Answering the Bell

article-2645272-1E61FA9A00000578-254_634x423I know, it’s been a long time. Five months, more or less, since I last posted here. So sorry, life has been coming at me fast. Or maybe slow, depending on how you look at it. I’ve had a lot of people asking me what’s going on with me lately, so I felt compelled to write something, even if it won’t give any concrete answers or discuss anything specific.

The truth is, I just didn’t have much to say for a while there, found myself sinking in the muck that life sometimes piles on, unable to do anything but try to put one foot in front of the other in hopes of finding my way back out. Though I’m back among the living now, I’m far from being back on solid ground, and that’s okay. Even if it wasn’t, there would be nothing else to do but keep moving.

I don’t want to get into specifics, or point fingers,  not even at myself. I don’t want to make excuses or pretend like I understand or have some unique perspective to offer, because I do not. I think there’s just a certain amount of heartache guaranteed to each person in this life,  but all of it, whoever it might belong to, is painful, valid, and important for growth.

I don’t believe the Universe cares enough in either direction to do it on purpose. Not to me, not to you, not to anyone.  I don’t believe that luck or fortune are a matter of value or of retribution. I don’t believe in karma or comeuppance. Bad things happen to everyone. We either stand back up or we lay down and die, and there is nothing anyone can do to avoid that choice.

Frustration is a mighty, mighty foe.  It brings out the worst in all of us, no matter what we like to tell ourselves. Sadness is a solitary experience, even when surrounded by others. Anger is the great subtractor, scraping the value out of everything it touches.  No matter how many people love you or care  or want good things for you, you’ve still got to face the long, dark nights alone, and again there is nothing that can be done but to face it, even if all you can manage is to do so from your knees, or lying awake flat on your back in the middle of the night. Acceptance is the only path forward, even when it seems damn near impossible to walk.

I’m starting to walk it now. It’s lonely, it’s scary, and it’s not what I wanted or imagined for myself. It’s not necessarily even what I need.  It just is what it is.  Sometimes you have to watch everything unravel before you can spool the worthwhile parts back together. Sometimes you have to throw the whole roll out and start over again, no matter how hard you’ve worked to wrap it up tight. Sometimes you have to shift your view of the world into something new, or else continue to stand still and watch things fall apart.

I don’t know where I’ll be this time next week, let alone next month, or next year. I’m sure there will be good and bad things in my life then, just like now. When we want to make something work, we will. When we want to do better, we will. Until then, each of us will be forced to either answer the bell or stay planted on the stool in our corner.

I’ve been here before, so at least I have practice. And, honestly, thank God for the practice, however traumatic it was at the time. If there’s one thing a childhood with a crazy, aggressive, egomaniac alcoholic will do, it will innoculate you against hard times. It will also train you with a natural pre-disposition to create hard times, but I’m working on that.

I know there will be a day sometime soon when things start to make sense again. I know the right people will remain a part of my life, not because they have to, but because they want to. I know when all is said and done I’m a decent, kind human being, much more than the sum of my faults and traumas.

I’d like to say that someday I’ll look back on this and laugh, but I know that’s not true. But maybe I’ll be able to smile, satisfied that I did everything in my power, that I was willing to change when it was required of me, and that the person I have become could not exist without the person I used to be. I wish the same for each and every one of you. Peace.

 

 

One thought on “Answering the Bell

  1. l’d like to say that someday You’ll look back on this and laugh, but I know that’s not true. But maybe you’ll be able to smile, satisfied that you did everything in your power, that “I was willing to change when it was required of me, and that the person I have become could not exist without the person I used to be.”

    Peace.

    Let’s start there, with the final verse, where the author validates his argument, that in the end we come back to dead center, that what has happened may shake us, but we always return to the middle.

    I consider you a very fine person, one that I call friend as well as nephew.

    Circumstances by no means dictate you as anything less than s brilliant mind you are, but the emotional heart versus the mind can cause us deep hurt,like to say that someday you’ll look back on this and laugh, but I know that’s not true. But maybe you’ll be able to smile, satisfied that you did everything in your power, that I was willing to change when it was required of me, and that the person I have become could not exist without the person I used to be. I wish the same for each and every one of you. Peace.

    ncern.

    And this is what we learn from.

    Give and take

    Ying and yang…..

    Except yang can kick your butt sometimes.

    ❤️❤️❤️

    UR

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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