Eventually, when I set out to enact "Purpose" enough times and it crashes and burns because the Failure Wall is, well, still very much there, I start to reserve some realistic ideas that I may not find any success after all.
I was diagnosed with gastroparesis in 2007. Gastroparesis does not inevitably get worse with time. I've said that before, and I will say it again: the condition of gastroparesis in and of itself does NOT get worse with time of its own volition. If you are like me and there are other problems that could make general motility worse over time, you may or may not go through my similar experiences.
I recently started up the vehicle of "Purpose" again, and as I rode the back of it, this is what I expected for the next forever:
(Hyperbole and a Half at hyperboleandaHalf.blogspot)
And I'm all excited. I am coasting hills, feeling much like free falling. I don't know if anyone has ever been bungee jumping, but at an amusement park in St. Louis, MO (two hours from where I live) my uncle signed himself, my cousin Jessica, and me for an adventure called a bungee swing. I was ten, and had just completed the fourth grade. I would have to consult my uncle for how large this infrastructure really was, but this thing was massive. Big, tall, almost unreal. If I had to compare it to anything, I would guess it was at least fifteen stories high.
But I was ten. I am not sure of the specifics.
It was huge enough that it coasted a pretty penny to ride. The three of us were bundled together belly down, then lifted with cables all the way to the top. Even being the daredevil I am (how else would I have the guts to try crazy things over and over again?), when we reached the top and they tilted us head first at the ground, I sent a prayer up to the heavens because I really thought we might die. I think my uncle may have told us that if attraction malfunctioned that we would surely die. He may have said it more than once.
My family is amazing...but we are all crazy.
When they let us go, that ground coming so huge so quickly only for the cables to snatch us up was what I soon learned was how victory feels. It is terrible, and it is the most gratifying force of nature that compels me to keep pushing forward.
(My mother screamed watching the video footage when we came home).
Needless to say...I had and always have had high expectations.
However high my expectations and hopes, there is the fact I think I am finally realizing that it doesn't matter the amount of data I collect, the psycho-babble I force into my head to remember has awful mantras that taunt me relentlessly, and enough well wishes to fill the entire ocean (so that I am swimming in a sea of platitudes): if someone had cut those cables, I would have died.
In essence, I keep riding up a figurative bungee swing, alone, so many times that now everyone think I am a total nutcase. Each and every single time, in comparison of my body being able to process food in any form in any part of my GI tract...I would be dead. I probably would have been dead several years ago. The mere fact that I am very much still alive is a mystery that I apparently don't appreciate very well, because I keep making the same mistakes with the same equipment. But with what is going on with me, I have almost no boundaries! No one knows where to go from here! This is almost a pathological need to keep doing something because I don't know how I would react to defeat. How I would react when letting the words that have already been spoken sink in...