Picture this – a little ship sailing out in the open sea. It’s all nice and calm. The sky’s clear and the annoying, noisy seagulls are surprisingly missing. Such beautiful peace! However, don’t be so easily fooled by this quiet, deceptive tranquility. The absence of those very same noisy birds doesn’t bode well. Heard of ‘the quiet before the storm’? And before you realize it, there are menacing, dark clouds crawling over the same clear canvas. The heavens split open as torrential misery pours down.
Just a tiny boat, a tiny boat that is no match for the giant waves rapidly approaching. You lose control over the wheel, there’s nothing but looming rocks, encompassing shadows and monstrous waves up ahead. Treacherous whirlpools and sweeping tides that silently linger to bait in clueless, naïve wooden preys, threaten to break and gobble you up. You’re but a mere wooden toy tossed and flung around by the tides that just might capsize you. They conspire to seize you and hold you down till all the fight leaves your being and all that’s left behind is a beaten down wreck in the very depths of the high seas. A wreck that wards off most and commands a presence that is answered only by nervousness and a silent wish to stay away.
You should know this though, this tiny boat is anything but tiny. It’s your existence. It’s as magnificent as any of the finest ships out there decked in its own unique grandeur. It is your life and as much as you’d like to always be in control, but there are times when that’s out of the question. There are so many monsters out in the sea looking such harmless vessels to wander out, testing the waters, so that they can find them at their most vulnerable state and devour them. One small blind spot. Just one Achilles’ heel. Just one little insecurity for them to hound upon.
But amidst this turmoil and chaos, for that one moment when the waters retreat, have you ever looked about? Or are you just too caught up in healing and recharging yourself for the next onslaught?
Sure, it’s important to heal and pull your guard back up. But just for a little while forget them. Let your guards remain down and look into the dark, dreary expanse of the night. What might appear to be camouflaged as an abysmal stretch, hides among its countless evanescent stars a single, sole light lower than the rest perhaps. A lighthouse.
A lone ray of brilliance to guide back the other solitary crafts. Just a tower to guide you back home. It doesn’t forsake your tiny meandering self. It doesn’t leave you alone with your own thoughts. There’s suddenly so much more to your life and there’s this tiny spark within yourself. A hope to possibly continue hoping and to survive. Even if it’s but a mere mirage, it still fills the lost nomad with a promise of there being a light at the end of the tunnel.
When surely all seems lost and you seem to be done for, don’t forget there are those who will guide you back. There were times I faltered and almost gave in to my demons. I could barely get back up from where I had fallen. The ones I relied on, my own blood, weren’t there for me. In fact, I wasn’t needed. I was just a mistake after all. I would like to make this about a story of true love, because who doesn’t love a romantic story once in a while! My apologies, but that didn’t happen.
Sure, I found love and soulmates. Yes, I say soulmates, with an ‘s’ , for they are my better halves. I hadn’t had the best experiences in friendship before but if there was something good that pain gave me – that was my own lighthouse. They scattered rays of hope for me to hold onto in my life and a drive to continue fighting.
The companions I cherish and always seek out, be it when my life’s caught up in a storm or not. They made me realize that even if my self is rendered into a formidable wreck, there are those select few curious minds that will set out to explore this same wreck. They will dive into the scary depths to find me all battered on the ocean-floor, only to preserve and put me back together again.
There are times I have been unable to express how they quite literally saved me from rotting away and breaking down. There’s now a drive in me to seek out this lighthouse, to wait for that occasional explorer, and to continue sailing and conquering the high tides.
This is the most beautiful analogy to life that I’ve read in a long, long time.
Life tosses and turns you over, but there is always that one source of light, that beacon of hope that shines in your darkness, telling you that there is a way- a way out.
So you know you need to hang in there a little longer, if you’re not seeing your lighthouse just yet. Hang in there a little longer. It will find you, and in Coldplay’s words, lights will guide you home. When you do find that lighthouse of yours, hold on to it like you’ve never loved anything before.
I hope you do.
(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at firstname.lastname@example.org.)