Let’s address the ocean—a tree with endless fruit from which authors LOVE to pluck. I find myself wondering, why do we always come to this as our perfect allegory? How dull, unoriginal. But, then what else is there in this world more elegant and beautiful, more poetic? The mysteries of the deep can invoke fear, tranquility, love, mystery, excitement. Every single emotion can be found within the ocean. As someone who hates the ocean, I hate to love this. And yet I find myself plucking from its branches, low hanging fruit, to describe and create. Even still, it may be “low hanging fruit,” it is still incredibly difficult to do it justice because of this fact, becoming its own puzzle to master—a challenge to all. There is nothing new under the sun.
We live in a world where if you don’t know something, others look down upon you. Whether it be obscure fact or common knowledge, you didn’t know it? You’re immediately discredited as a human being. I ask you to look inward, analyze this occurrence, and ask yourself why?
Because we live in a highly competitive, fast-paced society that values only knowledge, it is my opinion that this has put us on the path of self-destruction. We have become incredible chameleons, pretending to know the true depths of what someone is saying without knowing anything at all. If we do not instantly agree or corroborate what this supposed knowledgeable person says, we are labeled dumb or less than (let it be noted as I typed this on my phone, a clown emoji was suggested). Research is dead. I speculate that the majority of people that hear one talking with confidence about the science of proper hair care, why dinosaurs don’t disprove creation, germ theory, or whatever other obscure sciences come to mind, will in fact, not go home and further investigate BOTH sides of what was stated, nor will they admit they do not comprehend what is being said. If they go home and research further, their information will be limited as far as both sides and opinions. Why? Because the big guys, big companies, big kahunas, and the rich have limited our research capabilities and have convinced us that despite this limited information, the world’s knowledge is at our fingertips. We find basic surface information and call it fact because someone seemed educated enough to write about it. That is the true American tragedy. It is for this reason that I encourage each of you reading this to admit when one does not know something. Ask questions, speculate, debate, and share information always, for the reliance on technology is crippling, and far worse than that is the shame we spread for lack of knowledge.
Bare with me on this one. I am not one to declare my opinion to be the truth. It is an opinion. Truth is truth, and we do not know the truth on this particular topic. The same can be said for those that believe in God and those that do not; the truth is the truth, everything right now is our opinion, a belief, we will know the truth and find our opinion to be right or wrong in the end, until then, we opinionate and postulate.
We are taught from a young age of the seven stages of grief. I have lost people close to me, and for the most part, those seven stages were relatively accurate, felt on a small scale. However, the loss of my father, my best friend, the only person in the world that genuinely got me, rang out a new truth for my life (or rather a new opinion or perspective). Seven stages of grief imply a relative completion, a chart to mark with a pin, so you know where you’re at right now. It gives you a false sense of hope. It implies we can manage it and get through it, see the grief to the end. Grief doesn’t end; it’s with us forever. We carry it, stuffing it in our bags to pull into the next relationship we form. Now again, bare with me on this, sure we feel denial, hope, anger, depression, etc.; of course, we do, but those are stages of which we graduate to the next, step by step. Every day, we fluctuate between them--as we do with every emotion, every day to day experience, every task. Today we wake up forgetting for half a moment that they’re gone, and we move on with our day shrugging it off as a new normal. Tomorrow, that brief moment of serenity that may wash over us as we check our phone and forget, there will be no texts from our loved ones, stolen with the reminder they’re gone we may experience depression or maybe anger, throwing the blank screen across the room. We may handle that anger with the hope of seeing them again or the hope that one day we can stop experiencing the highs of the emotions--but don’t we all want to stop experiencing the extremes for every situation? Don’t we all want to be level, balanced, recognizing feelings and continuing on without allowing them to infect everything?
That, my friends, is grief. Not stages, not steps, not a chart to watch. A hurricane, a spaghetti map that connects in an infinite loop. You don’t get over it; it gets over you.