As usual, I took the train part of the way and walked the rest to therapy today. When I get off the train I walk up a slight hill towards the main road, beyond which rocky hills rise up steeply. I guess the rocks are made of some kind of sandstone; they’re a beautiful gold color, or variations thereof. I see them every week, but am always preoccupied with thinking, so I never notice them.
Today I did. They’re not very big hills, but they are majestic. Almost within touching distance. They have a timelessness about them, separate from the minutae of daily South African life. Something in me stirred, a love of Africa that I’ve been out of touch with for a while.
I thought about my life, and the path it’s taken so far. I felt at peace with myself and my journey. I wasn’t resigned, though, I was perfectly thrilled to be alive in this moment, at this time. Happy that my life has led to this point. Wanting nothing.
I felt privileged, actually.
I’ve never felt that I had a place in this world that was my birthright. It’s always seemed to me that everybody else has one, but not me. Pretty much boils down to not fully believing I had the right to be alive, I guess. Slowly I’ve been building a more realistic picture! but in the last couple of months, there’s been an exponential shift. I haven’t really seen it happening – which is the understatement of the year! -, but suddenly today as I looked up at those beautiful African hills, peaceful, timeless, and thought about all the positive strokes I’m receiving for my writing, for being me, I saw that I have a place in the world that’s my own, that I recognise. It’s always been mine, I just haven’t been able to see it.
I could see it today. Still can.
Building self-esteem is a slow process, but it gains momentum, and you get these moments of clarity where you know you’ve crossed a threshold. You know you have something that’s yours, that cannot be taken away from you. You feel your place in the world, you know it.
Today is such a day.