Everything is Waiting for You, David Whyte
I grew up in Southern California, very near to Disneyland. One of my favorite rides was called Thunder Mountain, an old “Wild West” themed ride with rickety wooden tracks that made you feel as though you might fall to your fate at any moment. The best (and worst) part of the ride was the slow uptick to the great fall, before the trains would speed quickly downhill. The overexaggerated sound effects would “chk chk chk” slowly upwards, and would give riders just a brief pause of warning that you’ve finally reached the top before hurtling downwards in a terrifying and exhilarating whirl of motion.
Lately, I’ve been feeling like this is a metaphor for where I am in life. The slow uptick, the constant waiting, the building anticipation before my life really begins. As if this part of it doesn’t count. Whyte imposes upon us the belief that “everything is waiting for you,” and in doing so points out all that is already here. It is through alertness to our world that we find we are not alone, that we are already acting the drama – this is no dress rehearsal. The slow and steady uptick of the roller coaster is just as much a part of the ride as the part that gets your heart pumping. Let the moments of pause be constructive in the journey, allowing us the introspection to climb the stairs that will mentor us for what’s to come, to open the doors that both frighten and excite us. When you have rare moments of reprieve from the rollercoaster of life, how do you stay alert and present?
Brianna Curran, Washington, DC