Forged by the Darkness

Life is an endless wheel of darkness and light. It’s always turning.

When the wheel of life turns to darkness and despair, I feel it in my bones. Sometimes I can’t even imagine how I’m going to get through it. Have you ever felt so sad that you couldn’t stay standing? You just had to sit down or collapse to the floor in anguish?

I have.

But the more I’ve pondered the pendulum swings of life, the more I’ve come to appreciate both sides of it. Yes, even the darkness that feels so deep. There are some who have felt loss like I can’t imagine. And I hope I never have to feel the devastation that so many of our brothers and sisters feel every day. I am grateful my life remains pretty whole.

Still, sadness is no stranger to me. It’s hard to feel, but there’s something healing about it. And so, in a way, I am grateful for it. I am especially grateful for the growth it gives way to. Before we can see a great distance across the land, we must first climb a perilous trek through the mountains.

That said, the road is never what we imagine. This is because the frightful mountain climb changes us. We see the land through new eyes. We will never be as we were before. In that way, we burn our old selves and rise again from the ashes. It’s the endless cycle. The hero’s journey. It’s the story we’ve heard and experienced a thousand times over. It’s nothing new.

But I am saying the journey through the darkness is required if you want to be born again. We cannot change if we do not struggle and feel our way through. And it’s not enough to know that we can rise again on the other side. No. We have to believe in our hearts that we are done for and that all is lost. We have to feel the fear thunder through us.

Only then can we lift ourselves over the ridge. Having triumphed over our inner demon, we rise with the gift we earned that will guide us forward. We must be changed by the deep to become whole.

Easier said than done. But such is life.