When I want to. When I need to. For different reasons.
And I believe everyone does, to varying degrees, duration and frequency. In those moments when we just need to get away, to get some “peace and quiet”, to stop listening to the woes of the world, when compassion-fatigue hits, in order to “calm down” and “get some perspective”… the list goes on. I don’t mean hiding just physically, though that is one way. It could also be hiding emotionally or psychologically.
Hiding is essentially removing one’s physical, emotional or psychological self from being in contact with its environment, compelled by a deep longing for solitude, for self. Or when we are too afraid, too fragile, too weary to meet the world…not just yet.
And I love it. For me, hiding is a time when I reflect, re-assess and re-group… hiding is when I contemplate and prepare for an unfolding of a different being.
I remember young children playing hide-and-seek. I remember the joy on their faces when they emerge after a successful hiding demonstrating the excitement of “look at me”, of “here I am” – ah, the triumphant look. They are the surprise, the one who was able to control oneself against any outbursts, the “new” person who made it through their ingenuity at cover.
In David Whyte’s words (from his book, “Consolations: the Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words”),
Hiding is creative, necessary and beautifully subversive of outside interference and control. Hiding leaves life to itself, to become more of itself.
Perhaps I, in the many years of living a conventional life, have always had this way of expressing the rebel within who refuses to conform to expectations, the one who questions and seeks alternate meanings to the life we live… for isn’t that what subversive mean?
So how do you hide?
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