Ebb And Flow

A fact of life I had to accept was the reality that our lives and world have an ebb and flow to them. Civilization and the world will do as they please, they are unchangeable, yet they are in constant state of change, chaos and disorder. Still, there is always order with in this disorder. A constant building, razing and rebuilding. That applies to all. Music, structures, art, laws, acceptance, norms, languages; all that is a civilization. The lands will rise and fall. Lakes will fill and drain. Desserts will come and go. Species will evolve only to die off. Religions will lose favor and fade away. Yes, the strong survive but not forever. Interestingly, this change is not to find the strongest in order to allow their endless survival. No, this change just is, happening every year, month, week, and second. Reshuffling of a deck containing an infinite number of cards into an infinite number of possibilities and outcomes. A dominant male, dominant society or dominant idea will always perish. The new will arise. Age is the great equalizer, always ending in death.

I’m a creature of stability as well as a human, meaning there are contradictions within my personal programming. I came to find no real problem with these larger ebbs and flows of civilization and the world. This may be so because I lacked any type of control over them. It's on a personal level where this become bothersome, specifically within friendships. Why they began. Why they end. Why were they good on Tuesday and bad Wednesday. What happened? Mostly likely nothing. This is the real lesson that took years to accept and understand.

During my early years of social development, many friendships seemed to simply end. Wither and die, becoming the dust of life. Strong ones, casual ones. Every time it hurt as well as being very confusing. In response I began playing mind games with myself, ones of politics, when an ebb in a friendship developed. A fear of pain can cause one to act stupidity. I know because I would. What can I do to get them back as a friend? Should I do this, or that? In addition, I would convince myself I saw imaginary improvements, thus believing such pronouncements as, “Oh, today was a better, I feel things are improving”. Later, reality would bite hard when it became apparent this was a lie I invented and so wanted to believe.

Even now as I grudgingly accept these ebbs and flows will occur, I still find myself asking how could a perfectly good friendship collapse? It seems no matter how hard we may try to sustain a friendship, they can still tumble into the sea. All that energy wasted. All that time gone. Is this so maintenance can be preformed? Updating the current, making adjustments? Removing the old, doing a retro fit? This process may take days or even years to complete. Worst yet, sometimes it never begins, leaving yellow warning tape staying strung for years. Blowing in the wind, slowly becoming very tattered.

Either because I finally found what works for me or I grew tried and lazy, I began never to push things, allowing nature to take it’s course. To just go with these ebbs and flows. Learning if it was meant to be, the friendship would simply flow back. If not, it would ebb away never to return. No matter how badly something may be wanted, we truly can not fully control any outcome. Using force, for awhile maybe, but that’s unnatural. In the end, what was meant to be, will become. Let it go, let it flow.

Doug Thornhill (dct)