There is a strangely human aversion to change. Maybe it trickles down through the rest of the Animal Kingdom, too, but I can't imagine a fox getting drunk over losing a job. I don't know many foxes, so maybe I'm misinformed. I'm misinformed about a lot of things these days.
I am not a huge fan of change. Little changes I can handle - like trying my baked mac and cheese with Gruyere instead of Cheddar* - but the big things are a struggle. These thoughts always lead me down the path to extinction, not mine - yet - but the extinction of just one species of animal or just one species of plant. It's a small blip in the grand scheme of things, losing one species, but I just feel so sad about it. I contributed, probably. It's a little my fault. But then my mind starts to wander...and I realize when this one species goes away, another rises up to take its place. Not immediately, but over time. There is always something coming up after us.
I think about what we are doing to ourselves and our planet and I know what the endgame is: one day we will be that species, the one that goes extinct and something else comes along to take our place.
We get all up in arms about it - and maybe this will help us change our future, I hope so - but I don't see a lot of forward motion. I think humans are essentially good, but we are also selfish - I know this from personal experience: I am selfish - and that is a not so great combination. Couple those two things together then add in thoughtlessness/obliviousness and the world as we know it is most likely doomed.
This isn't a call to arms: to reduce, recycle, reuse, buy green and local, eat less meat (though all these things you should do). This is a meditation on getting to the bottom of things, to why change affects us so greatly.
Because once I see the grand future down to the very end of its thread and look at it honestly, I can accept human extinction, animal and plant extinction, the shifting of tectonic plates, the coming of a new ice age or a hot, barren inhospitable to life landscape. I don't love this acceptance, but it is what it is. At least I'm not as sad or scared about it.
Of course, once we get to the personal, these above thoughts don't 100% apply. Why can I get used to human beings ceasing to exist as a species, but I don't like to move?
The unrequited life.
Not unrequited love, that's a whole other blog post at a later date.
The unrequited life. The life that would exist if you didn't change. That's what trips us up. I've been holding on to all my unrequited lives for so long now they have taken over my life. I am an unrequited life hoarder. I don't want to let them go...even though holding them is stupid and unproductive and maybe even detrimental.
Why do I, do we, do this? Why can't we get over the jobs we lost or didn't get, the places we've moved from or were kicked out of, the lovers we've banished or been banished from? Why are we so obsessed with the unrequited lives we didn't lead, to the point where the lives we ARE leading suffer? The present consumed by the past.
Living this way only makes us unhappy, right? An unrequited life is a still born life with no future. So why do we coddle them, like parasitic twins taking all the nourishment, keeping them alive for nothing?
Any thoughts folks?
*I always get a maudlin after a hard drinking night - two vodka sodas is a hard drinking night for me - but I did have a slamming mac and cheese :)