After attending an amazing wedding of some dear college friends this weekend, I was definitely struck by the number of people who came up to me and mentioned that they had read some of this blog. While at my 5th year reunion two weeks prior, I heard the same thing. While a personal blog like this is, at its essence, a vanity project, it still makes me feel a little weird that people are reading my thoughts – even if I do push every update to Facebook. I mean, I don’t know that I would actually read what I write.
Even so, thank you for the support – after a few weeks of radio silence, I’ve decided to resume communications. I won’t prattle on about what made me stop for a bit (and if you’ve seen me in the past few weeks, you’ve definitely heard me bitch about how busy I was), but here’s a triumphant return to the world of vanity blogging.
Part of what made me pause in the first place was concern that I’d basically covered all the ground that I was going to cover. The last thing I want to do is wrap up my same, general crazy in a new form every post. You know that I’m a perfectionist, prone to depression, and can’t plan or organize to save my life. I can’t keep hammering these same points home over and over again without actually doing something about them. My whole list of “100 Days Till 27” was supposed to be this kick-start into action, but it honestly just turned into an excuse to flagellate myself weekly for not achieving this “ideal” self. Seeing as my 27th birthday is now just a week away, I’m not sure that beating up on myself for the next week and trying to make grand, year-defining gestures is the best use of my time at the moment, anyways.
I had a moment on Sunday evening, after the reception, but before the first, aborted after-party, where I sat in our push-button-star Nissan rental with Lovely Wife, taking a moment to get away from the din and enjoy some A/C. It was in that moment that I realized that I felt content with life – I used the word happy at the time, but I think that that may have been a bit simplistic. It was a moment where I couldn’t think of a single thing weighing on my mind – “God’s in his heaven, all’s right with the world” (strange words coming from an agnostic, but allow me that indulgence). Now, considering that at the moment, the only pressing thought may have been if I’d chilled the champagne well enough for the after-after-party, reaching self-actualization wasn’t that impressive.
What was important to me, though, is that I finally finally had a baseline.
I can’t remember the last time I had a moment like that – no self-doubt, no fear, no anxiety. Everything was ok in that moment. For all I cared at the moment, I’d hit nirvana. I understand that life isn’t free from anxiety or worry, and I know that believing that I can go through a busy time in my life without some worry is a bit naive, but on the other hand, I now have something to aim for. Instead of firing blindly at a theoretical target, I’ve now understand what that kind of contentment feels like.
Now, I just have to make sure that I don’t flagellate myself when I can’t readily achieve that every waking moment of every day.
The other take away from the past few weeks of interacting with friends old and new is that I’m not the only person with these feelings and pressures. Some of the most successful people I know (academically, socially, or professionally) have the same feelings of doubt, distraction, and distrust. Now, they’re not stupid enough to write 750 words about it publicly, but then again, I always said that I was a mid-to-below average student at college. It’s crass of me to point and go, “Hey! I’m not the only kid who’s fucked up! They’re all fucked up too!” and I don’t think that’s what I’m doing here. It’s more of a, “We’re all in this together.”
If looking at my crazy ramblings makes you feel better about yourself, or if you gain any measure of insight form my words, that’s as good as I can manage. Knowing that there are folks out there, just like me, who perhaps deal with it in different ways, not only makes me feel less adrift, but also more resolute in my drive to change some of these aspects of myself and become better.
So I’m back – radio silence is over. Resume transmission.