Wednesday, November 24, 2010

812 Reasons why I both love and loathe change.

I'm sorry for the gap in posts, but with a trip to Texas to find out I'm the most awesome health insurance agent ever, Medicare season starting, my twin moving to the other side of the country, and being in the process of buying and moving into his house things have been extremely busy lately. 

But, alas, I'm alone tonight and having plenty of time to contemplate the recent and impending changes to my life and the lives of those around me. So, I'm taking some time to re-assess my priorities and this may be another babble/rant like the last post.  Sorry, I'll be back to well developed intellectual posts as soon as possible.

It's funny to me - in some ways I feel like I'm on top of the world right now.  If all goes well, I'm going to be moving into a house I can be proud of complete with furnishings and the like. I'm kicking ass at work - just got the first EVER AARP Services Inc. Distinguished Customer Experience Award - had a fantastic trip to Texas with AARP and Aetna.  And with Medicare sales going on now - I have people from all over calling me up for advice, counseling, questions - and you know what?  I love it.  I love being the one with all the answers. I'm singing all over the place and I keep getting additional requests - I'm really building a life that I can be proud of. 

But, at the same time, I'm terrified.  I'm terrified because I'm taking risks.  I'm overextending myself.  I'm feeling vulnerable.  I'm starting to experiment with trusting people and I feel like every time I do I'm getting burned.  I've grown accustomed to faces, sounds, companionship - I'm going to have to re-adjust to being alone. 

I done this before.  I've lived off of ramen noodles, I've made it through winter through creative use of space heaters.  I've gone home alone, come home to an empty house, woken up alone. 

So why does it feel so different this time?  Maybe I've gotten lazy and comfy with the status quo.  Maybe I'm afraid that through extending myself even farther I'll expose how vulnerable I really am.  Maybe I'm afraid that I'll fail and I won't be able to make my payments.  I don't know. 

So, I think I've been trying to figure out what my biggest fear is in all of this and I think it is loneliness.  I can deal with cold, I can deal with empty refrigerators, but dragging my kitty out to my parents house a few nights a week for companionship and watching old In Living Color DVDs on a loop until I start to dream in 1992 isn't something I want to go through again. 

But, it is different this time.  I have furniture now.  I have an awesome kitty cat and with all that space I can easily get another to keep her company during the day.  I have my choirs and my piano and my yoga.  I have internet on my phone so I can keep up with the outside world outside of work.  I have a larger dvd collection so I don't have to rely on movies and In Living Color for visual and auditory companionship.

I guess my biggest fear is that I won't be happy.  But as much as I fear that I won't be any happier there, I'm afraid that stagnating and taking the safe road will make me feel empty inside.  Yes, right now I have a life and lifestyle that is working for me, but it isn't taking me to the next level.  I'm always looking around at things in my life that I feel need improvement.  Things that disappoint me.  Things that make me feel inadequate.  I know that new and improved surroundings won't change that - but I know that if things stay exactly as they are right now I'll be more disappointed in myself for passing the opportunity to improve myself and my station in life.

I think I've talked myself out for the moment.

Monday, November 1, 2010

I am occasionally neurotic.

It took me about 27 years to discover that I was a valuable person and that I was worthy of being happy.  That might sound retarded to some; but, honestly, I think a lot of people can relate to that.  I think that we, as a society, are taught humility and guilt and shame, and that any sense of self worth is egotistical and selfish.  So, I spent years feeling guilty about everything and anything, trying to be everyone to everybody, and convincing myself that I was worth less.  That being me wasn't good enough, I had to serve others in order to make them like me.  That was a hard lesson to unlearn.

So, although I've gotten much better about trying to find the line between caring for my friends and family and going overboard to try to earn everyone's love, affection, and attention; I still find myself falling into that pattern from time to time.  It never ceases to amaze me how I can think I'm on a solid foundation and yet something simple and small can just shake me to the core sometimes. 

Lately I've been nervous.  Not like that dreadful, overly-anxious type of anxiety that I normally feel, but the type of nervous where I get preoccupied and forget to eat or sleep.  Where I start to really care about what I look like.  Where I care what I sound like.  Where I can't have a conversation without wondering what kind of facial expression I'm making.  Where I start to think that my best isn't good enough - I need to be a better singer, a better salesman, a better friend.  Then, I start to think that all the things I pride myself on the most I actually suck at and that I'm a horrible person.

Maybe I'm too Type A for my own good.  Maybe I'm doomed to always end up shooting myself in the foot.  Maybe I've been too scared to build myself up because I know that's just harder I have to fall.  But, I do it.  I look back on all the years I wasted telling myself that everybody else was better than me.  Why should I convince anyone that I'm less than the best?  That's for them to decide.  I shouldn't make that decision for them. 

But, with the idea that I have the potential to be the best for everyone and everything comes the flip side - what is the best for me?  Are there bigger, better, more fantastic things I ought to be doing? Have I fallen into doing what I am because it is optimal for me? Or am I simply settling for less? 

I make mistakes.  I screw things up.  It happens.  I work very hard to ensure that it does not happen, but I fail.  But, I learn my lesson (or so I hope), pick up the pieces, and get to work on fixing it.  I think how swiftly and effectively you fix problems shows almost as much if not more character than not letting them happen in the first place.  I try very, very hard not to go home and ruminate on it.  But I do.  I go home and I dwell on it and I stew over it and I let it run circles in my head until I'm a mess.

So I guess I question myself. I question why I let other people continue to have power over me.  If I am my own master then why do I choose to allow myself to be so influenced by my perceptions of how others view me?  Why do I consider my standing with the people around me to be so important? 

I know I'll be revisiting this topic later and this isn't a very well thought out or designed post.  I think I'm just going through an insecure phase right now and that makes me neurotic.