larger than our neighboring one, and it looked a lot scarier. This may have been amplified because it was set back in the woods.

What I can’t recall (I’d have to ask my brother in hopes he was the one with me at the time) is if we entered the house at all. It was during the day, and — as you well know —  that kind of thing really plays a huge role on determining such choices. What I do remember (skipping ahead a few months into Winter) is when some friends and I decided it would be fun to visit the house in the middle of the night. We believed it could be haunted and wanted to find out. There was a large group planned for this outing, but only two friends had arrived while the others said they wouldn’t be able to make it over until a lot later in the evening.

The three of us decided to do what any normal courageous trio in our position would do: we went alone. We geared up, grabbed a flashlight, and began the long trek to this new abandoned house. Along the way, we would hide in the ditch if seeing any incoming vehicles (for some reason this was a fun game we always played, whether in town or out in the country. It probably looked very suspicious). Once reaching our destination we began to transverse the unplowed driveway.

At this point in Winter there had been heavy snowfall, and the weather — being so cold — made it hard so you could essentially walk on it.  You may sink in here or there, but overall it wasn’t too bad. As I said, it was set back into the woods; silent and ominous. Once it came into view, the closer we got the more afraid I became. That overbearing feeling of malevolence. The doorless entryway its gaping mouth welcoming us inside. The night was crisp, the moon sailed high, what better snack than three Vanilla Ice lovin’ punks given their pseudo courage a try?

Then we were upon it. Face to face, the entryway just feet ahead. One of my friends stopped and began to have second thoughts. I was definitely on board with that! It wasn’t too late to turn back, besides it was a really decrepit house and could be too dangerous in the dark. But our other friend... he wasn’t having any of it. He was more of the skeptic type and he had just come all the way out to this house; he was going in.

So, he took the lead and we lined up behind him and began to advance towards the house. Then the flashlight began to flicker some. We paused, waiting, and it stopped. Nervous laughs were shared and the advance began anew. Three feet from the entrance... Two... The flashlight began flickering again. At this point, my friend and I were good to go, but the other was persistent. He slapped the flashlight and it regained its full strength.

Great.

One foot away, nothing but our footfalls scrunching in the snow betraying the silence. The voice in my head telling me: this is a bad idea. We came to the doorway and our friend scanned the inside with the light. Obviously there was nothing, but it was an excuse to pause again. Then he took a step past the threshold, the light began to flicker again, and we all stopped cold. He slapped it like before and it seemed it was going to work, but then it went dead.

We were alone in the entrance to this house in the moonlit night. And that was all it took, because then we were running. All of us, skeptic included.

Unfortunately for me I have always been a bit more heavier set. Regardless of having decent  leg strength from biking everywhere, I was still behind the others. I would be the first to die. Worse? That hard snow you could walk on? It must not have a fat boy running protection clause, because each step left me knee-deep in snow.

Another thing I learned that night, is when you are falling knee-deep into hard snow... it cracks. Not sure how best to explain this, but it seems to literally crack like a crevice tearing open during an earthquake or something. With each pounding step, the snow would crack and release a deep crackling sound that filled the dead of night (along with maybe our screams, but we won't talk about that). It sounded like you were being chased. I was going to fucken die by god knows what.

Dear non-existent diary, I hate Twinkies. They have killed me.

To be honest, all I could think of was getting the hell out of dodge. Eventually we made it back to the main road and booked it even farther, until we could no longer run. Half way back to my place we laughed about it all. How we were a bunch of chicken-shits. A car was spotted and we barreled into the ditch, once again enjoying ourselves.

Once in the ditch the flashlight suddenly turned on and we all just stared at it. If it wasn’t my ex step-father’s I would have been fine just leaving it there in the ditch for eternity.

Our other friends showed up and we told them about everything that had happened, so we planned to venture there again the next day; during the day. They tried hard to convince us to go back that evening, but our courage was tapped out.

When we went back in the daylight to investigate, we discovered handprints all along the walls leading up the staircase to the second story. These were little kids handprints and it gives me the chills just thinking about it. I assume they were made with paint, but who knows. I try not to think about it.

This is why I dubbed it: The Hand House

The name stuck ever since.

