Helios meine darlings.
See what I did there? Helios – sun god, Michigan warmth. Meine – I want to be able to speak German. It’s quite a lovely language. Darlings – I love you all.
Yesterday, I sent a reminder email to the chair of my dissertation committee that I was anxious to get to her revisions of chapters four and five, and set a date for my dissertation defense in April. I gently relayed that I would wait patiently, however, the defense is happening at the end of April, no matter what. I just got a request from her for my first three revised chapters, without her sending chapters four and five back to me. Is that a good sign? Does that mean the four and five are nearly there and she wants to compare to what I’ve already revised on one, two, and three? I’m sure I’ll find out soon enough! But for now, I’m going with greatness.
Why not? Why assume the worst? The outcome is going to be what it is. Which leads me to today’s consideration: life, communication, and discovery. I have been feeling various levels of intolerance lately, and I own it for what it is, it’s mine. It’s not anyone else’s fault. But holy shit, can you please give me a break once in a while? How many times do I have to hear, or read, how bad a person’s day has been? Or how terrible, or dreary someone’s life is? That is insensitive of me, I’m well aware. I apologize with sincerity. I am disturbed by all this crotchetiness. Of course there is pain and suffering to be had. I don’t deny that. But there is way more beauty and joy, than bad, and far too few people recognize this. I don’t take on other people’s pain as my own stress, no longer, but sometimes I do get intolerant. I currently work as a check out girl at a grocery store. I hear and see a lot of tension and weariness. I’m a happy lady. Light fills my days. Joy is everywhere, I just have to look for it, tap into it. Hell, I can create it. I’m telling you, anyone can. You don’t have to be blind and deaf to the entire spectrum of emotions. I don’t pretend sadness, anger, despair don’t exist. They sure do. I feel those things too. But joy is always there and I’m grateful for it. All it takes are simple shifts in the way you see the world, the way you feel the world. You’re all in control of that, no one else controls or decides it for you. You decide to feel or think whatever you feel or think.
I often find that it is common practice for women and men to not know the wonderful things that they personally have to offer. People see the world as beyond them and outside of their control. “Everyone else is normal, I’m the weirdo.” You’d be surprised to realize how many folks see themselves as the weirdo, the one who’s doing it wrong, while everyone else appears to know how to do it right.
We all flounder. We all mess up. We all act weird as shit. At one time or another, we cause a loved one to look at us, stare at us in a perplexed way, and think, “WHAT THE FUCK.” That doesn’t even deserve more exciting punctuation. It’s all there. You know what I’m talking about.
To expand upon this, and to speak about men directly, I have also realized that most of the men that we think of as “good men” have no idea that they are. The men who are compassionate, considerate, generous, intelligent, hard-working, these men don’t know how great they actually are. That pisses me off to such an extent that I have to swear about it. Bitch. Shit. Ass.
You know I’m laughing right now. There is almost always laughter behind my words. That’s how it should be. Laugh at shit that’s funny. You’ll quickly find that there’s a whole lot of funny shit that’s funny that you didn’t know was funny until you admit to yourself that it’s funny.
Being all those things, compassionate, considerate, generous, intelligent, hard-working, takes strength. Women often don’t know what to do with all that. In our rightful search for our own feminist strength and power, we are often shown that it is okay, and even desirable to emasculate men. NO IT SURE IS NOT. I promise, it is completely possible to be a strong, confident woman, and still admire and honor a strong, confident man. Men can do the same for women. Women, we can do the same for each other. Men, same. We would all benefit from letting people be who they are without judgement. Without gripping tightly to who we think they should be.
I realize this post might be a bit jumbled. Maybe messy. But it’s a blog, and it’s mine, so I’m affording myself that right.
One more thing. I used to be shy as all get out. Still am sometimes. I tell people now about that and they look at me like I just shoved my finger up my nose to dig around. I hated feeling it as a young person, but still let shyness stifle me. Becoming a mother started to change that. Grad school helped change that more. My years in Detroit have changed that dramatically. And finally, I now feel like I’m more myself than I’ve ever been, which is kind of not shy. About five years ago, a folklore professor of mine explained the following to a class on teaching folklore and ethnomusicology: When you feel overwhelmed by personal distractions – “What if my hair looks weird?” “I pronounced that word strangely.” “I have a red bump on my forehead.” “They think my ideas are lame.” “Why did I wear this shirt?” “Etcetera.” – it is more than likely that you are the only person who is really paying attention to all that in such depth. Know why? Because everyone else is equally self-absorbed. Everyone else is way more concerned with their own well-being than yours. As it should be to a certain extent. Self-absorption is akin to self-preservation. You are the most important person in your life. I don’t care what shirt you have on, unless it’s awesome, then I’ll tell you. I already forgot about how you pronounced that word. Pimple? Forgot it. Ideas? I’ll let you know if I feel a pressing need to engage in debate.
Personally I think the title of this post should be WEIRD AS SHIT, but that schoolcraft asshole took it out.Tags: Weird As Shit, You Know What I'm Talking About