There’s a recommendation to write when raw, skinned alive by circumstance and the slings and arrows of life. To unload and unburden when there’s nothing to lose. Today, I choose to unload and to see what’s away inside that drowns my sense of wonder; that derails the beauty ever ready to step out and shine.

In my raw it is: flitting between the shadows of the dark, and the beams and sparks of the light, I see the world from a range of perspectives. Some wonderful, others dreadful and terrible. Each is just a story I tell myself. And, as the storyteller, I understand this; as a person, my habit may be to forget that everything is only a game that I write the rules for.

In my darker moments, I implode into a history of confusion; I forgo my clarity, a clarity where I’ve risen above the clouds. And I reckon I may not be alone in this experience. In fear I create and maintain, overloads my inherent wisdom and I see not who or what I am.

The biggest challenge, I tell my self and commit some belief to, is that my inner critic and editor, demands control over my words and expression. And its very “nays” are the rules I must follow. These are but a small part of the story; one untrue in neither content nor fact. I am something so much more than these stories, and the editing critic.

Darkness and light are my experience. They represent my fears, my neuroses and my brilliance, my confidence, my clarity and expression of wonder. The shadows emphasise and cloud me, my thinking, my emotions and my beliefs, towards faith, wellbeing and trauma.

Today, and recent events, tell me life is difficult and I sit frozen, tucked away in panic, in avoidance and inertia (the ultimate denial). And yet, it’s not the events that determine my experience, it is how I choose to interpret them and tell me the story of their meaning. And you know what, they and the stories aren’t necessarily true, regardless of what I think. If I think that no one cares or that the world is cruel and hostile, then that is my experience regardless of the facts.

There’s a story of a man who drives into a small town new to him, his car packed with family and belongings. He sees an old-timer rocking on the antebellum of the local restaurant and asks: “Excuse me sir, I am thinking of moving here, what are the people like in this town?” In return, the old-timer asks: “what were the people like in the town you’ve left?” “Mean, unpleasant and unfriendly”, was his reply. “Then you’ll find the people here just the same, you better keep on moving.” And the man did. A little later, another man drove up and asked the same question, and the old-timer asked him his experience of the people in his last town. “The people were warm, friendly and helpful”, came the reply. “Then you’ll fit right in for the folk here are just like that, too. Welcome!” And this re-minds me of the expression: wherever you go, there you are (ready to welcome your arrival).

Rawness breaks down inhibition and denial. Denial is an egoic position designed to “protect” some view or story of a status both ones that are uplifting and positive or ones degrading and holding in a place of pain and suffering. Denial can be a powerful force to encourage shame and distrust and hold power over the “it’s me, I’m bad,” so, I deserve this trauma, this suffering and must either cover it, inhibit it, disguise it, drug it or attempt to annihilate it with behaviours or substance abuses to mollify its effects in my life. And it is from these morbidities of psycho-emotional patterns that panic, the terror, anxiety, depression and so many of the maladies of the mind spring into experience and expression. Sadly, the modern ways of seeking to cover or engineer a different brain chemistry, by whatever method, is just that, a sought “fix” to deal with the symptom of the issue, not the cause.

Causes of problems, are just that, causes. Inside, the brilliance of the diamond that’s normal to being a human, is lost in the chatter and the corruption that’s been loaded above and on top, so that all to be seen is only a veneer of image and persona, untrue to the wisdom deeply buried within. And that, my dear reader is a shame and a travesty. Honestly, we are far more wonder-filled than we can ever imagine from the positions of pain we gather, and the burdens we carry around with us – our families, our histories, our stories of unfinished pain and business and, yet, still expect to function sanely. This whole denial of the inner brilliance is much of the causation of the issue we next seek to fix artificially.

For me, I look to find my truth – to realise my stories and thinking are but an imagined truth. That they may be wrong. That I am only telling myself I stress, I’m confused and sat yet again in a shadow. For me, I thrive when I share, when I engage and when I express my inner values and qualities. What, I wonder is the thing, behaviour or time that brings you to vitality and to life, with brilliance and dare I say it, ecstasy?

I do not mean sex or drugs or things that make for a high, I mean activities that empower your sense of self and wellbeing; whether it may be in loving and caring for another human being, artful expression through dance, writing, music or voice; whether through spirituality and service; whether through empowering belief in another human being; and other similar activities of kindness, love, caring or compassion.

My shadows gather like Harry Potter’s dementors when the fears raise their heads and suck out my light and spirit, when I am not engaged with my service, my gifting and my expressing love and care. For me, my brilliance will always show up when I need it to show love and engage with others, providing a listening ear, finding words to share empathy. All I need be, is being myself, engaging with others.

That’s about me. I’ve taken the risk to share this with you. What do you need to be or doing to bring your magic to the fore in your life, your experience and to express your passion? Tell me, or just tell yourself. Either or both are a start to bring you from the shadows into the light of your natural brilliance. It all starts with the first step of intention and taking the risk to believe, is both possible and worth it.

One small secret: I’ve often thought it both impossible to untangle my web of lies to myself and that sanity was beyond me, in my life. If I can do this and get through to a place that is at least this lucid, trust me, there is hope for you, too.