Friday Reflections #8
“The truth,” Dumbledore sighed. “It is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution.”
In truth, I find truth these days to be a fence. Not a short one that lets us see the other side, but a high one, painted black, not the black of the beautiful night I have once adored, but the black of the unknown and the feared. It has climbed so high, this fence, that those standing on either side can only see the blackness, the truth what “they believe to be true”. The black of fear and unknown has made both forget that life is different on each side of the fence, as is the truth.
On the outside of this fence, life is hectic. I see one part of my family run to keep pace with what they need to do, or what they have to do, or what they love to do. There is freedom, yes, yet there is also restriction. A moment to sit down, to take a deep breath and to be in the company of those who matter, that moment is restricted. It hurts, that restriction, but it is something that they can’t always control. That race to keep pace with life brings illness and tiredness, a strain that they cannot take, and must break the run to take some rest.
On the inside of this fence, life is difficult. Only they, who are fenced in, the other part of my family, will feel the helplessness. They know we are running for them too, that it is time for them to rest, but even when it is that time, one truth that does not rest is that they continue to have expectations. It is a time when they need us the most, a time when they want to feel our presence, and know that they are not forgotten. That helplessness brings unwanted thoughts to their mind. Their ways are set, and they continue to want their way, even if it needs to change for their betterment.
The black fence has become so high that the ones on the outside only hear the frustration of the people on the inside. The truth might be that they can’t go inside because of that strain life has “gifted” them, but for those on the inside, that truth is seen as “we aren’t wanted anymore”, which is an unwanted thought. They lash out because of it, and we get irritated. The truth might be that they want to see those who matter to them because that presence eases their sense of helplessness. The high black fence blocks that and those on the outside feel “they are doing it on purpose to add to our irritation”.
It is only the misunderstandings, and not appreciating the other’s truth, that this fence has gotten so high. Neither side wants to let go of the view, for to them, that might be the truth. I am stuck halfway at the gate. I see both sides struggling, and understand both sides. Yet the truth is that I might be the most helpless of all. For seeing both sides struggle weakens my strength too, and try as I might, the black fence is now impossible to break. The fence is slowly breaking me.
(© 27th June 2016)