Saturday, July 16, 2016

Understanding Reality

Words fail me sometimes, actually I'd say words fail me most times. Extremely funny for someone who dreams of becoming a writer, perhaps that is why I'm not actually a writer.

I feel most of what I want to say. If that sounds confusing, just listen to the voice in your head. I know you have one, we all do. It is the voice that guides us through our lives from the moment we are first able to communicate to others, the voice that is always with us, talking to us, asking questions of our inner selves, laughing at us or the world around us. It is the culmination of everything we are, all of our happiness, sadness, anger, fear, hopes, dreams, desires, humor, sarcasm, self loathing, doubt...

As I grow older, that voice grows stronger. It tells me more about what I am willing to tolerate in my life and what I am willing to just let go, poof in a puff of air, gone from my heart, my mind.
Tonight I am listening to music, something I do quite often but tonight it's music that centers around a particular point in my life that I feel was my pinnacle, my shining moment, that last chance to be what I should have been.

If that sounds melancholy or regretful, it's not meant too but there comes a point in life where we must accept that we are not going to be everything we'd hoped for. When I was young, my father used to talk about this. I did not understand what he was telling me until recently. I never quite understood why he went to work everyday to a job he didn't like, why he gave up his dreams of acting and photography and traveling, why he didn't just quit his job and TRY to live his dreams. He tried explaining it to me but hell I was only 8, 9, 10... my life was still a blank slate. Except even then I understood that we only so many chances to become what we truly dream we'll be.

Maybe most of us are content with exactly what we are or what we become by the time we're in our forties and fifties. Maybe others are still grasping at straws to be THAT PERSON. Maybe some of us are actually exactly, everything we wanted when we were first embarking on becoming adults.

I had a lot of chances to succeed. I am still trying to be successful and do at least one thing I dreamed of doing. Finishing my Master's degree is a dream I've had for so long and it's possibly, realistically the only one I'll actually be able to finish. However, I am not always sure my own self-destructive streak won't rear it's ugly head and crumble all my dreams in a cloud of dust.

I believe parts of us don't ever go away, that there are little kernels of our souls that we cannot totally squash, no matter how much we evolve and look inside ourselves. One of my favorite authors David Foster Wallace was a genius at explaining what I am trying to say tonight and he was so tormented that he killed himself when he was just 46 years old. His writing was incredible, very human, sad, haunting, realistic, often humorous and so filled with commentary on the 20th century and modern day that I hope I can do him justice in my Master's thesis. I understand his angst, his panic at not being good enough and his desire to be more than he is supposed to be.

Tonight's reflection comes at a moment when I am at a crossroads that is causing my own soul angst and trying to come to grips with all of the things I'll never do again, the woman I won't ever be able to be, it's just a fact of life, that we must accept, age and disease destroys the body. I am lucky to be here still but sometimes I wish I was still starting over at 30 years old, jamming out to my favorite Guns-N-Roses, John Mayer, Velvet Revolver and Pink Floyd tunes while busting my ass on the elliptical trainer and weight machines at Lifetime Fitness. I don't regret my life but yeah some nights I just wish I could explain what it was like to live in a body that doesn't work anymore... while my mind remembers it all.

I understand my father much better today than I did thirty five years ago. I admire his tenacity and the dreams he gave up to raise five children while going to work everyday. I feel his loss and I understand his love. And I'm thankful for it.

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