A dark room. A scared boy. Naked. Skin raw with cold and exposure. Vulnerable and desperate.
A spot light slams on, searing his eyes. He can make out shapes from where the voices came. Hidden in shadows, protected. Fully clothed, coats, gloves, and masks. Protected, but isolated by space, darkness, and protection. The voices taunt and tease. The voices fear the vulnerability. The voices speak hate. Occasionally, they call the boy to them, saying soothing words. The boy, desperate and vulnerable, feels drawn to the words. He feels there might be love behind the darkness. He stumbles towards the edge of the light. He blinks, arms outstretched. As he nears, the words change. The barbs and the taunting return. They claw at the raw skin. He bleeds. He sobs.
Over time, the wounds scab and scar. He is more protected from the darkness. He develops a thicker skin. It feels safer. He can’t move as freely, but it is a small price to pay to not be so overwhelmingly exposed.
Still the voices call him, speaking words of vulnerability and connection. They speak of warmth, comfort, and love. The boy feels his heart becoming exposed, vulnerable. He wants to feel and hold the warmth. He stumbles to the edge of the light and is greeted with more taunting. “How silly to be so open and so needy.”
Dejected. Scared. Scabbed. The boy leans against the darkness. The circle of light glaring before him. He sees the harshness of the light. He blames the light and the desire to be in it. IF only he hadnt been taken in by the light. If only he hadn’t assumed that everyone would want to be in the light.
The decision. Lean back into the dark, join the voices. Be cautious, protected, and blind. Or, stand in the light, sometimes all alone. Be afraid and fearless. Be exposed and protected. Be vulnerable, open, alive.
What’s the choice to be?