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Today is my birthday, and I'm not taking it too well. It's not one of those landmark birthdays... you know the ones: 5, 12, 21, 30, 50, 65, etc. No, it's just another birthday, like Tuesday is just another day of the week. But one tends to take stock of things on one's birthday, just to assess, you know, how far off the beaten path one may have wandered over the past year(s).

I think maybe I'm becoming more and more aware of how trapped I am in who I am. And maybe I'm realizing that I've trapped myself. Oh, I've had plenty of help in framing my self image, that's for sure. I have no doubt that I could handily find a piece of my story in at least one chapter of every memoir in the 'Biography' section of Barnes&Noble. But you and I both know I am not alone in this...you could do it, too, as can anyone (thus the huge number of memoirs in the 'Biography' section of Barnes&Noble). But even though we all have succumbed to the myriad influences shaping our decisions and directions, in the end, (and here's a tired but true cliche) every life is but a series of choices. That's it. Just one choice after another, day after day, year after year, until we are presented with no more options and it's all over.

There really is nothing more to it, just a chain of decisions, this one or that one. Sometimes we are presented with several choices: right, left, center, forward, backward, don't move at all. Even when it seems "I had no choice!", we know that we did; we just didn't have the courage to make the tougher one. We are all confronted with a certain data set applicable to our particular personal moment in time and, after making calculations using self-constructed formulas derived from our understanding of the world around us and the outcomes of previous decisions in similar circumstances, we make another decision, and that's that. The chips fall where they may: smug self-satisfaction that we apparently made the right one, or heart-felt regret that we really made a mistake this time; giddy glee, or wrenching despair; a sigh of relief, or a stomach in knots. Or maybe just 'whatever' if we want to dismiss our decision as inconsequential. Then we move on to the next decision, which is contingent upon the previous decision, and so it goes, on and on and on...

Now, let me zoom out from such existential doom and gloom, and present the same scenario in a different context...

Comments

February 23, 2016 @03:42 pm

Thanks for your comment, Tame. I can't remember ever having no doubts, so, in my book, you're ahead of the game because you can still hear that brave heart beating. You will find it again, and you will drag it out from under all the low expectation that have been piling up on you. Low-expectations...no wonder the world is in such a mess!

cc
February 23, 2016 @12:59 pm

We are all confronted with a certain data set applicable to our particular personal moment in time and, after making calculations using self-constructed formulas derived from our understanding of the world around us and the outcomes of previous decisions in similar circumstances, we make another decision, and that's that. I remember a self that had no doubts, even as it fell under an avalanche of low-expectations. Its heart still beats; perhaps I can find a way to rescue it...

tame
 

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