I thought it would get easier.
I thought my life would lead somewhere, I don't know - grander, more bountiful, more integrated, more rewarding.
I haven't given up. I still may get there. Things still may turn out how I envisaged.
I do have doubts, though.
But doubts are nothing new. Doubts are like flies, mosquitoes. Everyone gets bugged by them. And everyone hates them.
You try and flick them off, squash them if you can but still, you carry on with what you are doing.
My doubts I can deal with.
What I am attempting to come to terms with is the balance between being grateful for what I have and acknowledging my yearning for better things.
I accept myself as a person. I am comfortable in my skin. By no means has it been an easy entity to inhabit but I have endured and learnt to make the best of things.
Beneath my outwardly chilled demeanour there is a churning intensity. Much of my time and energy is spent attempting to channel it in positive ways, subdue it, make friends with it.
Over the decades I have struggled with anxiety and depression, addictions, weight fluctuations, close to the edge life-threatening experiences.
I share this because it is the truth and I feel no need to hide anything. I know that many, if not all, experience some, most, all or even more of these things. We usually just shut up about them and endure.
I feel lucky that I have found my way through to this point and can be open about it.
My storyline, in most respects, is not particularly unusual.
I can say that as someone who has always been sensitive, perhaps overly so, and hyper sentient (I can't turn it off), that were it not for the release and understanding, integration that has come from my various forms of creative expression - I would not have been able to endure.
So, I ask myself, still, and often: What is the point?
Is it just about surviving?
What is 'making it'?
When will satisfaction, peace finally come?
It's a rigged game.
The challenges, demands, the things that get you - they never stop coming.
Work out one thing and two more pop up.
There is no retirement from life. It's work, work, work until the last breath.
And we kind of fear death, at least prefer to stay alive - even if and when it feels like shit - because of the finality and incomprehensibility of death.
It lurks, taunts us sometimes. Even beckons on occasion.
But our instincts are strong. We must continue. We must carry on.
Looking back, it makes sense how I got here. If I look at the steps, factor in the choices, the circumstance, the paths taken, the random, the coincidental - it all makes sense in retrospect.
But when we are younger - when we are formulating our dreams, envisioning our futures - we cannot know what lies ahead. We construct our ideals from the concepts at our desposal at the time.
And then, over the years, things happen - maybe from our own doing, but also from pure chance, due to others, or just because they do.
We adapt, we carry on.
We thought we knew where we were going but there are so many unexpected twists and turns, dead ends and surprise peaks that must be scaled that we become a little flabbergasted, weary.
And all along, time slowly ticks away. Suddenly, years have passed, then decades. We are shocked to see in the mirror a reflection not of our hopeful, idealistic spirits but of weathered and battle scarred veterans. Any of us who are not suffering from or who have suffered some form of psyche PTSD is lucky and amongst the very few.
The world being in the state it is at the moment with the good people, the average population being hoodwinked and bullied by unscrupulous, selfish politicians and their greedy, morally vapid money and power accumulating cronies in big business doesn't help. We are oppressed, make no mistake about it. We are being twisted into submission through rules and laws and agendas set by the gang at the top calling all the shots, serving only themselves. There is still goodness and kindness but it is only to be found at ground level. The current set of people in power have little care for the well being of others. We're forced to struggle to survive on little or noting in a game rigged in favour of the elite.
So, the system is doing us no favours. We're becoming fragmented, frazzled, distracted. No easy paths to leading a simple, uncomplicated, pure lifestyle. And it's only going to get faster and thicker.
I have no answers. I just take each day as it comes, wade through the swirling, pungent swamp of uncomfortable demands and try to find a tree branch to hold onto or a tiny patch of shore to crawl on and lay down for a minute, to snatch a brief day dream of how I thought it might have turned out or how I wish it would, knowing that any minute a storm will hit, the marsh men will shake me from my slumber and move me along, a gator will appear... something, something not to my liking will poke or prod me, bite or scratch me and force me to unwillingly get back in to the pit and carry on with the struggle.
A little. But not far off how it feels more often that not these days. Is it just me? Or does it feel unduly tough being a human these days?
Like I said, and I'm being honest - not what I expected.