Thursday, December 17, 2009

Things I should've learned by now (A Year in Review).

So, I've decided to make a list of how things have and haven't turned out this year. Funny, another passed, and I still haven't got my shit together. Hmmm...

Anyhow, I think it worthy of reflection, if only to note where I've been stupid, and where I've come a little closer to a self-actualized human being (baby-steps and some crawling).

1. I am occasionally still afraid of the dark. Case in point: I scared the shit out of myself by going to Paranormal Activity and The Fourth Kind in the same day. I'm regretting having seen the former and I think that made me appreciate less the latter. This led to a few nights of sleeping with the lights on. Silly, yes. Wise, absolutely. My mind goes all kinds of crazy and this is just one of those times when my own sanity is more important than saving the planet. Does this make me a hypocrite. A little.

2. I am capable of getting over personal shame. Despite my desperate desire not to go back to working for Hell-Mart and having to explain my explosive failure, I did. A little humble pie, anyone? But you know what? It was worth it if it means that I am on my way back to semi-normal (because who are we kidding - I never truly was normal). And if I was able to get over this shame, maybe there are others that can finally be resolved as well.

3. It isn't always bad to be ghetto-fabulous! I have managed to prove that I can be resourceful despite a lack of resources. I put together a bookshelf with out the use of a screwdriver or a hammer. Yay me! Who said that the handles on butter knives only have one purpose?

4. My sister is my best friend in the whole wide world. Mom's a close second. I needed to rely on some people who were completely trust-worthy, and none proved more so than Shannon this year. She has watched me struggling for the last few years and has only offered support and love (through her charming wit and sometimes sarcastic tones accompanied by advice). She may live three-hundred miles away, but she might as well have been next door.

5. It's okay to shave my legs every once in a while. After a long bout of refusing to shave, the itch began to drive me way too crazy to describe. I don't know how men do it. The cuffs of my socks were not my friends during this time. Lesson learned.

6. I watch way, way, way too much television. Here is the current list of shows I follow: How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory, Heroes, House, NCIS, NCIS: LA, The Good Wife, The Forgotten, Criminal Minds, Glee, Fringe, Bones, Ugly Betty, Grey's Anatomy, and Medium. Throw in a little House Hunters, Ghost Hunters, Stargate Universe, and Masterpiece Theatre, and you've got a recipe for couch-potato-ness (term officially coined). Now, I know that most of these are watched via an over-diligent DVR, but this is ridiculous and I am considering abstaining from TV for a while to cut the addiction. There are better things to do than spend all day on my days off catching up. Like reading, or getting my hair cut (more on that next), or catching up with friends. I remember a time when I often said, "I don't watch TV." Of course, this is when I worked two jobs (one of which covered second shift), and I didn't have DISH, much less a DVR. I think I'd like to go back to the freedom that comes with saying that.

7. My mother needs to get over my hair. She keeps telling me that my hair-style is out of style (I beg to differ - I tend to choose the styles that are relatively timeless, but whatever). Still, I have unresolved trust issues with my hair. Until I find the perfect stylist and can actually afford him or her, I will just have to decide to live through the pain of the possible catastrophe that might occur. My hair hasn't been cut since the beginning of March. A good four inches needs to be chopped at the least. I used to let it get super long. Not so much any more - it's just too big a hassle, and I'm getting too old. Plus, the last time I got it cut, I found that it was possibly the least emotional I've been about my hair. So maybe this is becoming less an attachment to my hair thing and more a Sam's-too-lazy-to-get-her-hair-cut thing.

8. My health needs to take priority. I am on the second cold in as many months and I am not pleased. This tells me that I'm out of balance (like I haven't been for the past three years [insert sarcastic eyebrow raise here]). Under normal circumstances, I get sick maybe twice a year, if that. If you've noticed the book I just read on the right (The Kind Diet), then you know that I'm working towards a plan for a lifestyle change. I haven't eaten meat in almost ten years, but that's only part of the problem. I need to consider how my body is responding to processed foods, dairy, and eggs. Plus, as previously posted, I've had an ongoing war with my weight for a while. Besides the phlegm-y disposition, and overall respiratory issues, my joints and back have ached a lot more (and I'm not even that huge). There has been a rising occurrence of stomach issues. Fatigue has been a major culprit in my overall well-being as well, even before the third shift made its appearance. I always do better when I'm eating mainly fruit and vegetables (in their unprocessed, whole or juiced forms). So, what I'm waiting for is beyond me. But I know that if I finally make the official switch to veganism, there won't be any turning back. It just wouldn't be worth it. I want to be healthy until the day I die and that doesn't have to be unreasonable a statement.

9. I can take each day at a time. If anything, being a third-shifter has taught me that. Yes, the personal sleep schedule is all out of whack, but it forces me to do things more in moderation than anything. If it doesn't fit into my waking hours for that day, then it will have to wait until the next day. And that's okay. Some people might rush to get things done and either wear themselves out or do a completely shabby job. It just doesn't have to be that way.

10. I'm getting to the age where I don't feel the need to sweat so much of the small stuff. So, things didn't work out perfectly. That's okay. I find that I will live a much better life if I am okay with all possible outcomes, even the less than stellar ones. I've always been one of those people who would fret and worry. But now, not so much. And that's awesome.

11. So the planned fortune that the business was supposed to bring didn't happen. So much for basing my success on the outcomes of others in that line of work. Oh well. If it wasn't meant to be, then it's just a matter of me getting over it. It would've been nice to be free of the burden that comes with being poor. I keep trying to remember that these periods come and go, and eventually the freedom, that comes with a good income, will arrive when it's supposed to. Millionaire I am not. [Insert sigh here.]

12. I actually found a wine that I like (two to be exact). Both are from Cedar Creek Winery. Their Settlement Gold and Cranberry Blush are awesome. I got oh-so-lost on my way back from Cedarburg the day I decided to venture up there. I thought maybe I'd get some Christmas shopping done up there and then all I came back with was wine. I don't do well with dry wine. I like sweet. And I made a total ass of myself tasting them at the winery, acting like I knew what to look for. I don't. Wine expert I am not. What's funny about that trip is that I found historic downtown Cedarburg really easily, but when it came time to come home, I got completely turned around and ended up even farther north in Saukville. Not too big a deal. Strange that it's only fun to get lost when that is your intention. Otherwise, it's just a little scary.

13. I finally, finally get that I am responsible for my own happiness. It was drilled into me as a kid, but now I finally feel like that is how I can live. I've been responsible for the crappy existence that I have thus far created. And if the last three years have taught me anything, it's that if I am capable of utter misery, then I am also capable of an absolutely fantastic life. And that's exactly what I intend from now on. If I want to see change, then it has to start with me.

14. I realized what it is that I really want to do with my life. And no more distractions. No more excuses. If I really want something to happen, I have to make it happen. The business was just something that clouded my judgment and kept me from the things I really wanted to do, or thought I couldn't do. Not anymore. I think I'd rather try and fail at something I actually love and not something that only frustrates, annoys, disheartens, and ultimately I hate to do. Besides, when you do what you love, it's not work. It only reinforces joy.

So, that's it. I'm not saying there won't be amendments and additions to the list. But for now, this is pretty good. I won't bore you with the details of things that I plan to change about myself, not as a resolution, but something bigger and better. Besides, I'm sure the details of my life will emerge here over the course of the next year.

Okay New Year, bring it on! Bring. It. On.

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