Drew’s Train of Thought

Drew DeKeyrel, Writer

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Hello to the three people that read this. Due to concerns from the school and, to a greater extent, my parents, I will no longer post these. At least for a little while, that is.

Do you ever see certain letters, usually abbreviations of things, that just make you think of a completely different word? For example, The Catcher in the Rye can be abbreviated to CITR. I don’t know about anyone else, but every time I see CITR, I think citrine. (Side note, spell check doesn’t think citrine is a real word. I know it is, thus, I am better than spell check.) Since CITR is a book that we are reading in English IV, it is usually in the context of “Read 1-4 CITR by Tuesday,” or something like that. My mind almost immediately goes to, “Read one to four citrines by Tuesday.” How am I supposed to read a type of quartz? Actually, now looking into it, citrine is popular in the healing rocks crowd, so maybe the citrine is supposed to read me. I don’t know. Nothing makes sense. A salt rock lamp appeared in my room about two months ago. I have no clue where it came from or what it wants. I just know that it tastes salty. It also glows. As far as I’m concerned, it’s some vengeful minor deity that has been confined within a rock lamp. Where was I going with this section? I don’t know. No one ever does.

I recently had surgery. If you didn’t know, now you do. I had a procedure called a lymphadenectomy. (Spellcheck wants me to say appendectomy, however, it is wrong and merely proves, yet again, that I am superior.) That is essentially a big, science-y, sesquipedalian word for taking out a lymph node. If you don’t know what lymph nodes are, they are the things that swell in your neck when you get sick. If that is too vague, ask Mrs. Stannke. Anyways, these lymph nodes are very dear to me, most of them having been with me throughout most, if not all, of my high school career. As such, I have named the larger ones. The first one, who is still with me, is named Zelda because why not. The second largest one who was taken from me a little over a year ago, was named Gargamel. Under my jaw, I’ve got Papa Smurf and Smurfette on the left side, and Howie Newsome and Bessie on the right. When Gargamel was removed, he had a son just below him. I’d like to think his son, who was later named Azrael, rose up and gained power in order to take vengeance on those who took his father. Sadly, Azrael ultimately met the same fate as his father, being removed from my neck on the 6th. Why have I named my lymph nodes and constructed backstories for them? I think it humanizes them, makes them appear less threatening. Otherwise, they’re just there, my little tumor babies.

This last one is tiny bit more serious, but not terribly so. At least, I don’t think so. I have trouble with knowing what is too much for people. Anyways, let’s talk about coping mechanisms. Not super serious coping, but coping all the same. Many people feel self-doubt and some even loathe themselves. The thing is, sometimes it’s hard to tell who exactly does this. This is largely due to our humor having shifted from lightheartedness to more of a self-deprecating kind. Not everyone does this, so don’t think I’m generalizing, but a great deal of us do. I don’t feel well most of the time, and it sucks. As a way to make myself feel better, I write this article, attempting to make light of whatever my problem is. If I can find some humor in a bad situation, then I think to myself, “Maybe it wasn’t all bad, I can at least write an article and try to get a few smiles out of people.” However, I’m realizing that this isn’t the best way to deal with it. I’m more or less giving myself an excuse to keep feeling the way I do. Recently, Mark Moen, a graduate from here, told me that I should stop using self-deprecating humor entirely. He said that no one finds it funny or even uses it outside of high school. As such, he’s stopped using such humor. He claims that he feels better about himself, and that he’s much more likely to be happy over smaller things. At least, that’s what I got out of the conversation. Well, thanks to Mark, I’m going to stop as well. In essence, all self-deprecating humor does is make you feel worse. Sure, you may joke about some flaw or insecurity you have, but once the laughing stops, it’s still there. It hollows you out from the inside. I don’t want to feel hollow when I laugh anymore. I want to actually be happy from now on. That’s what we should all strive for, isn’t it? To be truly happy? Don’t go calling me hedonistic, but if you aren’t happy with your life, then who are you living for? Your life should be lived for you, not for anyone else. If you do something that makes someone happy, but ultimately makes you unhappy, stop. Live for yourself. Smile for yourself. And once you can do that, share it with others. Raise them up, make them laugh with you, not at you, or at the expense of anything or anyone else, for that matter. When you go through life happy, it makes everything so much sweeter. There may be times when it isn’t so sweet, but add a little sugar or something, I guess. I want everyone to be happy for themselves, not for anyone else. You don’t have to pretend you’re always happy because after pretending to be happy for so long, that’s all you feel like you’re doing. Pretending. So, if you stayed with me for this long, then thank you. Live for your own happiness, and no one else’s.

That last section was a little–erm– off-brand for my article, but since this is the last one I’ll be doing for a while, I felt like I needed to say it. It might not even get posted, but at least I said something. That’s all I really want, to say something in hopes it makes at least one person feel better. That’s what makes me happy, knowing I can help someone with something. So do what makes you happy. Thanks for reading.