2AM Thoughts – What Do You Want In Life?

It’s 2AM and I should be asleep. I need sleep, God knows, there’s Monday starting rotation in Paediatrics awaiting, I have to clear out the rest of my apartment tomorrow and I am on medication that my body is still adjusting to in addition to a cold that isn’t physically making me any more prepared for life right now. Yet, here I am at 2AM, thinking. I have been thinking too much today (well, yesterday, technically) and I wish I had a switch in my head to make it stop. I contemplate many things, have debates in my head with myself about life and its many issues and like algebra, my brain works until it has reached the “x = ?” final line. What is the equation? “What do you want in life?” We get asked that question all the time and we are told by many how important it is to eventually figure that out. Most of us have a broad idea or else, a vague one, at least. I thought I was amongst that crowd of broadly yet vaguely knowing my greatest aspirations, yet today, my heart came up with a different answer on its quest towards banishing the pain that suffocates it daily. Its answer wasn’t the one of hopeful motivation I sought out to find. Its answer? Nothing. What if I honestly do not truly want anything in life anymore? Well, onto equation two we go…

Realising I didn’t want anything in life anymore that would make my heart race towards something promising contentment, I found was a double-edged sword. Not wanting anything anymore for myself or having anything to aspire towards loving basically speaks volumes for the root of its cause; depression. Depression, I realised today as I spoke with my friend is something that has rendered me colour blind. It makes all its afflicted colour blind. I asked her what things she loves and why and I asked questions about what would make her happy. Is she happy? Is all of this enough for her heart? Having the most simplest of answers, like food, coffee, friends, outfits and some day hopefully work, I felt like she was describing things I commonly know from a perspective that made her see colour whereas I only see black outlines I saw no point of. Perhaps her definition of happiness wouldn’t match mine. Perhaps more matters to me. Things like empathy and love and kindness and beauty that has nothing to do with daily trivial life. But somehow, I don’t believe those truly exist anymore and if they did, wanting them has only ever set me up for disappointment. So I stopped wanting anything. I do value relationships very much but I don’t believe their capacity to consistently last. I no longer believe the beautiful words many utter so effortlessly initially only to have them reversed and neglected later on and a false reality created.

But perhaps not wanting anything isn’t the worst thing in the world either. Perhaps that is how one acquires the state of just “being.” No expectations, no race towards something that creates anxiety and fear of not obtaining it and no creation of an unattainable world of colour. Perhaps that enables one to give and care without expecting that in return. Perhaps that removes the shades we wish to view the world through and just see it as is. We are no longer “domesticated” by society as to what should and shouldn’t be. Maybe it’s okay that a starbucks coffee, chocolate, an extravagant meal and dressing up to finally just feel beautiful and be told I am isn’t what would make me happy. I have started a course in dialectical behaviour therapy as requested by my Doctor, in my battle against this insidious illness, and I decided to be open minded and do it even though throughout most of it I still don’t see how it could truly work and question it. You are giving me a defined recipe as to what is okay to think, feel and say because my brain’s thinking is “distorted” by a neurochemical and neurostructural heartache. You are trying to create new circuits and rewire me to make my purpose in life a mindful one of loving coffee, food, goals and friendships enough to the point of making me happy. Yet, why do those things make me feel only empty? You are telling me to reinvent myself according to what would make me better and stronger. But perhaps my wish is to see truth and to see truth, I must not want to see anything preconceived. 

I don’t believe there is no beauty left to find amongst this destructed earth on which we dwell. I believe souls continue on in their beauty and that nature’s intent continues to be because that’s what its existence has ordained it to do. But I believe we are controlled by fear and fear has made us construe together the image of what is a safe portion of happiness to hold onto. But I do not want safe. I want real and real I think requires no expectation of what one’s life should be. Perhaps life is not to be created by us but life seeks out to create us if we are willing to take out our selective viewing and societal beliefs. Life’s truth may not be the same thing as your truth and maybe that is why so many of us will never truly be happy. 

I guess what I am trying to say is I don’t want anything, because I want to take worldly wants and myself out of the equation for once. Just viewing without judging I think is an exceptional challenge for the human mind but perhaps we will be surprised by what we find if we managed to do it. I want to live inherently and not according to construed definitions of what a heart should hope for. So maybe, that is what will lead me home; becoming a discoverer and no longer a definer of happiness.

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4 thoughts on “2AM Thoughts – What Do You Want In Life?

  1. I can’t pinpoint when I gave up trying to define what does or ought to make me happy, if, indeed, I truly did so. I do agree that such definitions and expectations tend to blind us to events, experiences, and ideas outside of them that may make us happy, that they close us up in some way. And, depression is the past master of saying, “If only [fill in the blank], then I could finally be happy.” That, too is a closing of doors, blocking openness. “Faith is, above all, openness; an act of trust in the unknown.” [Alan Watts]

    And, there is this counterpoint to depression’s color blindness, from William Blake: “Wise men see outlines, and therefore draw them.” That reminds me of this from Blake that also fits the subject of openness and not defining happiness:

    “He who binds to himself a joy
    Does the winged life destroy
    He who kisses the joy as it flies
    Lives in eternity’s sunrise?

    Learning to kiss our joys as they fly and let them go is no easy thing (our hands and minds are so good at grasping), but worth the effort.

    Liked by 1 person

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