The Suburban Vagabond

On a search for a better world, finding it in the most unlikely places

The Way It Is, the Way It Seems, and In-Between.

Processed with VSCO with 2 preset“We were born with these broken bones
We were born all these streets to roam
We are the kids without a permanent home”

This one goes out to you, the starry-eyed kid who walked dreamily into the revolving door of life, only to emerge that much the worse for wear…this goes out to those of you still spinning. This goes out to you whose hearts and minds and bodies – whose very souls bear the indelible mark of the survivor.

It’s 1:27 AM on a Wednesday, and my grip tightens on the bar, my exhausted muscles resentfully obeying the command to hoist this cold iron. Again. And Again. The sane people and the cheerily blasé soccer moms, the normal people are asleep with their dreams or their nightmares until another morning filled with Starbucks and pop radio…

Some of us aren’t like that…normal…some of us got cold-cocked on the way to happily-ever-after or whatever ripoff we thought would be the closest approximation. Some of us have become numb, and sick. And so damn tired.

It‘s my 21st year, and I have slipped through the icy grip of death twice in the last 6 months, albeit not without scars. I drag my body – specifically an arm that has been immobilized for 6 weeks – into a now long-defunct gym, and pick up a dumbbell, and lift.

And again. And again.

You never get used to removing knives from your back. It’s the same damned pain…severed possibilities, hopeful moments of beauty that somehow managed to still put you on your back, leaving you wondering what exactly happened, and the failure is so close you can smell and taste it like blood and ashes in the back of your throat…

I didn’t used to lift this much weight – could hardly bench the bar when I started. Now the bar bends and protests when I disturb its suburban-wasteland slumber. It never gets easier. 200 pounds is still 200 pounds. I have never had an easy workout – but I have gotten stronger. So much stronger. I will the bar back onto the hook, and the micro tears in the very fabric of my muscles begin to heal – just a little stronger than before.

And again. And again.

Maybe you spent your formative years being told that who you were was not okay – that the very fabric of your being was inadequate, that the very people  who were supposed to watch over you were at best indifferent, or clueless, or malicious. “A brain isn’t supposed to work that way. A body isn’t supposed to look like that. A heart isn’t supposed to beat for those things. Why can’t you just toe the line. And the failure…every failure lined up in formation…an opposing army daring you to take a step. Maybe the enemy stares back at you from the mirror.

I am not afraid. The disciplines of Iron have taught me well. I will stand back up. I will return to fears nameless and fears named – they will no longer recognize me, and I will know them well…and I will know myself.

And Again. And again. And again.

My brothers and sisters – take heart. You are not nearly so alone as you think. Know that there is strength in you that you have never touched,and beyond that strength there is a common grace – the grace of those who never gave up. There is a light beyond the shadow. I swear it by the iron that keeps honest and the scars that remind me that I must fight for every day. Go. Be you.

And again. And again.



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This entry was posted on 2016/01/14 by in Uncategorized.


Shorter thoughts…

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