Six Lane Highway

I’m stuck in the middle of a six lane highway, cars zipping by on either side in all directions, grazing my body, threatening to strike me. There is no way out. All I can do is stand here — head held high, shoulders broad, feet apart — and pretend like I know what I’m doing. Pretend like I’m strong enough to handle this.

In all actuality, what I want to do is crouch low to the ground, hands over my ears, eyes shut tightly. I want to block this all out, to escape from the chaos and confusion. Sometimes I look around me and think about how easy it would be to let one of these cars hit me, how easy it would be to just take the simple and cowardly way out. I can’t though. I’m too stubborn. I will get through this. Sometimes there’s a break in the traffic; sometimes I can finally see the other side of the road. I dash toward it, but then more cars shoot by in front of me, blocking the exit. This all seems hopeless, right?

My cocoon is smothering me. I thrash about, hoping it will tear and finally set me free. Instead, it tightens its unearthly grip around my body. The claustrophobia is settling in. I want to scream. One of these days I will break free of this and fly to freedom.

I’m running a race. Everything hurts. My breath is coming in short gasps and my body is threatening to collapse from fatigue. Just as soon as I think I can’t do it anymore, the finish line comes within sight. When I cross over it, I’m told that I have just run a single lap, and there are plenty more to complete. This is necessary. So off again I run, another lap in front of me in this inevitable race.

And this is how I lose myself. This is why I am falling.