So. Sometimes, you’re plugging along with your life. You’re good. Things are … fine. Not exceptional, not really anything to write home about (but sometimes you do, just so people won’t worry too much about what you’re up to), but okay. You reason that life? Is sometimes highs, sometimes lows, and sometimes just this stretch of bland, level road. It’s okay with you, because you’ve had the lows – the really low ones, the Death Valley lows, and you think that some time spent on level ground? Might be just what you need.
So you set the cruise control and you coast.
On occasion, something will show up on the landscape – not an oasis, but a rest area, where you can stop, stretch, refuel. There will be a friend there, sometimes a group of them, and you get some respite from the trip. Because, you realize, you’re starting to get a little bored. The road has been so straight and dull, the landscape so bland. You don’t even have to steer – it’s all straight lines and grey skies on the horizon.
But again. You’ve been through the scarier terrains, and this? This is better than that. So you keep getting in the car and going. You just keep going. That’s what people do, you reason. And who are you to complain?
After a few months – years even – of this? You don’t even notice you’re bored anymore. The grey leeches out of the sky and into everything. The road. The land. Your skin. You catch yourself regarding colours with suspicion, because they’re not safe. You don’t recognize them anymore.
When you pull over at one of those rest stops? You need to be pulled out of the safety of your car.
Until a day when someone not only pulls you out of the car, but steers you around the rest stop to a place where there’s a door. A door that is familiar – you’ve seen it every time you stopped, but you never considered opening it – and that is not grey.
Your companion points to the door. “Open it.”
You don’t know if you want to. You don’t know if you can anymore. “Where does it go?”
“Everywhere,” says your companion, and takes your hand and puts it on the doorknob, and then lets go. You have to make a choice.
You open the door.
On the other side is a mishmash of paths. They go in all directions, everywhere. The world is a wash of colours, shapes, and vegetation.
There is possibility everywhere you look.
You smile. You laugh. You actually clap your hands together with glee. You look at your companion.
“Yes,” is the answer. “But you have to go on foot. No more coasting.”
So you go. You turn around once, and your companion, grinning, makes a shoo motion towards you. "GO."
You keep going. Sometimes, things are not fine. Sometimes, you get tangled up and have to back up and find yourself places you didn’t necessarily expect to go.
But you’re not bored. You’re alive.
You’re alive and present and it’s glorious. Which is, after all, so much better than fine.