This has been in my scratch pad, forgotten, for 6 years now. Perhaps that says a lot.
You know the story, don’t you? You wake up depressed, something isn’t right but for a minute you can’t remember what it is. Did she dump you last night? Are you out of money and your rent is due? Did you lose your job? You shake the sleep from your eyes and the memory of that horrible event gradually comes back into your mind. There goes the day, you think to yourself.
You get in the shower and the warm water sluices the tension out of your muscles, you think maybe you will just stand there all day and never have to face the world. You reluctantly get out of the shower and get ready for work. You take a look around your apartment and remember you need to clean. Maybe you grab a bagel or a breakfast bar as you head out of the door.
In your car, you drive to work thinking about what kind of shit you’re going to have to put up with today. Maybe the old lady cuts you off when you get onto the freeway and you give her the finger. You get to work and sit down at your desk with a sigh. Maybe you do some work, maybe you screw around on the net for a while. You get some calls and help people with the minimum amount of effort possible. You spend your morning thinking about other things you’d rather be doing with your life.
At the end of the day, you head home having gotten nothing accomplished. You tell yourself that you’ll get something done tomorrow, like you do every day. Back at home, you sit down on the couch and watch TV. Maybe you make a frozen dinner from or maybe you head over to Taco Bell. You look at the mess your apartment is in, but you’ll clean it on the weekend. You think about doing laundry, but you can wear those jeans one more day. You spend most of the evening on the couch before finally going to bed and getting ready to do it all over again.
Is this how the story goes? Is this how it has to go? Maybe you are stuck in a rut. Maybe the momentum of your life keeps you stuck in this story, never turning the page to the next chapter, never throwing the book away and starting over again. Maybe a part of you holds on to the story, holds on to the unhappiness and self loathing.
Maybe tomorrow things will be different. When you wake up feeling depressed and alone, you will just smile. In the shower, you will enjoy the warm spray of water eager to start the day. You will make yourself a good breakfast, not because you think you should but because you enjoy it. You will look at the mess your apartment is in and plan to clean it when you get home, and this time you will mean it.
On your way to work, you will notice the sun sitting low in the sky. You will crack your window and smell the air around you, smiling at how the world smells in the morning. When that woman cuts you off, you will keep going without it affecting your mood. At work, you will get things done. You will be friendly and helpful, because you know that is how you would like to be treated. Maybe you will do one good deed, learn one small thing, notice something you never noticed before.
Walking to lunch, you will notice the flowers outside your building that you never noticed before. You will see a bee perched on the petals. You will see the colors and smell the scents of the world around you. You will look other people in the eye and recognize yourself in each of them. Maybe someone will bump into you and not apologize, but you will just smile.
When you get home, you will clean your apartment. You will resist the urge to sit on the couch and watch TV, instead you get some bread and go to the park to feed ducks. You will take a walk along the river or work out at the gym. Maybe you will call that friend you haven’t talked to in a long time, reach out to them without caring if they can return the favor.
You will be here in the present moment instead of reliving past events or waiting for the future to bring you happiness. You will accept things just as they are rather than thinking about how they could be. You will see the beauty of life that you never bothered to look at before. You will see that nothing stays the same and you will learn to embrace the constant changing nature of life.
Do you ever feel like you’ve been walking through life in a dream, carried forward by the momentum of your habits and fears? Do you have the courage to wake up?