I quite often feel that I have two parallel lives. I think that can often happen when you are in the sort of relationship which can be misunderstood. Part of me wants to say, “fuck it,” but the other part doesn’t use that language. That alerts me to the fact that I am not just living parallel lives, but I am actually made up of parallel parts. If this wasn’t the case then I would either have said, “fuck it!” already and would be living differently now than I am, or I would have said, “forget it!” and the same would be true. But what I choose to do is to live with these two parts, running along together.
As with any set of parallel lines, if you look up ahead, there is always the point where they meet. Is this reality? Or is it just an optical illusion, like the end of the rainbow which will always disappear before it is reached. Again, I have parallel thoughts. On one side I want to be at the point where I feel it is safe for the two to intersect, but on the other, I feel desperate about the fact that I want to continue running these two different parts, each a controlled distance from the other. My fear is that the two collide before it is safe, before I am ready, as, like two separate carriages on their tracks, they both would be derailed.
I wrestle with myself of course. I am split in two, but would love to be able to embrace myself as a whole. What I don’t want, is to have to compromise, to have to make the sort of sacrifices I would have to make. I have chosen a profession where I am expected to be a role model, to practice what I preach. I am meant to be honourable and trustworthy and to be able to work with vulnerable people. I am all of these things, and I am confident that my choices in private don’t compromise any of that. But could I defend myself if the trail of evidence I have left, was called into question? I think not.
I would certainly try my hardest, but when things are misunderstood, or taken out of context, or presented with a certain spin, they can be damning. I am concerned that the fear of challenge to those social structures people cling to justify their lives, would drive them to shatter mine apart. To see my tracks converge in the future is enough. It is something that I work towards. It is something I imagine. But I am content, really, that it is there and I am here. Or that I am there and it is here. Whichever works.
There are positives, too, in living in parallel. I can use what I know and I learn in one world, to benefit and enhance the other. I can use my parallel parts in an interchangeable way, bringing a set of skills and talents which would be lost were they employed all the time, but add something when they are called upon for a specific task. I feel that being both at once, has allowed me to learn more about myself and to use that for personal growth, as well as sometimes to benefit the others I engage with.
To travel two roads in parallel, does not allow you to arrive at your destination any quicker, but it does mean that you have seen more of the landscape on your way through. I really feel for me that my life has been enriched by it in so many ways. I am able to have all of the things I value and want, as well as being open to new and exciting opportunities. I feel privileged to be able to engage with the people I do in both worlds, and together they make me the person I am.
I love my life. I may sometimes wrestle with the points where it conflicts and hold me in, but essentially I am much freer than I would be with only one of the parts. It is challenging, exciting and varied. It is very small but also far bigger than I ever would have anticipated. It becomes a set of contrasts which, if they crossed would cause conflict, but because they don’t they add depth and meaning and purpose. I feel alive, I feel fulfilled, I feel that I am experiencing two parallel and opposing lives and am able to enjoy each for what it is – an opportunity.
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