D is for Disappointment


by Lillian Csernica on April 4, 2022

These are examples of free writing or word sprints using the prompt #disappointment.

1. Control Group

You never know when the pictures in your head will end up biting you on the ass. There you are, dreaming dreams, conjuring marvelous plans for the future, and before you know it you’ve invested too much energy. Now the dreams are set in mental stone. Now you’ve enshrined them, so you have to worship them daily. Worse, you have to do something about them. Here come the teeth. Expectations. Unspoken needs. Hidden agendas. Other people don’t have access to the art gallery in your head so they can’t paint-by-number according to your design.

2. Sun and Moon

Yow. Sunshine is good for the soul. Kill that disappointment with light. Drown the darkness with illumination. Not easy to keep the light burning. Gotta have fuel to keep it lit. Fuel is hard to come by on the cold dark days when the firebox or coal hod of the mind is empty , full of splinters and soot. Those lingering traces of old sorrows that begrime the pictures in our heads and tarnish our dreams.

It sucks to be stuck in the dark. Power failures are a literal disappointment. They kill the energy that makes all the really entertaining devices in the house work. So we are thrown back on our inner resources. How’s the firebox? Did the coal arrive? If not, we’re screwed. It’s so hard to generate our own light, to be the flame we light instead of cursing the darkness.

Disappointment can put out that flame, stain those pictures, suck up all our fuel and spit it out as nothing but heat that fails to warm us. Disappointment breeds anger, distrust, dislike, discord. Dis dis dis. Not. None. No more. Poverty. Emptiness. Lack of what’s necessary. Disappointment means we didn’t get what we wanted, what we hoped for, what we were expecting. It means the puppet show called daily life didn’t play out according to our chosen script. Cut strings. Empty eyes. Broken joints. No more plays today.

3. Three-legged Race

Connection and attachment lead to disappointment. To remain free of disappointment is to attempt to escape all risk. Why? The minute something or someone becomes important to you, whether for positive or negative reasons, there is the possibility of loss. Physical loss. Emotional loss. Financial loss. Spiritual loss. Loss of self, loss of identity, loss of freedom. On and on and on. Can one exist without connections? No. Not in our modern electronic pseudo-utopia. Can one exist without attachments? That means giving up everything. All of it. Total dispassion. Is that possible? Yes. Likely? How many saints have there been compared to the total population on the planet at their time? Odds aren’t too good, are they?

4. Stomp and yell

Physical exertion combats the toxins of disappointment. Sweat, dammit! Purge those juices that circulate like ink dropped in clear water. Purge those fractals. Sing the blood through your veins. Combat spiritual lethargy with craziness. Let GO. Let go of all those dusty old masterpieces chaining you to a life fixed on canvas and no longer vital. Burn them! Fire cleanses. Fire in the belly, in the blood, in the soul. Make new ashes. Ashes + lye = soap. Soap cleanses. Soap heals. Soap is fun because it makes bubbles. Bubbles are a sure cure for the downer of disappointment. Blow big, blow small, pop ’em, watch ’em float. Let it go. Let those bubbles carry those old ashes away. Cleanse your mind with pretty shiny soap bubbles and start finger-painting in the real world. Goofy little kid art. House. Tree. Dog. Baseball. River. Goldfish.

God is in the details. If we can learn to treasure the details, we will never be disappointed.

5. Blind Walk

Trust is difficult. Trust means loss of control. Loss of control can lead to disappointment because things don’t turn out the way they would have if we’d been in charge. That’s the illusion. Control freaks dwell in this fantasy land where everything will work out just fine as long as people just do things their way. All hail the Control Freaks, Kings and Queens of Disappointments. Control freaks are just asking for it. Control freaks don’t trust anybody, not even themselves. They’ve been disappointed big time in the past and they aren’t about to let that happen again.

I know about this. My wedding was a perfect example of misplaced trust and ruined expectations. All the key people were fine, it was the support people who screwed up. The photographer, dressmaker, and baker, all masters of their particular domains, and every one of them left me furious and disappointed. Yes, I’m a control freak. No, I’m not a Bridezilla.

Broken hearts. Broken dreams. All you can do is gather up the pretty fragments and try to create a stained glass window or a mosaic or some work of art that will remind you not to let whatever it was happen again. Memory is tricky. We want what we want. We need what we need. Attachments can become addictions. We’re so disappointed in ourselves when we realize we have so little control over our impulses and actions. We think we’re masters of our destinies and captains of our souls, but we’re still just apprentices sweeping up those splinters and all that soot.

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Filed under #atozchallenge, Blog challenges, Family, frustration, marriage, memoirs, worry, Writing

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