Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Game of Life or DIY: I'll Take Life for A Thousand, Alex

I've written a lot about how life seems like a game, with rules that I've never quite understood. While friends and family are getting married, starting families,buying homes, and settling into their adult lives, I seem to still be.... not drifting, exactly- but not matching up to some societal norms. But, then who says that society knows what's normal? Normal has changed so much over the years-feminism givng rise to a backlash, macho guys becoming stay at home dads, equal marriage rights for all- why we almost had a female president! Things are not the way they used to be and normal it appears, is far more fluid than we give it credit for. So who's to say that my normal isn't exactly the right thing for me right now? I have been an educator, a care giver, a world traveler even, while still remaing the same small town girl ( and yes, I really do still think of myself as a girl.)-Sometimes I wonder if I will ever be a fully grown woman. I imgaine myself still worrying about acne and having crushes at age eighty, but perhaps having grown up enough not to worry who knows it. I have not yet been a wife or mother and who knows if that's to come? Maybe I'll delve back into the past and be a hippie in my next incarnation. You never know- and that's an important realization in the Game of Life. You never know what will happen next- whether the milestones you hit are taking you along the "right" path. You never know if you're winning---unless you can say this- I have been proud of what I've accomplished, eager to see what I'll do next, grateful for the people who have journeyed with me, and humbled by the realization of both my own inadequacies and my own power. This is what it means to be human, to be normal- to realize that the journey takes you as much as you take it. And no matter where it takes you, as long as you keep moving, you're winning. So it all comes down to this-you spin the wheel, take your turn, make your choices- and hopefully you enjoy where the game takes you.

Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game. 

Friday, August 5, 2011

Same To You, Buddy!

So, I was driving to work today, coincidentally enough, thinking about writing this blog, and I nearly sideswiped another car (which just goes to show how deeply I think about these blogs before I send them out to you in the world-so, respect.) Now, of course, the other driver cussed me out and deservedly so,  and I would have done the same.  But it occurred to me that that person was from then on going to have not only a terrible morning, but an erroneous idea of who I was. Unless you're the sweetest person on earth, you know that road rage makes you think the worst of humanity, and so do lots of other things- the person who cuts you off at the grocery line, who's rude to you at the corner sandwich shop- the list goes on and on.  But  these little snippets of a person's personality that we get (in my case, they didn't even get to see) are like, like the many layers of Martin Lawrence's fat suit in his movies (which one?- ALL of them). They're there, but they're  not all that's there, and you have to peel through the layers to get to the kernel and find out if there's anything there worthwhile (that's a lot of theres!).   I often feel like the people around me don't know the real me- that they know my circumstances, and think that they're all that defines me. I am someone's daughter, sister, friend- and I have certain behaviors for each of these  that  other people who don't see me in that light would find astonishing. I'm sure my mother would be surprised (at the least) if she knew some of the things I discussed with my friends, and my friends would be surprised if they  knew what it is I do exactly as a job (no one really thinks I'm  very responsible in any of my relationships), and I.. I just let people think what they think because their first impression isn't going to change.  A science fiction truism is that psychics don't  exist in great numbers because they couldn't deal with the multiple pyschoses people carry about in their heads... (another is that people in scifi novels almost always have a hate on for psychics and invariably end up killing them to protect their own [sometimes measly and sometimes grisly] secrets- not great options for building a race of super humans.)  At any rate, I felt bad for cutting someone off, and wished they could see into my head to know I was sorry, but knew they never would. So one more version of me (the idiot female driver one) is  out there in someone's head, but it's not the real me.  Being fully known is one of my greatest fears and greatest desires- I want to pull off my own fat suit (the real one too) and stand in front of the world, someday- but for now I'll hide behind my glasses and wait for someone who is psychic or just really really patient to find the best version of me, the absolutely amazing one, and pull me out of the shadows. Who knows, it could even be me.

Self is the only prison that can ever bind the soul.  
~Henry Van Dyke, The Prison and the Angel


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