There is an open space at the client office which has a very high ceiling, a fish pond (rectangle more like it) on one side, and potted plants on the other. Although there is nothing particularly welcoming about this particular client, this open space is something that I absolutely love. Every time I pass by it, I feel like there’s this one place where the sunlight comes in through the glass roof and shines on us for even a brief moment. In that small walk across the open space some disinfection happens.
There’s another stretch of road between Building A and Building B in the client campus, of roughly over a kilometer, that I walk through every day. This road is lined with trees that have steel plates on them with their name and age. It has innumerable shrubs and a vast expanse of orange, marigold flowers. Of late, I have also seen two puppies play in the same spot every day. When nothing seems to save the day, I know that my walk back from B to A will provide some solace. And unfailingly it does.
Between the vast open white space and the short kilometer walk there’s a lot of unnecessary crap, misplaced egotism, lack of responsibility and fear. Of all the things, what bothers me most is fear. As a result of this, I find the need to protect myself every single day. This fear is haunting and all-pervading. I would imagine that in some universe, fear could even be quantified, like pain, on a scale of 1 to 10. And maybe it even should be. So when you visit a therapist, (s)he could ask you, “On a scale of 1 to 10 how scared are you?” Just like pain, even fear would be measured. They would give you a fear-killer. You would go home. Life would go on.
Since none of that is happening right now, I must find my own ways of cloaking myself against fear. Of all things, I recall what Lupin tells Harry during their lesson with the Boggart. They’re in class and they have to face a Boggart which takes the form of whatever a person fears. After everyone has had their turn, and the Boggart has turned into everything from Neville’s grandmother to Professor McGonagall Lupin doesn’t allow Harry to face the Boggart. This is because he thinks that the Boggart will turn into Lord Voldemort. Since Harry’s Boggart actually turns into a Dementor, it’s said in the book that what Harry fears is fear. Lupin says something to the effect, “That suggests that what you fear most of all is — fear. Very wise, Harry.” I find myself repeating this line because it’s one of those ways in which I can bring myself back to the table. I’ve been trying very hard, and suffice to say that so far I have failed.
Therefore, the need to protect myself is at its pinnacle now, and I may be doing a very bad job of it. Never before I have felt this way where I sensed imminent threat to my being. Promptly, I try to define myself and come up with half-baked answers. It’s a sort of an attack on a castle and I’m not sure where the arrows are kept. It seems as though all those who wanted to attack me have found the opportune moment and have cornered me at last. That I may have aggravated the situation in my head is my own Boggart. There is cognizance of the fact, and plans for remediation.
However, I must find a moment to accept that there’s fear. To add to the mix, there’s a sense of being wronged by people who I thought were close. There’s a feeling of being orphaned and left out into the wild. There’s disappointment – lots of it. Due to this accumulation, I have noticed how easy it is to resent. And I am not in Zen these days. I begrudge and I dislike. I also make a window out of which people should be thrown. But the whole point of this post is because so far I have feared to make crude construction of this disposition into words like I usually do. I make sculptures of words in the hope that they’ll stand as testimony and melt away some day, and they have. Hopefully, this will too.
Hopefully, the open space will disinfect all the fear. Hopefully, the solace in the walk back with permeate into everything else. Hopefully, I will dissolve all the knots I have made up inside myself. Hopefully, my Boggart will be easy to confound with the Riddikulus charm.
Until then, there’s a vast open space, a walk back, and two puppies playing on the grass.