By Steve Amey
Ever stood in front of the mirror and looked into your own eyes? I mean a deep look, not a cursory glance. What do you see? Years ago, I did this and I saw a young boy with blue eyes, blonde hair, full of innocence and vigour. Bursting of dreams and wild expectations. And I saw something more. Something I wasn’t expecting. Those same youthful eyes turned and looked right back at me. Inquisitively. Seemingly burning into my consciousness. Something wasn’t right. A question hadn’t been answered.
Fast track many years later after enduring a lifetime of joy, sorrow, love, fears, tears and the grinding sandpaper of banal existence. Now the eyes are a light milky faded blue, and the hair? Sun and wind bleached pepper – of course! Life is far from normal. Oh, how I wish for normal. Actually, I don’t know what normal is! I think it is a lack of deviation from social and cultural norms. Basically, what the majority do, believe in and indulge in. I don’t fall into that category. Not by choice. Driven always by sudden spurts of depersonalisation and dreaded fear.
People come and people go. Jobs come and jobs go. Life comes and life goes. Everything remains the same but is also distinguishably different. We all co-exist on the same plain, but we don’t feel the same. As the zillions before me soon I too won’t exist. Just a speck of atoms returning to the universe. As it should be.
But before I return to nature why now have I felt the challenge fade? That growth has lost its rosy glow? Is this when we come to accept the inevitability of growing older and search for a deeper meaning to exist? I’m in that vacuum. That transition towards another horizon. One that is occupied by brutal honesty and devoid of false pity. I now need more answers to make sense of the next phase.
It’s a hard decision to turn your back on the norm to face the unknown. I have just done that. I don’t know what the future holds but I feel weirdly optimistic. I don’t know how it will turn out. I think the fun part will be eventually letting go and just being me. Surviving and thriving on the unknown. I’ve done it before and while things get weird, they then get wildly better. So here I go again. Reinventing, redesigning, reengaging and re-living.
Recently I looked into the mirror again. Catching those dull blue eyes in a trance-like gaze. It was easier to see beyond the iris and the macula and onto the optic nerve. Do you know what I saw? I saw a faint sparkle. A tiny meteor flash that arced across the eye. I saw and felt that cheeky blue-eyed, blonde-haired kid that wants to fly away with the clouds again. The answer came to that ever long question I have been searching for… It was connecting with the innocent giggle of a child, the inner child, the ever-presence of optimism and that strong belief that the future is still yet to be written and I am still the architect of that future.
“Turning Horizon” was submitted to mindshare as part of The Turnings Project in 2020. To learn more about the Turnings project click here.