I was imbued with a staunch confidence from which I spouted my opinions and discounted those of anyone who disagreed with me. Sadly, I have a quick mind and a sharp tongue, so I took some pride in leveling my opponents.
So life was simpler, perhaps, but not easier. I very rarely had internal peace. At times I would carry disquiet and vague discomfort with me for hours or days or weeks after my certainty had galvanized me into regrettable action.
How could I not defend my position? How could I not try to convince people to follow the RIGHT path? My path.
In those days I knew my path. It wasn’t a winding track with the next few steps hidden by overhanging questions. It wasn’t soft on the sides with leafy branches of thought leading to unknown destinations. In those days it was straight. It was sure.
This sureness can still rise up and imprison me. On those fearful days I lock myself into a position of self-protection. I can’t move forward. I no longer wish to move back. And so I wait and hope that nothing goads me into action. If that happened I might revert to my sad former self and engage in righteous and wrong arguments in which everyone would lose.
Those are the days when I must be alone and wait for my uncertainty to return.
A Life Student
This was originally posted on Vision and Verb, an international gathering of Women.