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Stranger Than Fiction, But Not By Much

How losing at a long term battle can benefit the future.

It’s easier to get down to the bottom, than it is to climb all the way back up.

There is a strange place in my mind. The kind that feels easiest to relate to those tug of war challenges from school sports days. Only, it’s just me, and i’m pulling to the left and the right.

On the left lives hope, a youthful, healthy body full of ideas, ambitions, & creativity. The ‘me’ I long to be. It never loses an inch from it’s starting point. It never looks shaken or worried about losing the battle at hand. Its lead grows, no more than a step at a time, but it grows. Once in a while a step is met by a minor slip at the end, immediately steadied and greeted only by dismissive laughter.

To the right stands fear. The man I was, not even a year ago. A strange, negative body that spends most of its time puffing and panting its way along. Self-destructive and torn, it yearns for the times it was mere inches from victory. Times where one movement of its arm along that rope could strike absolute horror to the mind of its opponent. Times past.

Together they create conflict. Conflict that makes the act of creating one of ease, or the stuff of absolute nightmares. The idea that everything has an equal and opposite reaction has never felt more true. The difficult times — the troughs, were always followed by what felt like the best of times — the peak. Those peaks were no better than what had felt ‘normal’ previously. Everything is relative.

Life has a knack of deciding that peaks and troughs don’t have an equal timeshare. In the past, those troughs lasted for weeks, or months. Seemingly never ending, and with no response in sight. Troughs felt like normality, as if peaks were fleeting moments that were never meant to last. That the narrative of life held no equal balance and to feel happy, to feel confident and creative was an alien concept. I long wondered how to find that balance. It never came.

“Life is stranger than fiction, because fiction has to make sense.” — John Dufresne

The idea that everything balances out and has to have a happy ending isn’t really. Life will ebb and flow. Life often fails to make sense.

What I Know Right Now

Creating feels good again, and doubts are met with an emboldened sense of positivity, of strength, and a hope that the future has a lot of greatness to serve up. Closer to the peak, but not quite there, further from the pits, and unshackled. Today feels great. The future has every chance to be.

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