Being an avid procrastinator who hides within the convenient cloak of perfectionism is a double fault. One can always figure out a reason for a necessary action to wait, for another time, or until the conditions to attain perfectionism is met. To think of it, this springs from a deep-seated fear of inadequacy. To be placed on the scale and be found wanting is a usually immobilizing thought. One would instead fade in the background and be inconsequential than to risk success where there is even a faint possibility of failure.
I had decided with much zeal for the fifteenth time, two months ago, to start blogging. I even wrote the first three entries based on sightings around town. The blog, as I imagined it then, would be about my thoughts and reflections about life in Juba, South Sudan, the city of my birth, where I currently reside. I told a few friends about this plan, not the dream-killer types but the cheerleader types. Expectantly, they energized me further and convinced me that writing is what I should be doing. Not that I needed the validation, I said to my self, but it was a welcomed affirmation. But then there was one small complication. The name. The “perfect” name for the blog.
You’d think that would be simple, but the perfectionist in me seized the opportunity of delving into an endless whirlwind of mining her soul for the “perfect” name. Two months later, and after grueling and bruising mining, and the consequential abandonment of the mission, inspiration came as stealthily, as it always does, and as unimposing as a whisper.
Yesterday, I began reading a book of thoughts and reflections by a beloved author. His straightforward style and use of everyday experience to draw profound life lessons and to eloquently share them with his readers inspire me. Something I aspire to emulate in this humble blog.
One line resonated deeply within me: “[I] saw death as my daily companion, who is always by my side, saying: ‘I will touch you, but you don’t know when. Therefore, live life as intensely as you can.'” It was as if a personal admonishment leading me to only worry about this moment, for it is all I have. Never mind what others would think about my writings tomorrow, I ought to write, because it is the one thing that gratifies me. Tomorrow is not guaranteed, and what a pity it would be not to have done, what I am to do.
As I held that thought in my spirit, a whisper came through a text message, as if to consolidate the effect of those resonating words. A good friend who asked if my poetry book’s publishing date is a personal or business deadline, said, “Business is contractual, personal has room for an extension due to perfectionist tendencies.” A whisper of Providence. In that instant, I birthed this blog.
The name search became effortless. In keeping with the book I read, I searched for a simile in my poems. I found one that resonated in a poem, entitled Woman: “like a glowing moon, enticing yet refraining.” Like a Glowing Moon.
Since time immemorial people of all cultures marked the passing of time by observing the moon, even the English word for a month has its roots in the German word for moon. I would like to research the definition and epistemology of names for the moon in some of our Sudanese languages and have a blog entry about it soon. I am sure I’d discover something profound.
I am now embarking on a journey of writing thoughts and reflections under the guide of a glowing moon, and I invite you to, with this excerpt from one of my poems:
Take a walk with me, barefoot,
With no destination in mind.
We’ll fly upon the wings of a breeze,
And dive up into a cumulus cloud:
Be frozen, melted, and cleansed,
Over and over again.
The book I am reading is Like the Flowing River, by Paulo Coelho.
© 2015 Apuk Ayuel Mayen. All rights reserved.