Amongst the Thorns

For reasons I can’t even imagine, the song “Shout At The Devil” played repeatedly through my mind yesterday. I didn’t like the song when it was in its heyday, and I really can’t say I like it now. Yet, there it was, like a skipped record playing over and over in my mind. Shout. Shout. Shout at the devil. At one point, in a hoarse whisper, I sang it aloud.

I’ve spent the majority of the last two days on the phone, emailing, texting and visiting friends. Yesterday afternoon, I sat under the sun, and contemplated all that currently swirls around those I care about, and that which swirls around me. Everyone’s being forced to think about their lives. Although I’m okay, I fear some of them are not.

One friend is estranged from the man she cares about due to an outburst he made. As if suddenly possessed by a malevolent force, this typically quiet man, roared obscenities toward some teenage girls at a family gathering. My friend was crushed, and had to tell him to go. Something she’s never been forced to do before.

Another friend is analyzing his life, as he has stage III cancer; this due to a doctor’s oversight. He’s now trying to come to terms with a possible new fate; all the while he’s searching for a cure, a wormhole in the cosmos that will make it all go away. Something he’s never had to contemplate before.

And then there is the friend who, just yesterday, had to walk down the gut wrenching road of confirming one’s suspicions. In doing so she discovered the man she is dating, is dating someone else. The one thing she didn’t want to discover – she discovered; when all she wanted was as a companion she could rely upon. Something she’s never had before.

If these are all tests in life, then what are we to learn? When a new lover tests the other, they do so hoping that what they are seeing in the other is true, and not an illusion; due to fear they act out so that in the end, they won’t get hurt like they’ve been hurt so many times before. As difficult as that may be, there is a certain reasoning behind the moment. But when life does it, I have to wonder for what end. That is why I’m quite convinced that these downturns in life, are just movements in time; part of the natural ebb and flow.

When we believe we’re being tested we get angry, even if our reaction is silence. We question ourselves, we question Fate, we question God, and we question the Universe. We question why we’ve been made to endure the heartaches, the trial and tribulations placed before us. And when made to suffer the same trial over and over again, we get bitter. We close down. We steal ourselves against another hit.  Life can be inexplicably hard all of its own accord, then we add to it by creating a downturn where one does not exist. I’m quite convinced part of the human condition is sheer madness – even for the most sane.

Why the kind people in my life have had to suffer due the actions of others is beyond my understanding. If they are to learn something, then God help them learn, and let’s be done with it. Let’s move on to happiness. We all deserve to be happy. We all deserve to be loved, and faithfully, I might add. Some of us have been pricked so many times by life, and others, and that which we found beautiful; pricked by the very thing we reached out and tried to hold, that we resist ever trying to hold anything again. But life is like a vast open field; at best its precarious and uncertain, and fate isn’t always kind. I’m convinced of that. And Heaven knows, people aren’t always kind. But, I’m also convinced that we have to endure the thorns before we can obtain that which we want. Usually the most lovely flower sits amongst the thorny weeds. I just wish, for all of us, there were no thorns, and there were no weeds.


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