The Time Parade of Passing Glances

I used to move through life guarding a secret.

If a stranger locked eyes with me I’d wonder if they saw my soul and knew my shame. Hope would shimmer fleetingly that they might save me from myself, but then some primal reflex would pull my shoulders forward to protect my heart as I escaped.

Later I changed my life and a furtive happiness clung to me.  I feared my fragile self would become visible before its time, so I kept my head down to avoid notice.

Now I am learning to walk in my truth. It’s an oddly freeing, like having empty hands when I’ve left my phone at home, or driving one of those cars that doesn’t need keys to start.

These days I smile at those who meet my gaze. My instincts are outward, not internal. If I see eyes of sadness or shoulders shrouded in shame, I send out kindness.

Don’t worry fellow traveler. I don’t know your secrets but I do see your pain. I see you. I see you and I wish you well.

One day, when age and frailty give weight to my words, may I be so brave as to speak such things aloud. May I have the courage to lay a spotted shaking hand gently on the forearm of a stranger and offer wise words peace and strength.



About UnPickled

I am learning to walk without the crutch of alcohol. As I begin I am 1 day sober. Gulp. I drank in private and hope to quit just as privately. The purpose of this blog is to help make me accountable - just by following you will give me enormous support and encouragement.

Posted on November 18, 2014, in Getting Sober and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. Beautifully said, and a message that the world needs to hear. Thank-you.


  2. Loved this post. Thanks for sharing these beautiful words.


  3. I can so relate to this! I too have noticed myself making a concerted effort to look people in the eye, both familiars and strangers. Ok, let me correct that, I have noticed how much I did not do it before, and how often I can do it now. It is easier now. Not all the time but much more. It’s because I respect and like myself more than before I think.
    Thanks for posting about this.
    Love and light,


  4. Thank you for your words!!! You are one of my strongest sober tools in my tool box. I have 270 days today and feel as though I can walk free myself, it’s almost undescribable, you put it perfect!!! For anyone struggling out there, please please hang on- you are me and I am you!! After 20 years of madness I can finally see!! To live free is an experience of a lifetime!


  5. I love the way you write . And the words and experiences you use . Beautiful , thank you . It’s inspiring . And I need inspiring…


  6. Wow. I love this. I feel that I am almost there. Almost able to let my fears go and show my heart to the world. But fear holds me back and I am still not sure how to break free.


  7. Beautiful! I just have no words, just feelings after reading this post. And so, I wish you and everyone who struggles, some little joy today. (Myself included!)


  8. Lovely. Continue your eye gazing journey.


  9. What a beautiful post. It’s often too easy to judge others and sometimes we do it without thinking. It’s nice to think that we could offer understanding and comfort instead. Every one of us has a different journey to follow.


  10. Very profound. Very. Thank you for sharing your soul and helping so many find strength. My day 61. You have helped me immensely.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Nice post. I hope to walk in truth, have my instincts outward, instead of inward. Day two.

    Liked by 2 people

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