A goal of mine is to introduce diversity and variety into my life on a daily basis. Right now, I’m kind of down and out with a moderate back injury (I really should post about the top ten reasons to never use a trampoline after age 40) but I’m still trying. The many titles I hold, including Champion of Anxiety, Mother of Drag..(oops) Two Children with Autism, Widow, Girlfriend and Writer, never seem to include the one title I really need to concentrate on: Being Me.
To live in a bubble of stress and anxiety is not the way I thought my life would be at this point. I really DO strive for calm, peace and happiness. However, there are many extrinsic forces out there that test my patience, my ability to withstand stress and seem to live in constant contrast to the path I’ve always thought my life would take. The titles I possess do not seem to give me pause to step back and be just me from time to time. Things like lounging when everyone else is working and sleeping in when everyone you know is in rush hour traffic seem to bring on a sense of anxiety and guilt that is perhaps misplaced.
It’s not like I didn’t work for decades. I started working when I was a teen with the typical paper route, then worked at the mall. Two weeks after graduating, I did the office job thing and worked for quite some time in that field. After my husband died, I have worked as a freelance writer, but that isn’t the most stable of fields. So, I feel a bit of guilt when “all” I’m doing is being a mom, taking care of the house and other related things. It seems such an antiquated life and not what I thought I would be doing.
Sometimes, I have big aspirations of being a reinvented career woman again, heading out into the workforce. After this many years of being at home, I get stuck and worry about what I could do. I’m not going to work for minimum wage, so that leaves me in a quandary. Then, I think about finally finishing my book I started forever ago and making a run with that and anxiety takes over, killing my confidence and drive to get motivated.
I try to figure out how much of the way I feel is related to anxiety, just part of a normal process, the desire to have a non-conformist life or other things. It’s a restless feeling that never seems to leave you. From being very unhappy with the current location I live in, to an uncertainty about my future despite knowing what I want out of life, I live in a constant flux of wondering about things. I’ve already addressed the dangers of continuous ruminating and worrying, but that doesn’t make any of it go away.
Another thing that doesn’t seem to help very much is the fact that I’m not getting any younger and I don’t want to wait years and years to move forward with things in my life. I have this repetitive reminder that there are only so many tomorrows and the stagnation of life can be overwhelming. The regrets and wishes of things I’ve done and how I could have done things differently creeps in from time to time and leaves me knowing that I need to leave those things where they belong: In the past. Trying to say, “I can’t do this” because I did it before and it was an abysmal failure is not helpful. There is no way to know if something will turn out so much better the second or third time around until I TRY.
I spent a lot of time thinking about what that quote means to me. There are a lot of things required to live “in” that quote. For example, being in control of your life; what does that mean? I would suppose something different for everyone. For me, it’s being happy and with less stress and anxiety. Having realistic expectations is something that I try to work on daily. The challenges I face bring about the stress and anxiety that tries to run my life, but I truly need to actively think about ways to quell that voice inside me.
I believe the answer lies here. What do you think?