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April 5, 2023

Be a Fence Bird.

A chain-link fence. Restricted access.

Feeling trapped.

There’s a powerful image of a chain-link fence, gradually dissolving into birds that take flight.

How many of us can resonate with that?

It can appear, to many of us, to be the elusive, impossible dream. Freedom. Taking flight. Using our wings to fly to a better life.

Too many of us have only had the imprisoned experience.

Why has that been the case?

We didn’t know what wings were.

It’s quite possible that we had a life experience that was dysfunctional. It could have been through addiction or abuse. It could have been any dynamic in which what was perceived as “normal” was anything but that.

Yet, being within that environment, we had no frame of reference. We couldn’t measure it against any other way of living.

If it were normal for someone to come home drunk or beat us, for instance, how could we ever see an accurate, realistic representation of what being free looks like?

Wings were not a thing, because they were not a thing for us, experience-wise.

The application of knowledge is power.

Sooner or later, however, most of us encounter a situation in which we discover the concept of wings. It may be through a person, a relationship, or some healthier system.

Still, there comes a point in which we see, for ourselves, that this thing called “freedom” or “movement,” or “flight” is out there.

Other people are experiencing it.

Applying this knowledge, then, can often be the first step towards us experiencing our own more empowered experience.

We didn’t know we had wings.

Many of us who have been in circumstances in which we didn’t know there was such a thing as wings. And, more than likely, we don’t see ourselves as having them.

Again, that can be because we do not know what freedom looks like. Freedom from fear. Freedom from abuse. Freedom from stifling and crippling factors, like poverty.

We don’t know any differently.

However, the disconnect we have regarding our own personal wings and empowerment can be influenced by the following mistaken thought:

“Well, other people, sure, can have that, but that is not for me.”

We may even have been told that by an abuser. We may have been told that we have no right to our own body, our own autonomy and our own healthy well-being.

Usually, unfortunately, this “not-for-me” core belief has been the result of cumulative, erroneous words and invalidating experiences. Ignorance can drive the things. Ulterior motives and personal agendas, however also come into play.

It can selfishly serve someone else, like an abuser or a toxic person, to prevent us from knowing about wings, let alone, seeing how these wings could include us, and work to distance ourselves from an unhealthy and confining environment.

The application of knowledge is power.

If you and I can, by the tiniest mustard seed of faith, see that wings and freedom are in existence for us also, things start to shift and change.

Knowing that there is more for us can be a revolutionary concept.

We could fly away to more fulfilling, safer, happier experiences.

That is a powerful thing to ponder.

We didn’t know we were supposed to use our wings.

A lot of us who have been deprived of the wings experience have been repeatedly told lies of how we were “good- for- nothing.” We were called “stupid,” “worthless,” “useless,” and any number of disempowering names and labels.

We can all too easily believe these designations from others, especially if, day in, day out, that has been our reality, left unchallenged by any other thought.

“Wings” can challenge everything we know and live. It can challenge generations of abuse. It can challenge manipulation. It can challenge insecurity, inferiority, agenda, and selfishness.

The application of knowledge is power.

What if we recognized that our experiences with such experiences as abuse and addiction could be used for higher purposes? We could help other people by virtue of what we have gone through.

Maybe, even, you and I are the one individual who could help certain people, because of what we have lived.

Knowing about, accepting, and applying our very own wings changes the game.

It changes the game because, as embrace and use our wings, we convey a message:

“If I can fly, so can you.”

And someone is starving for that message.

Are you and I true “fence birds?”

It’s not as simple as a bird being in flight.

It’s recognizing that there was a story from struggle TO flight.

That’s where the beauty and the meaning reside.

Most of us couldn’t take it for granted being easily in-flight birds. Most of us could not take things like wings and freedom for granted. They were too hard-earned; they cost too high of a price, usually, in suffering, for that to happen.

We cherish wings and flight because it didn’t “just happen.”

We flew out of the fence.

Copyright© 2023 by Sheryle Cruse


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