My Life: Is This What I Am Living For?


Photo by Tara Bailey

Sometimes, people find that they have to break away from what is normal, to do something else. Life is about doing what you want, not what others want.

At one time, I thought that I was dead. Not like the decaying corpse that rested in peace in its confined coffin, but someone who was to dead to such a point, that life was never truly its own. It was the type of death in which the air became so thick and polluted that there was no possible way to breathe.

Maybe, I was just a ghost at the time, wandering about, desperately wanting to feel alive…to feel something real. I just wanted to feel, well, alive. No matter how I tried, no matter how loud I screamed or shouted to the heavens above, no matter how I implored for someone to hear me, I came to the conclusion that I was in fact, dead.

“This is your life, are you who you want to be?

This is your life, are you who you want to be?

When the world was younger and you had everything to lose[1]

For most of my life, I was told who I had to be, what I had to be, and where I had to be. However, no one thought to ask me who I wanted to be, what I wanted to be, and where I wanted to be. No one had let me live my own life as if it was actually mine, but instead, a life that was dedicated to the pleasure and needs of others. Over the years, I discovered that there is no possible way to please everyone.

“There’s gotta be something more.[2]

Whenever I did try to go my own way, I was told that I was not doing the ‘right thing’. I was told that I should have been like this or that, and, of course, I believed it. But despite the demand to be like someone else, I longed for something more. I desired for something deep down in my heart, and I did not know what that was for a long time. I finally did know; although, the journey to the realization was blind to me for most of my life. My journey, a long time ago that was, happened like this:

There were two major roads in the small, quaint town where I had once lived. There was one major road that ran through the small, quaint town before diverging into two different paths. The road on the left went directly to the town’s square, connecting one side of this town to the other. The road on the right, as empty and desolate as it was, went beyond the town’s limits. It led from this town to the next, and from there, the roads changed, always moving in different directions.

Nothing grew; everything was lifeless on the road on the left. Plants that did grow soon died afterwards as if the atmosphere had suffocated them, too. The road on the right, deserted, had the most wild and exotic plants ever seen.   There were pinks and blues and greens and yellows and reds swaying back and forth in the wind.

One day I walked directly to that line, fearing what was beyond that point. For a while, I continued to stand there between these two sides of the line. I just wondered who and what and where I could be, and that thought caused a rhythmic chill throughout my body. All of a sudden, my feet forcibly moved forward as if some supernatural force was pulling across the town line. Right foot in front of the other, I walked towards my destiny, my future, and my freedom. I walked between the worlds of life and death, and I found life.

Between the worlds of life and death, there is only one step needed to start the journey.

[1] Switchfoot. “This Is Your Life.” The Beautiful Letdown. Columbia Records, 2004. CD.

[2] Switchfoot. “Something More.” New Way to Be Human.  Columbia Records, 1999. CD.