On letting go of the scaffolding structures we once used to rebuild ourselves

Dear quarter lives,

Sometimes we build relationships, habits, beliefs in our lives that serve only as ladders and stepping stones that help us build and heal ourselves in places and in ways that would’ve been otherwise impossible to do without. Very much in the same way scaffolding allows builders to work buildings and edges of buildings, there are structures in our own lives that we’ve built that serve a temporary purpose and after which they must be removed. The difficult part is knowing which is the scaffolding and which is the main structure, especially when you’ve been working your inner building for years. It might be hard to tell the difference between what is temporary and needs to go and what is permanent and needs to stay.

Currently, I feel that at least on one side of my inner building the time has come for me to remove some of these impermanent bonds that I have created. Some of these are with people and places, others are with the less tangible world of beliefs. Today, I’ll only speak of one of them, and that is hope. Hope if you hadn’t already noticed flourishes in times of crises. It helps lift us and move us forward one small step at a time. But hope I am now understanding can only take us so far and for so long, after which its expiry date arrives and it must be carefully laid down and put aside. The scaffolding of hope if used even when it has gone rusty will poison the blood of its user and fill their hearts with delusions until instead of moving them forward, now hope is keeping them put in the same place and only deceiving their minds that they are still moving forward. Hope is tricky. It is slippery. It is a sword that possesses as most things do edges on both sides. Hope can help you see the light when your eyes cannot, but hope cannot bring back anyone from the dead, including ourselves. We cannot hope ourselves to remain as we once were.

And so the time has now come for me to say goodbye to my scaffolding of hope. Thank you for carrying me forward. I have come far. I have leaned on your walls and cried over your steps. I have grown lean climbing up and down your bars. I have grown ever more present as I’ve learnt to avoid your holes. I believe this is the end of our relationship, at least for now. You have allowed me to imagine many lives for myself. You have taught me much about the art of dreaming. Thank you. Now I must do the rest on my own. I must walk now using my own two feet. I am afraid, but I know in my heart that if you stay with me, I will be robbing myself and my future of something very precious and that is my own will.

You see, the next stage to develop and strengthen our inner buildings is to put them to the test — are they capable of standing alone and tall without the help of any scaffolding? And so when we put down hope, we are not falling instead into despair; what we are doing is that we are no longer using something to lift us up because we no longer need it — we are already up. We are done. The building is complete, or at least all the foundational floors and walls are. And it is our Will that Hope has allowed us to rebuild. It is our will now that must stand on its own. It is our will now that will carry us forward. But we must never forget how hope has helped prop us up when our will was down. And that is always when hope arrives — when our will is down. But to continue to use hope when our will is already up, is to tell our will we don’t trust it. Be mindful of the pace your will is able to charge forward on its own. We are all built differently after all. Some of us run before we even walk. Some of us crawl. Others do some combination of all three. It doesn’t matter what your pace is, so long as you do it and learn to lean on your own will.

May we all have the courage to remove the scaffoldings we no longer need. May our walls be filled with will, and our hearts filled with trust to lean on them.

With love and always for peace,


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