Is This It
Kevin Durant joined a 73-win Golden State Warriors team back in 2016 for one goal and one goal only. And that was to pursue an NBA championship. To feel what it’s like to be at the top of the mountain. To be number one. To have all questions answered. And all purpose fulfilled. And all problems solved. And to feel like a champion.
Well, he eventually became an NBA champion. Not once. But twice! In 2017 AND 2018. And not only that, but he was awards the NBA Finals MVP trophy both times. He had done it. He had helped his team become a NBA champion. He did what he wanted to do. And from then on, it was all cream and gravy from there.
But one funny thing happened. Kevin Durant did not feel fulfilled. He did not feel satisfied. He still felt like he had something to prove. And he didn’t feel appreciated by his teammates for whatever reason. And because of that, he eventually decided to leave the Golden State Warriors and join the Brooklyn Nets in 2019.
In pursuit of a new goal. A new journey. A new team. A new desire. Believe me, I know because I am a Brooklyn Nets fan thru and thru!
Many people would love to be in Kevin Durant’s shoes. To be a multi-millionaire. An NBA champion. To be at the peak of this world and one of the top basketball players of all time. To be glorified and praised all thru the halls. To be a household name amongst every NBA fan in the world.
But I get a strange feeling that Kevin Durant still does not feel fulfilled. Still does not feel happy. Still does not feel accomplished – even with all his past accomplishments in his trophy case. This year, he requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets, and it was evident that he was not feeling fulfilled in Brooklyn after a 3-year stint with the team.
His eventual NBA fate still rests in the hands of the management team to see if they can find an attractive trade package for him. But, to me, Kevin Durant’s story shows that some people can seem to have it all. All the money. All the glory. All the goals accomplished. But once they reach that mountaintop and soak in the beauty, sometimes they still ask themselves “is this it?” Is this really truly definitely genuinely what I’ve been looking for all my life? Or is there more?
I personally have that feeling too. In all regards, thus far in my life, I consider myself a success and a lucky person to have won the life lottery. I have two loving parents. Drama-free friends. Not living paycheck to paycheck. I have a home to live in. I have clothing on my back. I have entertainment at the drop of a fingertip on my laptop or iPhone. In all essence, I’m living the dream. I’m living in a first world country. I’m relatively healthy. I am well-off by relative standards.
But sometimes, even I ask myself the question “is this it?” Is this all there is to life? Is this what I’ve been looking for the whole time? Sometimes, even I fall into periods of boredom and disillusionment. Even I fall into the traps of lust and desire and wanting more and more. It always feels like there is another mountain top to reach. Another goal to strive for. Another hill to climb. Another thing to check off on my never-ending to-do list.
It always doesn’t seem like we are content with where we are. In the here and now. If Kevin Durant can’t find peace and happiness as a world-famous multi-millionaire NBA basketball player champion, what hope is there for us?!
I guess there’s no direct answer to this question: “is this it?” There’s no direct response. No solution to the unanswerable question. Either that, or the solution will lead to hundreds of additional questions, waiting for us to ponder and solve. That seems to be the essence of the game. Solving one problem to move on to the next. Achieve one goal, rest, rinse, repeat.
There’s inherently nothing wrong with that. I think it is damn near impossible to feel at ease and ideal and at peace 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There will be bumps and bruises. There will be times when you feel like the present is not enough. There will be times when you struggle and want more. There will be times when you are ungrateful for what you have. That’s okay. That’s also a part of life.
I’m not saying that we should just wave a magic wand and have all problems disappear for the foreseeable future. And one day, we will be sipping gin and tonic on the beach somewhere feeling complete satisfaction for everything everywhere all at once. I guess we all feel insufficient at times. Yes, Instagram shows our highlights. But, at the end of the day, most people have mundane day-to-day lives. No one is excited all the time.
Just be okay with being okay. Be okay with your highs and your lows. And if you end up asking yourself “is this it?” that’s okay as well. We are all humans at the end of the day. Imperfect creatures. Capable of doing great things, but also capable of falling thru the cracks into despair.
Just know that it’s okay to feel like something is not enough. That something is off or wrong with the world. It’s okay to be normal. It’s okay to be sad. It’s okay to feel like there is another mountaintop to climb. It’s okay to let go. It’s okay to feel like something is missing. That’s the nature of the external world. That’s the nature of NBA championships. Of championship rings. Of promotions and higher salary. Of getting bonuses and cars and a big house and two kids and a dog. That’s the nature of it all.
It’s okay. Keep searching. Keep striving. Keep taking on challenging. And keep asking those questions.