Taken For Granted

{My car’s transmission failed on me in the middle of the road.  I was aggravated, but not hurt.  Though I was headed to the campus computer lab to do homework anyways, I immediately wrote my feelings down as they came to me.}

We take it all for granted.  Everything.

We waste all this time with these things that don’t matter, while we let the things we really love rot and collect dust.

What happens when it all comes crashing down?  What happens when the thing you relied upon fails you?  That thing you took for granted as something that would just always be there?

These are the times that try men’s souls.

All this pointlessness that I while away the time with.  Trying to find meaning.  And I waste my time because I have time to waste.  I’m afraid of doing the things I know I should be doing.  Why?  Because I’m scared?  Because it’s hard?  Because I’m stuck?

And in a few hours after I write this, this will all pass.  The disgust.  The anger.  The hopelessness.  I’m going to go back to being the same old me, wasting the same old time and dwelling on the same old things.

Or will I?

I took for granted something big.  Something very, very big: my automobile.  I knew, and know, that it is not the best device.  I knew, and know, that there are problems lurking in it.  But what we never know, what we never expect, is when those problems will come due.  And because we’re so blind, so complacent with the way things are, any time is the worst possible time for the things we take for granted to fail us.  We don’t plan for it.  We don’t create a strategy for it.  We create these situations for ourselves; we build our own house of cards, forgetting immediately thereafter what the house is made of.  We say to ourselves, “Just one more day, just get through one more day,” when really all we’re saying is, “Please let me be able to put it off until tomorrow.  Please let me be able to procrastinate on what I know needs to get done.”

Why?  Why do we do it?  Why do I do it?  Why am I so lazy, so complacent, so in the habit of taking things for granted?  Because it’s easier.  But I’m scared.  I’m so very, very scared now.  I’m scared because I’ve been put into a situation that I don’t have a plan for.  My skin tingles and the back of my neck heats up.  I can feel every point of pressure on my body, from the desk, from the chair, from my headphones, mocking me.  My arms tense up as I type; if I don’t brace them against something, they start to shake.  I feel like I want to cry.  I feel like I am crying, screaming.  Part of me wishes it could all be over.  The other part of me says that I’ll look back on this and be proud of myself for how I deal with it.

I write.  I write to get the bad thoughts out, to get all the thoughts out.  I write so that whatever it is I’m thinking, they won’t be lost.  We all feel so much when we’re feeling it, but after the feelings are spent we could care less.  We forget, because if it’s not happening now, it’s not important.  We don’t care.  We don’t care about the little things, until they become big, and we wonder how they ever became big in the first place.  And we’re too dense to realize that they’re big because we never dealt with them when they were small, and easy, and quick, and manageable.

It’s the simple things in life you treasure, they say.  I treasure them, because I don’t have many complex things.  I haven’t had a very complex life.  So the simple things become my complex things.  Something as simple as getting lost in an unfamiliar city, or having my car break down at the most inopportune time.  I look at them as special, as important, as life-changing, because I don’t have much else to look at.


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