Finding Nemo

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Weird Fakeness of Reality

So 3 years ago my world fell off a cliff.  And I still haven't climbed back.  I'm finally accepting that I'll never be the same.  At the same time, perhaps a part of me also realizes that this may somehow be a good thing in a strange way. I had just gotten back from Bali to Belize or Bust in January 2006.  It was so strange coming back.  It was exhilarating traveling for so long.  Towards the last couple months, though, I felt this foreboding about the idea of going back to America.  It was a surreal experience coming home.  LA felt alien.  The traffic was startling.  People talked too loud.  The food was strangely boring.  The weekend plans everyone got excited about seemed so mundane.  My good friends suddenly seemed like TV characters, I could watch them but not relate to them.  Or perhaps I felt they could never relate to what I was feeling.
I had this idea in my head, percolating and growing ever since I wandered through the Nepal and India.  The idea was simple.  I would be a new person, with new eyes.  I would truly feel empathy for everyone around me.  I would listen, with rapt interest to my friends lives.  I would be a center of positive energy and emotion.  I would be happy just being.  Existing.  At peace.  And I would like to think towards the end of my trip I was starting to achieve that.  But as soon as I was plunked back down into my prior existence, the stress of work, driving my car, answering my cell phone, the routine of going out to bars and hitting on girls, being around all the old familiar places and friends, I knew that this state of mind was fragile.  It was too new, it hadn't had enough time to take root.  It started to slip away, even as I was aware it was slipping away.  And after just a few months, I realized it was no longer with me.  Well, perhaps this is overstating it.  I KNEW what I wanted to be, but the daily realities, the grind, the loudness and constant chatter of mindless activity that is simply a part of the real world, it just squeezed it out of me, like water out of wet towel.
But I was starting to fight back.  I made Yoga and the post-workout meditation sessions a priority.  I decided to block out a portion of every Sunday to reflect and work on what was really important.  It was all just a matter of carving that piece of time back out for yourself.  And as soon as I was ready to get back to my new self, BLAM!

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