I’m having a pity-party day at work. It’s a good ol’ woe-is-me kind of day. For the last few months I’ve been in a funk. I’ve attributed it to too much work, too many commitments, not enough me-time or time with my family. But, while sitting in the studio at work JUST NOW I had an epiphany. My current mindset does not lie in the fact that I have to work. My mindset does not lie in the fact that I have commitments outside of work and my family. My mindset does not lie in the fact that me-time or time with my family may or may not happen on a regular basis.
Several years ago I decided I wanted to write and self-publish a book. I did. It was terrible, but it was mine. I wrote it (by hand). I edited it. I typed and formatted it. I published it on Amazon.
A couple of years ago I decided that I wanted to go back to school. I didn’t care if I would be the oldest one in my classes. I took on the math classes that had always defeated me. I read the textbooks and wrote the papers. I planned my schedule for each semester and counted credit hours. I wanted to work toward an associates degree that I could transfer to a 4-year school. I did it for about a year-and-a-half. I defeated the math classes. I flew through my writing class. I pass Sociology (not with flying colors, but I passed), and had my eyes opened by my Social Work classes. But life intervened and I was unable to finish my associates. Someday, though.
I am a goal-oriented person. I need something to work toward. I need to have a finish line to cross. Right now in my life there is no finish line. I am living to work, not working to live. In the grand scheme of things I am burning the candle at both ends for something that will mean nothing when I reach the end of my life.
Goals have always been an important part of who I am. I’ve always loved to learn. There is so much that the world can teach. Different cultures, skills, hobbies, history, the more we learn about the world around us, the more we learn who we are as an individual.
When I was a child and would go to my grandma’s house, she had a rule when it came to meals. If there was something on my plate that I had never eaten, I was not allowed to say I didn’t like it. I was required to try everything new at least once. Grandma told me that was because I would never know what I liked if I didn’t try it at least once. Sound advice for life, not just the dinner table. Fast forward many years and that is still advice that I have stored in heart. I will try just about anything once.
So my mindset it not based on my lack of time to give to personal pursuits. I guess what I’m saying is that my mindset, my funk, is the lack of personal pursuits in my life. I’ve not taken the time to set any goals for myself. I’ve not taken the time to explore, learn about, or get lost in this great big world or my little corner of it. I’ve not taken the time to stop and small the proverbial roses. I’ve not taken the time to go on a scenic drive, or stroll though a local museum. I’ve not taken the time to immerse myself in something culturally diverse from myself. I’ve allowed myself to fall into a day-by-day cookie cutter life, and now my spirit is starving for adventure big and small.
When my son was born the nurses, as they do with all newborn babies, swaddled him tightly like a burrito. Most newborns love to be swaddled. It reminds them of being in the womb that they recently vacated. It gives them comfort. My son, on the other hand, hated being swaddled. He would scream and cry until the constricting blanket was loosened and he could move freely. To this day he hates being constrained in any shape or form. He likes to give hugs, but it has to be on his terms. That’s how I feel right now. I feel like I am swaddled, and what is supposed to give me comfort and reassurance is only making me uncomfortable and filling me with anxiety. I need to loosen the swaddling blanket and stretch my arms.
I need open highway. I need open windows and windblown hair. I need a Dr. Pepper in my cupholder, and not destination in mind. I just want to drive for a few hours in one direction and see what I can find. Small touristy places. Kitschy shops and a locally owned restaurant that makes a killer chocolate pie. Historical monuments and farmers markets. Funky water towers and roadside stands. I want to have an endless supply of fuel in my car and an endless supply of time to explore. I want to live my life based on my next click at roadsideamerica.com. I need to get lost in the world so that I can find my way in my life.
I want to be a professional tourist.
I want to be a nomad, a gypsy, a woman whose home is nowhere and everywhere.
Until next time . . .