This popped up on my facebook today, a memory from 2019.
Dragged my severely overweight arse up the mountain with Kyle yesterday, boy I miss our hikes. Fiona loved it except for the parts where I (literally) hauled her arse up some ledges (we tried for Knife’s edge but did the upper contour thingie instead on account of the wind. Up Rhodes Mem down Newlands via the saddle).
As is characteristic of our friendship we talked a LOT. Mainly about the apocalypse. Leonie’s article came up, and we felt a bit disappointed that there wasn’t a grand plan of action for dealing with the knowledge that, basically, we’re about to die (https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/…/2019-11-20-end-of…/). Of course another big topic was my recent almost-breakup and our general lament that relationships, even new friends are actually quite hard work for something that’s advertised as supposed to be effortless and comforting (Kyle’s been moving across countries often for research, and sad that that means not having a tried-and-trusted circle of peeps). But it slowly and wheezingly dawned on me that there is a parallel here.
I have this new mantra that I’ve mentioned before ‘Do what you’ve always wanted to do asif you’re going to die tomorrow, but don’t do anything you’ll regret if you don’t.’ For me this is basically ‘get horses’; probably the last thing on my bucketlist left to do. But seriously, if I was to die tomorrow, why on earth would I still fight to maintain a relationship with someone who is actually a shit-ton of work and who doesn’t shag me enough? Surely if this is the end of the world I don’t have to worry about STDs or calling them back the morning after and just go gung-ho into every good night?
The reality is that on the off chance of living to an old age, I really want to spend it with him. Even if there is only a miniscule chance, and even if he’s a ton of work, it’s worth it. It’s worth doing all the work even if I die tomorrow and it was all for nothing. It’s worth working on and designing the future relationship that I want. Because it’s that important that even if there is only a tiny chance of it happening, it’s still worth it.
I think it’s the same for the environment, the biosphere, our communities, whatever sorts of relationships you can imagine. Of course at this point the retaliation is a sad whimper about corporate interests, politics, human inertia, human stupidity, human shortsightedness … but lamentable as that is, that’s not the point.
The point is, What is the relationship you want for the future?
This brings it inside. Your relationship is affected by outside forces, imminent death, corporate enshittification, politics, economics, idiots, whatever, but not defined by it. It’s defined by you, your choices, and the other person/entity and their choices, that’s it.
It’s justified to be angry at all these outside forces that make it so goddamn hard, but at the end of the day anger is not going to give you the relationship you want. End of story.