It was a lot less scary during the day and with ten people, but I never went back at night again. Back again, period, for that matter. Some of my friends did after watching The Blair Witch Project in which a similar house (with similar handprints) was featured. They brought some of our female friends out there to scare the hell out of them after the movie. Mission accomplished.

I waited a while before watching the movie. A few years actually. The scene still gets to me, because of how similar it is to that house (which I heard was eventually burned down sometime after I moved out of the Stanchfield House). I can’t help but wonder what the history of the house was. Can’t help but wonder what we may have experienced had we decided to stay that night in complete darkness.

I can’t help but wonder why the fuck I never stopped eating Twinkies.

Here is a clip featuring the house in The Blair Witch Project. By now, if having interest, I’m sure you’ve seen it. If not, this is towards the end of the movie and if you’ve no interest in spoilers just avoid:

Please... there will be no questions at this time... Thank you :)

THE BRIDGE

For a moment there, I was thinking I was about to slip away from this resurgence of writing that I’ve recently acquired. Re-acquired. This would be a shame. I’ve so many things I wish to discuss! So many more random tangents to go on. So much more... rambling.

The last week and a half has been a bit of an inner struggle. A variety of opposing emotions tugging and pulling me in different directions; fighting for dominance over which will ultimately dictate the path I will take.

While things have seem to have steadied out, and calmed–the forces of “good” coming out on top–I can still feel it bubbling inside. The negativity and urges to allow myself to relapse into a state of being from yesteryear. Relapse back into a state I’ve worked so hard to avoid; worked so hard to transcend.



- Walking Contradiction -

One fear I have, in the time I spend attempting to reach a goal of mine–to help simultaneously express myself and allow myself (and possibly others) to learn who I am as it is constantly a work in progress–that I will lose sight of the beliefs I explain/express. That I will do what almost happened this past week and relapse into my old self, old habits, and in turn self-sabotage my own progress.

I understand that relapsing is sometimes part of the process, but I feel with certain aspects of my life, where it is currently at, that a relapse would be too damaging. There is also the underlying worry of feeling like a hypocrite. A contradiction. I go into length about my beliefs dealing with connections and relationships; Love and Fear. I would hate to think any of my previous expressions being compromised by future actions, or the reverse.

What I come away with, though, is the constant desire to just be blunt, honest, and upfront (is that redundant?). What I would like to think as authentic. I am human, I am far from perfect, and I will have struggles like everyone else on their journeys. I will have setbacks, and how I handle those obstacles is what will determine where my path leads.

If others decide that something I say or do, comprises whatever “message(s)” that I attempt to get out into the world, then so be it. I can’t control that aspect. Also, the remembrance that this all is, ultimately, for me. To be honest, that point blurs a lot of the time and I figure it will all follow a natural, organic progression as it should. Because, while I wish to write solely for myself, I can’t deny the fact that I hope, in some way, it will touch another. Even if just one other soul out there swimming in the lifestream. Perhaps it’s already happened.

- Inadequate Me -

Over the past few months, I have made a lot of new friends both online and off. A majority were met from a handful of write-ins during a writing event (program?) called NaNoWriMo. I’ve mentioned it before, and during this period of time in November I not only made myself get out of my comfort zone by attending the NaNoWriMo events, but began writing again. During this course I eventually came to meet a wide variety of people and, like what usually happens, I settled in with a group.

It helped, originally, having a mutual friend associated with some within this group. This friend was the one who kept encouraging (or threatening...) me to participate. It is very possible that without that nudging (or again.. violent assaulting), I would have never joined and given it a shot. I appreciate her commitment and owe her a ton of thanks! Just don’t tell her that (she will get a big head... and then walking down halls will be an issue... going through doorways a huge pain... etc. etc.)

During NaNoWriMo, I had some insecurities abound dealing with my writing (of course) having been so long, and completely out of practice. Those insecurities I could manage decently. What happened, though, was as I began to grow closer to the individuals of this group I began to think of them as potential new friends. With NaNoWriMo, a lot of times people get together through Nov to encourage one another with their writing, but once December comes they kind of drift apart. This was a factor I wasn’t completely willing to accept. In fact, I felt it could be fairly damaging to suddenly lose said support and companionship so soon.

