It was a hot summer’s evening when I settled down for another night alone on the beach. Alongside me were the few possessions I owned. I had no pillow so I would use a book. The blanket I used to cover me had seriously outlived its shelf life; having been used all summer without a wash, it was smelly, manky and uncomfortable and no matter how hard I shook it, I could not seem to get all the sand out that had matted its way in.
I had got used to this way of living and my body had hardened in expectation of what the night could bring. On this particular night, I was awoken suddenly by a homeless guy who was looking for somewhere to sleep and had seen my blanket all bunched up and, not knowing I was under there, he took it off me. I am not sure who was more shocked, him or me!
While sleeping in those conditions I never truly relaxed and, as you can imagine, my body was running on constant nervous energy, ready to go into fight or flight mode at a moment’s notice.
It was not new to me, living on the beach. I had lived under the stars in many different parts of the world, putting myself in some seriously dodgy and unsafe situations.
I was proud of the fact that, with a blanket and the warmth of a hot country, I could sleep anywhere. I was seen as the crazy adventurer by friends, a title I lived up to well.
I loved the fact that I thought I could survive anywhere, living off the land. I glorified the fact that I could get away with living on the fringes of society.
Making friends with people with similar attitudes showed me there were hundreds of people out there with the same “get out clause” as mine, all disillusioned with society, all running away in some way or another. I even teamed up with a group of guys who would meet in the middle of the night to go through the big hotel bins to see what we could find.
Over the years I have witnessed many people lose themselves in this illusion of ‘rebellion’ and ‘adventure’, and many sad, sad endings to lives that had so much potential.
What I have learned is that this kind of rebellion is nothing more than feeding the system back the very thing I was running away from. I was disillusioned with society – from the cold lovelessness that I could feel all around me, from the education system to the health care system. I wanted out, so in reaction to life, I rebelled against society, yet in doing so I actually added to everything I so detested about it. By not dealing with my issues, I gave up on life and in doing so, further compounded the idea that this society was loveless.
Thankfully, I found my way back home (literally) when I was introduced to the teachings of The Ageless Wisdom presented by Serge Benhayon. At last I had found something that was true, something that was not about a quick fix, but a true way, a real way.
Slowly I started reintroducing responsibility back into my life and over a period of time, I let go of the hardness that I had used to protect my body.
My many nights of living outside had taken their toll on my body. I had built a defensive layer around myself that inhibited me from getting to know the tender woman I actually am; instead the hardness in my body represented the harsh words, criticism and judgment I would subject myself to, for no matter how far I ran or whatever escape method I used, I could not shake the undeniable feeling that all was not right.
Today my life is so different. I really look after myself and enjoy the loving security of a real home. I have a full time job, which I love, a beautiful evolving relationship with my partner, amazing friends around me and, of course, a commitment to life that was not there before.
Choosing to step back into society was my decision to say ‘Yes’ to life, to deal with what came up and take full responsibility for the life I am now living.