A testament to the redemptive power of love.
|This is a record of one man’s transformational journey from the darkness of doubt to the light of hope. This is a collection of stories, a gathering of memories. This is a testament to the redemptive power of love.
I have been many things: musician, artist, laborer, manic-depressive substance-abuser, suicidal paranoid, homeless, shot-down, strung-out, reawakened and renewed student of the universe. I have experienced a wide spectrum of emotion, from triumph and ecstasy to defeat and despair. I have spent long periods in total isolation, and I have traveled far from the safety of home in search of adventure.
In four and a half months, my fiancée, the woman I love, will give birth to our daughter. This is our first child, and in many ways a true miracle. As I prepare to become a husband and a father, I feel compelled to stop and reflect on the sacred gift of life, the profound nature of consciousness, and how quickly and completely a change in attitude and perspective can truly change one’s reality. There is a strong desire in me to compile and collate my experiences.
A year ago I was deeply troubled, hidden away in a tiny, filthy room in Thunder Bay, Ontario. I was lonely and insecure, crawling wounded through each long day and strange night, wrestling demons and struggling with more than a touch of madness. I was selfish and desperate, ravenously hungry for validation. I often sought escape through drugs, sometimes disappearing completely into black velvet chasms – deep, hidden voids of my own soul. On more than one occasion, I slipped right out of this existence, and found myself in another world, populated by shadow entities of my own creation. At all times, though, I felt the presence of a Higher Power, and it was this presence, and the sporadic bursts of intense creativity, that kept my soul from sliding into the pit. I wrote songs and painted pictures to keep the nightmares from consuming me entirely. I also searched for meaning and comfort in the words of the wise, the spiritual and philosophical pioneers who blazed a trail though the darkness.
Slowly and surely my world began to transform. A very quiet and very powerful magic worked its way into my life. I found encoded in my heart a powerful desire to persevere. The man sitting here now, writing these sometimes painful, sometimes sentimental, but always honest words is a different creature. No better, no worse – simply refined, reduced and distilled to a purer essence of himself, closer to the source and more humbly aware of what it means to BE. I currently reside in Phoenix, AZ. I am still trying to understand the chain of events that brought me here, so far from the existential miasma of my previous life.
I am, like every other person on this planet, a product of genetics and experience, a reflection of nature and nurture. In order to begin unlocking the mystery of my own existence, it is essential that I attempt to understand where I came from. I feel it is necessary to honestly examine the events that helped shape my personality and disposition. I believe in free will. I also believe that there are forces at work beyond our perception. There seems to be a subtle, gentle influence guiding us towards what could be called personal destiny. When we are in harmony with the world around us, life is a comfortable, rhythmic ebb and flow. When we are in disharmony, troubles abound. The forces of chaos and discord were present and potent before I took my first breath.
My biological father spent many years of his life, including the year I was born, in a federal penitentiary for a violent act that almost killed my mother. He was a heavy drinker and pill user. He had many demons. He and my mother did not remain together, and for most of my life I did not know him at all. During his incarceration, he discovered much about himself, including a desire and talent for writing. He cleansed his body first, and then began to cleanse his mind by capturing his thoughts on paper. He spent many years writing an intensely honest account of his life. He passed on a few years ago, and I recently had the profound privilege of reading his manuscript. He spoke to me directly, father to son, as if he was still fully alive. We connected as pure souls, unbound by time and space. I hope to provide the same opportunity for my daughter, whom I already love more than these words can express.