Should I Stay or Should I Go?

“If you had to choose between choosing another profession or moving to a new city, which one would you choose?”

This is a hard question for me when you consider that I JUST bought a new house.

I could, essentially, do either one of my jobs anywhere. With the current state of online learning, I could easily teach anywhere at any time. Then, with the writing and editing aspect of what I do, it’s mostly remote anyway. So, the only thing keeping me in CT is my mortgage. Oh, well, that and my family. My nephews and niece are here; so are my siblings and my father. Could I leave them? I don’t know. I mean, they’d visit me and, I, them, right? It couldn’t be THAT bad; would it? Too bad that Costco wouldn’t let them all transfer to Puerto Rico; we could have all gone together.

I guess given all of that I would have to go with the new city. As I mentioned, I could pretty much work anywhere (even on the beach!); so, I’d probably go with a whole new state. I mean, CT’s taxes are quite crazy (10,000+ (per year) on my house, really?).

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The Importance of Being Selfish (Kinda)

“Who is the most important person in your life? Do you expect this ever to change?”

At the risk of sounding narcissistic, me; and, will that change? I don’t know. Before I start getting hate mail, please let me explain.

I am single, with no children of my own. So, I don’t have any ONE person I could single out as the most important. I do have a large family, but I love them all equally. It wouldn’t be fair to choose one as the most important.

Now, given that, should I get married at some point in my life, I’m sure that my significant other will be the most important person to me. But, that’s IF I get married. It’s unlikely that I will have children; I’m getting too old for that. But mom taught me never to say never, so I suppose it isn’t ruled out entirely.

So, for now, I worry about me and me alone. To be completely honest, I’m OK with that. Would I love to fall in love and share my life with someone? Absolutely! But, then I’d have someone else to worry about, and that concerns me.

In sickness or lying?

“When was the last time you avoided doing something by pretending you were ill?”

Honestly, I don’t remember the last time I did this. It’s likely that I was a kid. We’re all adults now; you can handle the truth.

In my humble opinion, pretending to be sick to get out of doing something that they don’t want to is something a child does so that their friends don’t get mad at them. I’ve said it before, and I will say it again, I do not B.S. I say what I mean, and I mean what I say. I’ll never be mean about things, so there is no reason to be angry.

Just last week I mentioned that I tend to be a bit on the anti-social side; but, my friends (and family) already know that. I don’t think that a friend has asked me to do something that they know I won’t do in a long time. Friends do ask me to go to dinner with them from time to time; and, for the most part, I’ll go if I’m not busy. There are times where I don’t want to, and I’ll tell them that. The way I see it, what’s the point in lying? If your friends can’t respect your wishes, they’re not really your friend.

The anti-social conundrum

“Do you have any attitudes you wish you could change but cannot? If so, what’s holding you back?”

The snarky side of me wants to say: YES all of my students. Those self-centered Millennials can drive a person nuts with their entitled attitudes. But, I know that’s not what the question is asking; so, here it goes.

Honestly, I think I would have to say my tendency towards being anti-social. I’m not a hermit or anything, I just really don’t like being around too many folks.

I’ve never been a party type person (at all). I’m pretty sure I was like ten the last time I even let my parents have a party for my birthday. That was about it though as I grew up. I loved going out and doing things. There wasn’t a weekend that went by where I wasn’t at the roller rink But, as I’ve aged, I’ve grown to like being at my place, doing what I want to do when I want to do it. I guess you can say that I have become a home body.

I really have no idea why I am this way, I just am. I’m trying to figure out a way that I can change it. I’m not there, yet, but I am terrified of becoming the crazy cat lady on the street who everyone is afraid of.

An army of one

“When was the last time you completely reversed an opinion you once held strongly? Have you become more set in your ways or less so as you’ve grown older.”

This is a very apt question for today. As I was driving into work this morning, I noticed a car in front of me with a bumper sticker that a machine gun on it with the words “come get me” underneath. It got me thinking.

My opinion on gun control has significantly changed over the years. I used to be completely anti-gun. Growing up, my mother and father wouldn’t even allow us to play with toy guns; so, I think I took the lead from that.

Let me start by saying that I am well aware of the second amendment “right to bear arms.” But, the Constitution states: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed” (as cited at Cornell.edu, n.d.). We don’t need a Militia in modern times; we have police officers to maintain order and safety. Even having said that, I, being a college professor, completely understand the desire for protection; which is why I’m not completely anti-gun anymore.

But, at the same time, I don’t think semi-automatic or combat grade equipment is necessary. For protection, one doesn’t need a gun that shoots multiple rounds in a short amount of time; a simple handgun (or shotgun) would suffice. I’ll admit that I don’t know a whole lot about hunting; but, I’m fairly confident that one doesn’t need a semi-automatic for that either. Once again, a shot gun should do the trick.

I’ve considered getting a gun myself or at least learning how to shoot one. Every time I hear about another school shooting, I think about it. I can’t actually bring a gun with me to school; but, I suppose knowing how to shoot one (in case I can somehow disarm the bad guy) wouldn’t be a bad idea.

                                                                        Reference

Cornell School of Law. (n.d.). Second Amendment of the
Constitution. LII. Retrieved from:
https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/second_amendment.

Psychoanalysis

“If you knew that by seeing a psychoanalyst for two years you would achieve significant personal insights you would otherwise miss, and if you could afford the cost, would you start analysis?”

