Bravery is going through a day, as most people do with their victories and losses, and then finding the time to do the dishes.
Talking to a friend I had not spoken to in ages, I realised troubles are a dime a dozen and that they have been hitherto absent from my life—except in doses small enough—may be the miracle I have been looking all around for. And then, I think of the schadenfreude of learning something from a friend’s troubles. Do not misunderstand me; I take no pleasure in it at all. I have been distraught over what I learned about his life. I wish I could help him, but some things are blurred only with time.
If anything, I was inspired, wildly and absolutely, to see how he was still at the top of his spirits, ready to do something for himself. When it all goes wrong, we often ask people, “How are you feeling?” as if it is the just thing to ask. Instead, we should ask them, “What will you do now?” Not because they need to immediately get up with a pep in their step and continue living like normal, but just how when you shake a tree, the dried leaves and the fruits—some ripe, most rotten—fall off on their own, people must also be shook now and then, especially when they go through their change of seasons. The question is but that: a shake. It may not help them let go of things, but it does wake them up. At least, this is what I would prefer if I were caught in a web I could not find my way out, even with all my experience in walking on a tightrope. I would prefer someone held me tight and shook me to wake me up, to urge me to do something, anything.
If drinking a glass of water keeps the fire alive in us, then, by all means, we must ignore the irony and stoke the flame. We must quickly fill it and gulp it all down. When hanging from a proverbial ledge, I think of nothing but the dishes. There are days which will end, and there will be dishes to do. The rest happens in between and is here for a second and gone in another. The banality of the dishes, the bills, the chores remains. What more meaning does anybody want?
All of us do things; most do them for a reason. Some, however, do them because there is no reason after all.