We all serve sentences. The difference is in our awareness of our sentences. Some of us intuit our sentences while not explicitly knowing that they're there. Others of us turn a blind eye to them, refusing to acknowledge their existence.
Growing up was one of my sentences. In a small southern town, when the Alpha girls turn against you, there's not much else except to pour yourself into your studies and your hobbies. There's something better waiting after graduation. And an unbearable life was bearable for the most part.
Open-ended sentences are harder to deal with. Those life sentences that actually feel like life sentences. Such as a really rough spell that Mr. Gaelic and I went through at one point in our marriage. The finite is easy. It's the infinite that crushes the bone.
Once again, a sentence is upon me. A sentence that is, thankfully, finite. Four years at the least, thirteen max. Four to pay for private Ivy college, thirteen for full retirement benefits. A friend wasn't satisfied with my reason for working -- to pay for college. She noted that we could always take out a loan to pay for college. Pressing harder, she made me evaluate the why of not wanting to take out a loan. Her pressure made me realize the reason was our dream retirement -- a house in the mountains of western North Carolina, eastern Tennessee, or southwestern Virginia. The floor plans are on the computer hard drive. She suggested I print it out, frame it, and put it on my desk.
I did her one better. It's the wallpaper on my office computer.
When an IT person stopped by last week, he asked if that was my house. "Oh, no, that's my retirement house. That's why I'm doing this," as I motioned around the office.
As Nietzsche said, he who has a why to live can bear almost any how.
Music and Footsteps
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