Monday, August 2, 2010
This morning I woke up angry and at this point I am still not certain as to what or why I am feeling like this. It is not typical for me to wake up "on the wrong side of bed" but today sure feels like I did. I initially thought to myself, "well maybe you're angry because it's Monday and Monday means it's back to work?" Yes that idea alone can be frustrating but it did not seem to relieve the tension. Then I remembered that I had the unfortunate task of writing a statement to my human resources department about something unsavory I witnessed last week at work regarding a colleague. That definitely agitated me because I am not sure how I feel about what I saw. Aside from that, my angst has not subsided. Am I angry because it is four in the morning which means time to go to work? Not quite. Has my bank account grown exponentially from the time when I last checked? Probably not. Then what could it be?
I haven't been in at work since last Wednesday so I know I can not use the beloved excuse of fatigue. No I'm certain my trouble goes deeper than that. I started to think about my friends and family and like a metal detector my anger seemed to pick up on something. I did not realize it but last night, as I went to bed, I went to sleep uneasy... sort of... worried. Because I went to bed in that state of mind, I woke up with nothing resolved, and perhaps only more anxiety and confusion.
This might be my downfall in life, but I am the kind of person who wants to make everyone's life happier and more fulfilled. When something is not right in someone's life, or even when someone is going through a rough patch, in comes J.Fable with black spandex tights and a red cape to the rescue (Well not exactly though the image is humorous). I go to bed with everyone's troubles and sometimes I forget my own. Sometimes it would be nice to remove myself from what is going on with those around me, at least when it's time to rest my head but unfortunately, I'm not programmed that way.
I had dinner with a couple of close friends last night and one of my friends said something that really struck a chord with me. "People are going to do what they want because they want to." Yes, an idea so simple yet lots of us spend time trying to expand on someone's behavior when really... they are the ones who are making the choices they see fit for themselves. I forget that no one agrees to anything, says something, or does anything unless they are fully committed to whatever it is. We like to blame outside sources for decisions that seem to have been made on a whim, or plans that do not seem fully thought out because we all like to believe that our beloved friend or family member is a lot wiser than that. The reality is, the person making those decisions is gaining something out of them and is fully responsible for what ever happens after. My friend said something else that made me reevaluate my position in my loved ones lives, "As their friend, you need to let them fall, and not help them." Sounds harsh I know, but I also know where she is coming from. How is anyone supposed to learn from a decision they made when someone is waiting on the other end in case something goes wrong, with open arms and a plate of cookies? To an extent, it is our duty to provide an open ear, and some words of wisdom, but no matter how much you care about someone, one has to trust that that person knows what he or she is doing and that they can handle everything that comes from the decisions they have made.
Now would you look at that, I am starting to feel slightly better all ready :)
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
How does one go about protecting loved ones from eminent doom when the other person they are trying to help is too stubborn to listen to any sort of logic? It is hard to sit back and watch a dear friend, relative, spouse...what have you, set themselves up for disaster, all the while you are the one who is sitting at home contemplating if you could have done more to ease the situation. This I find, is arguably the worst part of the whole debacle; the sense of helplessness one feels for the sake of their loved one. When one finally musters enough courage to confront their beloved person, the danger of being denied is often times too great of a risk to take for it might yield results in ways otherwise unexpected. So what is one to do? Try and speak up about the problem fearing the other person might take offense and terminate any sort of dialogue that was to come? Or turn a blind eye on whatever is going on and do your best to trust they will at some point see the situation for what it really is?
I suppose each situation is unique to itself and there isn't a one size fits all solution. Sometimes it is better to speak up and say what you feel, other times it's best to just walk away and let the other person figure things out for themselves. The trouble is being able to tell the difference between when you should jump in the mix, or stay out of it.
This sort of situation reminds me of a Greek tragedy. The audience is in on the secret, yet the protagonist is in the dark about the fate that lies before him and dies a very calculated death. Very dramatic, I know, but the idea is the same. As an audience member (an outsider) you want to yell out what is so blatant to you and to the people around you just so the person on stage (in life) can wake up and see what is going on. If I recall all of the plays I have seen, the audience fortunately remains silent; they know what is happening on stage is make believe. If only art imitated life in that sense, then perhaps we can all take a sigh of relief in the end. A standing ovation? A bow? Et tu Brute.
