Tag Archives: change

On Being Anal and the Benefits of Finally Letting Go

Salem and I.

Monday
I wasn’t perfect
But the world didn’t fall apart

Tuesday
I still wasn’t perfect
And the world still didn’t fall apart

Wednesday
I tried not even trying to be perfect
And the world stayed intact

Thursday
I tried being imperfect on purpose
And the world just kept spinning

Friday
I gave up on perfection
And the whole, intact, spinning world glistened with possibility

 

Between two laptops, constant travel, and an irregular sleep schedule, I am having a lot of trouble keeping track of what I have blogged about and what has yet to be written. I’ve been viewing this as a bad thing, but today I have realized that it also means that I am waking up every day with nothing on my to do list, nothing stressing me out, nothing causing a knot in my stomach.

I have always been uptight, though most people don’t see that side of me: waiting longer than anyone expected to have sex or smoke pot; resisting peer pressure quite easily be maintaining a fierce identity as an outsider; color coding my notes in classes; alphabetizing bookshelves as a leisure activity; etc. This part of myself has kept me out of a lot of bad situations and makes me an incredible secretary/organizer, but, I have realized in the past few years, it has also made me physically and mentally unwell.

I have always associated food with stomach pain, for instance. Now, hardly anything makes me feel ill because my stomach is relaxed enough to do its job. Mentally, panic attacks and internalized self loathing (because I felt I couldn’t control the situation or my reactions to it) have also been caused by being so anal.

So the fact that I don’t blog regularly or, more importantly, that waking up each day with no to do list doesn’t freak me out is such an incredible blessing.

I get lost in my head a lot. Not lost like day dreaming; lost like a deep dark forest with an evil witch from the original Grimm Brothers’ tales and it’s very likely that I will not make it out alive. My head, while often a comfort because of the numbness and/or strict containment it can summon, has been a place where I am terrified to exist, much less explore.

“Finally, finally things are changing…” That’s from a Dido song that I love – “This Land is Mine”. Anyway, things are changing. And for that I am incredibly grateful.

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St. Paul/Minneapolis: Leg #3

I’ve been feeling burdened by this blog as of late and I blame that on forcing myself to write about weeks past, trying to catch up. I have a few more posts like that queued up for the next few days, but I’m going to focus more on writing about today, this leg of the journey, the here and now. ‘Cause the here and now is pretty cool.

Since leaving Peggy’s, I’ve felt a definite sense of this being the third leg of the journey. Arriving and being in Chicago felt like the first; our time in Wisconsin – Milwaukee, Madison, Downing – felt like the second; and now, in the past few days, we’ve made the transition to the third leg.

Mostly, the shift was caused by a really awkward (and crappy) couch surfing experience.

I feel more empowered than I ever have to create the life I want to have. Casper keeps encouraging me, telling me that people really do like spending time around me. I often need reminded of this, particularly regarding people who I want to be friends with. Until now, I’ve pretty much just had lovers and acquaintances – another example (and there are many) of how I rely far too heavily on extremes, black and whites. Casper and I keep a count of “friends” I have: people who I like, who like me, and who I have established these facts with. A friend (apparently!) is someone who I don’t have to feel like a burden to, who I believe enjoys my company and who I have respect for. So far, I have four “friends” and it’s exhilarating! And new and exciting and empowering and validating.

I mention this because another part of our Twin City adventures so far has been reconnecting with my friend Mar, in unlikely and slightly unfortunate circumstances.


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