Before daylight saving time, I would wake up at 6:15am, take Obsidian to the park to play/train, and watch the glorious sunrise.
After daylight saving time (said with teeth clenching), I get up at 7am, drink tea, take vitamins that burn my empty stomach, and browse through discoverable WordPress blogs. When you’re first starting out, just hoping your closest friends and family read your posts, you get shocked when you see 600+ likes and 59 comments on someone else’s blog post. Over 2 thousand people following a blog?? I’m not sure why internet popularity dumbfounds me.
Anyway, in just 20 minutes I strolled through a garden of stories: musher’s abuse and insight into the life of a musher, the death of a ten year old goldfish, prison guard’s struggle and suicide, a mom who connects with her child through LEGOS, and (now on my reading list) the story of a girl who battled cancer and passed away last week.
I sit around in my office job, longing for a taste of the world. I’ve barely explored my own country, let alone my own state. I was on a plane to Florida for the first time in 2016. I’m inexperienced and ignorant in the skills/knowledge I long for, and my current life is going to keep it that way (for now). Perhaps the power of the internet and sharing is enough to be my soul’s ventilator.
Reading others’ stories will remind me that there is life after the 9-5 and the scheduled, monotonous work week. I wouldn’t mind if I could climb into my screen and experience a virtual reality that takes me through each story. I’d fall out of the other end of a virtual portal journey, and be a mom unsure how to play with her kids. Or I’d have a correction officer colleague screaming in my face. Or I’d watch the life flicker away from my eyes in the reflection of my family’s eyes as I’m on my death bed.
For now I can only read and ponder. I’ll get that burning in my stomach of wanting to call these authors and listen to their stories from their own mouths—to hear the emotion and inflection on their voices! The desperation to connect with another soul on more than just a sympathetic level is unreal in me. I want a stranger to know that I’m invested in them in that hypothetical phone call moment, and I want to drink it all in. I want to be moved by compassion.
But how fair is it for me to try and live through others’ lives when I have my own life to live? Not fair, and a little bit cowardly. Regardless, I’ll soak in these stories and perhaps I’ll be motivated to make my own story worth sharing.