When you’re a kid, the last few weeks of school are magical. The war of grades is over, and all the old enemies are friends. Teachers hand out bullshit word search work sheets and show movies, kids talk more freely, boys and girls tell their crushes how they feel after a year of sitting on it. And the summer birthday kids enter into their power with the magic of pool party bdays. As a November baby, I was always jealous. November birthdays are only fun once you can drink. I digress.
In my mind, I am always drawn to times like this. School being soon over is one of those moments when the lines of normal blur. The routine dissolves, and anything is possible.
I’ve always loved scary movies for the same reason. Scary movies have one underlying concept: there is a baseline normal world, then a disruption, then a process of believing the disruption and overcoming it.
High school kids, kids have dreams of a guy that can kill them in their sleep, no one believes them, people die, then they fight back and beat the evil. At least until the studio makes an ill advised sequel.
I’ve been thinking a lot about failure lately. The personal professional and social tragedies we face, and what we do with them.
One thing I truly believe is that most of any person’s virtues are built on a loose dirt mound of vice. We all have them. We would NEVER do this or that to anyone. Its usually because we have done that before and hated the way it made us feel about ourself, or someone did it to us and we never want to be responsible for that feeling in another. Show me the evil that made you good.
I think of this as the upside of the downside.
Every time I have failed big, or been hurt, or hurt others and realized it for the first time, its a jarring moment. Much like the last days of school, or the start of a scary movie, my conception of the world and myself has changed in some way that I can never retrieve or rebuild.
I think these are the scenes of our life when we have the most potential because we see more. We naturally block out a lot of details day to day. We are overwhelmed with messages. Most of them are noise. But when the rules of regular life dissolve, there is a chance at making a new life. One that fits closer to who you desperately want to be.
So if you are in a bad way, just know that it could, if you are brave, be the start of the best years of your life. Good luck.