This is where PSEUDO WARS originated from. Those fears, questions and inability to accept the possible inevitable. As luck would have it, the majority of the group decided on continual interaction beyond NaNoWriMo.

Time went on. Bonds and connections increased, and from among them a Wildcard. Something unexpected for me, which complicated things, but in a very good way.

Somewhere deep inside, though, that brewing of doubt. The more time I spent with my new friends, the more I felt completely inadequate. Feeling like I brought absolutely nothing to the table. Many of them are vastly more educated and are incredibly more comfortable in their own skin than I, and have little issue in becoming engaged in conversation.

I am more prone to just sit and observe. I feel like I'm the guy that says something stupid (like a catchphrase or two) randomly and maybe gets a few laughs, but then it's back to observation mode. Beyond that, I don’t feel like I offer much. Don’t get me wrong, I value humor and believe it is important, but the caliber of knowledge I seem to lack is frustrating.

Yet, they seemed to want me around and valued my company; something, I myself, seemed to have an issue with. I couldn’t (can’t) accept it, I didn’t (don’t) feel worthy. This is naturally a self love/confidence issue and I’ve mentioned the process I am undergoing to improve it.

A week and a half ago, though, it all seemed to come to a head. Finally the negativity was let loose and free to take control, albeit momentarily; thankfully momentarily. Those who are familiar with what I am talking about know that a moment is all that is needed. All that is needed for these emotions, left uncheck, to completely turn your world upside down.

I wanted to shut myself out from the world completely. Cancel all social interactions, online social interactions, everything. This would have been reminiscent of what I did six years ago (going on seven) when I moved and told no one, but immediate family, of my whereabouts, or how to contact me. All of my friends were cut off. Some found me thanks to family leaking information–Bastards–so, I was forced to confront them and tell them I would seek them out when ready, if ever.

Years went by, and various steps taken in spiritual endeavors, before I felt ready to reconnect with them. This is where the I believe bonds of time made this scenario even possible. Some could have told me to fuck off, they had every right to, but no one did.

With this new group of people, though, I felt that wouldn’t be the case. The bonds/connections too new, and time too short. If they were to be cut off, that would likely be the end of our roles in one anothers lives.

This is where I felt like a contradictory hypocrite, after talking about making connections and wanting to take the time to build/strengthen them. Now, I didn’t not want that. I wanted that very much. I just felt completely unworthy. Easier to save them the trouble of having to unload me, and I could avoid facing the rejection.

It is an odd feeling when you are going through the motions of disconnecting from everyone and self-sabotaging yourself, yet still being fully aware of what you are doing. Being aware of it and knowing you don’t want to go down that path. It is like you aren’t completely in control. There is that part constantly pushing you to take the steps it feels is necessary to protect itself.

Being aware, and reaching out to someone I felt would understand, is what helped the most. That and a lot of sleep. In the end, I was able to curb that primal desire of seclusion that reared itself, once again, unbeknown to most of the group. Most anyone, really. As the week progressed I felt it bubbling (as I still can even now), wanting to break free again. Waiting for a moment I am weak where it can dominate my course of action. To make itself safe from fear of rejection. Fear of life, fear of love.

Thankfully, that’s not what I truly want. It is that factor, along with awareness and support, that will sooth the negative stirrings within. Until I can completely dispatch them, that is.

- This Bridge Will Only Take You There, -

In 2006 I moved into my current apartment, accepting a job as a Resident Manager. As most apartments are, when you first move into them, it was empty. This was in exception to some odd bagged things I was told was associated with the railroad (which was where the previous tenant had worked) and some magnets I found in the cupboard.

There were seven of them–my favorite (unfortunately, not lucky) number–each displaying their own word. The “There” had a comma, which I thought was interesting. That sentence was what I made, and has remained on my fridge ever since. I was a bit taken aback, because the sentence itself seemed to sum up my belief about fate.

“Fate will only bring you up to a point, and then you have to make your choice.” I would say many times, when explaining my beliefs.

Suddenly, here was this random set of magnets summing that up for me. It was like... wait for it... fate. How could I not go there, seriously?

The belief is simply this:

That in life, you will continually be presented with a multitude of moments; important moments. These moments of fate, are not necessarily predetermined, but are part of our life makeup. A lot of these moments are what we are specifically asking for, or need, to learn and progress.

