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Should I be More Embarrassed or Should You?

On Saturday I was solo parenting. Adam was travelling for work and I decided I would hire a sitter and go to my friend’s birthday dinner anyway. So, I washed up, got dressed, put on makeup and drove to the restaurant. The restaurant was in a mall plaza and the parking lot was very busy. It took 5 minutes of driving around to find a parking space.

After my long day with my toddler who missed her dad already I was an hour late for dinner. But I was there. I left the house. I had a tasty dinner and saw friends that I haven’t seen in 6+ months. It was a really nice dinner and I was glad I mustered the energy to leave the house.

On our way out I offered a ride home to some friends. As we arrived at my car I noticed someone had written in the dust on the hood of my car. My initial thought was “some kid thinks it’s funny to write ‘wash me’ on my car” and was ready to dismiss it when I saw that it read ‘do you know how to park’. I laughed anyway because my wheel was on the line. Oops. I made a mistake. I guess that’s what I get for parking in a full parking lot in a cramped spot.

But then. Then the old lady in the van next to my car rolled down her window and said “that was me who wrote that”.

Well, that was unacceptable to me. I thought a young adult had written it. I didn’t think an old woman would be that crass as to risk scratching the paint on the hood of my car just because my car was a little bit too close to hers.

“You wrote on my car? You could have scratched the paint. You don’t know the circumstances I had when I parked here. I did the best I could. But you took the juvenile route and wrote on my car. You should be ashamed of yourself.”

I may have said it a bit louder than necessary but I said it. Her only reply was “aren’t you a pleasure to deal with”. I just looked at her and said “you wrote on my car. Go away.”

I think I’m still processing this for a number of reasons.

  1. I was genuinely surprised that a full grown adult decided that the rational thing to do was write in the dust on my hood instead of just driving away.
  2. My friends were there and they have never seen me yell at anyone like that. They said nothing and let me have my peace. They were very supportive after but I’m still embarrassed.
  3. I haven’t had a chance to get a car wash yet so it’s still on the hood of my car, mocking me every day.
  4. I’m worried that because I lowered my SSRI dose that my anger is rising again. I don’t like being angry. It feel awful. The hot anger in my stomach hasn’t returned but my patience is thin and I am quick to take it out on strangers. Especially bad drivers.

What did I learn from this? I learned that my view of humanity is probably wrong again. I always assume the best of people. I hate being proven wrong about that.

I learned that after a long day with a toddler that misses her dad and takes it out on me that I am quick to take that out on anyone who wrongs me.

I learned that my car is much dustier than I thought it was.

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Relationships

I talk to 2 people on a daily basis: my husband and my kid.

How many people would I like to talk to on a daily basis? Probably 6, maybe 10. But, obviously there isn’t time for that. Between work, groceries, crafting, husband time, and my constant need to enhance the functionality of our home I don’t have time to talk to more people than Adam and Beans.

I wish I were closer with probably 27 people. Maybe 38. I didn’t make an actual list.

Relationships require time and effort. Close ones do, anyway. So, how do I keep close with all the ones I love?

Facebook? No, thanks. I’m a lurker on Facebook at best. I don’t really like the idea of posting too many personal things for anyone to see.

Instagram? Nope. I keep my profile public and don’t post photos of my kid, whom everyone wants to see anyway.

Call them regularly? In this busy age it’s hard to find time to nail down where neither of us are busy or engaging in much needed solo time.

Visit them? Again, busy people are hard to plan with. I am one of those busy people. We had our first empty weekend this year earlier this month and we immediately filled it with stuff to do because when you have a minute of quiet you try to see the friends you never see and you probably try to make plans with your friends with kids because someone has to entertain the toddler.

Text them? It’s enough for a short period of time but it starts to get old and not feel real.

Lament about it on your blog and hope that writing it down makes me feel better? Yup.

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Who Am I?

I’ve been wrestling consistently since I was conscious with wondering who I am. I must be a hundred different people stuck in this one very crowded body.

Today the prominent person is longing to have time and drive to learn my dusty ukelele and write music and perform in front of a crowd. She wants to release the turmoil of emotion that has accumulated this year in a creative way. She wants to be given her chance to demonstrate herself. To show everyone. She wants to sit on a stool, play her uke and sing to a crowd with passion in her voice.

The second person fighting for escape in there is an androgynous woman who hates that I chose this frilly fucking collar this morning. Why did I put this stupid shirt on? Every time I wear it I hate it. This shirt is not me. This shirt is for someone who I thought I should be.

Another regular in this emotional rom-com is someone who is rock solid and needs no one. Who wears amazing outfits and walks her dog with confidence while listening to upbeat music. She’s the coolest part of me because she actually exists a lot of the time. I fucking love when I feel like this. I am confident, happy, musical, and social.

That little girl in the corner of the room is my mild social anxiety. She tends to sit in the centre of the stage, cross-legged, watching the audience interact while remaining alone in the spot light, trying to simultaneously disappear and draw attention to herself. She doesn’t quite know what to say in a crowd of people and always second guesses what she has said, if she says anything. If she says nothing she second guesses that too. She doesn’t feel remarkable but wants to be desperately.

There’s an incredibly strong woman working out in the other corner of the room who is trying very hard to be able to do a chin up. She can fit into her skinny jeans, has no muffin top and feels strong all the time. She’s not self-conscious of her body. She’s sitting there waiting to be pushed. She wants to get off her ass. She’s waiting for the excuses to run out.

There’s an early 20s woman who shows up far less often lately who wants to go out dancing and drinking and release her tension that way. She is easily talked down. She knows full well that being drunk sucks and there’s nowhere good to go dancing anyway.

Off to the side there, do you see her? The woman with the hair down to her ass, wearing my favourite flowy skirt, smoking a joint and telling anyone who will listen that love is the only religion we need. We just need to love each other, man.

A newer, more prominent character is the business woman. She’s confident, eager to learn, and excited about what the next step is. She’s the only one who is actively working to discover who she is. She doesn’t want to be the middle aged woman in a pencil skirt and blazer. She wants to re-define what it means for millennials to be professionals. While all the other characters are constant, this one is new so she has no history. She has no baggage. She can still be anyone. She wants to be all the above people at once. She is strongest when everyone is working in unison for the same goals. I am at my best when everyone in this crazy body is in agreement about what we look like, our core values, our musical taste, our preferred company. This career seeker is slowly taking over as the band leader. All of these women in my body are almost in time with each other. We are almost making beautiful music.

Today the music is stunning, energetic, full of drive and passion. Tomorrow the music will change. The next day we may or may not be talking to each other. Poor little social anxiety may just yell at everyone else to “shut the fuck up” and we will probably stay in that night. But after we’ve all become ok with that idea, miss hippie may take over and we will all relax a little and play board games and enjoy our husband’s company.

I am a hundred different people. I am variations of my emotions. I am I.