Living a Fraction of Our Selves

The moon, early this morning, was a slim smile.

The surface area of the moon, I have read, is 14.6 million miles. It is larger than Pluto. It is an immense presence in space.

But there are times when we see only a fraction of it. When it is reduced down to a mere sliver of its full self.

Down here on earth, I’m thinking that it’s not so different.

The brutal pressures to be likable, to stay in our lane, to do what’s expected can whittle us down to a tiny slice of our immense selves.

And these pressures aren’t abstract. They are family pressures to be a doctor/lawyer/engineer when we want to write kid’s books. Societal pressures to work eight days a week when our body begs for sleep. Social pressures to keep up with our peers’ lifestyles.

Layer onto that evolutionary pressure to belong, and how could we not bend and break ourselves to fit into the mold that’s been made for us?

And yet.

There never has been and never will be a mold big enough to hold the immenseness we each are. If we risked the full scope of our souls, ours would be a world of smashed molds and near-blinding aliveness.

It’s not impossible. It takes bravery. It takes heartfulness. It takes unfaithfulness - to those pressures. And it takes faithfulness - to our urge to write that kid’s book, quit our deadening job, move to Kyoto, apply for that artist’s residency, join the choir with no experience, start our own dance company. Whatever it may be that unmutes our soul.

The moon, early this morning, smiles its slim smile. But if I look close, I can see its full expanse. And the full expanse of anything is a sight to behold.

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