Within The Shadows….


Each time I set myself up to compel my fingers to talk as much as I wont, I count it a privilege that I have got a voice and one that can be heard. I have never been a fan of animation movies or cartoons until I was blessed to become a father and then I immersed myself in the simplistic world of the child’s mind and I realize that being child like is not just a virtue but a gift in itself. I am being reborn and yet agonizing the process doth seem most times, however I know that the end is not just a goal in itself but a destination, a milestone, an attainment. I have chosen to trust like a child, irrespective of what the present circumstances are, I know that He is never going to leave me. I recall the story of the initiation rites into manhood of the ancient Indian tribes that consists of the boy spending a night blindfolded and all alone in the dark jungle, surrounded by shadows as eerie as the tendrils of the trees that inhabit the swamps accompanied with sounds, each one more horrifying than the last. After a horrendous seemingly endless night, finally the dawn pierces through and with a gasp of relief, the boy yanks of the blindfold only to find that seated beside him silently on a tree stump watching over him through the night is his own father.

I was laid up all through yesterday, as my body was racked with bouts of sciatica and tremors, each more agonizing than the last one. Hobbling to and from the bathroom, each journey characterized with severe tremors threatening to even make me let go of my staff of authority but I know that I may not be made of titanium however my core remains strengthened from above. I have a list of things I would love to do some day and even as I endure each day – good and bad, I am resolute in the knowledge that I was not created with a glass chin and even as each punch seems to knock out more than I breathe in, I am still standing – feet planted firmly, eyes unflinching in their gaze, taking it a step at a time because I am built for the long haul and nothing and nobody can convince me otherwise. Each time, I look through my small red leather bound 4”x 3”x 1.5”personalized manual for life, I am not only reminded of who I am but I am also rejuvenated by the infallible truths contained within it. Truths that I have since chosen to believe and hold onto, and through the nights and the days, I know who is in my corner with me.

One thing I have come to realize as I sojourn towards my defined and expected end is that there will always be shadows, the shadows of solitude incapable of being explained to another, the shadows of people who stand in their feeble attempt to eclipse the rays of hope, the shadows of smoke arising from burnt out past relationships, the shadows of an inexplicable desire to just give in and get it over with. And as long as these shadows exist, I can and have chosen to acknowledge that even within the gloomiest of shadows, there will always be a face, a smile, a sincere word of hope, a hand briefly held….there will always be an angel in the shadows of my journey. I have learnt not to seek to recognize them because I will never be able to, however for every patch of shadow I walk through, I know that someone who knows and understands commitment will be there, be it for some fleeting minutes, a day, a week or for some, months and for a minuscule few, repeated appearances throughout my lifetime.

With bodies forcefully twisted and ravaged by this neurological disorder, I have met many a champions who choose to let their voices be heard – not in an irate display of regret and fury at their circumstances but in a display of selflessness, sharing their pains and joys; setting aside their own troubles so as to share in another’s. I have met quite a few who unable to grasp fully what each day unpredictably hurls at me, do their own little bit to just listen and with the words they hear, choose to enlarge the resources of their heart and move along with a better understanding of life. Because we are not merely human beings, incapable of genuine acts of selflessness and kindness but most importantly, we are spiritual beings fully capable of sharing of ourselves with one another – one life at a time by virtue of what we freely and bountifully receive each new day. I choose to be an angel in someone else’s shadow and not for the recognition it can bring but for the sense of fulfillment that comes with fulfilling an assigned task.

Whilst it is true that when push comes to shove, you are the only one with butts firmly planted in the dirt, don’t dwell in the inevitable loneliness of such times, be bold enough to yank off your blindfold and acknowledge the person who has been planted there beside you for a time such as that. I really don’t know why there are countless questions that simply defy answering for the now but what I know is what I share, that we can choose to allow circumstances define our lives either negatively or positively. This is because no matter how thin a slice of bread is, there are always two sides. Giving into the shadows might not have too much of an option as we all amble along, some with known purpose and most with aimless perambulation, but let us remember that walking with clenched up fists and bowed heads will deny us the beauty of seeing that angel sent to us or being that angel to another for those moments.

I have learnt to let go of hands that hurt and persistently weigh me down, to access those stretched out with love and concern. I have learnt to be a word of cheer to as many as I can as often as possible. I have learnt to make my voice heard when it is necessary because that is what I have been blessed with. I have learnt to accept the fact that we can choose to allow God use the good within us or simply be like the dead leaves blown around in the fall, devoid of life and usefulness. I have learnt that regardless of how much I hurt, I can choose to make room for just that one person because in doing that, the shared joys always outweighs the gloom of my own circumstances. We are not just created for ourselves (what a small package a man is when he is wrapped up in himself) otherwise there would be nothing like sharing. However I have come to realize that even within the deepest of shadows, nobody is ever alone.

lמסתדר טוב עד שניפגש שוב בזמן שלו


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