Life’s Little Reminders (a/k/a existential crises?)

Well, then, since I’m up (thanks, lack of cool air and loud ambulances), I’m giving myself permission to go back into my head one more time. Then I will get on with my busy week and I will be in Philadelphia before I know it and then it will be next Monday.

I haven’t slept much, so I’m not even sure any of my words will make sense. I’m at odds with myself, and I wonder if maybe I’m always going to be. Regardless, I’m reminded of my venture through honesty last fall, around this time, actually. I swore to be honest–with myself, and with others. I swore not to let what other people wanted dictate what I chose to do. I swore to have my own opinions, to decide what I really wanted and do it, or seek it, or work towards it. And to be fair, I think I’ve done a relatively good job with that. It may have slipped my mind at times, but I do more, I fear less, and I try to force myself to think about what I really, truly want at times.

I think this has been easy because I haven’t wanted for much. For the better part of a year I’ve wanted only to clear the hurdles of graduate school…and, of course, my friends/supports. I realize I was so busy living (and loving) my life that I didn’t stop to write about it, or what I was thinking. After rereading much of what I’d written last year, I realized my view had changed so drastically–on life, love, the pursuit of happiness–all of it. Ironically enough (someone tell GT), I stopped believing in monogamy. Sure, I still sought out the five qualities I was seeking in another individual I would want to involve myself with in any way, but when I thought long and hard about what it was I was really looking for, I came up empty-handed. I came up with only one word: freedom.

Perhaps it’s the sharp contrast between living a handful of years wanting one thing and doing another versus being able to see wants and desires clearly and just doing whatever, whenever. Or it could be the simplicity to it: there are no other things to consider, no one to coordinate with, no one to fight with. Or maybe it’s the idea of giving someone else control…not only over choices, but feelings. Once we let someone else in, we give them the chance to hurt us, and after we’ve been hurt in a way that feels like it can’t possibly get better, we build a metal cage around our hearts.

So what do you do when you remember all of this, when you’re reminded of all of this just by simply explaining it to someone new, and the other thoughts–the naggy little ones in the back of the mind–are trying to scream at you from the place where you were convinced you’d buried them deep down below?

I once wrote “you miss 100% of the chances you don’t take,” and I was right. (I was also really contradictory in that post, and realized later than my “friendship” with one said stand-up comedian was not, in fact, aligned with what I really wanted, but alas, we spoke only a few times and never really became friends anyway.) I’m just not sure which are the chances I’m okay with missing and which ones I’d hate myself for missing. I became so focused on determining what I want and being honest with myself about it that I never stopped to consider what I might do if I wanted two completely opposing things from two completely different places in my head/heart.

So I guess stay tuned. If history is any indication, I’ll figure it out eventually and likely write about it soon enough.


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