I suspect I’m not alone. Alone in the feeling that my hope is a wretched thing that ruins its object... like a child I can’t control, a beast that sees what I see. I concede, though, that when I picture a drooling and vicious creature devouring my dreams, most people just say something like, “ I don’t want to jinx it, but…” and then go on to tell you about a job interview.
When I become aware of something I want, my Hope (or shall I say: my pet monster that affects things outside of me?) sees it for the first time too, and begins to stalk it. I must keep it out of my attention, continue to tell my Hope, “Now, I don’t actually want this. I don’t actually believe that I can have this. See, Hope, I didn’t even tell my mother… if I wanted it, I would tell my mother.” All in a lame attempt to trick my Hope, distract him away from taking that which I want away from me. It never works.
The elaborate metaphor aside, hope is what rescues us from disaster and tragedy. Why live another day after you lost a child if you didn’t hope things would get better? But hope is also the instrument of disappointment and depression. The unfulfilled desire has the power to ruin a life. Buddhism will tell you that wanting is the root of all suffering. This is nothing new, fine, but I can’t reconcile it. I can’t get it fucking straight in my mind. So I should give up on everything, not desire anything for myself, and only then will I find happiness…? Let it go, Gwen, let it go, let it go, let him go, let it go….. well fuck, that didn’t work. Now what?