the little things



Lately I've been trying to make more of an effort not to get too worked up or stress about things that don't really matter. You know, the little things, the minor day-to-day inconveniences that if you don't let go of immediately, will only cause the resentment to build up and simmer until eventually it all becomes too much to deal with and you just explode with a month's worth of pent-up anger and emotion. So, yeah...I was profoundly tested today.

My mom and I were having afternoon tea today and the waitress who came over to our order accidentally dumped an entire cup's worth of milk all over me. Down my jacket, in my lap, on my seat, all over our table. I look down and as I'm watching the puddles of white begin to soak into my clothes, my first thought is, "This isn't real." Deep breath, close my eyes. Open them again. It's real. This is actually happening to me.

The waitress chatters an endless mantra of "I'm so sorry I'm so sorry I'm so sorry..." in the background and I hear myself assuring her that it's fine, these things happen, don't worry about it. Part of my brain is entirely invested in the moment, and it's making me furious and pushing me to the edge of tears. The other part has detached itself and is looking at the situation from afar with casual amusement. This peculiar dichotomy of hysteria and nonchalance feels completely bizarre and I can't do anything but force my hands to mop up the spills while tonelessly repeating the standard consiliatory phrases.

There's obviously no way to rationalize an angry outburst. Sure, I could've made the waitress cry, but other than a few fleeting moments of vindictive righteousness, what good would that have achieved? But biting your tongue and bottling the anger is equally destructive. It turns your insides toxic and distorts your mindset. And the more you allow it, the more it sets in, until one day you realize that you've become cynical and spiteful and you have no idea how it happened.

I excuse myself to go to the bathroom, shut myself in a cubicle, and take a few deep breaths. It helps to put things into perspective. A week from now, these erratic feelings will have faded. In two weeks, it'll have become a funny anecdote about a silly mishap. In a few years, will I even remember it? In the grand scheme of things, it just doesn't matter. And with that, I let it go.

I spent the next two hours shopping while the smell of funky milk gradually manifested. I might be exaggerating a bit for effect, but the point is, I didn't care. I wasn't paranoid about getting too close to strangers lest they smell it on me, and I wasn't constantly sniffing myself to see if it was getting worse. Once I let it go, I was free from all that anxiety. Even now, I'm a little surprised by how mellow I was, especially considering it was the worst thing that happened to me all day. But it's no use becoming (and remaining) angry at momentary inconveniences, it does nothing but waste your time and turn you bitter. And that's my long and windy way of telling you to not let the small things get you down, because in the end, it just doesn't matter.

A Wear jacket
Topshop sweater & skirt
Poof Excellence top
Barkins tights
Mossimo shoes


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