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A Beautiful Reluctance

We were born saying goodbye
to what we love,
we were born
in a beautiful reluctance
to be here,
not quite ready
to breathe in this new world

– David Whyte, Cleave

I understand this reluctance. I wrestle with it myself. And tackle the moments as they wash over me and undermine my footing like a relentless surf. We’re never quite ready for what the world throws at us, but with a subtle shift and a will to persevere we find a way to keep our footing.

For all the harshness in the world we learn that, more often than not, the waves come from within. The demons aren’t out there marching towards you in waves, they whisper in your ear. The distractions and busywork and perceived obligations squander our moments and precious minutes. The reluctance pulls at our sleeve, back towards what we are comfortable with, back towards the safe and predictable and indistinct.

Each step is uncertain, but slowly we move forward. The farther we venture, the harder it is to hear the call to come back. And in the growing quiet we might hear something just out of reach. Just ahead. And we continue towards those who call us, towards the Muse, towards our boldest dreams. One moment, and one breath at a time.

But it begins, as it must, with goodbye.

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