Hold On To That Instant

I believe enlightenment or revelation comes in daily life. I look for joy, the peace of action. You need action.
Pablo Coelho
A long time ago, when I was in my early twenties, I went through a really bad break up. For what seemed an eternity to me, and probably even longer for my friends trying to cheer me up, life just seemed dull and meaningless. The guy known for his hopeless optimism and constant sarcastic humor was gone, replaced by an angst melodramatic shell of a person. That was till I was almost run over by a car.

Bare with me…I promise there’s a moral to the story.

As I was crossing a local street without taking the proper precautions, I ended up in the path of a minivan. A second of tire screeching turned into an overly concerned lady apologizing for almost hitting me. I told her not to worry, that everything was fine and I was fine. And I smiled that half cocked smile of the overly confident smart ass I was back then (and still am today).

And for an instant, I realized I WAS fine. Everything suddenly fell into place as for an instant the universe, or at least my universe, made sense. It was like if someone finally pulled the blinds and I could see all the things I was previously stumbling over within the darkness.

I would love to end this story with the notion that from that instant forth, I was blessed with endless enlightenment, but those would be lies. The reality is that from the moment it happened, that light, slowly without my notice, started to fade away as I fell into old habits and old patterns.

I’ve been visited by similar instances several other times in my life. The only difference is that now I know that they are fleeting. So what I have done is to learn from those insights, squeeze them dry of any and all self-realization, extend their revelations as long as possible, and create a mental map of where I am, for those times when I find myself lost in darkness.

We are all gifted with those instants within our lives, and it’s usually when we need them the most. It’s in those moments when you find yourself lost, when you simply resign to stumble across life, that we accidentally end up pulling down the blinds from the windows. Call it a moment of clarity, self-realization, or enlightenment from above speaking to you, it’s an instant that provides you the knowledge you need to get back up, take a deep breath, and keep walking forward. Embrace it, relish it, and learn from it, for in that instant you will realize that you ARE fine. And you’ll realize that you can again smile that cocky smile of the confident man you are.