Friday, June 29, 2012

Trending Upward

Wow. What an eventful few days it's been. This is Josh again, by the way. I know our issues with not being able to create a login for Kincaid and him having to use my account is a little confusing. Just wanted to make things clear.

I'm feeling better if not at a hundred percent yet. Mind you, I'd be happy with just about any illness at this point given how lucky I've been. My wife is better, my fellow citizens are slowly being treated with nothing more than hot air and getting better because of it, and the unrelenting heatwave of the last few days has kept our walls virtually free of zombies. On top of that, we've had a communication from the Exile camp at the fallback point. They want to strengthen the truce. They have new leadership that wants to head in a new direction.

All told, it's been a damn good week. I don't expect it to last.

I hope it does, make no mistake. But I've seen too much betrayal, stupidity, and human nature to have any concrete belief that everything will go the right way. Life isn't about things going how you want. While that would be safer, it would also be incredibly boring.

Which reminds me, I want to tell you a story. I thought about this very topic while I was laid up, and it seems fitting to this post.

I once knew a girl. She was a brilliant chick, always top of her class, always succeeding. She grew up in a family that Had Money. Not the comfortable upper-middle to bottom-upper class money you might think about when I say that. They had a lot of it. Enough that when she was accepted to the school of her dreams, tuition wasn't even a blip on her radar. She went to college, eventually accepted into a premed program.

The point is, everything she ever did, she succeeded at. And that made me so sad for her. At first I was a bit jealous. I wasn't given a new car for my sixteenth birthday, or anything like that. But I got over that crap. My mom worked her ass off for us and my siblings and I never wanted for anything. No, it made me sad because all her life, this girl never faced a struggle. She never knew what it was like to be hungry, to truly fail at something.

I bet you're thinking that I'm going to say that when The Fall happened, she wasn't prepared and she died. You're wrong.

The girl went to medical school. And in the first week of her residency, she made a mistake. Someone died as a result. Tormented by that and completely without a coping mechanism, she took her own life. This was just before The Fall. She was only twenty-five years old. Poor girl skipped grades, went to college early, and had a bright future ahead of her.

It wasn't anyone's fault. Her parents only wanted a life for her that was filled with less pain and exhausting effort than their own had been. Should she have given up the opportunities she had? Of course not. In the truest sense of the word, her death was a tragedy. No blame to be found.

But there was a reason. I think we all see it.

For all the terrible things we've suffered, we've proven ourselves equal to the task. Not because we are stronger than she was, or smarter, or somehow better. We are none of those things. She slaved away night and day to learn and to be the best. But a life of work and isolation put her in the rare and curious position of not having any emotional callouses. No coping mechanisms. No way to quantify and understand the agony she was in.

She didn't have people like you. She hadn't been through the things we've all endured. I know that over the last two and a half years or so, I'd have gone insane a dozen times over without Jess and without you all. We'll face hard times again and we'll work together to make those days easier. Let's always try to keep perspective.

We suffer, we hurt, we starve, we fail. We make mistakes and sometimes they have consequences we can't imagine. It's when those things happen that we have to turn to one another and remember that together we can always work to make it better.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Josh-

    You've mentioned an abundance of clay, have you tried pottery? You can make or use scavenged large clay planters to do Zeer pots... basically it's just a clay pot inside a larger pot, the space in between filled with sand. Keep the sand wet, with a heavy wet cloth over top. Evaporative cooling extends the life of the food- raw veggies up to about 3 weeks, meat 1-2 weeks, depending. Extends the shelf life of stuff you intend to use soon without having to get in and out of your big box. Bury them partially to make more efficient.

    -East of Zombie Ground Zero