It is what it is.

Gonna’ get back to basics
Guess I’ll start it up again
I’m fallin’ from the ceiling
You’re fallin’ from the sky now and then
Maybe you were shot down in pieces
Maybe I slipped in between

In general, I am a happy person. This is not to say I’ve not had my dark days. There have been some – many even. Still, my pragmatic optimism has always prevailed and a happy kid I remain. One of the most evident benefits I have enjoyed with age has been the realization that contrary to adolescent belief and conventional wisdom at large, happiness is a choice, it is not a fortuitous occurence that is bestowed upon some and not others.

It simply is what it is.

I was enjoying the company of someone last night who was explaining a set of circumstances that he was not especially happy about, or comfortable about. “I don’t know. It is what it is. You know?”


I know.

I considered the habits of my mind as I watched this boy from across the table. I thought of all the time and energy wasted contemplating, manipulating, hoping, expecting, demanding that things be other than what they are. It seems really silly when you think about it like that. I remembered one of my favorite lines ever from my very wise faux-husband, R who said, “I can’t date. I end up sitting at dinner with some chick who is sizing me up for marriage and I haven’t even decided if I want to fuck her yet.” I thought about the moments lost in the present for the ludicrous pursuit of the future. I smiled as I listened to this boy try to convince himself that It might actually be something else than what It is; and then return awkwardly to the acute reality that It still was what It is. I thought about all the times that, after meeting someone and becoming plainly (painfully!) aware of the calvary of Red Flags, I chose to close my eyes and go forward because, It might not actually be what It is. But, always, It is what It is. You know?


We know.

I said that this was good news; it being what it is, and of course, knowing that it is what it is. He said no. It would be better if it was not exactly what it is. But then, I said it would not be what it is at all. He agreed. Perhaps this is better. This. Being what it is, and all. I thought about the freedom in not worrying about what it might be, or could be, or should be, or would be. How much more of the now does one want to give to consideration of the later? Now seems nice to me. None of this is easy when you are mired in complexities of the now, but it is possible. He told me he was concerned about, you know, it turning out to not be what it seemed to be. Then, it will be what it becomes, I said. He looked at me and nodded. “I guess,” he said. “I just needed to let you know, you know. What it is.”


I know.

In the pursuit of happiness much silliness has occurred. Always leaving the now for the then and conveniently placing the eventual happiness out there in the when. If I make more money. If I lose weight. If I get a better job. If I get a better guy/girl/house/suit/nose/title/life… But last night while we sat and enjoyed pizza and beer and music and San Francisco I told him that what it is, is just right. And he looked at me, and replied:


I know.


About Amanda

I am repatriating expatriate trying to work it all out. Well, to work some of it out anyhow. I am writing here for sanity, focus and general over-sharing.
This entry was posted in Chasing the Life I was Supposed to Want, Friends, Life, Perception, Philosophical Underpinnings, Relationships, true stories and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to It is what it is.

  1. Jaclyn Rae says:

    “I thought of all the time and energy wasted contemplating, manipulating, hoping, expecting, demanding that things be other than what they are.”

    You’re brilliant. Love this post, thanks for sharing! 🙂

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