Monday, January 25, 2010
As I analyze my relationships with people, and I here stories of past relationships, (be it platonic or romantic) I am finding that social interaction is something that keeps us all sane. As humans, we need the freedom of being able to interact with one another in order to accomplish everyday tasks and further bonds but most importantly, strengthen the spirit. A life in utter solitude is one of the most dangerous lifestyle CHOICES one could possibly apply to his or herself. Without interacting with other people for a somewhat lengthy period of time (i.e. a few hours to a day) I notice that when I do get the chance to have someone to speak to, I become a furry of information. It can be overwhelming for the person who is on the receiving end of this tornado of words. I notice that after being alone for a period of time, I desire a conversation with another being, simply because the internal conversations I have become monotonous and obsolete. Having someone on the other end of the conversation provides another perspective and reinforces the human identity which keeps us infinite and grounded in our reality.
Do not cut me to the quick, I value my alone time more than anything. I look forward to it everyday because I am surrounded by people all of the time. When I am alone, I reflect on my life in the past, present, and the ever so near future. I am learning to not dwell on the past as much and to live in the present as much as I can because before you know it, the year is over and you are no more further along than you were in the start of the year. I do not believe in New Year's Resolutions but the one thing I promised myself this year is to live each day to its fullest and to take one day at a time. Self reflection allows this to happen and is necessary in building the spirit and eliminating the toxins society creates for us. I find healthy and sometimes creative mediums to channel this energy (ex The Boy Who Knew Too Much blog). In a world filled with so much pollution, self reflection offers a sort of clarity, that to me...is priceless.
Overall, I am willing to bet that the most important moments in your life, that helped shape your identity, were not spent alone; someone was there with you. People provide the spirit with lessons and memories that are vital to our growth. It is important to surround oneself with people who are not trying to stifle this intrinsic right we all have been given as sentient beings. People who are on the same wave length as I are the ones I find the best connection with and value their presence more than others. No matter what, I am comfortable around numerous people, and just as happy keeping to myself; balance is everything.
The human condition is a complexity no DNA strand can ever reveal in its entirety. We as humans (which essentially means animals) desire the same common interests, yet go about achieving them in different ways, and often times in ways that do not yield results. For example, most of us desire more money in order to gain whatever it is we want; a car, a house, friendship, love, a new rolex with diamonds lining the rim. Some of us would put in more hours at work, others would spend less, and some would demand a raise in order to gain whatever it is he or she desires. Some of these actions will yield better results whereas some of these will not yield any. One can really judge someone's character based on the paths he or she decides to take on their journey in achieving whatever it is they want.
The other day a friend was explaining to me that he desires a loving relationship with someone more than anything. After a few failed attempts at finding this bliss, his spirits have weened and his self-esteem bruised. I thought to myself in that moment, that love, the desire to be loved, and the ability to love back are actions that we as humans expect at a certain point in our lives. We've seen it played out before our eyes even before we could speak. Blonde princess in distress, knight in shining armor to the rescue, they kiss and instantly fall in love and get married. One can not imagine what the world would be like if this is how relationships actually formed. In many tribes, marriage and love are two different ideas; no one marries based on love. Actually, one would be lucky to have even met their spouse before they "tie the knot" because in many places, the husband picks his wife-to-be out of a jumble of women and hopes he at least picked one that will put up with all of his demands. If these indigenous people can remove the idea of love from a relationship and get married based on things like economic status, land ownership, and political standpoint, why can't we here in the western world do the same? Why are we conditioned to believe that love needs to be the main factor as to who we spend our time with and who we are intimate with? We even have a national holiday in February that tells us on this day, if you don't have a lover, you are essentially a loser. This has now become a case of nature versus nurture.
The funny thing about love is, is that it is a basic human desire that is embedded in our blood, yet some people have no idea how to attain it, or deal with it once it's there. Some people use it as a weapon, others do not know how to function without it, and some, like my friend Jason, want it so badly that it is all they think about. What I found reassuring about Jason, is that he is determined on finding that story-book ending we've all seen so many times on the big screen. This fantastical idea does not seem fantastical to him and his naivety is surprisingly charming. I can agree that relationships are overall more enjoyable when both players share a common love for one another. Nothing is more beautiful than watching two people, who do not have very much figured out besides the fact that they love each other, go at life together and learn lessons along the way. Sometimes, it just would be great if there was a fast-forward button to the part where they kiss and live happily ever after.