Be Careful So Close To The Finish

Friday 19 September, 2014

Five weeks from today it will all be over. I have been working on this blog for almost four years and in just over a month it will be complete. As much as I’m tempted to get excited about it, and as much as there is also a part of me which just wants to reach the finish line, I need to remain focused and I need to be careful. Very careful. It’s a general rule I learnt early in my training, but it’s one which always has the capacity to catch me unawares, because it’s easy to think I am being careful enough. This post is a reminder to me – at a crucial time near the end of a prolonged and intense process – to be calm, focused, alert and safe.

It sounds dramatic, but my caution is driven by three factors. Firstly, it is common for every one of us to relax too soon. Inexperienced sprinters are prone to it, which is why they are trained to sprint through the finish line. Secondly, the bigger the endeavour, the more emphatic the pain of falling at the final hurdle. These final few weeks constitute not just the end of a four-year project, they also mark the closing chapter of a 15-year journey which began on day one of my training. Thirdly, a part of my script (TA) seems to want to prevent me from getting what I want, which is a strong enough reason in and of itself, to be careful.

I spoke with Karaj this week. We have been conversing on this subject for some time now because we have both known it was coming and, with our respective fates seemingly linked to each other, we find ourselves in similar situations. Right now, we are both struggling. Mine is predominately a physical struggle because, as so often over the past four years, elements of the pain which afflicted me throughout my training, have surfaced again. My present, once more, is mirroring my past. Here is a brief summary of what I mean:

For the last three weeks I have experienced a gradual worsening of nerve problems in my left leg. They stem from the issues surrounding my back operation in 2001 and have flared up at various times over the past few years. When posting the latest journal entries from September 2003, it became clear that I am experiencing echoes from that period (see here, here, and especially here). These parallels have happened repeatedly over the course of this blog and, whilst I acknowledge that it could all be a coincidence, it still makes sense to be careful. Just in case.

As Karaj and I talked, I expressed some exasperation that maybe it would be better just to shut down and barricade myself in the house until it’s over. (Indeed, a couple of years ago I considered closing down the blog because the correlations between past and present were so uncanny and I knew there was more journal pain to come.) His response was immediate: ‘No, because isolation has to do with the ego. You have to participate in the world.’ My conclusion, therefore, is to follow the same procedures as all the other times when I have faced similar situations:

Accept what is happening, stay focused and relax. Be safe, alert and aware. Remain calm and observe. Then, with the utmost care and attention, proceed to sprint through the finish line.

[Karaj: This is good. We need to talk more to keep this at the forefront of our minds as we complete this 15-year journey. The vulture (Script) is watching us all the the time, every move, every action, every thought and every clever idea. When we believe we are safe, and we are home and dry, it strikes with mathematical precision; no emotion, no sympathy and no exception. We relaxed just as we we were putting the key in the door and we thought we are already inside the safe warm home.]

Related posts: Just When We Think We’ve Made It | Take Care Towards the End

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