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Licorice and popcorn.

I like to end each day by pretending I'm at a drive-in theater, watching the moments of the day unfold on a large screen. Popcorn in one hand, a grip of licorice in the other, I close my eyes and watch life scroll through the screen in my mind. Interactions, delicious food, action, inaction, chores, reflections, joys, and fears. All of it plays again until exhaustion hits. I then say goodnight and thank the day for letting me be a part of it. It helps me process, apologize, re-consider, take a stand, and more importantly, allows me to put it to bed to begin fresh the next day.

The compounding can be too much at times. An ROI I’d rather not cash in on. So, I let it all in and just as quickly, let it all out.

The other day with mental popcorn and licorice, I posted a quick sketch of my day on social media…

Yesterday included, in no specific order:

--A pompous author who writes amazing stories and also likes to hear himself talk about his greatness. A lot.

--A stroll beneath twinkly, otherworldly lights.

--A collision with an old work friend who has the voice of an angel.

--A near collision with a dank and tall zombie.

--Cathartic screaming in bewilderment about but not at said zombie. Etiquette.

--Zoom calls that later lead to...

--Saying, "You know how in social media, you can turn off comments? That's what we're doing now. I am, with all the love in my heart, turning off this one-sided negative discussion. Silence or choose another topic."


--Followed by, "Our beliefs shape our actions. Our actions shape our thoughts. What happens when our beliefs aren't true and we're running amok?"

--And then, that warm sensation of stubbornness willing it to not be so exhausting; willing it to right-size. I believe we can do this. I believe. I believe. I believe.

--A generous gift from a beautiful friend who thinks she has a bad haircut, but it actually looks luxurious.

--A moment in the sun; eyes closed and warm.

--Remembering a former co-worker who recently passed away. Remembering her kindness as well as the complexity of her troubles. I will never forget her disappointment. Maybe she gets peace now.

--Remembering another former co-worker who said, "I made a mistake. A bad mistake and now I don't know how to get back." It was true. No matter what he did; what we did, he never made it back, his youth not allowing a GPS beacon home. I will never forget his sorrow. Maybe he gets peace now.

--A moment in the freezing night, eyes open under the stars, breathing it all in.

I've written about this before, but so often our social media lives tell a story so deeply filtered, that we miss the beauty, tone, true connections, devastation, tickles, disappointments, joys, boredom, and nuance.

In other words, we miss truth(s).

We miss it and it isolates us from reality.

I try to try,

Not to miss it.

And I share it. All of it. So that I am less alone. So that you know that you are less alone.

I share not out of sadness, or attention seeking but of appreciation for the complexity of our experience. Sometimes that involves extreme sadness and your attention, but it is not the only story. Far from it.

And as I write this, listening to the mournful horns in Radiohead's "Life in a Glasshouse,"

I can tell you (through the tears streaming down my face),

I can tell you (as the anchor of a boy struggling with the whys, what's, and how's),

I can tell you (through my hope),

I can tell you (putting my licorice and popcorn away),

what you already know: there's no use hiding.

Photo credit: Peyton


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