Fate will only bring you up to a point, and then you have to make your choice. (*Sigh* see?) Now, life is basically all about choices. Broken down, I believe they are fundamentally choices of Love or Fear. My reactions I described above, revolved solely around Fear.

What I have come to find, though, is that once crossing the bridge to the moment of making your choice, is that there are millions of paths you may take. Both equally in Love and Fear. Some of these paths eventually bring you to a new bridge, while some bring you full circle back to the same. Once crossing it again, you make another choice; the hope being that you’ve learned from the last path you’ve taken and eventually have overcome fear and negativity. Otherwise, you will find yourself crossing the same bridge over and over, until doing so.

I don’t think I can fully explain it, but in my head I see it as though having a similar (but more intricate) pattern to the Flower of Life:




The are an infinite number of the these points–these bridges–for us to continually cross to learn and grow.

I thought I had left this current bridge far behind in my spiritual dust, but it seems I had been mistaken. I feel I have learned from the previous path, and felt I made a much stronger, wiser decision, and I can only hope I don’t find myself crossing it again.

As it were, though, only time will tell.

*Flower of Life image is from world-mysteries.com

THE SECRET TRUTH OF THE HEART

I originally had an important post lined up to be released today; it is a special day. I decided, however, to go a slightly different route. A route that may result in some backlash, ridicule, and loss of friendship. If lucky, it will result in the opposite as well. This still is an incredibly important entry to me; just of a different nature.

As it were, I began this journey to open up about myself, and offer a glimpse of what makes me tick. There are some murky waters, but also some beautiful panoramic landscapes. I thought to myself: If I am going to do this, I have to dig deeper. I feel I have done that, to an extent, with my “Into the Grey” posts. It can be uncomfortable to admit those secret, questionable desires.

It wasn’t deep enough, though. I had to keep digging. If doing this, I have to do it right.

So I am about to share some things about myself that very few know. I could count them on one hand; I want to say three, but a fourth may have squeezed in there at some point. Vulnerabilities scare the shit out of me, but vulnerable becomes you when you open up. I have been assured I am not crazy, but I still think some of the following builds a strong case for an argument.

So I am going to keep digging. By the time I am done, I may be too deep to get out on my own. Some will have begun to shovel the dirt back over me, while some will offer their hand. One way or another, I will eventually get out.

Somehow I always come back.

“I will tell you God’s truth. God’s truth about me.”

I have no real way of accurately explaining what I am about to divulge. What I will be doing is discussing various topics that are true to me. In the sense that there is no “right” or “wrong” and no questioning of myself. These are simply the feelings and/or understandings of what just is. No different than knowing I am human and am alive. It is just an awareness I have. A few of these I feel transcend myself; that they apply to everyone.

I will begin with those and then move on to the more individual beliefs.

“Man can no longer live for himself alone. We must realize that all life is valuable and that we are united to all life. From this knowledge comes our spiritual relationship with the universe.” 
-Albert Schwweitzer

I believe in love and the interconnectedness of all; us, the world, the universe. Everything we do affects others on some level. Sometimes it is major, others barely noticeable. Actions can be fueled by positive (Love) or negative (Fear) intentions; much like thoughts, which I also believe affect those around us.

One of the hardest things for me to do has been, and still is, to control my output of negative thoughts. Most of mine involve myself; that lack of self-love. There have been plenty of times, though, where the thoughts are of others.

I am unsure how many of you have tried controlling those thoughts, but I find it to be a bitch. It is so impulsive and reactive; almost instant. Try catching yourself when you do it, and try retracting it. It is one of the things I am currently engaged on changing about myself.

I wish that more people understood we are all connected. Harming another harms ourselves. I think the sooner people begin to realize and accept this, the sooner we will all get along more peacefully.

While I’ve always had this belief about being connected, the acceptance about love has been more recent. Without going into too much detail, there was a time I didn’t believe in love. This is no longer the case and it integrates with connectedness.

I am Love

I am Love. You are Love. We are Love. God is Love. Love and Light I feel are interchangeable. Love is the essence connecting everyone and everything. In my writing, I call it The Essence. That unseen substance flowing and connecting everything in the universe. It is no different, I imagine, than The Force of Star Wars.

