Things seem better in trees. Maybe it's the new perspective, or the way even the thought of there being a possibility that something in wrong in the world seems so out of place among the leaves and the breeze. It's a safe place. The sky is bluer when you're that much closer, the wind is softer and the leaves are just enough greener that everything floats away on the backs of all that lives up there in the gentle canopy.
It's up there that you start thinking; about love and life and the things that you forget to remember. The smiles and the pain and the reason you laughed three days previously. And you start to wonder what might have happened if you hadn't pep-talked yourself into facing the day that morning? What if you had let yourself slip into the angst that a lack of: a) Things going well; b) chocolate and; c) sleep seems to create? Would your day have gone quite as well? Would you have laughed as loudly, or as often? Would everything seem as sunny as it did? Would you have been thinking to yourself that very afternoon that you were finally over him because you'd figured out why you were holding on, if you hadn't convinced yourself that the day was worthwhile? Would you have spoken to him that night if you weren't as content with the world as you were (all because you told yourself to smile?)?
What if you chose to stay annoyed that day?
Those tiny little decisions you make daily that seem so insignificant, until you remember them and suddenly – they're not. Those tiny little choices that set up chain reactions of events that can make or break you, your world, and your life. The irrelevant decisions you make that gain more significance than is due – the ones that you remember.
If I'd known what I know now, would I do anything differently? If I'd known then what it would mean to do what I did on that fateful day all those months ago – if I'd known what it would lead too – would I have done it? Would I have gone against all I'd been taught just for that single glimmer of a hope?
And when do you define that choice? At what moment does it go from being superfluous to the reason for your happiness? Was it that day I chose to take a chance on a memory of something better? That day where the sun smiled and suddenly all the pain leading up to that moment was worth it? That day where everything I'd ever wished for came true and I was left contented?
Or was it further back than that – on that otherwise insignificant day that I chose to do what I normally did on a Friday? That day where I smiled because I'd decided I'd gotten over him because I was smiling again? That day where things went like normal and everything was different?
Or back further, when that same person shattered my world and I chose not to move on from him? What if I'd let go? What if I'd listened to my senses and advice and the rest of the world? What if I hadn't let my heart win? Would today be any different?
Or even farther back still – what if this had never started on the day that it did, all those years ago? What then?
Is there such thing as fate? Would it all have worked out this way if I'd chosen differently? Would a small pep talk have made that much of a difference?
And what about when those choices incorporate someone else? What if you hadn't chosen to do what you never do, and you hadn't spoken to me that day? Would another time have come around, and all this just been delayed? Was this meant to be, so much so that it would have worked out even if we hadn't been in the right place at the right time?
But of course, as with all the other forgotten questions that the trees inveigle you to ask, the missed chances (and the taken ones) and all the subsequent choices that they lead too, fall into the realm of dreams and possibilities, never really gaining or losing what they never really had in the first place. And it's only when the possibilities seem more enticing that the reality that you begin to ask why on that particular day you chose not be stay annoyed, and why not any other day. And you ask yourself what if it I'd woken up only three minutes later. Would they day still have worked like it did?
And you work through each of the tiny choices you made that day – from the seat you chose to sit in on the train that was running surprisingly on time for once to the way you chose not to jaywalk the way that you usually do. And you run through each of these choices until you're only left with questions, and then again until you're only left with one.
Were we inevitable?