Friday, January 12, 2007

The Other

It came during the early morning. Didn't know what hit me but I woke up feeling suddenly scared. It's hard to explain how it felt like--but it just felt like you want to put back everything to the way things were before yet you know you can't. No going back they say--once you start something that's it. It's bound to happen.

Yet I didn't expect it to come this early. And I know that as confusing as it may seem it only means one thing-- that fate is working its way. It will bring more fears and more confusion as the days go by but that is part of it-- part of the story of the other.

It's called the other because it, according to legend is the one that tells us who we ought to be rather than who really are. Paolo Coelho described it as the one that tells us that we are alive yet it also scares us back to our old shells where everything is safe and risk free.

But life isn't like that. Life isn't risk free. So I tell myself that often--as often as I could remember and I hope that I am reminded of that gift of the other. I woke up scared this morning--scared of the other. I cleaned my room and did my laundry in my hope of exorcising it from my thoughts. Two hours later I was exhausted and unsuccessful.

Then it hit me.. Pilar didn't try to kill the other. She embraced the other. In the book By the river piedra I sat down and wept, Pilar used to be afraid of the other until she realized that she should not fear her heart. The other is the part in us that tells us that tries to veer us away from embracing the grace of life.

I'm still scared. But I'm braver now. Someone once taught me that. If I survived before I know I shall survive now.

"I looked at the Other, there in the corner of the room—fragile, exhausted, disillusioned. Controlling and enslaving what should really be free: her emotions. Trying to judge her future loves by the rules of her past suffering.But love is always new. Regardless of whether we love once, twice, or a dozen times in our life, we always face a brand-new situation. Love can consign us to hell or to paradise, but it always takes us somewhere. We simply have to accept it, because it is what nourishes our existence. If we reject it, we die of hunger, because we lack the courage to stretch out a hand and pluck the fruit from the branches of the tree of life. We have to take love where we find it, even if that means hours, days, weeks of disappointment and sadness.The moment we begin to seek love, love begins to seek us.And to save us."

And who knows what may happen.. This time I might actually end up happy.

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