This is how I view Love. That power existing everywhere in the universe, in everyone, linking us all. I believe it is one of the hardest things for someone to accept - that you are love - and still is for me, from time to time. It exists in all of us, but sometimes it is drowned out. We don’t embrace it. Regardless of who you are, there exists Love. It is always there, even if just a pinprick. It glows there at our core, waiting to be accepted and grasped.

I am not religious, and one of my issues with religion is the seemingly teachings of God and ourselves as separate. He is Love and he is in each and every single one of us. You don’t have to go to church (though, I fully feel those types of social systems have their place - and can be very positive) to speak to God. You can, and do sometimes without knowing, at any given moment. He is talking to you too. Can you hear him? Still your mind and believe in the power within yourself.

God/Light/Love, as I said, I believe are interchangeable. This is the belief that has rang true to me. Resonates from within. There is no fear there. There should never be the fear of God/Light/Love. Ever.

Some have requested I go into detail about my spiritual journeys and so I will do specifically that, in a blog entry dedicated to that sole purpose. It may not be as exciting as they wish to think.

This gives you some understanding of my belief on God/Love. It is one some may resist or rebuke. That is okay, I don’t judge them. To each their own.

We are Love; the “good” and the “bad.” Everyone. There are no ifs, ands, or buts. Only what is and our awareness/acceptance of it.

Things That Just Are

Still with me?

So now a simpler list of things that I feel I just know and am aware of. One of those, has already taken place; albeit I thought it would be literal instead of metaphysical.

1. I am going to die at the age of 32 (or one of, I believe, 2 other ages):

Well, I am now officially 33 (Happy Birthday to me!), but I won’t count it completely until clocking over into Tuesday. I lived! Survived what? The Apocalypse? Seems we all survived that, and it was pretty anticlimactic.

I do, however, feel I died in a different sense. I broke free of a cycle I was stuck in, and have been given a creative rebirth. It has been a very positive and healthy transition. Perhaps there are two more of these “deaths” waiting for me down the road. I can only hope so. This isn’t to say I won’t have my challenges with this change. I most certainly do, but they are all for my own growth both spiritually and physically.

2. I have to be prepared to run:

I have to be completely honest, I have yet to uncover the meaning behind this. I took it, much like the first, to be literal. There is the chance that it could also have a more psychological and metaphysical meaning. It feels important, though, like there is possibly a dangerous element involved. I had associated this with the ages listed above and my death.

The reasons I am uncertain it is non-literal is because ever since I was a child, regardless of my size, I’ve always been a decent runner; I always loved to run (and bike). I would receive comments about it from students and teachers alike. Where I am at now, I doubt I could run away from a steamroller.

Which brings us to...

3. I am not prepared:

Again, I just naturally interlocked this in with the running and possible impending doom. It always seemed known that whatever was coming, there may be a way to escape, at least for a period of time. Overshadowing that was the knowledge that I was not prepared for whatever it was. I was squandering my time.

I worry this may be linked to my health in general. With my diabetic scare back in 2007, and the falling off of my newfound healthier lifestyle, I fear there may be a chance for relapse. Not a chance so much as an already ticking time bomb. One thats final time of detonation remains hidden from me.

The Best is Yet to Come

Now, these next two are the ones that give me the strongest hesitation. I personally feel they make me out as being completely crazy. Maybe I am? dun Dun DUN! Anything is possible. So let me think... anything to note before jumping in...

One thing would be to, again, explain how I a non-religious. Never believed in God; still don’t in the traditional, religious sense. For the longest time I would consider myself to be Atheist, and then Agnostic. Now I would say Spiritual.

This hole is already pretty deep, perhaps I should just take a break.

*Sigh*

Dig. Keep digging.

Delusions of Grandeur?

4. The belief that I am meant for something:

One of the two most persistent beliefs or awarenesses of what is.

Not just something, but something important.

More disturbingly, the knowledge existed that this could be with either positive or negative intentions. It would take some time trying to unravel and share with you the inner struggles of Good Vs Evil within myself. Rest assured, the “Good” won out... I think. Wouldn’t that be what an “Evil” person said, though, just to fool you?

