Lately I’ve been walking and counting my steps. Often I take steps in equal number to the date. Counting steps makes it difficult to think about anything else. The walking makes it difficult to do anything else. I’m trying to make the task “the thing” without other influence, goal, or reward. I only walk when I don’t know what else to do.
Today after walking my 616 steps I’m thinking how absurd it is to need to unwind myself in this way. Even the idea of not knowing what to do is absurd. What would my grandfather say about such a thing? He would probably dismiss it and talk about how things were in his time because they didn’t have the luxury to wander about for the sake of purposely not doing something.
But I think the struggle to not do something is the struggle we must deal with today. It’s a privileged position for sure, but one that we (most Americans at least) have been given without really asking for it. Part of me says that I don’t want it. I want to live on a farm and do the day’s chores and provide for myself and family in a direct and meaningful way. But the other part of me wants to make something great and meaningful with the opportunity I’ve been given.
When I think about the work I’m doing I’m often torn and thrown back and forth between it being mandatory/important and it being wasteful/pointless. And no matter how much I want to believe it, or even if I were to give up, I think it will always be this way. I don’t think it can be clear. Some days are better than others but they are all just days and must be both enjoyed and weathered as they come.