The war had just ended.
Puffs of smoke could be seen in the distance, our ruthless residue from firing against the enemy.
A calmness set in after battle.
Still in our armor, we began to search for the fallen.
The mountains stood serenely beneath a fresh blanket of snow.
Steam danced gracefully on the surface of the lake below.
Wading into the icy water, I followed my commander closely. Knee deep, he reached underneath its crystalline surface.
What emerged left me frozen in place.
I recognized the pallid and decapitated head to be one of our own. With eyes shut and lips sealed forever, his face merged with the whiteness around us.
I shivered. How many more of our men would we find? _________________________________________________________________________
I am hesitant to label this dream as a nightmare, although many would consider it just that.
The purity of the snow, the tranquility of the Mongolian mountainside, and an overwhelming sense of equanimity despite encountering a beheaded friend did not make this a nightmare.
It was a wake-up call.
How much longer was I willing to partake in a headless war against myself?
Negating my conscience.
Muting my heart.
My denial of self only served to make me a direct target in battle.
Suddenly unshackled from a cycle of perpetual self-sabotage, I accepted responsibility for my own beheading.
Attempting to Be ahead mistakenly led me to Be a head.