According to the scientists, chaos is a thing of mathematical purity, a creature of shape and form. But some shapes and forms defy consistency and pattern: defiance is a pattern maybe. Some shapes and forms are too complicated to recognise and prefer to roam in dense dark clouds across one’s perception. Daily life can feel like one solid grey blob but there is a consistency and a sense of control to be had, a pattern of sorts. For me it is caring for the horses and the chickens and being at my desk every morning by nine. It is eating and sleeping at roughly the same times and exercising according to the schedule.
And yet still the sense that there is no consistent shape or form pervades everything to the point of malign pollution. Every week is different, every month has some disruption, every year is a new tangle of events. Nothing is predictable and we become passive passengers despite the power of control freakery. There is really no control because everything is subjective, dependent on externalities. Maybe we need the sense of chaos to force a weird discipline, to avoid making it worse. A consistency in the inconsistencies?
The problem with the sense of being ruled by chaos is that as one gets comfy with it. Chaos gets familiar so it’s not so chaotic as it once was and it’s tempting to keep adding to it. Chaos is like a drug and it tempts you ever deeper into reaches where there is no light, no discreet sounds, no shapes, only an intense sense of formlessness. You listen in idle moments to some distant low level but indistinct noise. You know it’s just the overwhelming sense of being out of control, but you have the sense that something like warm wet concrete is slopping over everything. You know you have to move but it’s just so much effort and it’s quite cosy to give in to it all. But you know that it’s just a matter of time before the concrete sets and you’re stuck with no escape. Bound forever in sinister chaos maelstrom you face the horror. The chaos has frozen and binds you to a future where nothing can ever be resolved.
Resolution is how we progress through the days, one to the next. Feeding the cat, lounging in the bath, folding clean laundry, eating pizza, are all resolutions of a kind. But becoming a victim of your own life is part of the intoxication, the temptation ever for more, ever to keep saying yes, yes I can do this, yes I can fix this, yes I will save you. Yes. You just keep pushing harder and this is why people develop high blood pressure and peptic ulcers. This is why people drive into brick walls and holes in the road. Too many thoughts rushing about and fighting for supremacy. You can solve it with drugs and booze and being antisocial. Or you can do it by unwinding the chaos of work, family, children, pets, home, socialising, exercise, shopping, eating, sleeping and the rest, one step at a time. Resolution solves the blood pressure thing, and maybe the ulcers. It also untangles the chaos and washes away the concrete before it sets.
We thrive on change and yet we fear it. We want a full life and yet we yearn for quiet spaces, so much that finding them adds to the pressure and sense of chaos. Travelling is its own chaos but is there anything more restful than being on a long haul flight where someone else is responsible for every aspect of what you are doing for those precious hours of voided existence?
So when someone asks you how things are going, don’t tell them that you’re thriving on the mess, that the puzzling together of daily tasks and the sheer thrill of existence, keep you awake at night. For in those witching hours you make plans for what happens next in your life. For adrenaline junkies there is always another opportunity for a thrill and for chaos obsessives there is always another opportunity to twist the chaos into a new and even more exciting shape. Keep track of the details in the darkness when you can’t sleep. Hold on to the tail of the burning beast that is your wild life and don’t stop twisting it. Twist it into the form you want however intensely you try to pretend that you want a quiet life. Maybe you do want a life of predictability and one where at the end of the day you sigh and doze off watching whatever pap the television is serving. Be passive and drift away or grab at whatever you encounter that is unknown and unfamilliar and hold it fast. It might prickle a bit, but at least you’ll know you’re still alive.
PS This is what the WordPress AI evaluation says of this piece. The italics are why AI still has a long way to go:
The content captures the sense of chaos and its impact on daily life effectively. The descriptions are vivid and create a strong image of the overwhelming nature of chaos. However, the main ideas could be more organized and connected to each other. Consider restructuring the content to create a clearer progression of thoughts and ideas. Additionally, some sentences could be refined to improve clarity and flow. Finally, consider providing examples or anecdotes to support the points being made.