I never write here anymore and for good reason. I'm far too busy these days to keep spitting out wu's. 40 hours a week on the job and 24 credit hours a semester is more than any man can handle and maintain any kind of a online presence. I push, and stretch, and struggle, and ultimately thrash against the unbreakable bonds of time.
All my life, as long as I can remember it, I've pushed hard at something. Usually it was just at myself, a sort of implosion that didn't really change anything but kept alive this constant feeling of conflict that I've struggled with for as long as I can remember.
It's not a hopeless sort of feeling either, or even a sadness or anything so definable as all of that. It's a discomfort with my own skin. So I strive, and I stretch, and push so much harder than almost anyone I know to gain some sort of imaginary ground to stand on.
I know many hard workers in my life and many that simply seem to lumber along, living half-asleep lives of contentment, and so I ask myself: what is the reason for all of this labor? It would be seemingly without benefit as that it yields little internal satisfaction and less temporal reward.
I know a man who struggles to make a name for himself, and by extension God. For a time I thought that this would be my pursuit. I thought that I would stop only when my worldly needs were so well cared for that I couldn't think of anything more to want, much less a place to put it. The longer my life went on, and the more happiness (for that's really what this entry is about, my quest for happiness), I was able to attain without material longings always going answered, the more I realized that not only did I not worry about the items, but also accolades of others, and that I actually don't want them. The word recognition took on a new definition in my mind as I realized that I had little to no desire to attain it for myself any longer.
What I craved was something deeper and not in the casual meaning that springs to mind. I wasn't looking to go and have some spiritual experience leading to enlightenment. I don't really believe that the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow can be found in this life. Religion and spirituality for me is about how we live, not about how much we get or where we end. When I say deeper I mean something internal. The harder I strove at what we would call admirable things, the less I cared about who admired them and it was leading to me an understanding (or perhaps a reminding), about myself that I achieved this afternoon.
As I sat here (where is actually irrelevant), this afternoon reading about a great writer that I respected immensely I was struck by a solid and undeniable truth about myself. All of the work, and the pain, and the struggling that for years I thought I was doing for the love, appreciation, and admiration of others really was serving a completely different purpose. In the end I was only trying, and still am in fact trying, to forge myself into someone that I could respect.
I have made enormous steps on the path of becoming what I consider to be a respectable human being and I still have many yet to make. Because I am not satisfied, or perhaps because I do not know how to be satisfied, I will continue to push, struggle, and strain until I find a place inside myself where I see what is a complete, respectable man. A man who bases his actions and choices on a genuine love for his community and his world.
After coming to these realizations it was much as I expected. No noticeable weight was lifted from my shoulders. I am still beset by the various responsibilities I have imposed on myself. I am an 'Atlas' who will never allow himself to shrug because I believe the real value lies in the struggle itself, and in the forging of the person. I am in fact not one bit more prepared to face any of the challenges I have placed before myself. But there is this one thing I have realized. I have realized that although some might not rate my motivation as anything better than a desire for acceptance, I do. I have also realized that in the pursuit of making myself a better man I will be as a force of nature. I will be as a titan. A monolith. Nothing will ever stop me from hammering myself into the best me that I can be.
I would consider it the very greatest of honors (and you are reading this you likely know me and so it applies to you), if you would take a moment and consider coming, or staying, on this path with me and encouraging me on this journey towards becoming something greater than sum of my parts.
My name is Steven Adam Ward, and this is how I feel today.