If I Don't Understand My Life, How Could I Expect Anyone Else To?

Everything that we experience in our lives brings us to where we are, and if even I don’t understand my life, how could I possibly expect anyone else to? And yet we live in an incredibly superficial world where if people think they know one thing about you, or that you hold a particular opinion or view, you are just instantly judged negatively and harshly by people who have absolutely no understanding whatsoever of your life, and probably don’t even understand their own, either. Failure to respect a person’s views is a failure to respect their life, and all that they’ve been through that has brought them to that point. This is madness, but it explains the world we live in, and when our own politicians take this to master craft level, do we really need to wonder why we’re so “polarized”? The more neurotic someone is, the more views and hits and “likes”, as it just feeds the worst possible instincts that people have about anyone other than themselves. It doesn’t have to be true, and this applies to both sides. The paradox is that we’ve never been more connected, yet never more disconnected and superficial all at the same time. People would rather interact with the world through superficial social media than actually sitting down with others that they might not necessarily agree with, and having real face-to-face conversations. Why do that and actually understand when you can just post a stupid meme on anti-social media that doesn’t have a shred of truth to it? People would rather be comfortably ignorant than uncomfortably enlightened, and this is where we’re at. And this is the progress of an “enlightened” society?

I don’t understand my life at all, but I’m trying so that I can keep moving forward again. Why am I where I’m at? How the hell did I even get here? What was I meant to do next? The truth beyond my cancer fight and survivorship journey is that my wife and I have had a seemingly unending string of totally neurotic and destructive people in our lives spanning 10 years, most all of which have gone well out of their way to make our lives as miserable and uncomfortable as possible. The first neurotic and destructive person was my wife’s father, who threatened to kill our entire family kids included for the past decade. This bigoted, racist, mysognist, and basically everything-ist piece of trash human being is the sole reason I own guns. The threats were credible, and I was a daddy bear with two young children to protect. There’s also not a doubt in my mind that there are people out there who think terrible things about me because I believe in gun rights, when the truth is that I really don’t even like guns at all. That’s a damned shame too, and sadly just getting warmed up.

What’s really depressing is that it seems like whenever we’ve finally gotten clear of one neurotic and destructive person, there’s been another right behind them waiting for their turn next. There’s been death threats, fraud, abuse, sexual misconduct, harassment, extortion attempts, and other shit that I just can’t even make up. Because of how one of these people had been behaving towards me right while I was in the middle of dealing with cancer-related PTSD, they actually became entangled in my mind and a trigger for that PTSD themselves, and I had to spend the next few years suppressing a terrible instinct I had to throw this person out of a window the rare times our paths might have crossed. And this person had been a friend, or so I thought. It’s the fact that we’ve been extremely close to most all of these people that either already were or had become completely neurotic and destructive around us that’s made all of these things so painful. They’ve never just been random people that you can laugh at and dismiss, like idiotic Twitter trolls that think they’re so smart.

It shouldn’t come as any surprise then that I think my wife and I are just kinda burned out and done with other human beings for awhile. Part of it is because we’ve both been so busy with work, but we’ve hardly even done much with our closest friends this year, whose presence in our lives we do still value, and were it not for them might have written off humanity completely at this point. We’ve actually fallen in love with our dog. Our dog just wants to love and be loved right back, and all he needs are belly rubs and treats. He’s always so excited to see us every day and greets us with a sloppy kisses, and he’s never going to threaten to kill us, attempt to extort or defraud us, or try to sabotage our lives in any way. I’d actually had a dog as a kid. I just didn’t get them back then, but I see it as clear as day now that dogs are truly man’s best friend. Our son said that if he were elected President, he’d give everybody puppies. You know, that’s actually not a bad idea. Maybe if more people had the love of a pet, especially if they don’t have much else, people would stop becoming such deranged psychopaths? Everybody could use the love of a pet, even if they don’t realize it. I never did until now.

A decade ago I looked at people who were older than me, and wondered how on earth they became so deranged and twisted. Now I know exactly how, and some days it’s an all hands battle to not become one myself. Every instinct we have tells us to retaliate when we’ve been harmed. It takes far more effort to restrain ourselves, and to be the bigger and better person and walk away. It’s why I’ve personally withdrawn from so much over the past year, because I’ve been pushed to the absolute limits of my restraint. If I have one more twisted and neurotic asshole in my life I’m not going to be able to hold myself back anymore, and one would also no longer be able to tell the difference between me and them. It’s why I’ve largely pulled away from social media these days and kept my personal Facebook account deactivated most of the time, as the entire platform is a hot bed for yet more neurotic and destructive people that we simply don’t need. It’s also why I quit cold turkey all of the cancer non-profit work that I was doing. It’s such a shame that no matter what we do, no matter where we go, and no matter how much good we’re trying to do in the world, there’s always another neurotic type waiting in the wings to bring us yet more misery, and so now we’re just done.

I don’t understand any of this, but at least it’s helping me get my bearings.

On Friday night we enjoyed some Porch Life, and on Saturday night we enjoyed our backyard fire pit. Normally we’d text some friends to come over because that’s how we’re social these days and a far better way to truly “talk” to people, as opposed to anti-social media. But this time, no texts, no friends, no nothing, just the two of us and our kids (and dog), and a glass of wine, a root beer float enjoying the last bit of summer, and some smoores. My wife had patients screaming at her this week, one of whom threw papers at her secretary, I nearly got into yet another accident from a string of kamikaze red light runners who clearly didn’t give a damn or had a death wish. Things like that are absolutely terrifying in my smaller car, and I saw this going on all. week. long. Let’s just say that living in the Washington, D.C. area in the Trump era is not a good place to live if you’re trying to avoid a seemingly critical mass of completely deranged and unhinged people (no political judgments), but we just doubled down and bought a new house last year rather than moving out of the area like we almost did, so here we are.

My wife and I have both done plenty and have given plenty to people in our lives and the world around us, only to see so much of that sabotaged by very twisted and deranged people in ways that we’ll never understand. For now, our cups are empty and we’re just going to do good for ourselves for a change. I think that’s a perfectly reasonable place to be after all that we’ve done in the past, and all that we’ve been through together.

Writing about it all does help.

We’re good, but definitely taking a backseat while the rest of the world hopefully sorts itself the hell out. Or if not, at least we’ll be having fun while we all go down in flames. :)

StevePake.com