Error: Out of Service

Restless, Irritable, and Discontent

“This better be a fuckin’ emergency,” I said, glaring at my phone as it vibrated for the second time.  I hate that.  I hate when I get called twice in a row.  There’s a reason I didn’t answer the first time, so why would you call again?  I don’t accidentally miss phone calls.  If I didn’t answer it’s because I’m fuckin’ busy or not in the mood to talk to you.  Can I just have a bad day too sometimes and be left alone? “Apparently not,” I said aloud as I swiped the call to answer.  “Hey man!  How’s it going,” I politely asked, switching my tone from grumpy old man to concerned mother.  He responded by asking me for help.  He asked if he could borrow $8 so he could fill his prescription at the pharmacy.  I could tell it took every ounce of strength to have enough courage to ask me that.  Man, I lose perspective on shit sometimes.  It’s a good thing God doesn’t need permission to work in my life.

Otherwise I’d be dead or worse, lost.

Remember when you’ve had too much pride to ask for help?  It’s truly amazing to me how difficult it still is at times!  I have guys that depend on me to help them and sometimes I’m delusional enough to believe that I have answers, not questions.  If you let this slide you will lose perspective and begin closing a mind that took so long to open.  Remember how painful it was when you failed over and again but would rather die than ask for help?  When your perception of asking for help meant you looked weak or inferior?  I certainly do, because it happened again yesterday, and it took 2 phone calls in a row for me get the help I wouldn’t ask for.  I forget where I came from and the freedom I take for granted at times.

I lose sight of what I’m doing and what my purpose is.

I forget that it is an absolute miracle that I’m alive and an even bigger miracle that I’m in a position to help anyone.  It’s easy to stop checking yourself when you start having the responsibility of checking others’ behavior.  Here’s the top 3 circumstances that tell you it’s time to take a look at yourself:

1. You start feeling a little more irritable than usual.

Your friends start annoying you with their upbeat demeanor and their optimism makes you cringe.  You find yourself exercising patience in every conversation requiring you to listen or be empathetic.  You are a little more passive aggressive than usual…and people start telling you, making you more irritable.

2. You’re restless and discontent constantly.

Unless you’re receiving gratification from something in the moment. You can’t stay present because you’re either scolding yourself about the past or worrying about the future you can now predict.  You have a strong desire to isolate from others because human contact seems worse than your own company.  For the 10th time, Netflix asks you, “Are you still watching?”  Clearly you are, because you’ve declined the last 5 phone calls to do it.

3. You don’t do what you say.

So, you neglect someone you’re responsible for helping and they do your job for you until you get some perspective. That’s no accident.  Someone calls you asking for help and you finally pick up what He’s putting down.  Answer your phone and quit being an asshole…I still love you though!”

Once you recognize it it’s essential that you take immediate action before it spreads like a cancer and becomes unmanageable.  That open mindedness was a more than a gift…let’s be real, it’s nothing short of a miracle.  Open-mindedness closes without growth and we lose the precious freedom we struggled to earn.  There are no guarantees, no promises, and no free rides.  An open mind only stays open if we remain teachable.  You don’t get to keep it for being a good person; you get to borrow it to be a useful person.

It is a reward that needs to be earned daily.

It’s easy to get complacent.  You think, “this looks like a good place to rest for a while.”  There’s nothing wrong with this, everyone needs a break and deserves to enjoy the second chance they were given.  It’s when you say, “thanks for the life, I got it from here!”  This is when things start getting interesting and we find ourselves fearing the outcomes of tomorrow instead of focusing on the action of today.  We forget our purpose and lose our usefulness. We forget that we owe a debt for the open-mindedness we were given.  We forget the cost it came at.  We forget the dues are a daily obligation and not an annual membership.

We forget who we are if we’re not reminded of who we once were.

2 thoughts on “Error: Out of Service”

  1. “Otherwise I’d be dead or worse, lost.” Death is easy. Simple. The pain just disappears altogether which is what we’ve wanted for so long. But being lost, we don’t want to die but the pain feels so unbearable that it sounds better. Fighting, trying to get our footing with failed attempt after failed attempt is so much harder.

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