My parents took me to Disneyland when I was six. While in Florida, we went to the beach. I’m not tall now, and I really wasn’t tall then. I remember being buffeted by the waves and thinking this whole playing in the surf thing isn’t much fun. And then I went under a wave instead of over it. The pull of the water picked me up and set me back down and when I stood up again, the wave had receded and I was standing there quite pleased with myself. My father was in a panic, of course, but I had just picked up a philosophical touchstone.
Every impossible thing gets easier if you quit fighting it.
Surrender. Let it pick you up and set you down. Hold your breath and watch the murky world under all the drama going on above your head. It’s magical down there; everything happens in slow motion. You might not be in control, but you aren’t out of control in the same way as you are when you’re unprepared and gasping for air.
See? A lifelong philosophy for managing difficulty. Go under it. It’s such a good plan… until you’re looking at your life and thinking “how the f*ck do I go under this?”
Ah, the difficulty of philosophy that works in theory and is a thorny bitch when it comes to practice.