Sunday, February 19, 2012

"Growing up"

I haven't written in a while.  Maybe it's because I finally made the move to Salina.  Maybe it's because I made the move to Salina, and am stressed about my new budget.  Maybe I'm stressed about my new living arrangements, missing having F around all the time (and Katherine, my cat)...there's a lot going on.  Work continues to grow hazy, crazy, and complicated.  It's a great job, and I do enjoy my work with the kids, but I'm not crazy about the "never feeling caught up" feeling.  I guess that's social services for ya.  I'm experiencing things and having to work through things that are completely new to me-- new car, new car registration, tags, checking tire pressure...having a roomate somewhere other than a dorm, getting used to coming "home" to a house every night, trying to get the space to feel like somewhere I actually want to be. 
Some people keep saying, "It's part of growing up."  I really dislike that statement.  I think that growing up is something that happens at a different time for everyone, and can take many forms.  I believe that "growing up" is a decission that has to be made: "What kind of things do I want to participate in/be a part of?"  "What are the kinds of things that I know I just really don't want to identify myself with?"  These questions happen to all people in different ways, and at different points in life.  These questions are hard to ask, which is the reason that they don't get asked till later into the 20 something years for the majority of people.  Only the courageous and the bold ask these questions when it is unpopular to ask them, when everyone around them isn't into asking questions yet, and still playing the "monkey see, monkey do" game.  I didn't play that game for very long.  I think that game existed in 6th grade for me and maybe for about half of 7th grade.  After that I was done relying on my peers to tell me what to do and very determined to carve out my own path and find my own identity and direction. 
That statement in and of itself is kind of an oxymoron.  To this day, I feel like I really don't know what I'm doing, where I'm going, or why I'm here.  I know that small pieces of the puzzle have been revealed to me and fallen into place over the years, but I guess you could say my confidence is lacking.  I know that I am POSITIVE that I have always lived for serving others, and yet, I still find myself in the "I don't know what my purpose is" boat too often.  I wonder why this happens?  I think a big part of it is the performance-based culture that we live in, the culture that makes it too easy to observe what others are doing, and compare what you are doing in your own life to what someone else is doing.  I'm very sensitive to what others are saying, how they are saying it, and what their motives might be.  I guess you could call this intuitive.  Whatever it is, it's confusing too!  I know this fact about our culture, and yet I find myself sometimes "protecting" myself from others' posts on facebook, because I know that I am likely to fall into this trap of comparison.  I don't want to live my life comparing myself to what others are doing.  I don't want to spend my days thinking, "Well, gotta catch up to her" or "Wow, it would be nice if my boyfriend said stuff like that about me"...but it's so easy to do just that!  And then that just makes most of us angry or miserable!  Grr.
This whole thing has sounded and felt confusing.  One thing I know for sure: reality is not (or shouldn't be) any one person who has everything together, completely figured out, and feels like they are just the epitome of awesomeness of what a "successful" human being should be.  If you do know anyone like that, tell them to get over themselves.