I have a place in the world that’s mine


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.

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