I woke up before the sun
Finding myself the protagonist in a horror film
My bed a pivotal character in the story
For in the middle of the night, just outside my bedroom door
I heard a frightening yet muffled mumble
One that petrified me to my core
The sound jolted through my body
And set off alarm bells in each limb
They rang and rattled along my bones
Thundering further down my spine
It was a voice so familiar; a sound I knew I heard before
Through the corridors, the cadence echoed
And moved at an eerily steady pace
Louder and stronger it grew in a short time
I felt it slowly closing in
A panic arose in my center, and fear kept me shackled to my bed
I sunk further into my mattress
Leaving shallow imprints of my form
“No, please no, not again,” I said in a whisper.
But it was too late.
I saw a darkness phase into my room
It crept through the night and moved towards my bed
The hollow of the night was now by my feet
Then a haunting voice spoke beside my ear
And at that moment I recognized the visitor in my room
For the demon of my mind woke from its long slumber
The one that I imprisoned and buried deep below
Never again wanting to hear its cackle
The haunting quiver spoke again, pulling at my sleeve
“Hey, I’m awake now, and if you wish, I can play on loop, just like I did before. I can recite your favorite story, the one you used to love to hear.”
Uh oh. Now what?
Because it was right.
I was all too familiar with that story. I still know it so well.
A story filled with thundering storms, dark alleys
Featuring characters with questionable motives.
I am petrified of this story.
It’s a tale that ignites an extraordinary amount of terror.
A story that revs up my heart, sending it speeding at an accelerated rate
A pounding so loud in volume it blends into the chaos within
It is a story that kept me up many nights
Filling my head with noise.
For the fear that leered in the silence, was a killer salivating at the smell of my own blood.
But the story now is different.
It unfolds with hopeful, triumphant new chapters
And I see the radiant beauty of its power
A light so strong it guided me towards a place of salvation
I am grateful for the beauty that surrounds me
Vibrant, rich green hues invite me to soak in the glory
The call of the wind greets me to feel the calming voice of the present and I remember the soothing sound of my breath
It’s the gentle nudge I need to soothe my darkness after its long slumber
For it is relentless and in need of my attention
“Hold on, sweetie,” I say. “I will give you the love you desire. But this time, it will be different from before.”
For years on end, I crumbled tiny pieces of bread and let piece by piece fall to craft a wondrous path
One that illuminates in the dark
It is always there to guide me back to safety when I am lost.
And today, I saw the progress of all my hard work.
My spiritual practice kept me at bay and pushed me through the debilitating pain
It gained control and walked me towards nature
Where I was reminded, there is more.
As I dust off my momentary lapse in judgment
The one that adjusted back to a default at night
I become the hero of my own story where I reminded myself,
Hey, it’s going to be okay.
Because now I just recalibrate.
I don’t have to start all over again.
The muscle memory is fierce but there are still tough days ahead, waiting in the future.
We are never truly safe from ourselves.
But through consistency and training every day
You will feel the difference when that familiar voice inside wakes from its hibernation
You will know what it needs for nourishment after it rises from its long slumber.
And when you stumble and get lost again
The breadcrumbs are forever ingrained in the soil
A powerful path will glow in the dark
One crafted with your resilience and love
It will guide you back to where you are safe.