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On Introspection

Introspection, and the practice of it, is truly a gift from the divine. God Himself has blessed human beings with reason and ascended sentience, the one trait that distinguishes us from animals. In spite of our chaotic, often contradictory natures, we can transcend our basest desires through thoughtful application of this most integral asset. Recently I was fully reminded of the importance of utilizing reason studiously while plagued with a decision to make regarding an ex-girlfriend. For the sake of privacy and brevity Ill redact the most personal details, but the gist of the whole fiasco regarded why I still missed her, and ultimately dealt with contacting her to attempt and rekindle the embers of our tryst's flame. Hindsight is always beneficial, and the whole ordeal showed me that said flame was more like a lit match than a raging bonfire, but I digress. In this exposition Ill outline and flesh out some of the most illuminating lessons I was reminded of while suffering through the agony of peering through a keyhole of perspective and attempting to ascertain my obfuscated motivations and desires. This was also borne of a dear friend and former lover's personal issues and her inability to find some sort of alleviation to her personal pain. If youre reading this babygirl, and I know you are, I hope the instructions Ive laid before the reader, which have served me faithfully and zealously my entire life, work as overtly for you to bring you a semblance of solace.

Alvin York was an inspirational man. Drafted to fight in World War 1, he experienced a crisis of conscience and a conflicting of faith. A devout Christian burdened with the yoke of passionate Patriotism, he struggled to reconcile his love of God and His laws with his duty as an American. In summation, he painfully considered his options, examined his heart thoroughly, and consulted with many men, from his hometown pastor to the Major charged with command of his company. Eventually, through prayer and mental illumination by God, he decided to fight, eventually killing 20 German infantrymen  in an assembly line formation in the process of freeing POWs. He would capture 132 German soldiers in total, 3 Officers and 129 enlisted men. If youll forgive me the brief history lesson, a question presents itself: What can we learn from Mr. York, and what relevance does it have to my point? The purpose of it all is to examine your motivations and thoughts unceasingly and passionately, with the unerring, calculated focus of an accountant balancing his company's books. Question your problem or predicament from every angle, inquiring of yourself as to why you feel the way you do. For my example, I felt the need to call because I felt that I needed her back, and I felt guilty for my part in our split. After examinating my heart resolutely, I realized that I didnt want her back, I just missed the companionship. I also drew the conclusion that I did indeed feel guilty for my portion of the negative outcome. I forgave myself, and made the decision to contact her. View your affliction from all perspectives and engage in exhaustive analysis. You owe yourself nothing less, as completing this task satisfactorily will ensure your peace of mind, regardless of the outcome.

The next step is to carry out the decision youve made. Thought without action is leagues ahead of action without thought, but thought and action combined are a potent, effective mix. Once again relaying my own story, my decision was to contact her so my own conscience would be unburdened. After doing so and communicating the tumultuous thoughts buzzing around the mess my heart had become, I felt weightless. This leads to another portion of the lesson. All actions, however well meaning or deemed necessary privately, have consequences. Unaware that she had a new boyfriend, I recieved several messages ablaze with hostility and ardor. Threats were leveled against me, and I accept them fully and blamelessly. While Im no stranger to violence and have no doubt in my ability to deal with this vehement suitor should he provoke or engage me, I recognize dispassionately that I would do the exact same thing if I found myself in his situation. You must realize that if the actions you deem essential for your consolation involve others, an unlimited amount of situations can occur. I made peace with that, steeled myself, and carried on promptly. Ensure you do the same.

The last step can prove to be the most variable, but also the most rewarding. After youve carried out your final actions and the dangerous storms raging in your troubled soul have calmed, twinges of doubt and reconsideration may begin to break the freshly laid soil of your bucolic feelings. This is my personal demon, and the persistent little bastard has only been slain by constant examination and the embrace of reality. Throughout this entire entanglement, youre like a seedling, a plant brimming with life, struggling against the gravity and weight of the Earth itself to reach the harsh, stark, but ultimately freeing and rejuvenating light of logic. Youve been destroying your limiting beliefs and eviscerating toxic emotion by facing them both directly and systematically dismantling them through a battery of consideration and realization. This act empties the halls of your spirit of the clutter burdening it, and allows the fresh air of life in. I realized that I didnt need her, and was nowhere near as sorry as I initially thought. Not only that, but she was nowhere near as grandiose as I had hypnotized myself into believing. This was only possible by engaging in battle with my issues until they evaporated into thin air. Be honest with yourself at all times. Honesty is the universal solvent in all matters of the heart, mind, and spirit. It magnifies and revitalizes the truth laying buried and dormant within you, and acts with fatal corrosion to the lies you tell yourself and unconsciously allow to plague you. Always listen to yourself above all else. Consider evidence and advice, but trust your gut. Its there for a reason.

I hope this short essay has given someone a glimmer of hope. You may feel adrift in the world, alone and tormented, crippled by your percieved inability to remedy your pained heart. You are anything but alone, and are surrounded by those experiencing the same hurt to varying degrees. Ive equipped you with my weapons, the ones Ive fashioned through a lifetime of trial and error. You are not weak for feeling, you are weak for denying yourself help. Recognition and admittance are signs of strength and a warrior spirit. Clad in the armor and armed with the tools Ive given you, you are prepared to battle whatever ails you. God be with you, and remember to talk to anyone you trust, especially therapists. Shatter your shackles and come rejoin us in the world. We miss you. You matter. And you are never alone.

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Countertop

Haunting this countertop/ Wondering how could all/ This go bad and walk/ Away from us, the patterns caught/ On repetition in my life, absent thought/ A coward's plot/ To brandish false/ Hope and manage slots/ Left over from the branch that rots/ Away, the old adage copped/ As an excuse, wrath of God/ Plant your balk-/ -ing seeds and stand and walk/ Because you are my spectre/ And I'm stressing/ Out over the time left in/ Our dying ending/ The price mentioned/ Was too much, so I write, wept in/ Quiet, bet this/ Life's questions/ Won't answer why settling/ Down defied convention/ My best friend/ You'll soon fly, stretching/ Our hearts like vested/ Lives destined/ To find remnants/ Of each other in every girl or guy messed with/ And getting over you/ Is akin to choking booze/ Down and moping through/ My days, hopeless, nude/ Vulnerable, emotions bruised/ Soaked in blue/ Feelings, morose and gloom/ My heart poured into/ Every poem proof-/   -read at a bar, alone, enthus