Sometimes my posts betray me. I snitch on myself, as the kids say. They give you a glimpse into my soul and show you where my head is at, even when I’m not entirely sure myself.
2020 has been a rough year. Some reasons are commonly shared between all of us. Some are things that I’m not really ready to talk about. Others I might never be ready to. Either way, I’m moving forward, staying strong, and trying to keep enlightened.
Focus. Determination. Strong will – all mantras of those with inner peace. We focus on our breathing. Stay determined to move forward. Keep our wills solid so the good work can be done – not just for the world, but for ourselves.
The issue with all of this feel-goodery is that we end up with a sense of knowledge about what we need to do that can be a bit of a downer. We know that talking things out will just lead us to answers we’re already aware of. There’s no hidden truth or unrealized meaning. We know the truth. We figured out the meaning. All that’s left is blind acceptance and the ability to hold on as we move forward. Tomorrow the sun will come out. If not, then the day after or, at least, some point down the line. It’s coming. All you can do is wait.
It makes me think of the theoretical physicists who came up with the simulation theory. Without getting all Sid The Science Kid on you, it essentially says that the odds we all live in a giant computerized simulation of reality, as opposed to genuine “reality”, isn’t just possible, but probable. In an infinite universe, it is pretty certain that we might be nothing more than computer code, tricked into thinking we’re alive. It comes off like an amazing breakthrough and one that those in the white lab coats should be proud of. And they were.
They also became depressed.
This infinite knowledge took away any what-ifs or missing information. It left them in a bubble where all they could do is simply move along. If true, the laws of the universe might not make sense because they were programmed to not make sense. The final answer to all life’s questions might be that there are no answers because there are no questions.
We too face the simulation theory in our own lives. There are many situations, usually the biggest ones, where we find ourselves all talked out with no benefit to rehashing the same complaints or recurring pain. Repeating the words doesn’t help or hurt, it just seems tedious in its perpetuation of nothingness. Things get put in motion to correct our problems and, as the process takes its natural progression, all we can do is buckle up for the ride.
You plaster a smile on for the kids, co-workers, family, and friends. People ask how you are and the answer ranges from “fine” to a deep sigh, depending on your relationship to them. Most of the world is none-the-wiser to what you have going on. Even if they were, with all apologies to Kurt Cobain, there’s nothing left to say that you haven’t thought before.
Frankly, this calm response to a chaotic mental state should be applauded. It’s something that we, as a whole, don’t congratulate ourselves for enough. Keeping it together for the sake of society isn’t an easy task but it’s one that, by and large, most people do. There’s a reason why the sight of someone flipping out in the supermarket parking lot is filmed and shared online. It’s because it’s so rare. If everyone who wanted to throw a shopping cart into an S.U.V. did it, we’d all be chucking them.
Let’s be honest. There are some times when you have to let out a blood curdling scream into a pillow the second the house is empty. You throw punches at ghosts, argue with distant memories, and thank God that all those people you took the high road with are walking another path because, if they were in front of you right now, you’d run them down in your cart-dented S.U.V. You lose it on the inside so you don’t lose it on the outside.
I know it might make you uncomfortable to read. It makes me uncomfortable to write. But it makes us all so comfortable to do, when the time is right. We have to acknowledge the pain we bury inside or else it will bury us. As someone with quintuple reasons to avoid bottled up anxiety, letting it go when I’m all by my lonesome is the best medicine I can get.
So, yeah, get it together, grouch. Smile at the devil. Don’t fear the reaper. Treat each day like it’s your last. But, when the time presents itself, let that volcano erupt now and again. I do. I need it. You do too. We all do.