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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A Sinusoidal Life

Much has been said about the "ups and downs" of life. There is also a lot said about the many phases, or stages that different people experience through their life. But, then again, there are people like me who seem to be working towards a I-know-I-hate-life-but-I'm-perfectly-willing-to-exist-if-you-leave-me-to-it. And the interesting thing in this journey has been that regardless of what major upheavals seem to be conspiring against me to make my world such a miserable place -- and there is loads of sarcasm here, but I guess you had to be here to hear it -- there are just as many wonderful surprises in store from one minute to the next! However, and please watch out for the long series of "buts" or like words, my focus is most certainly singular; only being able to focus on the positives or negatives one at a time though they may occur simultaneously. But, I don't think is particularly bad because I refer to it as "being moody". And sure, that's only a technicality away from like bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, right? However, for all the times I have said things like "This too shall pass" like my usually textbook-ish self, or heard the same from someone else, I often find myself battling with the fact that the status quo may endure for longer than necessary. I don't mean to say that I have succumbed to things when they 'hit the jagged rocks below' simply because there were some of those that almost certainly would have prevented my sitting here typing up this tripe today. Perhaps I should begin by explaining what the "longer than necessary" refers to. It's just a sense of realization that you've been hiding in dark corners pretending to take the weight of the world on your frail shoulders, and at the end of this little mental meandering, you've come back to your senses. The only issue when you do wake up -- or maybe I should say, "when you open the eyes inside your head" -- is that the conditions in the real world seem to prevail, so you now begin blaming yourself for having been such a fool to have let your "feelings" get in the way, and so begins a sort of downward spiral. But, and because even spirals can be fitted with steps, and that's exactly what happens as you let yourself down onto the step below: feelings of inadequacy/purposelessness, followed by an eventual return to the wonderfully soothing reality of the way things really always were, suddenly struggling with all the damage that you had caused and making your way to step number three.

Obviously, I haven't gone down too many steps on the spiral staircase, the only thing filling that dark void. But, sitting here, I have to say that the "ups and downs" that I referred to earlier are a clear case of people missing the bigger picture, myself included. Quite frankly, for all those beliefs that we have come across or at least experimented with, things like "Every cloud has a silver lining," or seemingly inane opposites like "For every crest of sheer happiness you are setting yourself up for an equally big fall and wallow in the pit of sorrow," we miss the fact that much like the sine-curve, the sinusoidal wave as in the title of this post, is not life. No, it's the space between the highest peak and the lowest trough. That is life. If you were to draw two straight lines to border a sine curve, and proceeded to shade the area between these lines, the shaded area would represent life while the curve snaking through would represent the path that the individual chooses to take. I know that this isn't particularly profound, and it doesn't help to try and spice up the packaging by using an example that I am not totally familiar with. But, I'm not sure lots of people look at things this way. Hey, who says I do either, eh? Well, for those who need the visual, which seems to be a good juncture to point out that the path may take any form for each individual, here it is from Apologies for the unnecessarily academic nature of the image.

So, the ups and downs of life, and the here and now, and the joie de vivre, and all the rest of it. What is it all about? And, quite honestly, what's the big deal? At the end of the day, you find yourself in the world around you, and you have to do something whatever that may be. That's all there is to it. And I don't know how many people have heard me say it. Well, if you all must know, from where I'm sitting at the moment, I'm not doing anything like this. I guess I've decided to exercise my right to be a hypocrite. Or maybe I find myself in the throes of a decision to gently let myself down on the step below, of the spiral staircase that occupies the dark void inside of my head, and it's being in between these two steps that my mind snaps back to the present. Oh, what a gift. Ouch!
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