Something Wicked This Way Came

“‘Have a drink!?’
‘I don’t need it,’ Said Halloway. ‘But someone inside me does.’
‘Who?’
The boy I once was, thought Halloway, who runs like the leaves down the sidewalk autumn nights.
But he couldn’t say that.”
–Ray Bradbury – Something Wicked This Way Comes.
Everyone deals with the stresses and strains of life differently. Most find that the way they pictured the world and how it ‘worked’ is much different, and often more troubling, than they had ever dreamed in their hopeful and optimistic youth.  Some handle this realization better than others, but who can really be the judge of just who those are who ‘handling things better’ than anyone else? It really comes down to personal preference and considering what we want out of life.
“Happiness depends on ourselves” Aristotle is quoted as saying. There is quite a bit of truth to this statement. Does it mean that if we want to be happy all the time then we can be? Of course not. Bad things happen and it is up to each of us to find a way to deal with these things and continue forward. It does, however mean taking control of whatever situation we happen to find ourselves in, whether it be a personal situation or a world event, and instead of simply letting things happen to us, to become part of the action. ‘The world is what we make of it,’ after all, so jump in and get involved. Do something. It can be a large thing that brings many others together in order to effect some change on the world around us, or it could be a minor change in the way we behave or even treat others we interact with on a day to day basis. Organize a charity event to provide support for those involved in any of the many tragedies that occur worldwide each day. Take the time to promote an event which may already exist that contributes to a cause you support. Maybe you overcame something in your own life that others can relate to; write about it, post it somewhere that is accessible to the community and perhaps help someone else who is presently struggling with the same things you had been facing. While happiness is ultimately a personal thing that each person must achieve through their own personal journey, that doesn’t mean that you cannot contribute to someone else’s happiness, or make it more difficult to achieve as well. Misery loves company, but don’t drag someone down who is trying hard to achieve some sort of joy, just because you had a bad day/week/year and want to spread it around. Smile more; only mean it.
That little sophomoric rant, quite full of clichés, to ask: when was it that we stopped running everywhere? This has been asked quite a bit before, by many others before myself, but it still bothers me that, as children we would run everywhere; even if we weren’t going anywhere, especially if we weren’t going anywhere, for no other reason that just to move with enthusiasm. [Speaking of sophomoric blogging, check out all the commas in that last sentence, right? #ObviouslyHiringUnpaidEditors] Did we stop running everywhere because we started to have places that we actually needed to be, or was it that more and more of those places that ‘required’ our presence were places at which we had less and less desire to arrive? Going out for a run with no particular destination in mind seems to be the closest I seem to be able to get to recapturing what that little boy, ‘long ago’,  felt as he ran everywhere, to nowhere in particular. I think the ‘runner’s high’ is just a ‘moment of clarity’ toward an idealized view of a self we were in a different time. It is also one more way to take control of our own happiness by reminding ourselves of what is important. To remind ourselves that our ‘hopeful and optimistic youth’ isn’t something that is, or should be, outgrown, but rather something that is left behind and can be found, enjoyed, and shared with those around us who have also lost this precious gift. Go run around to anywhere and find it for yourself.
“’Wanna go for a run!?’
‘I don’t need to,’ Said Anyone. ‘But someone inside me does.’
‘Who?’
“The girl I once was, thought Anyone, who runs like the leaves down the sidewalk autumn nights, she said.”

 

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