A friend of mine shared this story with me and it so resonates with the journey I’ve been on for probably my entire life.
This is what he shared…
The story describes someone sitting in a dark house with no windows. Someone had been bound up in the house and one day became unbound, but was still in the dark house. The first time the person stood up, they hit their head. The second time they stubbed their toe. Finally, someone came in the house and helped them find the door. When asked how did they know their way out of the house to help free them, the helper responded, “I was once in the house too.” In some ways, with what this past year has brought you, you might be in the house, but realize there is door. In other ways, you are telling people you are in the house with them to show them the door.
Can I tell you that I was definitely in the house and I think at times I thought there was no other existence outside of the house. As time went on a friend, in my case my health coach, helped me discover that there was in fact a door. For months I would say that I was stuck in the inside looking out to see what it might be like if I had stepped outside.
But the reality was I was scared to leave because the house had become my home. I had beautified to my liking. It was comfortable. I knew what to expect. There were no surprises. I was never disappointed because I never had to take a chance. On the flip side, I still looked outside, I saw and meet people as they were passing by. More and more I became curious. I took one step outside my little home. But with each step away from the dark house, I found more and more uncertainty. It scared me, and so I often ran back to the comfort on the house I called my home.
More time passed as I got used to playing in the yard just outside the home. I was living more free and yet I was fenced in. Still afraid to completely abandon the place I had grown up in. But more and more people came into my life and shared their experiences of how they were afraid to leave as well.
Eventually the dark room became a distant memory. Because I took the courage to leave it behind me. Was it scary leaving the one place I knew I would be safe? HECK YES! But with every step I have found more and more freedom. Did I do it alone? HECK NO! Are you kidding me? That is scary. I needed to know that I would be safe. Thankfully there have been numerous of people willing to share their journey out of the comfort of their own dark homes. It give me such peace knowing that I was not the only one that had been stuck in the comfort of darkness.
These days I get the rare opportunity to share my story. I’m living outside the home. Do I go back for a visit every once in a while? Yup, but the desire to go back to that place is smaller and smaller every day. Sharing my journey with so many allows others to see the endless possibilities of what COULD BE, if they had the courage to step outside their comfort zone. Maybe you have been watching, maybe you have been debating to take that first step. It looks different for everyone but the commonality is simply that the unknown scares us all. The fear of what will happen next can sometimes paralyze us from moving forward.
And I think that’s the goal in life, to get out of our dark homes and find that there is an entire world out there to live. What does the path look like? I can’t tell you, but if you are willing to take a step you can discover it for yourself and possibly have the time of your life doing it! What may feel like a crawl today may end up being the biggest act of your life.
You don’t have to do it alone, EVER. There are people who want to walk (or crawl) with you. I know this because I have seen people crawl with me. You get the set the pace, that’s the beauty of life, no one will tell you what to do or where to go once you get out of the dark.
Be courageous and know there is no right way. There is just your way. And who knows… your journey may set someone free. And that my friend is a powerful thing!