Is That Me?
I recently revisited the novel Journey to the Center of the Earth. This story fascinated me as a kid but I remembered little of it. I hoped for that great nostalgic feeling I get when I reread Treasure Island or The Hobbit. Instead it disturbed me.
Axel, the narrator, is a wimp. It seems that about every chapter or so he gives up, flops on the ground and prepares to die. Before long, I couldn’t stand it anymore. I just couldn’t take the whining. I began to hope that Axel would die and that the others would move on without him.
After awhile, the thing that grated me more than Axel’s cowardice was the mirror that Axel holds up to my life. I whine as much as he does, perhaps not as loudly as him, but I definitely outlast him. What I lack in volume I make up for in endurance. In fact complaining is one of the few facets of my life where I have grown stronger over the years.
More recently, I find that I am far too ready to quit. Just like Axel, my immediate response to hardship is to abandon hope, abandon the adventure and abandon the plan.
How did I get here? I used to revel in the adventure. I enjoyed it when life put up a little fight, making me struggle to the victory which i would ultimately savor more because of that.
I didn’t like the image in the mirror. Is this truly me? Or is this just the way I look because I haven’t engaged the struggle?
Shameless Self Promotion
I will be performing comedy at First Presbyterian Church of Woodstock Talent Show fund raiser on March 9.
I will be speaking at a Toastmasters workshop in Naperville on March 15.