Pretty Little Box - A metaphor for enjoying life
Song: Fragile N.4 - Dustin O’Halloran
For most of my life, I thought that the best way to live was to stay inside a pretty little box. This box was safe, because I could choose what I let in & out of it. To me, most of the world was outside of the box. That world was dark, dangerous, and scary, and I was wise and strong to not step out into it. I laughed and mocked the people that stepped foot into the unknown territory in order “live freely”. I thought that enjoying life was not a right, it was a luxury. That those who chose to simply be happy and let go did not understand the gravity of their purpose on this earth. Only the “small minded” would think that having a good time was of value. There were priorities. Priorities that fit inside my box. Things that needed to be done, changes that needed to be made, plans to be had, people to be helped, dreams to be thought up, problems that needed to be fixed. And yet, even though I believed with complete surety that I was the one that was right, I was filled with envy. Because the walls of my box were not made of wood, or plaster, or steel. They were made of glass. And standing inside safe & busy, I could see the world around me. I paced back and forth, trying to understand why something so wrong could be so beautiful. I studied the colors, the lights, the people, asking myself what it must be like to just let go. The smiles and laughter were so curious to me. So pure and sincere. I tried to laugh and see if mine was like theirs. My cheeks were tight when I smiled & I wondered if that was how a true smile was supposed to feel. Some days I would even press my palm to the glass. But no matter how hard I pressed, I couldn’t feel anything but the strong cold wall. Those close to me would admire the structure I stood in. I saw the respect in their eyes as they watched me choose to stay. Only a few would slam their fists against the glass and demand that I step outside and experience life. But I knew that no one could choose to break free for me. That my cage, that cage that I chose to live in, could only be broken by myself. One day the walls felt too tight and the world outside looked to exquisite. I suddenly knew that I could not stand in my 4 walls any longer. Desperate, I began to kick and slam my body into the barriers that stood between me and freedom. I screamed, exuding every ounce of energy I had into breaking free. The walls wouldn’t budge, the box wouldn’t crack. And no matter how hard I tried I couldn’t escape the prison I had made for myself. Exhausted I fell to the floor. It was then, right then, as I laid their panting, that I saw a faint outline. I crawled to it & pressed my palm against the surface. It moved open, filling sweet air all around me. I heard a whisper, faint but strong… I’ve been here waiting, all along.