fear · growth · humor

Playing Possum with God.

9.28.18.jpgNope nope nope, not going, leave me here.  Out there is scary, unknown, this is fine.  I’m fine.  Nope, being impaled on my own self-doubt is fine.  I’m cool with the middling life that affords me just enough to feel nipped at by lack and struggle.  It’s fiiine, God.  Jesus, lay off.  I built this whole small life myself, man!  I have small passions I follow briefly then abandon, that’s good because I don’t get too good at anything and won’t make anyone feel uncomfortable, and I won’t be judged, and I can continue to call myself a Master of None (you know, if Aziz Ansari is okay with it).

Wait?  What’s that noise?  No, you heard it… it’s faint, listen hard, you have divine hearing for chrissake.  There!  It’s someone else!  I think they need me!  Yep, uh huh, they totally need me.  Omigod, Phew.  See, I’m just going attend to them first, it’s cool — HA!  See, I’m totally doing something.  Can’t fault me now!  Well, they may not have actually said that they need me, but I’m sure that they do.  I’m just going to psychicly mine them for any point of lack or fault so I can go charge in with my spackle.  Nah, it’s cool, wearing cargo pants is totally how I want to go out into the world, a utilitarian life that plods inexorably toward death.  It’s fine!

Yes, I heard you.  Yes, I see these open doors, these other options, but whatever, this is easier.  Yes, I said easier.  No, it’s not hard to shrink back and pretend to be something otherwise.  I’ve been doing it for most of my life, so why wouldn’t it be okay?  No, I already told you this is comfortable, my legs and arms twisted into a grotesquery of hiding and smallness — I’m good here.

What do you want from me??  Let go!

You and your choir of angels and highfalutin’ abundance talk and shiny opportunities can go fart in your soup.  This is the level at which I’ve been raised, it’s the level at which I’ve built a life, why would I give it up?  I’ve staked so much on this smallness of being.  My whole identity is wrapped up in believing and projecting that I am less, have less, do less, feel less than I actually am.  What are you asking of me??  I feel really exposed, here, you know.  Pulling my covers like this is not very courteous.

Yes, I seeeee what you’re showing me.  I see that you’re offering a different way, but what about this one?  It’s like Tom Hanks leaving his island in Castaway — do you know what kind of mourning there is when you’re leaving the inappropriate but familiar place you’ve build with your BARE HANDS!?  And now you want me to just leave it?  Crazytalk.

Alright God, Okay.  Okay!, Whatever.  I’m looking.  I don’t know exactly what you want me to do yet — and I’m making NO promises — but I’m looking.  I’m not completely listening yet, but I’m looking.  Go fart yourself.


addiction · career · fulfillment · humor · procrastination

"Admitted we were powerless over Netflix, and our lives had become unmanageable"…

There is a great proportional equation in my life: The more
fearful I am, the more Netflix I watch. 
Perhaps you have a similar equation?
As Summer School draws to a close — both my morning job
teaching it and my evenings learning from it — I begin to feel more anxious.  I begin to poke around job sites, as half-heartedly as I have been for weeks since this summer school job began,
but more fretfully as the job nears completion… tomorrow.
As I look at teacher jobs, I am reminded that, honestly, I
feel out of my depth to put together full-time lesson plans, learning arcs, and
curricula.  Hence my desire to earn a
teaching credential, aka more schooling, aka not til next Fall if that
happens.  There’s plenty of “go get ‘em”
attitude in me that says, “Meh, who needs it, you’ve taught, you’ll be fiiine.”  But there’s a great dose of reality that
reminds me that as someone who’s never taught full-time it’s not fair to me or my students to simply “wing it,” to
throw something together — and to throw myself into the deep end.
And it’s unclear to me which of these voices is more
valid.  So, I poke half-heartedly.
In the meantime, as I have come home these 6 weeks from my morning gig
teaching a creative writing elective to middle schoolers (which, yes, I love more
than any job I’ve had), I have a few hours before my evening physics class at a
nearby city college.  In those hours, I
could: study for the physics final, which is this evening; I could look for
work; I could reach out for help; I could learn my monologue for Sunday’s
audition; or… I could watch Netflix.
Oh!, you great and terrible time-suck!
And cowing under the realization that I am unable to
moderate my time spent … wasted … whiled … and lost in front of the pixelated
numbness, last week I began to try to find ways to moderate.
Oh, it’s not like I haven’t tried to reign
myself in before.  There’s my “Anything
more than two hours is avoidance and isolation” awareness.  There’s the “Never after 10pm” rule.  There’s the “Just one more episode” mantra
that somehow repeats unto the depths of my pockets of time.
And so, I decided, Enough! 
I looked into suspending my account (at least until I’ve found a job),
but you can’t do that.  I even enacted
parental controls to restrict my access to the website, even by a few
steps, but instead I managed to prevent myself from even accessing my
email.  I found a way around
those restrictions (since I still can’t figure out how to undo them), and Lo! found
myself right back in front of the “Continue Watching” button.
Finally, with a deep mood of disgust, regret, and
resignation, last week I cancelled my Netflix account.
And began rereading all the Harry Potter books.