What I’ve learned

Never stop learning, because life never stops teaching… (the Buddha, apparently)

I was reflecting this weekend on things that I have (finally) learned in my nearly 44 years on this planet.

Wow, I feel old.

But sometimes (okay, for me, many many times) it takes many missteps and mistakes and errors to finally figure out what is often relatively obvious. Sometimes, it’s remembering something I used to know…but conveniently forgot. Sometimes, it’s learning that one way doesn’t necessarily work, so maybe it’s time for a change.

Anyway, here are a few things I’ve learned…

1. If it hurts, don’t do it. Just. Stop.
2. Relaxing once in a while won’t kill you.
3. Eat the damn cheese.
4. Tweezing your lip hurts. A lot. (and is not necessarily something your mother will warn you that you will probably need to do at some point in your life)
5. The life you have in hindsight is probably not going to be the life you imagined. That’s okay. It might even be better than what you imagined.
6. Just because you can hold a grudge like a champion, do you really want to?
7. I can do hard things.
8. Sometimes, where you are is almost as important as what you are doing in terms of your happiness.
9. Your life – your relationships – your job – are not going to make sense to everyone. This is more than okay. Live the life you need to live.
10. Not all relationships and friendships will be lifelong. This is also okay.
11. Wherever you end up, find your people.
12. Who you are is who you always were. Remember what made you happy as a child… and find a way to bring that into adulthood. Trust me, it will make you a much happier adult.
13. There is nothing like finishing the day with a hot cup of tea, a piece of chocolate, and a good book.
14. Relationships change. They evolve. When you think about all the ways you’ve changed over time, this makes perfect sense.

Obviously (well, hopefully) it’s not an exhaustive list. I don’t feel like a very wise person, but life is a good teacher. Constantly learning, constantly growing.

Mindset shifts…

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I have to say that it’s really weird that I am listening to Taylor Swift’s new song (Me!) while writing this. 
Good grief, I feel like I’m 15 again. 
Then again, I think I have a much better idea of who I am, and what I can do, compared to when I was 15. 
This was yesterday’s revelation during my therapy session. 
Yes, I go to therapy. I should probably have gone a long time ago. I think a lot of people could benefit (then again, I don’t tend to ask people if they’re in therapy; perhaps they are already benefiting from it, but i just don’t know about it…). 
It’s helping me realize that, among other things, I can do hard things. 
I am not weak. Not by any stretch of the imagination. 
I am stubborn as heck. I am persistent. And I finally – finally – think I’m getting to know who I am and who I should be. 
Nothing like taking half your life to do that. Then again, better late than never? 

Black Dog on My Shoulder

I think that was in A Wrinkle in Time? but maybe not…The Google isn’t coming up with it. Regardless, I’m in a mood this morning. We had wonderful thunderstorms last night. But this morning, it’s windy and chilly and cloudy. And I’m grumpy.

And it occurred to me, for all of my griping and angst and worry about last Thursday-Friday-Saturday, and getting out of my routine, and doing things that I don’t typically do… it was three wonderful days with my people.

People who speak my language.
People who get me.
People with whom I don’t have to explain everything.

Even better, it was my work people and my family. So I had three wonderful days where I felt like I belonged.

Then yesterday, in a fit of unproductivity (apparently that is not a word, but go with me here…) I completely lost all the good feelings that I had built up.

It was time I didn’t know I needed.
A break I didn’t know I needed.

Time to reset. Sigh. I did cancel my 9 am off-campus meeting, so that will help. I need to get to it today. Break out of the rut. Get, ahem, stuff done. (Not exactly what I wanted to say…) I don’t need to hit it out of the park today, but I need to at least get a hit.

The only way through is through

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A quick note… a busy busy few days. 
So challenging for the introvert in me. 
I’m dwelling on all the dumb things I said at dinner last night, when I was exhausted. I was completely out of my league. 
Hopefully they forgot all about me, and I can fade into the background again today. 
The work-related thing is almost over; the family related stuff starts this afternoon. 
I’ll get through. 

Staying in my lane

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I was reminded of this yesterday, when in an effort to be helpful it turned out that I was the roadblock keeping someone else from being productive and moving forward with what she needed and wanted to do. 
I often think that I can help people – and offer that help freely – but I also sometimes assume that doing something is better than “making” someone else do it. 
And that’s not always the case. 
I did spend most of the morning wallowing, of course. I dug myself out of it (kind of) by the evening, but it was a rough day and led to a less-productive day than I had hoped to have. 
So today – onward! and since I have to be in close proximity to the person who I hindered rather than helped the rest of the week, I’m going to work on staying in the background, letting her take the lead, and being helpful when asked.