Battles make good fodder for stories. You, the protagonist, want something, but an opponent – the antagonist – gets in the way. The thing you want is important enough to fight the battle, and the battle ends with you either losing or winning. That’s where the story ends. Of course, it could also end in a stalemate, but I prefer definite endings.
In real life I am a fighter, and I hate losing. I do pick my battles, but even the ones I fall into, whether I want to fight them or not, I will fight until the end to win. The one I found myself entangled in today, I decided to lose because sustaining it would’ve meant inconveniencing someone who was waiting for me and counting on me. But more than this, I didn’t have the energy to fight it.
This battle, although short and unforeseen and somewhat uncalled for, was not only a tally loss against the opponent but a real loss of many things for myself, things I considered precious and pure.
If there’s one thing that often trips me up and makes it challenging for me to climb the ladder, it’s that I can’t work for people I don’t respect. And today, I lost a lot of respect for someone I had quite a bit of respect for and took after as a role model.
I am nothing with my principles and passion. These two things keep the fire in me going and sustain me through rough times. But today, as a result of losing the battle, my passion took a hard hit. I found myself questioning my conviction that the work I am doing and have enjoyed immensely for the last year is right for me.
If the passion was real and true, this loss wouldn’t have me second-guessing myself. But then again, maybe I am making a mountain out of a molehill and this incident is merely an anomaly that can be isolated from my confidence in my career. As absurd as it was. (I still don’t understand why it occurred at all.)
Or maybe, as you grow older and more cynical, only your principles remain. Like bones.