Dear Deluded Heart
Sometimes I feel the past trailing behind me, like a cape blowing in the wind. Except, this cape is not empowering. It’s a slow stalker, unassuming, always present… tied like a noose around my neck.
It is the memories of past events, which form the fabric of this cape. The problem with this, however, is that memories can be a misconception; the grandest of delusions. Like a magicians slight of hand, it’s all trickery. Memories can reveal the magic – be it joy or trauma – and conceal the trick; the actual truth of the events.
The greatest trick that my memories perform, is that they cloak themselves as longing; when I choose to remember, I think I still desire. So I keep myself remembering and hold onto the feeling of wanting. But in this twisted slow dance, I lose the verity of my thoughts. When I finally do face my past, the memory – which disguised itself as longing – finally comes out from behind the rose tinted glasses. I find that the cape was just an illusion upheld by my selective recollections. It only served in slowing me down, and it was one that I no longer needed.
This sudden epiphany came from today’s events: I finally confronted a piece of my past: For far too long, I’ve held onto something that I thought I still wanted. Every time I thought about it, my mind would travel back in time to my former self; with my former state of heart. But having finally faced it, I felt neither the urgency, nor the desire, that I anticipated I had within me. It’s not that I ever consciously buried those feelings, but over time, somehow they evaporated. I realised that with each passing day, my life is affected in a new way. My circumstances change and I change. But my memories belong to my former self and is unaffected by the changes of time. And so I was trapped in this illusion; driven by wants and desires that did not belong in my present, but consisted of my past.
Whilst reflecting upon this, I’ve come to conclude that holding onto the past in this way, is like having a single tunnel vision, without the consideration for change; an inevitable consequence of time. Where time would soften the fixation, this tunnel vision keeps it fresh and in focus. The past, when also paired with the misconception of memories, can become even more heavy. And that is how the shadow of the past, can be far greater than its presence; the past marks who I once was, and everything from my past belongs to that person, and it does not belong to the me of now.
In a nutshell, I guess this all comes down to my strange relationship with the past; it’s not necessarily that I don’t know how to let go of it; it’s just that I keep my hands clenched regardless of the changing times.
With the shape of my tightened fists intact, my mind thinks it holds what it once held in its grasps. However, what it fails to recognise, is that what once was, is no more; it’s long gone and I HAVE moved on.
It’s only when I finally reach for something else to hold onto, that my mind accepts the past for what it is. Only then does my hold begin to loosen. But I am not used to unclenching without the stability of the next hold.
Still, with this realisation, today I was able to look down at my hands, open them and see that the thing I was holding onto had escaped me; I’m done with it, I just missed the memo. With that, I can finally undo the knots around my neck, and set the cape of my past free.
It’s a peculiar thing to wake up to – this epiphany – and it will take me a while to get my head around; no doubt when I do, I’ll come back to revisit it with a clearer and more coherent approach. But I’ve just woken up from the curse of my past’s tunnel vision. And I’ve finally accepted the presence of change.
If anything, this is a small step forward, and that’s all it takes to initiate great movement… After all, it’s the small grains of sand that make up a desert. It’s small drops of rain that can cause a flood. And small changes within, can reinvent us completely. Just like that, we can be reborn; with new tastes, new visions, new desires. Once we accept that we are not fated to the choices that we make, and accept that a change of heart, mind or circumstance does not wait for permission, then we can confidently stray from the path we’ve selected before, and begin to live the thousand lives that exist within us. As we hold onto the present, we sever the hold of the past and open the endless possibilities of the future.
This goes for even the most hard-headed of us. For even the stubborn, steady earth bows down to the seasons change.
I guess, seasons are changing.
Diary of a Deluded Heart
Written: August 14th 2016
Published: November 22nd 2016