Life, Lemons, and More Life

Life, Lemons, and More Life

A Story by CT
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Life loves to kick dirt in our faces. It loves to kick us while we're down. It loves to make our time in this world we live in hell. Don't just sit there and take it- give life its damn lemons back.

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 You know, I’ve been doin’ a lot a thinkin’ this last week. A lot a s**t’s happened to me this year, and there’s nothing I can do to change that. Hell, s**t’s still happening. Anyway, last Monday- which was, of course, the Fourth of July- I just got so fed up with everything. I got fed up with my mom, my dad, my whole f*****g life. Anyway, we got home from the fireworks, I said my goodnights, brushed my teeth, yadayadayada, same-ol’, same-ol’ routine, stripped down to my boxers and climbed into bed. It was friggin’ hot as hell that night, lemme tell ya. If hell has a sauna, I have a sneaking suspicion that it bears a striking resemblance to my bedroom. Anyway, the heat was only exacerbated by the fact that I was buried under two think-a*s blankets. Didn’t matter. It was a precaution I had to take.

                Earlier that night, at the fireworks, I had gotten in a good old American fight with my dad, and I was pissed. I won’t get into what it was about. It doesn’t matter, really. It was just one more stupid, useless, goddam moronic fight in a long succession of useless, stupid, goddam moronic fights. Yippee. Long story short, I ended up going back to the Explorer in a huff and just breaking down. All the desperate desolation and depression that had been pushing in on me in all directions finally broke through. I opened up the “Notes” app on my iPod and began typing what I was sure would be my final- and perhaps, greatest and most emotional- work.

                By the time my dad and sister arrived at the car, I had lapsed into a sort of desperate resignation. I spent the ride in relative silence, not talking much. We got home, filed out of the car, and went in.

                So it was this sequence of events that found me roasting beneath my blankets on an ungodly hot night, typing a suicide note on my iPod Touch. Pretty f*****g melodramatic, huh?

                I was up ‘til three in the morning typing the thing. I put something in there for everyone I care about. I just let it all out- a roaring river of raw, undiluted emotion. I let out my anger at my parents, my exasperation with their stupid fighting, my… fed-upped-ness?... with my mom and her antics, my dad and his expectations. I’m not gonna get into the mundane details of why I hated my life, because I have a sneaking suspicion that none of you care. I’ve got a feeling that you’ve got enough crap going on in your life without my whining about my own problems. Looking back on it now, I can’t believe how selfish I was being. I think now of all the people that have slogged-and still are slogging- through much deeper s**t than Christian Dale Thompson, AKA Indi555, and had the will to soldier on. The fact that I came within an inch of ending my life because of my tiny, mundane problems now disgusts me.

You see, in the grand scheme of things, what’s one little biological organism on the face of a tiny pebble floating in the great eldritch infiniteness of space? Alone we mean nothing. We’re just one tiny piece of a much larger universe.

                That’s what I told myself as I threw off my covers and made my way towards the kitchen, anyway. Perhaps it’s true. Perhaps it isn’t. Regardless of whether we have a purpose here on this Earth, I say that even if we don’t, we should make one. Our purpose, I think, should not be to further our own infinitesimal dreams and ambitions, but to do our best to contribute to realizing the hopes of our fellow women, men, and children. Oh, and old people. Perhaps Lovecraft and his cosmic horror stories were right. Perhaps we have no greater significance to the universe than a single atom within a blade of grass. But, my friend, we do have significance to each other. And that, I think, is the crucial thing that we, as imperfect beings, so often forget.

                I stood there in my boxers, the blue and red handful of pills glinting in the artificial kitchen light. I slowly raised my palm to my open mouth… and stopped. Within my mind’s eye, I saw faces. They were faces I knew well. They were the faces of all the people I had acknowledged in my note (which, now that I think about it, was more of a suicide novella. That thing was long).  Could I really do this to all those people? All their support, their love, even the actions of my parents, however misguided but still committed in love, would have gone to waste right there. I wasn’t even thinking about what would happen to me if I swallowed those capsules, but now, I’m of the firm opinion that if my consciousness had popped up in hell, I would have entirely deserved it. If I was willing to spit in the faces of all these people, then eternal fire and torture, I think would have been a somewhat suitable consequence.

                So, ending the eventful night with not a grand finale but an unceremonious fizzle out, I dropped the pills back into the bottle, replaced it on the shelf, and went beddy-bye.

                The next day, eight o’ clock found me wishing that I had, as I so colorfully put it “F*****G SWALLOWED THOSE F*****G PILLS!”. Once again, the circumstances that brought me to this point don’t matter. This night also found me in my room, thinking clearly for what was perhaps the first time in months. Believe it or not, I went to bed with a smile on my face.

                What, you may be asking yourself, is the point of this little anecdote? I wish I could give some wise, sage-like answer, but in all honesty, the best I can come up with is “because I felt like writing it”.

                I sat down and took a good long look at my life, at my friends, my family… and I realized something I think I should have realized a long time ago… life isn’t about any of the things we so often think it is. Life isn’t about school or politics or fame and fortune and pleasure. Life is about life. Life is about experiencing everything this world has to offer, trying to better yourself, and above all, I think, trying to better the lives of those around you.

                That’s all good and dandy, of course, except for the fact that our society, our world, is set up in such a way that it’s damn near impossible to succeed while still retaining your basic humanity. The great existential conundrum, I think, is how to circumvent this fundamental problem of life.

