About a week ago, I went to Moxie’s to visit some of my ex-coworkers/now-girlfriends for dinner. Every time I visit, I always promise myself to make more of a habit out of it. Being there always seems to bring about that comfort of nostalgia I so often crave. That feeling you get when you come back home after a lengthy trip: happy you left in the first place, as your departure was what lead you through a new journey, but somewhat relieved to be back all the same. Back in your comfort zone, letting the breath you kept held for so long finally come out, letting go of the anticipation and anxiety that you held with you through every unknown step of your latest experience. The reason that these feelings are so bound up for me in what was merely one of several past part-time jobs is twofold—one being that I quit and asked for to be re-hired so many times, that feeling of “coming back” is just hardwired into my emotions by now, two—I have more memories of waking up after a swift nap in the staff lunch booths than I do of waking in my own bed. Anywho, being that it is a restaurant, banter and fun-poking is an essential part of the culture at Moxie’s. So, I was anything but shocked or offended when the conversation between my former boss and the group turned into a full out ridicule directed towards me for “selling out my dreams of writing” for the money and comfort that a job in the insurance industry will (hopefully) give me. It did, however, leave me a nagging thought, a kind of inspiring itch. I took the route of comfort to be able to enjoy my passion as a hobby instead of begrudge it as a job. Yet it seems that I have become over-absorbed in my new life, woven two tightly into the rigidity of routine and schedules. My fiery passion in which I once pursued this hobby has instead now fizzled down to a permanent degree of room temperature on the back burner of my life. So Tom, this one’s for you. Just* to show you I can make money and* write all at the same time.:)
I bought a new pair of running shoes for the gym yesterday. It’s always a somewhat emotional experience for me. (Being a cancer zodiac, to the core, most of all experiences tend to evoke some sort of unnecessary emotion) But when you thrive on the gym as much as I do, you would understand why. Well, first of all, I should explain that, growing up, inanimate objects took on probably much more human qualities than they should have. (Thanks, Mel-Sac). Names were given to toys and things that usually don’t get named, personalities were given to objects that wouldn’t necessarily have a personality in real life, well, objects that couldn’t even possibly have a real life. Essentially, let’s just say we lived in a Pinocchio-esque type of environment in our younger years—we treated all of our puppets as real-live-boys.
It’s only normal that those types of feelings towards my things have carried on through to my adulthood, right? (Just agree and read on).
After confirming that my new shoes had made the cut (through a trial run on the treadmill), I deliberated solemnly on how to properly dispose of my older, worn out runners. A special, separate, bag just for them, I decided. They can’t just get dumped in the big black bag that gets tossed so thoughtlessly to the curb. No, they needed a proper burial. It’s only appropriate, I think. We’ve come so far together, my shoes and I. We could’ve toured an entire small European country in the miles that we’ve ran. They have taken me on some motivating and inspiring trips. They have weathered with me through the bad days--always there to pick up my slack. They have kept my feet dry and clean on days when I decide to abuse them on unforgiving concrete or the unpredictable shore line of whatever given ocean of the country I’m currently visiting. They’ve seen me through to my goals and beyond. They stood by me proudly as I crossed the finish line of yet another 10k, pushing me to keep my pace, to meet my hoped-for time. They’ve kept my feet grounded as I push my legs to do one more squat, lent me the power to push my arms to press just 5 pounds heavier, stayed firm so I can do just one more sit up. Pushed me to my very limit and then showed me I can do even just a little bit more…
Tomorrow will be garbage day. Tonight, with memories in mind, I will pack up my shoes in their special going-away bag. In the morning, they will sit proudly on the curb, their worn-out condition a proud reminder of everything they’ve accomplished, more significantly though, all they’ve help me to accomplish. My eyes may not have memorized their make, or model, or colour, but my mind will remember the lesson they taught me in the power of perseverance, my memory will embed in it all the strides we took together, my muscles will remember the endurance we gained, the strength we accrued.
And so you see, sometimes it’s not so bad to invest emotion into every experience—whether it be a relationship with a simple running shoe, or the memory of an insignificant part time job. What if, instead of making you “weak” or “vulnerable”, “emotionally too-available”, it makes you wiser? Helping you to learn that much more from that much little; helping you to grow faster and stronger—taking something with you every time you walk away, from whatever it is you’re walking away from, as your foundation of growth for wherever it is you may be going.