“The apocalypse is commonly known as the end of everything. Though “I” tend to side with the ancient ones. It means an awakening. Something hidden once, now coming to light, a lifting of the veil. Unraveling truth, discovering proof, a chance to follow a brand new trail. Yes times are tough, a darkness grows, an evil shrouded in sin. But fear not, fellow travelers for good will always win. It may feel like the Apocalypse or Armageddon is on the way. But view it instead as an awakening, and everything will be OK.”
My multiple visits to the refuge were difficult to understand. Joseph was a cryptic conjuring of my subconscious and he spoke in riddles. The dreams were out of order, sometimes repetitious, and bounced back and forth erratically through time and space. Trying to make sense of the nonsense was a chore I could barely keep up with, let alone understand.
Eventually, to make sense of it all, I had to unravel a puzzle. A multidimensional puzzle. A puzzle without a reference picture. A puzzle devoid of edges and corners. A puzzle of ten thousand upside down pieces scattered across the universe. I’d find a small piece, flip it over, stare at it for a moment, place it on the table with the few others I discovered along the way and it still didn’t make sense. Even connecting two pieces together was disheartening and forced me to swipe them from the table’s surface back to the dimension from where they were found.
All I was able to do, was let the dreams linger in my memory for a short time, and then file them away with the other forgotten files. Here today, gone tomorrow. What else could I do? When something doesn’t make sense, either we dismiss it altogether and carry on with what does make sense in our reality–pretending the nonsense doesn’t exist–or we somehow make sense from that nonsense. Even… if eventually making sense of the nonsense… doesn’t make any sense. You’ve figured it out and the outcome is just as ridiculous. Yeah… that’s a tricky spot to be in.
Right… OK… moving on.
Joe had been correct about many things. My desires to escape. Running and hiding from life’s problems. Following the pack. Intentionally making wrong choices. My need to be a victim. My desire to experience self loathing. Dragging my feet from one responsibility to another while forcing a smile. He was right on a lot of it.
The thing he was most accurate on, was one specific sentence uttered a few nights earlier. He was in the middle of a brief outburst. “You know nothing. In fact, you know less than nothing and don’t you ever forget it.”
He couldn’t have been more right. I know less than nothing and I’ll be the first to openly admit it. I’d like to say I know a little about a lot, and can carry on some decent conversations but at the end of the day… I know very little. And that’s just fine. I can say one thing for certain. I am self aware.
My youngest and I have some neato conversations. A more recent one was centered around self awareness. Knowing oneself. Understanding and recognizing personal flaws, working on said flaws, and focusing on strengths. Self acknowledgement. Personal growth.
It took quite awhile, but my awakening was knowing I know nothing. My own personal apocalypse. My defining moment of self awareness. Once I made that discovery, I knew I had an opportunity for growth and expansion beyond my own restricted paradigm.
That glorious night I burned the refuge to ashes.
The box I was existing in was small and claustrophobic. The air was stale and difficult to breathe. The space around me lacked color and meaningful substance.
I was tired of the life I was thrust into. Not tired to the point where I was ready to do something drastic about it, but tired of believing there wasn’t anything more to the life I was living. I was at the point of accepting mediocrity and stagnation. Complete surrender to complacency. It’s better to ride the wave, than fight the tide. My fight had left me.
Then one day, it came back.
My journey hasn’t even really started yet at this point in the tales. I still have many visits left at the refuge. Meeting Karen formally for the first time and shaking her soft gloved hand. The day Joseph provided me a compass and told me to sail my boat north. How Bill and the vault all connect to it.
The week before Nancy and I signed a lease on a rental home, Joseph did tell me a battle was on it’s way. I’d have serious choices to make. I believed afterwards his statement could be interpreted as simply as, “every day is a battle.” That’s how I made sense of it in my brain. To my fractured mind, that made the most sense out of the nonsense.
“Every day is a battle.”
Once again, I was wrong. Yes, every day can be a struggle, but the monsters that waged war with me on my doorstep, I still think about today, six years later. Pure evil. An evil with a minion army. Poison and pain. Blood and suffering. Endless tears.
It was during that war, I discovered myself. My awakening. My first glimpse into the apocalypse.
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