Thursday, December 31, 2015

Six Years Later

It's that time of year again, where in between the stuffed stomachs and hearts, we reminisce about days gone and plan those looming in the distance. Have I done all I could do or has history repeated itself once again? Did I set out to live a truer existence, one in which I was more adventurous and carefree, and if so, did I succeed? I'll let you in on a little secret; most people haven't, not because they didn't try, but because they did and they feared.

You see, fear is a multifaceted phenomenon. It presents itself in many forms, shapes and sizes; the front door of your house, the clockwise turn of your car's ignition key, a red legged devil on your shoulder whispering in your ear words you'd never have the courage to say out loud. It's a wall dividing the square kilometre you live in and the vastness of the Japanese Alps, separating who you are and who you could be. There is no saying who or what led to its construction but it's imperative that you break it down, sooner rather than later, before the sand runs out. Because for all you know, it could at any minute.

I have never said this before, but fear was one of the main reasons why I started Life Unplugged six years ago today. I was afraid, scared of life and everything in it, so instead of fighting that fear, I hid behind thoughts and wrote, and wrote, and wrote. I made myself the heroine of my own stories and together we embarked on journeys to lands I am still not sure exist. I never told anyone about her, so much so that to this very day, she remains nameless. Unfortunately, with time, we both let go, decided to live our separate lives, me a coward and her the "untitled heroine".

I saw her again this summer, as I was strolling down the streets of Japan, mispronouncing the hello's and the thank you's, nibbling on grilled stingray fins and raw horse meat. I saw her again this summer, carrying a big bag on her back and a notebook in her hand. She looked at me funny, probably because the years have been kinder to her than they have to me. When she finally recognised me, she nodded in approval and smiled as if to say "I see you"; and she did, I know she did. For the first time in six years, she saw me, not for who I am but for the woman she knew I could be, free of fear.

Let go of your fears this year. Be adventurous, live a little, life's too short.