A few hard knocks can teach you a thing or two

Leaking pipe with towel

It’s important to get to the root of the problem.

I recently had the worst night of my life so far.*

Just off the heels of my marriage coming to a finale and two rejection slips of a different kind, I found out I’m losing my job to a corporate restructuring.

AND THEN, while I’m desperately trying to process what the hell the universe has in store for me while taking a middle-of-the-night wee, my bathtub faucet starts howling wildly. It lasted for about ten seconds, presumably due to me flushing the toilet. After it stopped, I lumbered back to bed while convincing myself it was just a freak incident. About an hour later I was up for a glass of water since sleeping was out of the question, and it began howling when I turned on the kitchen tap. This time though, it stopped only after I turned the bathtub faucet on and off. About an hour later, it began howling unprovoked, so I shut the water heater off and ran the rest of the hot water out of all the faucets. It helped for a while.

It was about two in the morning at this point, and I had a mandatory meeting a mere five hours away that would require I sit poker-faced through the announcement that many adored colleagues would be seeking new life-opportunities.

On top of being grief-stricken and too devestated to even cry, this fucking ringing faucet was doing my head in.

The strongest part of me knew I just had to get through the night, but just as I thought I’d stopped it for good and would fall asleep, the faucet would announce its malfunction and violently rip me from slumber. It was like a siren from the depths of hell, and I was the muppet in hell that couldn’t do a thing about it.

By 4 in the morning, it wouldn’t stop no matter how I tampered. I crawled under the floor and shut the entire water supply off and fell into bed, exhausted.

While I was in the midst of this witching-hour agony, I think I disassociated. During one moment after temporarily silencing the faucet, my id stared vacantly at the gleaming white bathroom tiles in my bathroom while it slowly rocked my body back and forth on the cold floor, hands over stomach in a feeble effort to soothe. My super-ego floated above in the corner watching me, waiting it out until it was safe to return.

They say that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I say what almost kills can teach you a gargantuan lesson.  The amount of growth that has come out of losing those things that provided equal parts stability and distraction have provided me with a super-charged, accelerated growth spurt. For that, my super-ego is thankful, even if it is aware that my id is still eating itself alive, mad with fear of the unknown.

The pain has been since replaced with wary sense of curiosity, and this rejection has given me insight I would have otherwise been too spoiled to absorb. Let’s see what life has to offer now that the options are wide open.

*Compared to what some people are dealing with in this world, peanuts. But it was still my personal best as far as shit experiences are concerned.


  1. Enjoyed both your psychoanalytic terms and your big-picture sanity in terms of relative problems. Keeping things in perspective is always a wise thing to do.

  2. Pingback: The power of context (Chronicles in the Blues: Day 2) | evolution

  3. Pingback: I’m only human | me, the world, evolving

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