Experience teaches everyone, sooner or later, that sometimes nothing can get better unless you just throw up your hands and stop what you’re doing.
This doesn’t guarantee that things will get better, but there comes a point at which throwing up your hands is the path to the best possible outcome, whatever that is.
It’s hard to do this, despite the relatively low mass of arms and hands, because (a) you tend to forget if it’s been a while since you’ve had to do so, and (b) sometimes it’s hard to face the thought that you have so little control over things that matter that in fact the best you can do is to become nothing more than a passive observer of life.
For those of us that want to do good, it can be hard to face the idea that you just can’t do any more good—that anything you try do from here on out will actually be bad.
But it is what it is.
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“Begin at the beginning,” the King said, very gravely, “and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
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I’m looking at you, pirate. And at a million, maybe a billion others.
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A big part of growing up and becoming a better person is letting go of the idea that you have to get yours. Realizing that “fairness” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. That you can enable others get theirs rather than you getting yours, because you’re going to be okay if you don’t get it and maybe they’re not. That you can survive without fighting for what you don’t actually need, and there’s no shame or secret disadvantage in letting need matter a bit more than equity.
Sure there’s pain and sadness. But those are neither here nor there at the end of the day.