Last week I spent some time with a friend. He has a very demanding job, he is a tour manager. When we met, he was on tour for fifteen days, with four bands, nineteen people in total. They still had eight more days to go before their tour ended.
They spent all the time in a tour bus, stopping for shows every day in a different city, in a different country even and were on the road again. And my friend is managing them, taking care of them, almost babysitting them.
I admit, a job like this would have me banging my head against a wall within days. Yet, he is calm like a butterfly. I asked him how he does it, as I envy peaceful people and I want to know their secrets. Or their meds. He gave me the most simple and beautiful answer: “I don’t let anything kill me”.
His reply stuck to my brain ever since. I keep wondering what am I doing wrong. And I think I know.
I don’t let anything kill me either. But I fight everything: life, thoughts, feelings. I do let things take their natural course, but I over think everything. And this is pretty much like fighting. In the end, even if I win, I am exhausted.
Fighting everything feels like it’s killing me slowly as we speak but to be fair, it is what kept me alive and made who I am today.
I grew up in an aggressive, dysfunctional family, being emotionally abused from an early age. The neighbors and the people my parents knew were pretty much the same: uneducated, sodden by poverty and alcohol. From about 30 kids in my building, I think only three of us went to university. The rest of them got married at the end of high school, more or less.
My parents didn’t teach me anything good. In fact, over time I had to change many things about me; things I had due to the education I got from them, because they were wrong, stupid and anti-social. Growing up, I had no role models, no one to look up to, no one to be a positive influence on me. As a defense probably, I tried to be different from everyone I knew, especially from my parents. Basically, I have spent an important part of my life time trying not to be a various number of people, that I sometimes wonder, isn’t it possible to have lost myself on the way?
I will probably spend my entire lifetime looking for myself, this will be my curse, I am aware of it. For now, it seems like the fighting never ends. As a child I fought my cruel reality, as an adult, I have to fight the pain of the wounds my childhood fights caused me. I don’t regret I fought those fights. I have come a long way and I wasn’t even supposed to get that far. Everything was against me, from the very beginning. So, maybe, I don’t let anything kill me either. And I never did. I just do it differently.