With two days left before school starts, I’m inclined to run away with my kids to an island where we can be left to wonder, without the world shoving its will down our throats. But we won’t. Instead, we’ll fall into line with everyone else and suffer the bullshit. And smile. And pretend to be good little soldiers as we try to live up to society’s expectations of what that means.

It’s hard to raise children and tell them to dream, and then put a barbed wire fence around them. And it must be devastating for them to outgrow their fence, only to see the ones around us. Their heroes. Childhood is fleeting. I know. I can’t let it go. And I still have never fully given in to this game even though I have to wear the right clothes, pour unsustainable fuel into my car, and take tests to prove I’m worthy of earning money.

I sometimes hate that so much of our lives are predetermined by society’s predispositions on how we should be, act and think.

We go to school. We get a job. We vote. We produce offspring. We die. Yes, there’s beauty, laughter and miracle epiphanies sprinkled in – but those are contained like lightning bugs in a pickle jar. Only, I’m on the underside of the jar’s lid waiting for the opportunity to escape – careful to avoid being crushed by a panicked God rushing to screw the top back on after He spots me there.


Jim Mitchem

Another Snickers Gem
The Genius of Steve Jobs

Jim Mitchem

Writer. Father to daughters. Husband. Ad man. Raised by wolves. @jmitchem on twitter. First novel, Minor King, out now.