Since my last entry, its been a bit difficult to get things out on paper/laptop. I felt raw after being confronted with such a clear mandate of self-acceptance and being overwhelmed by the fear that I would not be able to do it.
The week after that revelation, I had this inner sense of wanting to do something fun, lively and playful. My days lately are marked by hours of staring at a computer screen, working library shifts (exhilarating!) and getting home to cook-clean-watch The Mentalist-sleep. In a few days I start a new term which means I’ll be adding several hours of study into that mundane routine. My only change comes once a week when I jog for an hour, that pretty much covers my ‘leisure’ time.
I used to be a fun chick, I had a very adventurous streak that would lead me to do spontaneous-sometimes dangerous- things. On a typical weekend, I would pack a sandwich, get on a train or bus to an unplanned-unknown destination. The thrill of being in a strange place and getting lost, then finding my way around, sitting in a cafe and people-watching was totally cool. I would look for art galleries and get lost in the colours and expressions for hours, go into museums and take my time wandering through street curios. Cape Town offers so much to discover and plenty of little undiscovered corners to explore, I even had specific places around the city where I would go to relax, meet people, even to write poetry. I would go out of the City to visit coastal towns and villages, with a book, camera and a snack as companions. On the cold rainy days I would spend hours in the mall-window shopping, enjoying my favourite coffee shops, and watching a movie in the daytime when cinemas are empty.Yes, I am a lone shark (as long as I’ve been single)-but I made the most of it and had as much fun as a single person can.
Somewhere along the line this all changed. Its like I just don’t have the energy or desire to think up something fun to do. My weekends now are divided into-doing laundry, cleaning the house, having a big breakfast(the one day a week I get to eat a pile of pancakes while watching the Simpsons re-runs with my nephew), back to bed, work on assignments,watch Ghost Whisperer, work some more, go to bed. One Sunday I go to Church real early, after which-you guessed it-sleeeep!
Really, I’m embarrassed to actually admit this, but I cannot deny the truth. I am BORING!
Something has to change. Last week, my sister told me of a discussion she had with my mom recently about my lifestyle. They think I’m not taking much interest in my life. I denied it of course, but after some thought I actually see they are right. Its not easy to see your own faults, especially when you’re so comfortable with them. In the past I would never have dreamt of spending Saturday afternoon indoors let alone in bed, now I can’t think of anything else I would rather be doing (I mean really, I work hard all week-I need some sleep right?)
The one thing I have began to notice lately is a change in my attitude, I am definitely on the road to self acceptance and tolerance. Maybe this can help bring a shift in my lifestyle. For the first time in years, I am actually looking forward to my birthday in a few weeks time. I will be 29.
This year I am dancing to a new tune. My new tune is to no longer be ashamed of not living up to my ridiculously high expectations, not achieving all the goals I think I should be (according to socially acceptable norms), and not being ‘normal’ whatever that is. This year, I am going to learn to sing the tune that is my existence, the lyrics to my life song. I will not be humming along to someone else’s beat or trying to learn the words to a whole lot of other people’s music in the assumption that theirs is probably the write one. No more pressuring myself to be-or look like anyone else but me.
It is my hope that this new attitude will begin to steer me back to being the person I used to be, to finding the right balance between working hard-and living, chasing adventure, loving nature, discovering hidden treasures in the corners of my world (currently Cape Town), maybe even digging out the paintbrushes from the boxes I stuffed them in and getting reacquainted with canvas. I really miss creating something-a story-out of a blank paper and a few pencils, the smell of paint in my room, I miss being able to strike up conversation with strangers and hear their life story. I miss being ALIVE!
It is really comforting to know that God doesn’t just want me to live-He wants me to live life to the fullest-and He made sure I got the message too!(true to His word…)
‘If you go the wrong way—to the right or to the left—you will hear a voice behind you saying, “This is the right way. You should go this way.”