The Earth perpetually turns: Light follows shadow, and shadow chases light. We can become a slave to these cycles, and simply accept them and ride their waves. Natural though they may be as day turns to night, we must ask ourselves: What do we do in the dark? How do we handle our dark cycles?
The night is where we hide our secrets, and our demons come out to play: dark thoughts, bad habits, a full spectrum of self-harming behaviors emerge.
Shadows slip down the face of day
And darkness overtakes her former light.
As naturally as time shifts from dusk until dawn,
cycles of light and dark run through her soul.
Enslaved by their comforting monotony and easily lulled to sleep,
She dreams whilst her demons run freely through the night,
Entranced by how much they thrive in the dark,
Dancing with them to the brink of sick ecstasy.
Moonlight fades and dawn breaks
To find her still under shadow’s spell.
But, upon light’s return she is left with nothing,
An empty, bottomless void unworthy of holding its loveliness
The devils’ trick—
Deception of mind and body prevails.
But what if we can shift the cycle? Shadows cannot help their nature, but one thing to remember about shadows is that they come and inevitable go. Sometimes their darkness is irresistible, but what if we slip into shadow with a different purpose. In darkness, we can find a certain peace and respite if we do not give into its heaviness. If we could only investigate the roots of our darker side with curiosity and a desire to understand ourselves better, we could find rest instead of torture. Inspect each thought, decision, and behavior and unravel it’s meaning instead of just punish oneself for it.
There have been times in my life when I have felt that I was swallowed by shadow. And while I often still find myself in a cycle of darkness, I am beginning to see it as an opportunity to learn instead of to wallow in guilt. I want to know what bring me joy instead of pain. It has taken a lot of reshaping my thoughts and behaviors and finding out what nourishes me instead of sickening me. The journey is and will continue to be an untwisting of my soul and unbinding of my mind from ideas that I thought were branded upon my being forever. They are not, and I am free to choose. Free to be me. I am in control of my thoughts and actions.
I seek to understand the thoughts of self-doubt and unworthiness. I chose to forgive myself for the choices I’ve made that were more harmful than good. I refuse to participate in the hateful self-talk. Thoughts may come and go, but I will keep only the ones that serve me. I will remind myself of these lessons each time I shift towards shadow and remember what I have learned.
I will dance in the dark instead of being defeated by it.