Anyhow, this has been a feeling that has existed within me since a teenager. I can’t recall an exact age; just a general timeframe.

At one point in time, I thought it revolved around my writing. It has always been a goal to positively affect people with it. Even if it was just one person. Hell, even if it was myself. That is the most important goal to any writing I partake in. I suppose even my blogging would apply, though I know my focus was always on novel writing.

I’ve no real idea as to what this “importance” involves, nor on what scale. Just going by what I know of myself, I would assume it associated with helping people.

Mind you, I am just attempting to explain what I feel inside. What I know.

I’ve always disliked this feeling, because of the whole Delusions of Grandeur aspect. How am I supposed to be somehow important with anything profound. This irks me doubly given my constant underachieving habits. Despite my feelings of being unbefitting of such a thing, it is what it is. It is what I feel like I know to be true.

So if this is dangerous, watch out. It has always concerned me. To the point I would even google search for others with the same feelings. I did happen to encounter some groups/communities of people expressing similar thoughts/feelings/awareness, but I never engaged them. I studied from afar.

Researching this issue at least unearthed some results. The same couldn’t be said for my most troubling of awarenesses. The cream of the crop...

The Path of the Spiritual Warrior

5. I am a “Warrior of God”:

So yeah...

Not sure how to even explain this one. This is one I struggled and fought with for a long time. Where it came from, I’ve no idea. I remember just sitting there, minding my own business, and it ninja-kicked me in the mind.

What a dick.

You have to understand, for the longest time I didn’t believe in Love. I mean... I understood the formulaic nature it existed between family and such. As for feeling I could ever love someone else? No. I definitely didn’t believe in God. Don’t, again, in the traditional sense.

So when this kept persistently assaulting my mind over a long period of time, I became concerned. Who wouldn’t? Well, maybe some would just embrace it all “Fuck yeah!” style, but I assure you that wasn’t my take.

My take was like... “What the fuck is going on? I don’t even believe in God.”

I tried looked it up; if others had the same persistent feeling. Nothing. Wait, there was one dude that was a musician and began to play Christian music in church and such. That was the only instance I had found. That was some 5 years ago, though.

I will be honest, I haven’t even bothered to look it up again, and don’t plan to. Over the course of time, and my spiritual growth, I began accepting it. In a spiritual sense. A Spiritual Warrior. Now, what exactly does that mean? I’ve still only a very small semblance of understanding.

“The Spiritual Warrior is a person who challenges the dreams of fear, lies, false beliefs, and judgments that create suffering and unhappiness in his or her life. It is a war that takes place in the heart and mind of a man or woman. The quest of the Spiritual Warrior is the same as spiritual seekers around the world. The Spiritual Warrior faces this challenge with the clarity and awareness that this war is fought within himself and that Truth and unconditional love are on the other side of these battles.” -Toltec Spirit

As time went on I was distracted by a multitude of various materialistic things that mattered very little. So naturally part of me wonders how much this may intertwine into being unprepared.

Even with being distracted, though, I have changed and developed spiritually over the last few years. I feel that it is a self-reflective journey. One that, in some way, I can maybe share with others. I love the discussions of various beliefs, but how do you do so when a lot of yours are not yet fully defined?

What is defined? What I mentioned about Love and Connection. There is no wavering there. They simply are.

Dig a Hole, Fill it Up

So where does this leave me exactly? I’ve no idea. Not a fucken clue. All I know is I dug this hole.. and...

Hey! What the shit... Who started throwing dirt back down on me? I bet I know... (the “fucken” gave it away).

Seriously, though. These are just some of the things that I believe I know about myself, and the world around me. One can likely understand why I never talk about them. I feel like a whacked out freak job.

And... now it is all out there for the world to see! Fancy that. Yeah...

Who knows, though, maybe there will be others out there who have felt (feel) something similar. I plan to go into the whole Good Vs Evil and Love & Fear topics in depth, and I hope there are some themes there that really connect with people on a deeper level. I can’t be the only out there feeling this way.

Considering we are all connected, how could that even be possible, right?

I think I’ve dug deep enough for now. Now to get the fucken hell out of...

HEY! I swear to fucken God, if you don’t stop burying me in my own...

*sigh*

Anyone with a helping hand?