One day, a couple of months ago, I woke up, disoriented, and looked around. I didn’t know where I was, who I was, where I was supposed to be, and what I was supposed to be doing here. It took me a couple of seconds to bring my reality back to me. And when it came, I was so drained that it took everything in me not to turn and go back to sleep. Which, to be honest, I was and am highly capable of doing because sleep is my escape. And books. But that’s not the point here.
The point is that since that day and that moment in particular, I’ve been asking myself: What is the point? We are born. We go through the motions. We live. And then we die. Whatever you do between birth and death, you’re going to return to nonexistence, to dust. Then why are we so hell bent on doing what we’re doing? Or doing something in one particular way? Why is it that we punish ourselves? Why is it that we reward ourselves? Why do we think ourselves greater than people who exist alongside us? Why the snobbery? Why the joy? Why the sorrows? Why the anger? Why the rudeness? Why? Why? Why?
There are a lot of whys in here, but I genuinely felt at that point that whatever I do, I’m never going to get anywhere. Nobody will know I exist. Nobody will understand the dreams I have. Nobody will know that I wanted a life I lived on my terms because I know how disappointing I can be. And that’s the paradox, isn’t it? That I want to live life to the fullest, on my terms, but also want to avoid anything that remotely resembles the hubbub of life because one of two things will happen: Either I will disappoint or be disappointed.
On this particular day, I was on autopilot. I didn’t want to do anything. So I sat down in front of the TV – something I rarely do except to watch Masterchef Australia – and binge watched Dash and Lily. I was sprawled over there, my back bent in an unfathomable manner, unwilling to move because that’s what I was asking myself: What’s the point? And then a sub-question came to me: Why not sit here and just watch TV instead, because there’s no point to that (my work) and there’s no point to this?
I have the reputation of a workaholic. And I second that, because I love working. But also, I’m on social media. If I don’t work hard and put my all in, I’m not going to get anywhere. So when my family saw me sitting there, staring at the TV, they were all agape. “What’s happened? How come you are here, watching TV, and not working?” Which is fair enough. And my answer was, “Eh, I don’t know. Didn’t feel like it today. Very lazy.” Which is a safe answer for everybody. Why burden them with my morbid thoughts of pointlessness?
It’s a task, trying to get your brain to disconnect from certain parts of life, in order to get through them. And today, when I look back on that day in the distant past, reflecting this very day that I’m putting up this post, I feel like there IS no point after all. Things can get suffocating and this claustrophobia of life can be so overwhelming that it will give you panic attacks. That feeling of insufficiency, that we’re not doing everything that we want to do, that we’re never going to be able to do everything that we want to do – it is quite debilitating. And the past few weeks have been like this for me.
I know that I will get over this, that my self-worth is more than what I can do. But right now, when I’m drowning and don’t know what to do, I can’t see it all. Everything I’ve ever said and done wrong plays through my head. The people I’ve treated badly, the lenience accorded to me which I put down as merely good luck but which actually had reasons behind them, the things I missed doing for my close ones because I was too in over my head, every single thing that chokes the life out of me by keeping me alive. It’s a lot and I know I’m much better off than so many people out there.
So I ask again: what’s the point to existence if all I can do is bottle up my emotions? What’s the point to existence if all humans can be are total d*cks to each other? What’s the point? What’s the point? What’s the point?
I see none.
I need air. I need to breathe.
But all I can see is the dark.
And before long, I’m flailing in the open seas.
2 thoughts on “Existential Question: What’s the Point?”
A blade of grass — here today and gone tomorrow. It’s an overwhelming thought that has been striking me often these days. There is a book that talks about this — “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity. …all is vanity and grasping for the wind.” (from ‘Ecclesiastes’) But the writer ends with what should be “man’s all”.
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