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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Individual in a Big City

A hustling, bustling city. Street Lights changing from green to red, car horns honking, night clubs hopping, people shouting…life in a city.
Adam was just like everyone else. And everyone else was just like Adam. In this city, no one wanted to be singled out, no one wanted to be an individual. And so everyone was pretty much the same. They wanted to be accepted by their peers, everyone frequented the same bars and clubs, read the same books and watched the same movies. They fought over the same issues. They pretended they didn’t feel hurt or ashamed. No one wanted to look weaker than the others, so everyone put a brave face on everything, respecting each others stoicism.
Adam felt lonely, bored and miserable. He worked at a job that his family and friends respected, but that he had no passion for. His home life was full of routines; cleaning, shopping, eating, sleeping. His life was a cycle that he couldn’t escape and he just wanted someone to be with, someone to share his life with. He believed in Soul-Mates and knew his was out there somewhere, but he had no idea how to find her.
All the places he frequented were full of people that seemed to be all the same. Adam struggled to make lasting connections with people and soon was calling everyone around him “sheep.” For years he isolated himself from the other “sheep” in the city while still searching for his Soul Mate. But he could not meet anyone like himself, just more “sheep.” He became depressed and wallowed in his problems. He wanted a change and thought a new person could bring that to him.
And then one day something changed in Adam. He woke up and sat in bed, thinking. Usually he’d jump right into his morning routine but today he thought first.  Instead of putting on his regular designer clothes, he put on a pajama shirt. It was something he had gotten in High School and sported a faded emblem from a band he loved, but that was never mainstream.
Walking out of his house, people pointed at his clothes and made fun of him. In a city where everyone dressed the same, Adam now stood out.
He got in his car and started his drive to work. Usually he’d sit and listen to the AM radio, but today he’d decided to play the FM station. Songs came on and he felt like singing. Nearby drivers would point and laugh. While sitting in bumper to bumper traffic, some people even seemed upset that Adam was singing and having a good time.
Adam’s day at work now felt like it was in slow motion and muted. He didn’t care for the drama and he soon realized that most of his interactions at work involved heavy emotions of some kind. He didn’t mind, but just wanted to pass the information without getting emotionally attached to it.
He left work feeling alive and full of energy. He was a little hungry but as he drove home a park caught his eye and he decided he felt like running around in the grass. So he did. Kids on the playground saw him and laughed, but soon joined him, following behind him as he jogged around the park. When Adam saw them following him, he turned around, a sly smile on his face, and started to pretend to chase the kids.
Weeks went by and Adam continued to allow himself to gravitate towards what he wanted. He stopped going to all the clubs, movies and restaurants because he thought that was where he should be, and he just focused on where he wanted to be. He did what he wanted, not because he thought the outcome would favor him, but because he wanted the experience. No longer focused on the destination, he was able to start enjoying the journey.
And while this transition was not easy on Adam, he was no longer bored and miserable. He’d been so busy living his life he’d forgotten about his pursuit for his soul-mate.
He woke up one Saturday morning and it was raining out. He immediately put his running shoes on and hopped out the door. His neighbors thought he was crazy, running in rain, but he loved the way it felt. He loved the way he felt. He was hopping over puddles and feeling the cool drops of rain against his face.
When he opened his eyes he saw a girl jogging on the other side of the street, but in the same direction as him. He was staring at her when she looked over and saw him. He smiled and waved. She smiled, a little wider than she had wanted, so she looked away so he wouldn’t see.
They jogged another 12 blocks on opposite sides before coming to a T intersection, when Adam asked the girl if she needed a running buddy.

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