At the precipice I stand, teetering on the thin line between safety- my comfortable perch- and the vast unknown. In the distance, beyond my scope of vision, I hear something calling to me: the allure, my reason to let go. In the past I would have hesitated, but this time is different; it’s a familiar voice calling me forward. It’s a familiar touch steadying my balance and there’s a gentle breath catching my wings. The drop is deep, the fall would hurt, but I know I won’t. So here I stand on the precipice, finally ready to take flight.
Written By: Hollie Barringer, 2015
I’m recovering from a low point in my life. It’s hard to rise above the pressures weighing down on you, especially when they attack from multiple fronts. Between my final semesters in college, searching for a job to kickoff my career, and juggling my personal life I had become something of a wreck. I’ve made poor decisions and attempted to hide from them. I lied to myself and hurt the people closest to me. I did a lot of foolish things in the name of delusion. It’s difficult to admit, but it’s the truth. It happened. But, it’s also in the past now.
The sweet and beautiful thing about hitting rock bottom is the ability to see things in a new light. The realization that all of your reassurances were false and the scenery you’ve been imaging doesn’t exist is a sobering experience. It’s a moment of clarity that hits you from out of nowhere and left me stunned. If I’m being honest it’s both terrifying and thrilling, but mostly terrifying. The worst part is knowing that I was responsible for the hole I dug and that the collateral, everyone who visited me in my pit of denial, are irreversibly affected in some way by my mistakes. While it wasn’t my intention to cause harm, the fact remains that I did and for someone like me who cares deeply, it stings. Fortunately, I’ve had time to process. I can now say that while I am deeply sorry for my mistakes, I also accept that the past is beyond my reach to change. I found a way to come to terms with myself and now I’m able to breathe again.
I want to revise an earlier statement. The worst part is remembering the wreckage left behind, knowing that it exists in its current state because of my choices. But, the best part is that I got to start over. Despite all of the shame I may have felt I was able to see new opportunities I never thought possible. The unknown is still daunting and Lord only knows where my path will take me, but this time is different. This time my choices are for me. This time there won’t be any lies. This time I won’t accept contentment; I will strive for what makes me happy. This time things will be different because if I’m being honest I have changed and I am better for it.
This is a bit personal and a little dated at this point. It’s something I’ve tried to write about but could never put into the right words until now. With the wax and wane of inspiration it wasn’t until now that I found enough of my voice to share this. It’s not the brightest of topics, but if there’s anything to take away from this it is that change isn’t always a bad thing. You may make mistakes in life that bring great shame, but mistakes are part of all of us and their lessons are what help us grow. I have dramatically changed from the person that I used to be and in the beginning it terrified me. I’ve come to realize the beauty of change in that it opens the door to possibilities we never imagined. It allowed me to see the world in a new light. I hope that anyone struggling with themselves, anyone on the road to self-discovery, anyone unhappy with the place they’re in… Please don’t accept contentment. Fight for your happiness and your individuality. As much as it hurts to leave people and things behind us, you’ll only hurt yourself more if you pretend everything is okay when it’s not. I speak from experience.