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Hitting The Wall

In my youth, I firmly believed that I would one day out-grow my frustrating tendency to hit my wall; that maturity or modernity might make me immune. I’m outgrowing that belief.

I now believe that my wall’s there for good purpose. Complete clarity might not be the purpose. I always seem to find myself in a hazy, twilight world when hitting my wall. It’s as close to pure experience as I get, no thoughtful choosing. I simply wham! After the impact, though dazed, my internal compass seems partially reset. I’m more mindful, too, if no more than mindfully confused. But even confusion seems, upon reflection, an improvement over my former mindless over-extension.

Hitting my wall never qualifies as pleasant. It’s painful. Often humiliating. My usually reliable control surfaces seem hijacked. Even if I could see the impact coming, there’s nothing I could do to prevent the collision.

Others might not even notice me crashing, but it seems to me that they must. Then, I get to work through my embarrassment at having been spotted at my worst. That young mother screaming at her unruly two year old has been spooling up for this outburst for longer than this particular trip to the grocery. I just happened into the middle of a movie, produced especially for my education, but which I can do nothing to prevent. Reminding this temporary splatter mother how proper mothers really should comport themselves should work about as well as fixing the past ever does. Take cover. This storm should blow itself out.

She can’t use my platitudes. Nobody ever talks electricity out of finding ground. She’s grounding out to reset, then plug back in.

If I squint a bit, I can see my own experience playing out before me. I’m no psycho, but I have my irrational moments. I’ve lost control on unanticipated ice. I could have done more than narrowly avoid denting a fender. We almost never dent the wall.

Though it’s darned inconvenient for a grand daughter to ‘lose it,’ it’s not gonna end up being the end of the world. I’ve grown to believe that the most important things happen at the least convenient times. The more inconveniencing the experience, the more useful it might be. Can I sit comfortably with this mess or must I amplify the impact by bouncing off my wall, too?

One person losing it can induce everyone around them to lose it, producing a raceway pileup. Let ‘em spin. It’s their wall, not yours. After, you could pretend you didn’t notice and be there to help them hammer out a dent or two and get back onto their wheels again.

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