Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Being a Sitting Duck

I detest the feeling of being helpless.

In psychology, there is a concept known as the locus of control. The theory distinguished between two types of people - internals, who attribute events to their own control, and externals, who attribute events in their life to external circumstances. I think a primary part of me belong to the former. I like being in control of my own destiny. If I am not, I would like to trust or understand the person who is in control.

As such, I get vexed when circumstances grow beyond my reach, beyond my comprehension, beyond me. When I was just a wee tyke, I would stand by the window to wait for my mum to materialize from the bus stop when she is 10 minutes late from her usual arrival time. As the time dragged longer, I would start to worry my little head, letting my imagination run wild on the worst possible scenario, before starting to tear. This is the feeling of helplessness.

I used to think that the most heart-wrenching feeling on earth is to helplessly watch a loved one suffer. You stand by his or her side, attempting to proffer comfort in vain.

Now, I think it is more grievous to know that someone is suffering and you aren't even allowed by their side to offer any comfort. You are just alone in the world, agonizing their fate illegitimately.


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