Sunday, April 16, 2017

In the Moment of Passed Places

Sometimes life throws at us its worst, and we respond with our best.

I am rebuilding, refocusing, and working hard. I am entering that next phase. I am keeping trying to salvage the best of the past, while moving towards the future.

There are times all that we can do is the best we can do, and we must accept that.

But doing is the key here. Not doing is where you do not want to be. Not doing means letting another day go by without moving forward, trying something new, or learning.

There is this thought which haunts me.

Sex is something you write when you cannot write anything better.

It is a terrible thought, and one I fought against my entire writing career. It is a predisposed statement, loaded, and entirely wrong. It denies the human condition. It denies who we are. It heaps shame on the subject, and pushes it into the back room.

Yes this is a thought which keeps coming back to me in my moments of weakness.

If I did not have this thought, I would have never fought against it, and I would not be who I am today. Sometimes, without our darkest thoughts, we are not ourselves. Without a weakness to fight against, there is no fight. There is no wrong to battle, there is no dragon to slay. So I keep having this thought, and it speaks to me from the darkness with its siren's song.

"Quit."

"Go mainstream."

"Writing sex demeans you."

"You are better than this."

I am sure you hear voices similar. Doubts. That inner voice telling you, "you can't." Trying and failing. Being unsure of yourself. Thinking the grass is greener. Being someone who you are not. Quitting. Not trying. Giving up through ignorance and inaction.

But fighting those voices makes us who we are. With every act of defiance we grow stronger. With every step forward we deny the step backward. We also deny the force of inaction, which I feel is the most dangerous place to be.

You are who you are.

Do not try to be someone else.

And there are times when who you are...is not who you really are. Because you have been living a lie all your life. Or parts of your life embody that lie so much you cannot see it for what it really is.

Life is an expressway. You must move with it or you are placing yourself in a place you don't want to be. Even standing still puts you at risk. You must be in motion, fluid, and always going forward. There is no alternative.

There is no standing still. Not in this life.

There cannot be.

Those voices will always be behind you. They will call to you, to turn around, to go back the way you came, and to tell you it is better where you have been than where you could be.

But that is all those voices are.

Memories of the things of which you have seen.

Places passed on the road of life.

You enjoy them in the moment in which you had them, but living in them gets you nowhere.

Nostalgia is an opiate. A lie. Comfortable ropes which tie and bind. Denying our future and denying our potential. Nostalgia has a selective memory. Nostalgia is influenced by the darker voices within.

There can be nothing better than what came before. The way things were will always be the way they are. This idea was the best. We might as well give up trying to do anything new and settle back in the stale and familiar.

There is no better us, nothing better shall come, and therefore there is no better you.

Again, another voice which tells me, "you can't."

And I shake my head, keep driving, and know there is another monster out there in the darkness which I must fight. More worthless words from the voices within.

But valuable in that fighting them makes me who I am.

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