Decrease

Decrease: (v) to diminish or lessen

I was a god.

A ruler by passion, muscle and erection.

Nothing seemed to matter other than me.

I forced myself to be humble.

I pretended to have brief spurts of weakness so as not to frustrate those who were trying to keep up.

I tried to run my life by my emotional and spiritual sensibility, but my energies far surpassed my willingness to be cooperative.

I was a man, a husband, a lover—a domineering force who tenderized my efforts through a studied understanding.

People called me dad. I was their father—and able to father more.

I was the one who lifted things.

I was the one who solved problems that involved movement and pounds.

I was strong.

And then one day—and it seemed like just one day—it changed.

The young men born into my house were suddenly surging.

  • I was present but not omnipresent.
  • I was potent but not omnipotent.

I saw them growing—each finding his place.

I spied them bringing intelligent people into their lives.

I was becoming a symbol, a memory—a standard.

It was time for me to decrease in my importance and allow the world around me and those I loved to increase in their decision-making will.

At first, I resisted—and when I did, the young ones were compelled by the natural order to pull away from me, to make their mark.

But when I realized that my decreasing gave license to their increasing, it brought me joy to know that somewhere in the vast unfolding, I still offered value.

I am no longer a god.

I had sons.

They brought daughters who birthed children.

I had to decrease so they could increase.

But in doing so, I found my better place.

Crumple

Crumple: (v) to give way suddenly; collapse

I love living.

I am downright silly about my enjoyment of breathing.

I am not looking forward to dying.

I am not one of those noble souls who believes I am going to a better place, but instead, have cast my lot in constructing my own “better place” here.

Along with this devotion to inhaling and exhaling comes a certain amount of hypochondria.

It’s true.

I’m not crazy. Nor do I become a nervous wreck about every sneeze or discoloration of a wart.

But I have been known, as a young father, to scream at my children because they caught colds or the stomach flu and were dangerously threatening me with them. On occasion, this reaction has flirted with irrational.

Of late, I have had some good, long talks with myself about refusing to crumple over every little symptom that might temporarily invade my body space.

I am perfectly aware that not every headache is a brain tumor.

Indigestion crops up without foretelling of a heart attack.

And having an occasional bout with bleary eyes due to fatigue does not forewarn of blindness.

You see, I know all these things.

But trying to get my “knower” to make the short journey to my “feeler” is often implausible.

So I am aware that I’m healthy, but I still often try to mimic sick.

On these occasions, I crumple—getting a few tears in my eyes while considering my demise and how sad it will be to those I love, and even mankind as a whole.

It is foolish.

It is childish.

But when I get into one of these crumple fests, it doesn’t help me to know that I’m foolish and childish.

I just need to roll over in the morning, take a deep breath, realize that my lungs are clear, my heart is beating, and God bless America:

“I gots me another day.”

 

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C


Subscribe to Jonathan’s Weekly Podcast

Good News and Better News