i write myself into resilience

what happened then i can understand now. from a distance of several years, able to see the full curve of my life. the universe was nudging me to exchange short term pain for long term gain. it felt, at the time, a grossly unequal trade. like an ill-fitting mantra, i told myself i was wearing golden handcuffs instead of a ball and chain. is it any wonder i reached for the distractions i did? i was fermenting for years.

then at last, i was no longer bound. my destiny again in my hands, all the weight i’d carried seemed worth the strain. but the storm of 2020 hit, making a joke of self-actualization. so i threw myself into words, balm to every flavour of suffering. when the clouds began to lift, i dove into the journey, convinced this was it.

eight months later, i’ve come full circle. i’ve trekked through four seasons in one day only to end up in the same place. the injustice being that i’m more than qualified, have done the work. yet i feel tremendously unsettled. like the dust around me will never stop swirling. very likely this will all make sense in a few years, but today the future is a fogged path. a lifelong atheist, i’ve been struggling to keep the faith, and so —

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