Epiphany, As in an AHA Moment

“Soar above the rest.” Painted on Mrs. Kuhlman’s wall.

Hello dear readers.  It is two thirty in the morning and I had an epiphany.  It’s kind of funny how things happen really.  Yesterday I was reading a blog that I follow and the author mentioned he had slumped into a funk.  I knew, oh so well, exactly what he meant and exactly what he was talking about.  Funks are the worst thing in the world.  I’ve been in them before, but not for so long that I’ve actually noticed really.  I’ve been trying to get out of it for the longest time.  You know, think this way–think that way.  But I never could.  I would have some good days, but mostly I was just…. funked.  I guess for clarification, I better tell you what I’m talking about.  When I get into a funk, I become the Negative Nancy your momma warned you to avoid.  My already short temper gets shorter, I’m irritable beyond all belief, I snap at people and don’t feel sorry about it, I just go through the motions day by day.  Sometimes I throw myself the awesomest pity party ever to justify why I’m stuck in this mode.  Othertimes I’m giving myself a pep talk to try and get out of it, only getting motivated enough to throw another party.

But I’ve figured it out everybody.  The few times I thought I was getting better, it was because I had something to go for.  I had a goal in mind, however small, that consumed me.  I knew what to strive for, and for just that brief moment, it got a little better.  Ever since I’ve been discharged I’ve been stuck in this funk.  Only twice have I thought that maybe I was coming out of it, only to get stuck again.  Like when you’re stuck in a really big rut.  You get enough momentum to get going up some, but only fall right back into it.  When I had made my decision to go to live here, my mind was clear for a few days.  I was at my dad’s at the time and every moment was a ticking bomb.  Except, I couldn’t see the countdown.  I had to be on my toes at every moment ready to take the heat and accusations that would and did come my way.  It didn’t take long for me to slip back though.  After a few days of being here, I had the goal to get a job.  Once I got my first interview, I slipped right back into my funk.  I reached my goal.  Especially after I got a job offer.

So here I am–nearly three in the morning–finally understanding.  You want to know how I came to my epiphany?  I was having The Walking Dead marathon and drinking a Monster.  Once I had gotten all caught up, I went to shower and go lay down.  Then I started thinking.  I can’t even remember right now how The Walking Dead led to my eighth grade English class, but it did.  Mrs. Kuhlman, Enlish Pre-AP, row 5-seat 4.  Mrs. Donna Kuhlman didn’t just teach us literature and grammar.  She taught us life values you can get from literature, and yes, even grammar.  It sounds a bit cliche to say it, but it’s true.  She taught us the meaning of behemoth and epiphany just randomly as she was telling story.  She would make us read a story, take a stupid hard test over it, then tell us we missed the point and what was the story really about?  She made us aware of the bad history of our town as well as the good.  She once told us that if we were going to be hobos on the side of the street, we could at least be the best hobo around.  At least once a day we were told, “Don’t grow up and get stupid.”  She didn’t hesitate to cry.

What sticks out to me the most, what I have been saying over and over in my head for the past few days however, is not a definition of a word, or a story’s moral, or the prepostion songs…  What has stuck out the most are the two things she drilled into our head with every lesson.  All lessons, all moments, all lectures, came down to two simple quotations.

“We strive.  We move step by step until we reach our goal.” 

“But I–I took the road less traveled.  And that has made all the difference.”

Multiple times she would make us get out of our seats and make as step as we all said our defintion of striving.  I can still see her pointing to the poem The Road Less Traveled by Robert Frost that she had written out on the wall as she said it.  Everytime, making sure we had no doubt in our mind what it meant.  I remember now.

This funk is not because of something happening in my life.  It is because of what was taken away in my life.  Not by any person but myself.  I forgot to strive.  I forgot I have to MOVE.  Step by step by step by step.  Never stopping until I reach my goal.  Strive–move step by step until you reach a goal.  I forgot that not every road that I need is well-traveled.  I forgot to strive-moving step by step until I reach my goal-for the road less traveled-it makes all the difference of the world.  People need somthing to fight for.  Something to strive for.  Even if it’s staying alive in a zombie-ridden world and striving for that one sanctuary, where ever it may be.

I forgot to strive.  But, I hear you now God.  I forgot to strive, but you reminded me.

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5 thoughts on “Epiphany, As in an AHA Moment

  1. too true. i recently came to the same conclusion through different means. through the 49ers mantra of you get better or you get worse, you never stay the same. i tend to get bored and lose focus easily so having goals and reminding myself of them and striving to reach them keeps me out of slumps. poignant post

    1. That’s a good quote to go by! I myself love football quotes as well, though I’m more of a Cowboys fan. Thanks for the like and follow! I appreciate it and thanks for sharing! 🙂

  2. Great post! 🙂

    My 8th grade English teacher (who actually won Disney’s Teacher of the Year in 1991, honest to God) was also insightful, and a bit eccentric. During a P/T conference, he once told my mom that I was either going to grow up to be one of the greatest achievers in the world, or was going to be at the bottom of the heap, no in between. Well, I made it to the bottom… but at least when I’m not funky, I am quite happy. Everyone seems to think success has to do with the tangible things, but it’s nothing but a state of mind…

    Strive on!

    1. True story bro! lol I didn’t even know there was such an award!! That sounds pretty cool. And you can totally be a big achiever no matter where you are in life. Some people make a lot of money or are considered “high-up” but are worth nothing to society. At least you can.make people smile with ES and crew. Keep it up soldier! 😉

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