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  • Writer's pictureAudrey Chin

On Self-Censorship, OB Markers and Beyond

Updated: Nov 1, 2020

Last week, I made a hole in a fence

Outside the grid

I put pen to paper and asked – what if? I said- I’m part of the family but … I said – I’m not accepting this.

Guess what? No bolts of lightning fell from the sky to strike me dead. No one came to excommunicate me. No one cut me from their guest list. Indeed, not many noticed. Or, if they did, it was no_big_deal.

It has been incredibly liberating, making that hole. Why didn’t I do it sooner?

I realized – we take fences too seriously

I could blame how I was brought up – my church, my parents, the schools I went to, the society I live in.

I think though, it was just laziness.

I was too lazy to question my own assumptions.

Like my daughter’s dog Charlie, I assumed the fence keeping me in would stand against my weight. And so, I didn’t ask – Why? How can it be? What if?

What if?

It’s a powerful question.

The week before last, my what-if led to my seeing the possibility of kinship with  all creation, even those I would normally despise.

Danielle Shroyer’s what-if, led to Original Blessings, a book that opened my eyes to a different interpretation of humanity, God and sin.

And when I embraced Shroyer’s what-if and wrote my post, a weight came off me. I have been walking on air all week. And even my un-conscious muscles have been celebrating. On Monday, I managed to push myself up to a full wheel stand at yoga class. Once more  – After  thirty years!


It may all be illusion – those no-go places we won’t let ourselves venture to, those OB markers we think exist.

What if? And what if we push the point of the question against our walls of resistance. And what if a door appears in answer to our question. And what if we walk through it?

Who knows what cartwheels we might turn in that field of possibilities?

It’s sort of scary.

I had to think three times before publishing that un-remarked upon last week’s post. But, I’ve no compunctions now in letting my mind wander and my imagination fly –

On that note, these words, from my former risk-manager self:

A risk-manager’s ruminations

here every street light has an ID not because anyone might try to steal them but just in case…

here all NPark trees are tagged not because they intend to fall on anyone but in the event…

here we pride ourselves on being alert and ready not because we don’t have robust preventive systems but things do break down…

the ground is not sweet best to be prepared link every data point to the grid pranksters freak storms malingering service persons

so even if it’s after the event we know the where the who the how

so even if we can’t undo the damage we know who to hold responsible scapegoat punish

imagine the buzz that would wake the city if the lights began to sparkle of their own accord as if struck alive by lightning

imagine the crowds that might follow if the trees pulled up their roots to dance as if called by some invisible piper

imagine the visions we might bring to be if we all gave ourselves to dreaming as if hope could become reality

the chaos!

the walls crumbling the dams breaking the doors and windows flying open the light and water flooding in

and afterwards between the stones bare ground sweet with the scent of new beginnings

Imagine… Ask yourself – What if…?

What fence did you make a hole in? Let me know  —


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