Abyss' Edge

On 21-September-2004, the following was part of the contents of an e-mail I sent to my wife.

As usual, asking me to think about what I want is hard. Unfortunately, my head still does not know what to do.

It is very frustrating for me to not know what I want. I only continue to know that I cannot continue as I am. Sometimes I just want to go away by myself for a few months. But I worry about Jason (Tania is bigger and seems to be more independent, so I don't worry about her as much - but then again, maybe I don't worry because I have not spent enough time with her and now we are drifting apart ... who knows? All I know is that I don't know.)

Life used to be simple - sure there were a few things I didn't understand, but aside from that life was great. But now I feel burdened, trapped, out of control. I visualize my earlier self as sitting or lying on a raft drifting lazily through a river called life - enjoying everything as I passed by. I am no longer am I drifting lazily through life, but I have been caught in rushing rapids, a maelstrom of forces I am powerless to control. All I can do is hang on and pray that my raft holds together as this cataclysm of forces pulls me ever forward. What is my fate? Will I, by the grace of God, end my journey in a peaceful oasis? Or have the fates decreed that I should hurl over the edge of a waterfall and plunge smashing into the rocks below, or drowned in a Charybdisian whirlpool?

Yet it seems that no matter which way I turn, each decision I take is fraught with danger and uncertainty. One wrong choice and I lose what has taken me a lifetime to gain. This is not to say that each decision will necessarily cause me to lose everything, but they can cause me to lose those things which are precious to me and have taken a lifetime to achieve or things that are irreplaceable or things that can only be regained at an even greater cost (you, the children, the house, income, benefits, status, happiness, companionship, solidarity, respect, dignity, etc).

I will deal with things as they come. But right now, I am still filled with uncertainty about the future.


Almost a year later, where do I stand?

Six months ago, I found refuge on a outcropping at the edge of the abyss. A small oasis of calm in the midst of the raging turmoil around me. At first I was grateful for the calm, for the chance to breath once again. Now, feelings of hopelessness and fear engulf me once again. I cannot stay here indefinitely. This outcropping, my refuge, is being worn away by the forces that have swept me here.

I stare into the raging abyss below me, knowing an unseen end awaits me, pondering if I should leap now into the turmoil which awaits me or wait until I am swept into it when my meagre refuge finally yields to the unrepentant forces which shall prevail against it.

I look up to the sky and wish I could fly - it seems my only escape.

Comments

ingrid said…
Wow. I'm trying to think of any appropriate response to such a hard thing. Everything I think to say sounds like a trite platitude, but I believe this:

But there are still some calm lakes, some peaceful places. Often they are hidden. But they are there. I hope that you find one just for you. To restore and renew you.

Love and peace to you.
Richard said…
Thanks. You only need to say what you honestly believe - never mind how trite it sounds.

I realize that I will survive (barring being run over by a bus).

My emotional mood is quite good, but things are not the way I would like them.

The problem is that I am not used to feeling this way - so finding my way out is proving difficult.
dandan...™ said…
"Life used to be simple - sure there were a few things I didn't understand, but aside from that life was great. But now I feel burdened, trapped, out of control. I visualize my earlier self as sitting or lying on a raft drifting lazily through a river called life - enjoying everything as I passed by."
-This describle best my feeling.
I really feel this way right now.
Tml will be my 3rd interview with a shipping company. Hope I get the job and my income will be sailing smoothly.
Bee said…
"I look up to the sky and wish I could fly - it seems my only escape."

that's how i m feeling too now.
Dark periods inflict everyone at some point in one's life. The challenge is to go through it with all the courage u can muster, and emerge a stronger person after that. Swimming in it will only make you worse. Lean on friends if you need to.Sometimes all you need is a little straw to get you out of the depressing quicksand.

I will be here if you ever do need someone, a listening ear, a confidante.

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