Updated: May 18, 2022
The most essential ingredient of a lame-ass life is comfort. It’s the God of this nation. You worship what you most fear living without. The thirst for it is insatiable, its power domineering, its devastation perfect… and its carnage utterly indiscernible. It will kill who you most deeply long to be and you won’t even know it happened. And you never will. Because... it’s comfortable. It’s its own poison.
Hungry. That’s what “slender” feels like.
Exhausted. That’s what “proud parents” feels like.
Painful. That’s what “awesome” feels like.
There’s some damn fool notion that if you’re really doing really well, you’re comfortable. Complete bullshit. When you get to the base of the mountain. The one that’s really worth climbing. And you’re looking up at its peak. You’re going to realize something: you aren’t strong enough to make it to the top. And you’ll be right. But you who will start to climb in spite of it… you will soon discover the secret: the only way that you can ever become strong enough to climb to the top of the mountain is by climbing to the top of the mountain. You will be strong enough to make it to the top in the instant you arrive there.
It's called “becoming”. And becoming just sucks. It is supposed to. If it doesn’t, you aren’t. And the more it does, the more you are… but only if you get to the end. Because if you stop in the middle of it… you will die there.
It’s a good thing we don’t remember our own birth. We were supremely comfortable in the womb. Then without warning we were plunged into the most horrifying and painful experience of our lives. And at the end of it we took our first breath of life. We would have preferred to stay in the womb. Had we done so, we would have died. And had we not undergone the entirety of birth’s anguish, we would have died. Our only chance at any of life was all of the angst of becoming alive. Nothing has changed.
Previously published in The Boise Beat.