Pursuit of permanence
“No. It’s just changing.”
My feet dragged behind me along the long stretch of road, dirt and gravel and rocks. Cars passed by on either side pretty quick. No sidewalks. I chose to refrain from listening to music; I was content with the sound of my own two feet shuffling along the ground. I always enjoyed walks because they helped to put things into perspective. A little perspective was perhaps just what I needed. In fact, I wished they sold perspective as little energy shots at gas stations and convenience stores.
Exhaustion had wore me out, and it wasn’t from walking. It had worn me out far before then, before I had arrived there twelve hours previous and had nothing to do with the fact that I hadn’t slept in forty-eight hours. This exhaustion was more associated with frustration, anger. The suppressed brand. The kind you don’t want to shake or else to have it blow up in your face. The kind that hurt. I’ve always been like that.
Late for work. To top it off, no smokes.
I hated smoking. Having vowed to quit so many times over, I never really did. Perhaps it was the mind set to quit that always prevented me from really doing so. What I did know was the reason why I smoked. It was because I always hated change.
Permanence was something I always sought after. Assurance and certainty; I craved for a taste of such things, in all things. I wanted to know that I could wake up every morning and find things exactly as I remembered them to be when I left them. It never happened.
Maybe it was because everything had always changed so fast and so suddenly that I could never once keep up. Maybe. I didn’t know. My kid self was strapped onto a roller coaster ride at the age of only six or seven and that’s how it had been ever since.
“I can’t recall my childhood.”
Growing up too fast had its consequences. Quite overly mature in some aspects and childish in others where I shouldn’t be. Turned myself out to be a clown, but I preferred magicians instead. Magicians had a sort of elegance to their appearance. Clowns just always seemed straight out miserable to me. It worked I guess, because I always pictured life as a circus. Everyone had a role to play, everyone was a character, an eccentric, a freak or a weirdo. The magician stuck out to me, but in imagining myself as a character I had become the magician in clown shoes. It made no sense, but things rarely do when you’re growing up.
Things never really do, actually. We just assign universally accepted values to things that otherwise have none. The colour red could have been called purple and people would have associated its emotions and semblances as purple. “Red” in itself was man made and given a universal interpretation.
I sometimes wondered the same way about god.
In my quest for keeping things as much as I could, I seemed to have really lost myself. Smoking was perhaps an assurance that one thing would remain the same even though if all others changed. Perhaps like an anchor for my sanity.
Though running out of breath along the gravel path proved to me that I needed to give that up too. For the sake of my health at least. To think I once used to be athletic.
I missed running.
“Everything with a beginning has an end.” I had always heard that and agreed with it but never really accepted it for myself. Instead I tried to fight the fact and search for something that wouldn’t end. But it was quite contradictory that a cigarette would always burn out. Though I could spark another, the previous one would never be.
I realized that I was changing. Everything around me was changing too, always in constant motion. But for the first time I started to accept that I was, in fact, changing with everything else, and willingly so. The mechanics of my life were taking new shapes and forms, directing me towards a new path, much like the gravel path I walked. A path of perspective.
The realization occurred to me then that everything and everyone around me were a part of my safety net. A comfort zone that I created but needed to suddenly break free from. I had caged myself in and then grown too large to be contained much longer. Suffocation, if you may.
I learned that permanence tasted stale after a while. Things change, people change. Everyone has problems. Everyone has demons. Perspective helped me understand that. Also, that my pursuit of permanence was a pseudo state of satisfaction that I had created and trapped myself in. I wasted too much time.
Nothing is permanent.