The Past is a Pee-Filled Bladder

The past is a lot like pee.
A bladder being trickle filled with hot pee.

Imagine this.

You’re on a long drive. It’s over 100 miles to your stop.
You feel the urge to pee coming on.
There are tens of thousands of trees and shrubs on the side of the road.

Opening Google Maps, you see a gas station in a few dozen miles. You keep holding it.

“I’ll just wait until the gas station,” you say.

You get to the station, but decide it isn’t quit urgent enough and say “Nah, I’ll hold it until we arrive.”

The urgency grows.

Finally, you frantically pull over, rushing into the woods.

With an audible sigh, you feel that sweet relief of release. You can feel the stretched and deflated bladder within you, bereft of pee.

Climbing back into the car, you feel reborn. You can finally focus on the road. You can drive around the speed limit comfortably. You’re able to enjoy your podcast or music. Your mind is clear of that increasing burden.

You are in the now!

So let me ask — why didn’t you just pull over and pee in the woods earlier?

We all lay awake at night, tortured by our past.

The things our exes said to us. “Are we that short?”
The way our boss raised their eyebrows with soft sighs at our proposal. “What did that mean?”
There’s the times you gave in to hunger hormones, opting to sit and eat a pizza, ice cream, and a tube of Pringles (including shaking the dust into our mouth).

“I told myself ‘I deserve a reward for doing so great eating and exercising!’” you think to yourself. Tears well up in your eyes. You’re grateful it’s the dead of night and your spouse is snoring, unaware, beside you.

“I said I’d have just a piece of pizza…how can I have gone so far? Am I so pathetic?”

A dull headache greets you the next morning. The food hangover looms like a muted shadow.
The episode of failure evolves. Deciding you don’t feel well, you skip working out.

Before you know it, you’ve derailed the fitness and diet routine.

The past is brutal. It is heavy. It is strong.
It’s an angry, silent, and judging sumo wrestler we are powerless to budge.

But that same weight and power — like the sumo — is also its weakness.

When we stop resisting the past, its own weight makes it fall over.

Here’s the thing: the past is immutable. It has already occurred. You can’t take it apart. It cannot change.

Duh.

When that sumo comes at you, instead of burying your face into its huge, sweating tits while you dig in your heels, straining and pushing, just step to the side. It will stumble right past you.

The sumo won’t go away, of course. It will roar and lunge again. Sometimes, you’ll find yourself pinned and engaging it (to fail), but that’s okay. Next time, you’ll remember to sidestep.

“Well, how do I stop worrying about the past?”

Pretty straightforward:

Stop acting in a manner inconsistent with your goals and character.

Stop skipping your responsibilities.

Stop ignoring the voice in your head that says “Hey! Idiot! Put that pizza down — remember your diet!”

Stop being offended.

Stop wasting your time on the thoughts of others.

Stop procrastinating.

Stop justifying bad decisions with logic.

Stop being unaccountable.

You aren’t a loser — so why are you acting like one?

The past is a swelling bladder full of pee.
When you’re not doing what you’re supposed to be doing, it haunts you. The fat, sweaty sumo in the tiny diaper lunges and lunges, relentlessly.

Skipping responsibilities and being inconsistent makes that sumo bigger. It makes the bladder stretch a bit fuller.

When you’re scrolling FaceBook and that tug on your soul’s sleeve says “Hey, you need to clean,” you should listen.
Or when you’re on your 4th episode of “Friends” and you’re not even enjoying yourself. You hear the same voice say “Don’t forget — you promised you’d lose 10 pounds this year.” Turn on YouTube and put on a 10 minute exercise.

Not doing these things will come back as a manifestation when you’re laying the jet night.

Are you going to “go pee” now? Or, are you going to ignore it, letting the urgency loom larger until you’re forced to?

Living in the now is impossible when we are ignoring that which we know we should be doing.

What should you be doing?

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Lucas A. Davidson

Born and raised a Yooper, I write daily philosophical meditations on Eudaimonia. These are distillations from my book on the topic!