Welcome to the madness!
Epiphany-an experience of sudden and striking realization.
I have never claimed to be the smartest person in the world, nor would I.
That would mean I suffer from the character flaw of pride, and I have no flaws. That would be a silly thing to say, considering I am enrolled in school to learn a new trade, namely computer information technology. This isn’t the epiphany I promised. We’ll get there, though. Trust me.
I have lived on this gem, this marble in the satin of the universe, this third rock from the sun. as the late great Jimi Hendrix sang, for fourty years. My contributions are, at best, minimal. I’ve done things, said things, seen things, etc. that I wish I could take back. Heck, haven’t we all? I helped in the production of, in my opinion, two of the most awesome kids in the world. I admit bias, of course. Like I said, I am not without flaws. As I stated in a church, speaking to the pastor, there has only ever been one perfect person to walk the earth, and they put him through the most brutal manner of death possible. (Not to spoil the ending, but He got better.)
I don’t know why, at 1am, I’m back in front of the computer, typing out this….well, whatever it turns out to be in the end. I’ve likened my writing style to….well, vomiting. I just open up and whatever comes out is out, then I feel better. You….could have done without that metaphor, most likely. My apologies.
In a very short week and one-half, I will be done with another semester. I only got three classes in this semester because most of what I needed was not offered until the Fall semester. Still, it’s pretty decent. I’ve gotten some good feedback from my teachers, so on and so forth.
…..all right, I’ll get to the point.
Life is a few days of trouble. A much wiser man than I said that long ago. We get to choose who we become, where we end up, what we end up doing, and even if we like pecan-flavored syrup for waffles. And yes, we say pee-can, not pe-cahn. That doesn’t mean we are ignorant, it means we grew up somewhere different from others. For all I know, my kin in Scotland call them “those wee lil baggers wot ye ‘ave tae crrrrack”. Roll the R. (Gaelic is a very, very difficult language.My opinion, and mine alone.) The point I’m trying to make is this: toss off your chains. Stab the inner voice which tells you not to try because you will fail in the eye with something pointy. Listen to that voice, that calm one that keeps saying “Get back up and try again…we’ll never know what we can do otherwise.”
I’ve never been the most positive-thinking person. I’ve a great friend who will most likely read this and know I am speaking of her, and she calls me out on these things regularly. Call it my 10,000 mile checkup. Right now, as I type, I’m alone in a quiet room. I feel relaxed, at ease, and although I have some sort of sore throat/cough/galloping crud, overall I feel okay. I’d like to think my views are changing for the better. Even now, at 40, I am still a work in progress. I wonder what I’ll be in the end? Ah well, I guess I’ll find out along with the rest of you.
Some parting words for all. Maybe this will still be up and my kids will read it. Well, read it without rolling their eyes too much.
Kids, do yourself a favor. Wait. Don’t try to grow up too fast. Don’t hop in the sack with someone you don’t intend to speak to again, let alone marry. Do your best, try your hardest, and above all, make sure whatever it is you want to do satisfies you. Don’t take a job, find a career. There is definitely a difference. A job is where you dread going in, punch the clock, bust your bum, look at your watch a few hundred times, and sigh often. A career is something you can say yeah, I’m headed for the office/shop/store/tannery/whatever, and I’ll be awesome. Assurances are nice. Make sure to have as many of those as possible. Help folks when they need you. You never know when you’ll need someone. If you have someone in your family that you have a grievance with, go to them, tell them that family is stronger than whatever the dustup was about, and forgive. Forgive them, and forgive yourself. The latter is harder, but more satisfying. I’m learning slowly to forgive myself for the idiotic things I have done in the past.
As I said, work in progress.
We all have things that bother us, things that someone near to your heart may do. Or not do, as the case may be. Don’t let this escalate into a fight. When you love someone, all fighting accomplishes is hurt. Sometimes physical pain is nothing compared to a broken heart. Don’t drive people away that you want to be with you. Don’t do things that you know you shouldn’t. Pull up your pants, turn your hat around (that thing you wear pointed backwards was designed to shade your eyes from the sun. Look it up.)
If you have a question, ask it. Ignorance is not bliss. Ignorance is ignorance. Questions tell the other person that you are in need of their view or advice. If you love someone, tell them. I can’t stress this enough. Tell them. Then, once you have told them, show them. “I love you” is just words if it doesn’t come from your heart. You might not get a chance to tell them (let alone show them) that you love them again. Many people sit around with a cloud hanging over them because they either didn’t say and show it enough, or they are letting the wrong people take up space in their mind rent-free.
Bobby McFerrin said don’t worry, be happy. Jesus said “I am with you always”. Yoda said do or do not, there is no try.
That’s the epiphany in a nutshell. “O God, I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams.” That’s from Hamlet, if you didn’t know. Don’t worry if you haven’t read it already. I was a grown man when I finally read it. (I am sorry, Miss Kelly, but I used the cliff notes when we were tested. No, not during the test. I also read the graphic novel.That counts…..sort of.) ANYway, what Shakespeare was conveying here is this: I’m a sane, rational person with flaws, and I have bad dreams sometimes. That doesn’t mean I give up, it means I’m working on it. I wasn’t supposed to be privy to the conversation, but I overheard two people speaking of me way back, when I first graduated and started my first job. “He’s never worked before.” said one. “Oh, you’ll see. That boy has enough quit in him for three people. I’ve known him since he was little. He’s a crybaby and probably will always be a crybaby.” Well…..as you can see, I haven’t quit, and no, I am not crying. I’m learning. Pretty soon, I’ll have a degree, some certifications, and a few letters behind my name. I refuse to brag, but once I’ve earned them, I will be signing everything with those letters. They mean a lot to me.
If you’re still here and haven’t closed this out yet, I apologize for being long-winded. There are a lot of things I must do in order to become the man I need to be….and the man I want to be. Will I quit? Heck no. So guess what, nameless-old-ladies-in-the-freezer-section? You were wrong. I may not be where I need to be, but I AM on the path to where I am going. Once I get there, I’ll send you a postcard or something.
That’s all I have for now. I can almost hear your sigh of relief. I don’t blame you, I would have put this down and read something more entertaining…like a phone book. (I kid myself so as to steal the thunder of those who would criticize me. It’s just one of my many things.)
I never know how to end these things, so I’ll end it with a quote. “Some people feel the rain. Some just get wet.” If you don’t recognize it, Bob Marley said it. He also said “Don’t worry ’bout a thing cuz ev’ry little thing..is gonna be alright.” Stay cool, guys. Thanks for reading my twaddle. It means more than you know.
I am now, and probably always will be.
AKA The Original Geek/Furball
(Feedback is welcomed and craved, by the way.)