Friday, February 3, 2017

Check Your Pulse

I need to preface this by a few acknowledgements. First of all, it's been too long, I mean this to be weekly and my only excuse is that I had my Big Idea before I allowed myself to watch the morning news on Monday. Since then I've been seeing these weird parallels, as shocking to me as anyone. I'm trying to whittle it down but it will probably be a long self-psychoanalisys and ill-informed op-ed based on a half hour of news, Weekend Update, and YouTube videos.

First, my epiphany. Of course, I've known I've been born with this innate kind of survivor's remorse for no real reason, so I've dedicated my life to punishing myself for being blessed. I have tried everything to make the crushing guilt abate while being ever vigilant to anticipate all possible catastrophic scenarios and have a plan so I'm prepared, to head off the crushing anxiety. I've been totally unsuccessful. It's the epitome of futility. The guilt never goes away because the catastrophes are never what I'll expect and, being a hyper-critical, skeptical, Virgo, AND melancholy Wednesday's child lacking both trust and confidence, I've spent 34 years searching for something certain. If one person in the world can doubt an idea, clearly it's not concrete enough. I've been wandering around in a dark forest with a lamp, squinting into the horror of the darkness, stubbing my toes, falling down, torn to ribbons by briars, and being constantly terrified of what I'm already enduring and paralysed by guilt by dragging through the underbrush those I meant to protect. And all along I've had this lamp. If I quit trying to head-off the hell on Earth I seem to be manifesting myself and just look down, maybe I'll see that lamp illuminating my path and appreciate how pretty the leaves on the trees are and just take baby steps in the light as opposed to the total destruction of planning ahead in the pitch dark.

A plan like that is reasonable, only I can't stop the "what ifs?" I may be on my pretty path now, but what if I look up? What if it stops abruptly? What if it's not even the right path? Nothing is real, and everything is suspect if I can ask "what if?" So I've pared everything down to its most basic. That's why I try to keep my head down and limit as much input as possible, I'm better off. "I think, therefore I am?" Lost me. My thinking cannot be trusted. So what is real? Well, I think, therefore I'm alive. I'm alive! That's it! I can check my heartbeat any time. No question. From there the possibilities are endless! I didn't start my heart and I don't control its beating nor can I stop it so clearly there is a higher power, and there must be a path He set for me if I relinquish my compulsion to avoid destruction by being terrified in the dark and trust to look down and appreciate the lamp light.

So, I was pretty excited about being able to check my pulse at any time when I turned on the news for the first time in ages and the lead story, this is no joke, was a kid in Kansas who invented a locker soda vending machine where you can put money in a locker and get a Dr. Pepper or Mountain Dew, followed by a commercial for a diabetes medication, an insurance company, fast food, hospital, new cars, and injury lawyers, which all seem to kind of cancel each other out. Check the pulse. Yeah, this is real. Then, Donald Trump. And Hillary. The sound was down for part of it but I have to say, based on body language alone, I found Hillary off-putting at best, and Trump at least appropriate. Then, with sound, Trump was using adjectives! Only psychopaths and politicians avoid adjectives. It doesn't occur to the former, the latter don't want to qualify anything on purpose. Trump has my attention. It's something totally new. That's exciting. Check the pulse.

This is not a platform to air my psychosis or my ill-informed political views, and normally I would never reveal anything about my thinking that may offend anyone, or worse, make me look stupid. But Donald Trump said in an old interview "I know I'm right and when I know I'm right, I don't question anything." I can't believe I'm quoting the Trumpeter, but never in my life would it have occurred to me to have to confidence to make such a declaration. No "what if?" So, it's in that spirit that I'm posting this, having no clue who thinks what or if I may offend or what is really real. This is a risk it's taken me a week to evaluate, until I realized, evaluation is another form of lack of trust and confidence, more squinting into the darkness, no absolutes. Press "Post." Check the pulse.

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