The Temptation of Rock Bottom


I modestly pride myself on having been a fairly together person in my life thus far. I’ve had a number of obstacles that could weigh me down (no pun intended) not only from reaching heights, but into miserable trenches of destructive behaviour justified as “escaping” a worse world on ground level. I’ve exhibited destructive behaviour, but not so deep that I couldn’t lift myself out of it. Figuratively speaking, that is; I have terrible upper body strength.

I’m not a person of extremes. I find all-or-nothing decision styles to be foolish. I will have shitty emotional episodes and resolve to take drastic measures in fixing things that only I see as horribly wrong. But when my ducts go dry I fall asleep and wake up with a clearer mind. I’ve never been so mentally under the weather that I haven’t gotten out of bed at some point in the day.

Rationally speaking, I don’t ever want to go on extended streaks of destructive behaviour. I’ve avoided that so far. I finished university, I’ve never been fired, and my credit is, technically, pristine. The temptation, as entitled here, arises in blips out of first-person perspective. I escape my situation and look at it, for a brief moment, and see mediocrity with no excuse. It’s my own doing, it’s what I aimed for. I deserve what I have. I’ve earned it – but from what?

I’ve proved I can accomplish things through safe choices. Nobody is, nor should they be, impressed by a grounded and fully capable person taking safe choices. Nobody would be impressed by a previously grounded person taking incredibly unwise choices either, but if I reached far enough depths of despair and wallowed in it for long enough, would making it back up to where I am now, against this different background, appear impressive?

Mediocrity and material comfort are difficult things to abandon, I’ve learned, for either direction of change.


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