As it once was uttered... so too do I now say, "I am awake."
Once there was a man who had everything. It was taken from him in an instant, and in that instant he found himself awake for the first time.
Soon afterward, however, the dream faded and was replaced by a nightmare. It swallowed him down into depths he'd never seen, and once more he faded into darkness. After what seemed like aeons, sinking into the dredge, he began to wish earnestly for freedom.
And then, inexplicably, there was a light that shone in the dark. He began to tug on it like a rope. Testing it cautiously at first, he pulled himself along. When he came to the end of the rope, he realized that someone was at the other end, and that really he'd been pulled to the surface by someone else. When he crawled out of the deep, he looked beyond the beautiful face of his savior, and he saw another face, and another behind that one. On and on as far as he could see. He walked the Earth to follow the line of souls til the end. There he came face to face with himself.
And it dawned on him in that moment, that once again, he was awake. He had found the light, he had forged the will, and he had been blessed with those who had invested in his resurrection -- himself included. All of what he had once learned when his soul had first been fractured, became etched into his heart, and served as a catalyst to his recovery.
And so I say again; this man was me. And I am awake.
There are many crests and troughs in life, some more extreme than others. And I can't and will never proclaim to understand how one pulls out of the toughest of circumstances. Nor do I claim to have lived through "the toughest of circumstances." But I have felt my share. I know how it feels to be oppressed and paralyzed by your own fears. I just hope in my heart that all of you are as lucky as I am in life. That when I find myself up against insurmountable odds, there are those in my life who are there to drop some light on me. And they are willing to wait patiently, while I sit, alone in the dark, until I decide it's time to hang on once again, while they pull me up. Through factors both internal and external, we skate by as best we can until the universe, in its infinite wisdom, decides that its had enough of us.