Black vs. White — Color in the middle?!

This weekend, I had to take an unplanned trip to Tahoe and back, adding some impromptu emotional roller coasters to the mix. With less than two months before I transform my life from city livin’ to the high Sierras, I was caught in the midst of vulnerable OT. Being at a crossroads between logically seeing how trust will overcome, but also wanting zilch to do with trusting the unknown left me to rest on a bed of needles. Confidence has now blended with insecurity and the result (besides tears and a lot of force from my ego) is a washing machine of reality – the old, dirty beliefs washed to become clean and reinvigorated.

My old tendency is to go to the ‘black and white’ extreme of putting up guards to protect my heart; thinking Miss Independent will prevail. The belief that I have to take some things with me and leave others without any compromise is a habitual go-to. But at the same time, I understand that if I resign to either side of the black and white spectrum, I will end up disappointed, frustrated, misunderstood and farther from my truth — plus in lack of serious color. If you know me at all, you know that color is a major part of my life (or at least my wardrobe…and bike!). As uneasy as I feel about not sprinting to one side of the spectrum, I am giving a shot at ‘trial-and-error’ in the middle. I am hoping that maybe, just maybe, I will wind up with a bunch of colorful compassion and faith between the normalcy of extremes.

Focusing on the present day at hand is a challenge when we aspire to burn bridges and build bigger and stronger ones. In the past few days, planning for the future has rented more space in my head than marveling in the awesomeness of what is right NOW! I feel deeply appreciative to be faced with the hardship of parting with a meaningful profession and significant relationships…and transferring to a flourishing community and positive workplace. Any yet, my mental distraction is a reminder that everything is relative because although all my basic human rights are honored and sustaining (unlike many on this planet), I still have the desire for certain expectations to mold together with ease and enthusiasm. As colorful as my ideal future is painted in my head, the actuality is that perfection does not exist and I have to paint the colors depending on the day rather than the dream.

Resigning to patience feels counterintuitive to success based off of cultural standards. However, the rawness of it all is that we are not a standard; therefore there does not have to be resignation — there is only humaness, a bold assignment to existence. As I step in to my new chapter of life, I want to cling to comfort OR to stand up to comfort for the means of protection. But really, the middle ground of tranquility is much more productive than either of the former options. Embracing the capability to act in a ever-growing noble and honest manner is only profitable after we accept that the roller coaster is the ‘amusing’ ride of our existence.

Whether it is a big life change like a move, or a simple lifestyle switch like cutting out caffeine, the descend is just as exciting as the climb — they are both crucial to the adventure. I am slowly (and maybe for the thousandth time) learning that it is not about having a situation look either this way or that way. Rather, we have to stay open to being accepting of the outcome, rather than dependent on our individual version of it. There are too many things around us that affect the outcome. All we have control over is THIS moment. And maybe by not resorting to having change appear a specific way, we will discover a vibrant rainbow of colorful light. To me, that sounds much more appealing than being stuck in dark black or dull white. The darkness and the light serve as a background that illuminates the colors. Then we can get creative about the way we paint our life — no need to erase, paint over or throw away because it’s an abstract piece, free for interpretation by each person. No one else will understand why we painted our own piece with the patterns we chose, so we have to express ourselves with what we consider beautiful. And sometimes beautiful is a concept that only lives in our imagination. So dream big, but live in today!

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