The short answer to this is who wouldn’t? I would. I enjoy learning about myself; especially when it makes me a better person.

Now for the long answer. I watched my mother struggle with fear and anxiety from the day she turned 30 until the moment she passed away a few weeks ago. She lived in extreme fear of death; so, psychiatrists and psychologists have long been a part of our family life. In my humble opinion, she did very little “living,” especially once she was diagnosed with cancer. While yes, it was her ultimate fear come true, she didn’t live while she had the chance. She slept and cried, and it killed me.

They say that our emotional health comes directly from one of our parents (mostly our mothers); so, yes, I’ve had my fair share of anxiety. There have been times I’ve struggled and let it stop me from living; but, not anymore. I began the process of self-discovery with a yearly new year’s resolution that I call “new year-new me.”

I think long and hard about what I would like to fix about myself and vow to change it throughout the year. I’ve all but tackled my fear of crowds, and I’m well on my way to being ok with flying. Last year I flew twice, only to Florida, but it’s a start. This next year I’ll be working on my penchant for being anti-social- both in my personal life and at work.

So, if I could have someone telling me what to fix about myself, and showing me how to fix it, I’d be there in a heartbeat. I want nothing more than to live my life (how ever long that may be) to its fullest.

P.S.  For the many of you who follow me closely, I thank you for the condolences on the loss of my mother and for staying with me while I took the necessary time off to grieve.  I am back now, stronger than ever!

If I see him…

“Are there any people you might see on the street and try to pretend you hadn’t seen them?”

Well, the short answer to this question would be:   see blog post from June 26. If you want a more complicated answer, then yes, there are two. While I was raised to forgive and forget, there are two passed relationships that I’d avoid.

The first one is the man I spoke of in my blog on June 26th. I’m not sure I could endure the awkward conversation that would likely stem from that meeting. Also, my guess is that his wife would probably be with him and I have absolutely no interest in seeing her, like ever. Side note: I’m not jealous of her in the slightest; I do believe in destiny, and maybe they were each others; I just have a hard time with the “you can’t talk to her” ultimatum she gave him. It just seems wrong to me.

The second, and likely the most important to this question, is another ex of mine who stole from me. You see, he and I dated at the time when social security numbers and such weren’t as hidden as they are now. Our numbers, birthdays, addresses, and phone numbers were right on our time cards, sitting in the office for everyone to see. He took it upon himself to get all of my information and have a female friend of his open a credit card in my name. She then put him on as an authorized user. He ran up a few grand in debt before I found out about the problem. Thankfully, I had an excellent lawyer and didn’t end up with the responsibility of having to pay it.

So for him, I think I’d likely punch him if I saw him in the street, which could end up with me getting arrested. So it’s probably just best if I never see him again.

Lovers and friends don’t mix

“When a romance ends, would you rather stay in touch with your former lover or break off all contact? Do you have any close friends who were once lovers?.”

It’s so interesting that this question would come up today because my family and I were just talking about it yesterday.

I had a boyfriend for ten years off and on who I remained friends with the whole time. There were a few times in those ten years when one (or both) of us was seeing someone else; but, we remained close. We confided in each other and helped each other through everything. He loved my family too. He was always more than a lover to me; he was one of my best friends.

That is until he came to me one day and informed me that he was seeing someone and she didn’t feel comfortable with him coming over to see me. She felt that it was “weird” that he and I were so close. He walked away after having said that to me, and I never saw him again. He married her a year or so later.

A couple of years after that, he ran into my mother and father at a local craft fair. He stopped and spoke to them for a little bit (she wasn’t there) and commented, once again, that it was because of her that didn’t come around anymore. I don’t know if it’s insecurity or fear on her part (or even if those mean the same thing); but, even then, after having been married for a few years, he still wasn’t allowed to see me.

Again, just the other day, he ran into my sister at a birthday party for a mutual friend’s children. She waved and said hello, but got nothing but a grunt of sorts as he continued passed her.

Ten years ago I was head over heals in love with this man. No one (in my opinion) ever measured up to the way he loved me; which is why we always found our way back to one another (and perhaps why I’m still single).  I don’t know if we were “destined” to be together or not.  I only know that, then, he knew me better than anyone else ever had. Now, he knows nothing about me. He doesn’t know that I made my dream of becoming a writer and professor come true; nor does he know that my mother is sick. I hope, though, that he does know I miss him- more and more every day.

So, to make a long story short, no, I don’t have any friends who I used to love; and, I will never make that mistake again.

Just have a little faith

“How well do you understand yourself? How frequently do you react in ways that surprise you?”

I think I have a pretty good understanding of myself (in general); but, I still surprise myself from time to time. What it boils down to is that we’re always our own worst critics, which makes us doubt ourselves from time to time. There is a saying (from someone) that says “you never really know how strong you are until being strong is the only option you have.”

Life has thrown me some pretty crappy curveballs the past couple of years, and I have to say that I’m pretty darn proud of myself for maintaining some semblance of strength. Mind you, I’ve had my moments, and I’m sure I will continue to; but, overall, I’ve been a lot stronger than I ever thought possible.

The one place where I know I falter (a lot) is my ability to do certain tasks. Especially something where I might be able to break something. I never give myself enough credit to realize that I am an intelligent person; I can figure it out! Case in point, just the other day I needed to fix something in the shower. My friend’s husband told me how to do it, and I did, but I was scared the entire time.

“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” -A.A. Milne.