Sometimes I feel like a satellite; it’s as though I’m floating through space with no one looking for me and no one to report to. I collect data and observe, but I’m removed.
In my most abstract of thoughts, I’m a robot, which is absurd, but the thought still crosses my mind. It’s as though I was an experiment gone wrong; an AI programmed to love, but the slider was too far and no one, certainly not me, understood how much I could, or would, hurt over my lifetime. My emotion meter was maxed and whoever created me wanted to see how it would play out. Only no one had an interest long enough, and the results went further than expected.
Of course I’m not a robot. Robots don’t gain weight (unless they are upgraded?), they don’t require food (I wish so hard for food pills; food is tedious to me), or get tired. Sure, I’d need to be plugged in periodically, but what if that’s what I’m doing when playing games? What if I was programmed to play games as a way of recharging myself?
Sometimes I feel like an orphan, how ridiculous that must sound, an orphan at 40, but it is how I often feel. Like I was created by happenstance and thought. Where did I come from?
I once saw a caterpillar cocoon itself; I assumed it would be a gentle and lovely event; I was incorrect. The caterpillar I witnessed built its chamber around itself, then spent several minutes thrashing about; the process looked confusing, uncomfortable, and dangerous.
Even when I have felt hopeless, which, let’s be real, has been often in my life, I’ve almost universally had a drive to keep going, to keep trying, even if I didn’t know a positive outcome was possible. Over the years I’ve mentally turned myself inside out. I’ve tried as hard as I believe I could try. I’ve metaphorically torn myself apart and restitched myself back together, all for the sake of improvement.
I’m 40 years old and I’m still thrashing in that cocoon.
Sometimes I look at the world and my surroundings almost antiseptically; I calculate my options in various scenarios I will (hopefully) never encounter. I am the person who is always looking for what I could do in case of an emergency. I am always trying to be aware of every situation.
I am an observer.
I collect the data.
I am the satellite, made of the strongest materials to survive the pressures of space.
I collect the data for no purpose other than myself. I am the rover singing myself happy birthday on foreign planets.
I sometimes feel I was programmed with a heavy hand by way of caring; I have always cared too much.
I’ve lost so many friends in my life, family, even, with no true understanding of how or why. I recently lost two friends and not only do I not understand what happened, but these events deeply trouble me, as I can only conclude the problem must be me. After so many incidents over my lifetime, I can no longer consider the possibility of it being other people; it truly must be me.
And, again, I wonder if this is what a robot would feel, that most everyone, at some point, must leave or tire of me. That I’d age out of utility or novelty. I’m the stuffed animal in a box in the attic.
I know I came from people. Those people may not have known me for a long time now, but they were my origins. I may not be a compelling enough friend for everyone, but the people who are in my life who care about me are my priority. I may think I’m generally a piece of sh*t, but I think I care for Cloud, our dog, as well as possible, and that fills me with a warm satisfaction. I hope I am a decent partner, though I feel I am defective in many ways.
Not all electronics work properly.
And if I was a machine, it would make so much sense why I love electronic music: it’s the music of my people.
Please take a moment to contact a friend today. They might need it more than you think.
And if you’re here reading this, you’ve made a satellite smile in code, whatever that looks like.