Monday, 20 September 2010


Autumnal Leaves ~ Simon Howden

I expect you will have noticed the changes to my blog layout and also my new banner (which is free from Banner of Blessings). These alterations have been on the cards for quite a while now and are very much a reflection of the changes I feel within myself.

For some time it has felt as if someone had taken a big stick, stuck it inside me and stirred round and round and round, faster and faster and faster. My thoughts and emotions have been muddled, muddied, strewn hither and thither, tossed about and thoroughly ~ completely ~ mixed up! I have been sucked down into the depths where, for a while, I thought I was safe and secure with my feet planted firmly into the anchoring mud. But it was only an illusion of safety; the mud slowly started to suck me in, deeper and deeper. For a while I didn't even notice what was happening, I simply believed that I had reached a place of calm and peace. Gradually, though, I realised that I was losing myself in that mud; it was pulling me down into a place where I didn't belong and I knew in my heart that it was somewhere I didn't want to be. That mud was clinging to me, smothering me, changing me ~ and suddenly I had the clarity of vision to see that I must break free before I sank any further.

The thought terrified me! I am not good with change, with new things, with living life differently. It's not easy for me to step out of my comfort zone ~ even if that means I stay planted in a place where it is not good for me to be. I find myself rooted to what is familiar, even if that familiarity holds me back from living life to the full; I keep myself trapped behind the walls of what I know rather than venture out to explore the world beyond.

And yet, now that it has become clear to me that I really must open the door which I had so firmly closed ~ locked! ~ the fear is starting to subside just a little. Yes, I am still afraid; yes, I am still apprehensive; yes, my stomach still churns and feelings of panic start to rise. But mixed in with all that, tiny glittery sparkling thoughts have begun to shine little beams of sunlight into my thoughts of doom and gloom!

It would be perfectly safe to unlock that door, even open it a little. I don't have to actually step outside, not just yet. I can stand in the doorway for a while, breathing in the scent of a fresh beginning. I can keep hold of the doorframe with one hand, whilst I tentatively reach for that new start with the other. There is no pressure to jump straight in, I can do this slowly and gently. I can savour each new step I take and I know that one day ~ soon ~ I will turn around and realise that I have walked away from that door which I had kept closed for so long. I will be there in the midst of my new life, living it to the full, facing challenges head-on.....and I will never shut myself away again.

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