The bewilderment carried by surprise


The element of surprise is something I once adored. 

Year after year, I was sent off to Thornapple Elementary where my day would be filled with stimulating surprises each and every day. I lusted over the most simple surprises thrown my way; I was living life in the unknown. I took in each moment as it unfolded before my inquisitive, young eyes. 

But now the element of surprise has morphed into a bone-chilling idea hovering over the days like an ominous cloud. While I once embraced the state of oblivion, I now find myself wrapped in a world of a fully-omniscient lifestyle. 

The word surprise often holds a negative connotation in my older, maturing mind. While it once carried excitement and anticipation along its back, the eight loud letters now encourage the hairs on my back to stiffen and my hands to shake without control. 

I long to adore surprises once again. ”

While surprises once involved the jovial games in gym class each week or the long-anticipated holiday parties, the positivity and anticipation surrounding the idea of the unknown has diminished from my vision.

But as I reflect on my merry childhood, I realize how much I long to love surprises once again. 

As surprises in my world today include the detested Random Student Selector and ever-so-loathed pop quizzes, I find it nearly impossible to allow the intimidating idea of surprise to leave me in a content and elated state of mind. 

As we mature, societal pressures encourage us to act, perform, and think in a certain way. They slowly chip away at the admiration of surprise. Rather than embracing the unknown and allowing the future to take hold of the reigns, we shy away from what we can not plan and prepare for. 

We have become so hyper-focused on how others view us that we have closed the door to a world of surprises. If we aren’t prepared for how we must respond to a situation thrown our way, we tend to send our minds searching for protection and shelter from the intimidating society judging our every move. 

As a child, I allowed the future to lay out its path for me and my life. It did not lead me to a world of consternation but rather a world bliss and satisfaction. If the element of surprise once allowed led me to live a life much more freely than I live today, why not embrace the state of starting each day with a blank slate?

Although the idea of surprise and the unknown has morphed into an unnerving notion faced in my everyday life, I now long to rediscover the admiration I once felt towards a life in the unknown. 

I long to adore surprises once again.