If the first is a guess, what is the second? Paranoia? Or worse? Action is a blessing, reaction a debilitation, and to twist from reaction to self-doubt sinks the battle and the battleship. When I can’t make sense, the gift is stepping back. Better to put my hand down than to lose the farm. When I find myself in a minefield, I can walk gingerly or wait for aide from above, air rescue or other. The option of rethinking every step sets me dancing; the tune, which begins this hurky jerky polka of death, stems from the metronome of criticism playing in my ear. When I am overwhelmed with critique I give up acceptance of chance or the joy of spontaneity, throwing myself into a pit of apprehension. I am safer being wrong occasionally than unsure forever.
Study an old map and find a new way.
Message with no Bottle
I found a note while I was cleaning the art cupboard.
It was written in my hand.
I don’t remember writing it, or thinking it for that matter.
The note said,
“Total disregard for the survival of your soul”
and I have no idea if it was a warning or a suggestion;
a place to start or a destination at which not to arrive.
If it was written during one of those dark days
it could be the former,
I hope it is the latter;
a sign post on my recovery road.
I bring it out here to write to you about it,
share it and take me to a place
where I am no longer alone with this flyer.
I sit down to the keyboard
lift the note to read it again with care.
I scan the edges for clues
and see that it is a memo sheet torn in half.
When I flip it, on the back I see,
“2 loaves & 5 fishes to feed a multitude”
and though I may not believe in that miracle
I do believe in this one.
You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault