The path of least resistance is a futile one to follow for me…seems like everything I do or have done in my life has travelled the path of most resistance. Any attempt to take the easy way out, the low road, the most travelled path has simply never been an option.
The tests of my youth even illustrated that I was attracted only to the hard way. If there was an exam where I had the option of choosing three of four questions I would choose the three hardest ones. Regardless of the fact that I knew I would get a better mark by choosing the three easiest ones. In the end the result isn’t what mattered, it was always the challenge and feeling of accomplishment. While passing an exam is nice, “ace-ing” an exam was always elusive.
Yet day after day I see it wherever I go. The lowest common denominator running around with better toys, making more for themselves, seemingly happy or at least sufficiently numb in their lives that any hardships can easily be avoided. Why is that for them–the unwashed masses; that person who is so deathly happy with working at the local hardware store chain for $10 / hr and never knows where anything is–the life worth living is the one that requires the least effort? I don’t get it. I suppose I never did, but somehow they do get it.
Now I’m starting to see and feel what a lifetime of climbing uphill brings. Eventually the hardway becomes the only way, the high road is the only one you can see, and the least travelled path is the only path that ever really presents itself. The world starts tailoring everything for you. Things become pointier, less soft, you keep moving until one day you wake up and realize that you’re so far out to sea that there isn’t anyone around to give you a life raft;you’ve got to swim back to shore on your own.
I’m at that time now. I’ve only just begun to swim back to shore, and I’m not sure I’m going to make it all the way. Then again I suppose this is the hardway presenting itself again. I didn’t really need to swim out this deep into the water now, did I? I suppose not, it’s just that sometimes the way out is much easier to find (inspite of the hardship along the way) than the way back home. The way back home / to shore is a long swim away.
With no dinghy,
With no guiding buoy,
With no preserver of any kind.
With no lighthouse to guide me in.
I am alone in the return.
And yet in this moment the water around me is warm, feels–I suppose–like a womb-like comfort. All I have to do is to stay here and drown myself in this sea of loneliness and sorrow. That would be too easy…and there in lies the rub.
With all the strength I can muster,
With all my facilities about me,
With all warmth near by.
With all presense.
I take the long way home (again).
And when I reach shore, and open the that door to my home. I will make sure that I will balance the hard ones with the easy ones. Temper myself, and perhaps take a little corner of the page in the book of life of that woman who works at the Tim Horton‘s down the street and can’t count change to save her life, but is still happy.
There can be no more halves.
There can be no more imbalance.
There can be no more corners.
Me will mean me.
I will be I.