I run. I run constantly. Even when my body is still, my mind is racing at a breakneck pace to consider all the things and thoughts. At times, the race gets so frantic that it changes from running the marathon of life to a terrifying race through an ominous forest to escape some unknown menace.
As I race through the forest of my mind, thoughts jump out in my path without warning to trip me or distract me. The surrounding landscape grows darker and darker, and the roots and tendrils of responsibilities and commitments that sneak into the path trip me, causing me to stumble.
I have got to just stop.
I desperately seek out the shelter of my safe place. It’s there, just around the bend ahead. Even in the times when I don’t think I can make it, the thought of just being in that sanctuary gives me the strength to press on through the overwhelming onslaught. When I reach the bend, I see the glimmer of hope that is the yellow porch light. Just a few more strides and I will be there. Safe. The walls of my sanctuary are tall and strong. It takes a few minutes to leave the distractions behind, but somehow, they fade away in that place.
There I can just stop.
I can stop worrying. I can stop wondering. I can stop running. I can just be. I can rest knowing that I am home. I am loved.
I cling to every second in that place, breathing in the deep browns and greens and blues. Soon enough, the time will come when I will have to go and start the race again. I will linger by the door letting that safe place hold me for a few more seconds to reassure me that I’ll be okay once I have left the safety of its embrace – letting it remind me that when things are maddening and I am nearly at my wit’s end, it is still there, a strong bastion when I am desperate for safe place to just STOP.