There’s an old saying that says something along the lines of “when life throws yellow citrus fruit of the genus hesperidium at you, make a sweetened lemon-flavored beverage commonly drank during the summer”. I used to think that this saying made a lot of sense until I actually sat down and looked at it (okay, I’ll admit, I was helped on a bit by a certain riotous fictional CEO). What this long-accepted quote is essentially saying is that you should simply sit there and take whatever s**t life throws at you. Sometimes you don’t have the sugar, water and ice to make said beverage. Sometimes, all you can do is make life take the lemons back. Don’t just sit there and take it. Life is too short for you to just “sit there and take it”. Fight back. Screw everything else. Just don’t give up. For God’s sakes, don’t give up.

                I guess what I’m trying to say here is that, in the end, life does matter. Maybe not in the conventional sense, but pertaining to those around you- and those that you have yet to impact- you do make a difference. Sure, some of those people may think the world’d be a better place without you in it, but in the long run, who cares? F**k ‘em. A smart man with a beard and a thing for Galapagos Finches once said something about “survival of the fittest”. Fight like a demon to be the aforementioned fittest- but, and this, I think is the vital difference- do your damn best not to trample those around you in your mad scramble for the top. If you can, take their hands and drag you with them. That’s what a small handful of people did for me, and I quite literally owe them my life.

                I’m not going to pretend that I have all the answers. I’m just a teenage boy trying to swim upstream through life. I’m not God. Hell, everything I’ve said up to this point could be nothing but bullshit. But I don’t think so. I really don’t. For the last week, I’ve been trying to apply that simple philosophy to my life, and you know what? I’m the happiest I’ve been in months, despite the fact that just a few days ago all three backups of my novel I was writing suffered an unfortunate Total Existence Failure. So I sit down at my computer, open Word, and flip a big, fat middle finger at the universe by starting over. And if it does it again? Well, let’s hope it doesn’t come to that, but if it does… well, as long as I’m alive and not brain-dead, I can keep trying until I reach my destination.

                Believe me, I’m not pretending this is the magic cure-all for all your problems- hell no, I’ve still got a bunch of stressors- but next time your mind wanders to that bottle of pills up on the shelf or the gun in the box in the closet, close your eyes, take a deep breath,  and think- really think- about the ramifications of this. Life is too fragile to simply crumble up and throw away. You have a whole blank canvas stretching ahead of you, waiting for your brush to touch it and begin your masterpiece. And if you still think that that’s the best option, then go ahead. I won’t stop you- like I said, I believe in survival of the fittest- and neither will life. Life won’t care. Life will forget. The world will forget. But the people around you never will, and that matters. We all leave our mark upon this planet, no matter how small, and that matters, too. And, no matter what you tell yourself, you matter. Or more accurately, you have the potential to make yourself matter. We all do. We can make ourselves significant. It won’t be easy, but hey, when you look at it, all you really have to do is open your eyes, take a deep breath, and make life take those lemons back.

                 

 

© 2011 CT


Author's Note

CT
I threw this little philosophical essay... article... thing... together after going through a lot of hard times. In a nutshell, this is just my outlook on life and how to live it to its fullest.

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Featured Review

I was raised to take life as it is and that nothing else matters, and it's certainly something that sinks in when you're surrounded by family members that drop like flies. I really enjoyed reading this and just the simple act of doing so is something I appreciate greatly. Even hearing about someone on the verge disturbs me though. A single person may not be important when you look at the big picture, but why throw away your place in it?
This is a very thought-provoking piece and hopefully one that reminds people to cherish their time and stop being so damn emo.

Posted 8 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

There is a fair amount of heart stopping truth here. If I had to really explain how I feel I would say it reflects closely my inner turmoil at the moment. You address some key issues here as well. I admire your knowledge and common sense. It speaks volumes of your intelligence and ability to tell truth without fear.

Posted 8 Years Ago


I was raised to take life as it is and that nothing else matters, and it's certainly something that sinks in when you're surrounded by family members that drop like flies. I really enjoyed reading this and just the simple act of doing so is something I appreciate greatly. Even hearing about someone on the verge disturbs me though. A single person may not be important when you look at the big picture, but why throw away your place in it?
This is a very thought-provoking piece and hopefully one that reminds people to cherish their time and stop being so damn emo.

Posted 8 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

“when life throws yellow citrus fruit of the genus hesperidium at you, make a sweetened lemon-flavored beverage commonly drank during the summer”. I used to think that this saying made a lot of sense until I actually sat down and looked at it (okay, I’ll admit, I was helped on a bit by a certain riotous fictional CEO). What this long-accepted quote is essentially saying is that you should simply sit there and take whatever s**t life throws at you. LMAO...qoute of the day.

But seriously that was Scary, I hate thinking of people taking pills as a way to go. it's damn scary because it hurts before you die. I mean in some cases if you go beddy-bye you may never wake up. But MAN you never know. This is very insperational even to someone who hasn't thought about commiting suicide. You should be talking to people on the teen hotline. -__- so serious :P

On a different note: I love the way you write, as if it just spilled from your brain and your like. "Hey bitchessss, listen!" but the stuff is so relatable at the same time. I can't describe how great that....wait yes I can. *clears throat* "AWESOME, SO SWELL, LIKE TOTALLY FREAKED ME OUT, I MEAN RIGHT ONE, BECAUSE..."

--------------------- you know I like the saying "When life throws a damn lemon at you, throw it back and say, WTF LIFE?!?" -------------------- JUST IGNORE ME >///< 'Tis late and *smh*

Posted 8 Years Ago



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416 Views
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Added on July 13, 2011
Last Updated on August 7, 2011
Tags: Life, Lemons, Philosophy, Darwin, Survival of the fittest, empathy, emotion, depression, desperation, suicide, friendship

Author

CT
CT

Somewhere Within The Confines of a Dismal Reality, MI



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