A few years ago I had the opportunity to play Hamlet on Signal Hill. For those of you who don’t know, Signal Hill was the site of the first wireless transmission across the Atlantic Ocean by Marconi in 1901.
One of my favourite lines from Hamlet, which was cut from the version I was performing, is the following:
“O God, I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space—were it not that I have bad dreams.”
What Hamlet is saying here, is that even in this confined life he is living, so filled with complications, he could still have the world by the tail — if only he could reconcile the past that haunts him.
That’s kind of how I feel from time-to-time.
Recently, I’ve taken up hiking. Recent as in last week. But I’ve gone on three so far. This past weekend was spent on the Discovery Trail, where Caitlin and myself hiked the Skerwink Trail. What a beautiful hike. It’s one of the blessings of living in a place like this. You can exercise with some of the most beautiful views you could ever possibly imagine. Talk about infinite space. Yowzers.
Anyway, after Saturday’s hike I felt awesome. 5.3km of rising and falling. And the next day not an ache to be felt.
You see recently I’ve been struggling with the void. The reasons I filled my body with food. It’s not so much struggling as it is coming to terms. I hate that phrase — “coming to terms.”
I know why I did what I did to myself. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out. I let my past creep into my present. It took hold of me and controlled my self-esteem, choices, behavior — and it moved me about like I was some sort of marionette, all strung up and out of control.
And sometimes, even when I’m feeling the strongest, I can still sense the strings tightening around me. The hard part is cutting them loose. Feeling good with the movements I make on my own, and not the ones that were set out for me.
I don’t struggle with this every day. These moments are few and far between now. However, when they present themselves, they are still potent, and they still take their toll.
It’s a struggle that a lot of people who are overcoming addictions and weight issues have to deal with. Anybody can stop overeating or feeding an addiction, but staying that way is another thing entirely.
Cause, it’s hard. Facing what you have spent your whole life trying not to face is very difficult. But, it is the most important thing you can possibly do for yourself. Because without that reconciliation, you can eat all the salad you want — you’re still destined to fail.
This is where help is needed. If not from a friend or a family member, then from a professional. Reach out. It’s the best possible decision you can make. Untangling this mess of wires we call life will make you happier than you could ever imagine. I did, and it has brought me nothing but positivity.
Now, along this road there are bound to be curveballs. And that is what I experienced just yesterday. A blip in the cosmos. A signal that was interpreted incorrectly, Marconi would have been pissed.
But it’s what you do with these feelings that really define the journey. You either stew over it, and let it eat you alive. Or, you do what I did, you call up the missus and go for a walk.
All I can do smile, and keep dancing to the beat of my own drum, no strings attached.