My Own Prison....

This morning, while waiting for a ride on my way to the office, my mind was racing, amidst the crawling traffic on the west bound lane, the speeding vehicles on the east bound lane, the cool wind blowing, and the pounding migraine I have been suffering on account of my slightly elevated blood pressure.

I was absent the day before, specifically because of that migraine. And yet, here I am, teary-eyed from the throbbing pain in my skull and nape, on my way to the office to give a presentation simply because that's what everyone, including myself, expects me to do.

One of Creed's songs flashed in my mind, the song My Own Prison. Here's the first stanza:

A court is in session, a verdict is in
No appeal on the docket today
Just my own sin
The walls are cold and pale
The cage made of steel
Screams fill the room
Alone I drop and kneel
Silence now the sound
My breath the only motion around
Demons cluttering around
My face showing no emotion
Shackled by my sentence
Expecting no return
Here there is no penance
My skin begins to burn

Sometimes I get too hung up on what people expect me to be, on what they expect me to do. As a result, my own expectations of myself rise far above the realities of my true self. The simple truth of the matter is, I'm not as intelligent, as wise, as moral as others think that I am. I guess that goes without saying. I am just an average joe, trodding through life, making a ton of mistakes along the way. And though I say that with such conviction, I can't help but feel devastated when I can't meet other people's expectations, not to mention my own.

Strangely enough, two people have actually seen through my ruse...and think I am a masochist for having to absorb all this distress. I think they're right. You people know who you are.

Unfortunately, one cannot change his or her mindset overnight. I have somehow succeeded in brainwashing myself into thinking that I was what everyone expected me to be, and even more. And now, I have gotten caught up in my own hoopla and hype. While I always thought that aiming for the stars would get me the moon, for the most part it has given me nothing but frustration and disappointment in a lot of aspects of my life.

The bottomline is, I really have to loosen up, and let things occur naturally. I have been a go-getter and control freak for so long that it seems almost criminal to lay back, but I have no choice. Any more of this and I'll either crack up or have a heart attack or stroke from all the tension. I'm feeling the effects right this very minute as I type these words.

Yes, for a long time I have trapped myself in my own prison. Its about time I set myself free. But first things first. I have another presentation to make tomorrow. :-)

And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without
the rain, there would be no rainbow.

- Jerry Chin


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