Today: Jun 24, 2024

Waiting for the other shoe to drop

JESSICA GIANNONE — Opiniosn Editor
When a person imagines his or her life ahead— given all the hopes, fears, questions and dreams held onto, after all the accomplishments, struggles, memories and chances passed—it may be an excit­ing vision, but also a bit frightening.
Based on our pasts, along with the state of our world now, it is evident a pattern of ups and downs will surface throughout the course of all of our lives. To ponder this very matter leaves us only with more anticipations and, contrarily, questions.
As for me, with my overly-questioning mind, it sometimes seems as if my successes are almost taunting in so that my “luck” has served as a chal­lenge to me rather than a fond collection of memo­ries. My accomplishments aren’t just achievements to be proud of that led me to where I am now; rather, they have to be maintained—entities to hold onto not solely in memory. And this is a little “frightening.”
Most people would have a precarious view of the world after something bad happened to them. They might lose a sense of control over the world, realizing the dangerous, unpredictable place it is. Usually something causes this diminished confi­dence in fate; when a person hits a bad streak in his or her life, that’s when the fear kicks in. I, on the other hand, have an opposite train of thought.
After I explained to my abnormal psychology class last week, which served as quite a display of amuse­ment with my dramatic rants, it seems as though every time things start going good for me, that’s when I start to wonder, “Alright, what’s the catch? Is this too good to be true?” As the old but ever-true phrase goes: I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop.
I can be compared to Charlotte from “Sex and the City” who, in the first movie, expressed her fear something bad was bound to happen because everything was working out perfect for her thus far. It does sound whacky.
Considering my precarious view of the world might have come from a house fire two years ago, when I lost much of my sense of faith, hope and security for a while, my worry for my circumstances to “balance out” may seem justified, I suppose. The irony is, when things tend to go bad I tell myself they are bound to get better; the circle of fortune is inevitable, so things must work out. Considering the good streaks that arise in my life, however, when I asked if this “worrying of the shoe dropping” was a problem, I got my answer. As my psychology professor comically put it, “It’s something worth looking into.”
But I realize he said this with more than a hint of seri­ousness. Waiting for the other shoe to drop is like setting your­self up for lower standards, the ultimate buzz kill. I’m not pre­paring myself, I’m exhausting myself. That might be the catch, itself. With all my worrying about the other shoe, it might as well go ahead and drop.
The severity to which I question my fate from time to time isn’t actually a degree of constant obsession that is always on my mind affecting my day to day choices, but it’s in the back of my mind somewhere, and it’s completely unnecessary.
We all want to know how things will work out, but holding too much significance to external forces is a different story. If some of you can relate, on any level—whether you are consciously intimidated by the uncertainty of life all the time, or it only mildly crosses your mind occasionally—maybe it’s not the shoe we should be focusing on; it’s our feet.
They are our feet after all—all we have to do is tie our shoes tight and we should be good to go, right? Who ever said another shoe had to drop just because the first one did, anyway? I say, if things must balance out, we should simply put the first shoe back on. If we lose assurance, instead of waiting for other feelings to follow, like doubt or reservation, we should just find assurance and put it back. Then we’ll be ready to walk, 100 percent “grounded.”
As individuals think about where they are headed in days to come, there is no harm in car­ing about the future. What should be remembered, though, is to not view paths as if they were written in stone, unaffected by personal responsibility. The only “worrying” we should be doing is about how we’re going to take action; not how the universe is going to screw us over.
We can all have control of our footwear, it’s just a matter of holding onto our shoes. Better yet, why not say the heck with it and go barefoot?

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