You know how people say that, and it pisses you off because what the hell does that even mean?!?! Okay, is that just me? Maybe it is. Whatever don’t judge me, you don’t know my story. (I mean unless you read my blog then you probably know my entire life story.) Anyway, on my recent rip to Arizona, I’ve made some interesting observations that I would like to share. Here they are . . .
1) I Am A Nomad.
This is a very important observation. I don’t like being in one place for a long period of time. I need a variety of scenery, and different things to do. Without that variety, I get bored, and then I do dumb things. More than just needing variety, I work better with a very precise set of circumstances. I need a job that has a variety of responsibilities. I need to be able to craft my life around my schedule, and not the other way around. I need to have a readily available support team – be they family or otherwise – I can go to when I need something. As my Sorority Sister once told me, “You are consistently inconsistent.” That’s a very accurate portrayal of me. I’m a flake, but I’m reliable when I’m not in Flake Mode.
2) Tell People They Matter, before you can’t tell them again . . .
When my Nephew Fred Lux died last month, the only thing I could think about was, “Did he know how much he was loved?” People need to know they are valued. People should know you rely on them to get through your day. At work, at home, when you go to the mall . . . Doesn’t really matter. If you haven’t told them how important they are to you, assume they don’t know. There were 500+ people at my Nephew’s Funeral . . . Standing Room Only. People took time off their jobs, on a Wednesday, to make sure his family knew that he was important to everyone he encountered. Tell people they matter. It’s not just about stroking their ego, it’s about touching their heart.
Kids are the greatest thing ever in life. And not for a weird reason, but because they are the personification of innocence in a very messed up world. The smile of a child is enough to change the direction of your day . . . If you let it. I spent this vacation with children for the most part. My nieces and nephews, the kids I used to babysit when I lived here, and even stopped by my old job. The thing that struck me was that they remembered me. Not all of them remembered my name. But I made a lasting impact in some kind of way. From a kid saying, ‘Hi Applehead’, to the little girl who couldn’t even speak, she just hugged me until I walked out of the door. My reason for being, is to work with children. To educate them, to be a friend, and to help them at whatever stage of life they happen to be in when they cross my path. The absolute understanding of that concept was baffling to me when I was younger. At 31, it’s a challenge. Can I be what I think I’m supposed to be. Can I live up to that standard? I’m not sure, but I think so. I’m excited to see just how far I can go!
4)My Father Loves Me . . .
I know that sounds weird, but it has taken me a long time to accept my Father exactly as he is. For years, I expected him to be what I NEEDED him to be. Then, I expected him to be what I WANTED him to be. About two years ago, I came to the conclusion that I had been doing it all wrong. Understanding you will never be able to control another person’s actions creates a kind of relief. You can stop holding them to the standards you have set for them. When I left Arizona, I explained to my Father that I needed something from him, that he wasn’t able to provide. But I wasn’t upset about it. I just understood what I needed in my life at that time. But I love my Dad. For every conversation where he tries to protect me from my own stubbornness, to his gestures of acceptance as weird as they might be to others. I’m at the point in my life where I’m so GRATEFUL I have two Living Parents. I can go to them in need of advice, and they actually respect my dilemmas/issues and give me solutions without Judgement. Growing up is sometimes awesome.
5) True Friends are hard to come by . . .
I’m not talking about people you see everyday. I mean the people you don’t talk to for MONTHS, but one phone call makes it feel like they are right next to you. My Best Friends all have “titles” – White Boy Best Friend, High School Best Friend, Lesbian Best Friend, etc. – But their Best Friend status is not based on their label/title. It’s based on how/what/when/where/how they have been with me throughout my life. I’m learning in my old age, friends are there when sometimes family chooses not to be. I’m grateful for the people who call me friend. Those who listen to me talk about my life, and don’t judge me or my actions. Those who might have a completely different outlook on life, but still embrace mine. Friends who teach me how to make a new meal every time I see them, and who don’t judge me for late night texts/IM’s about my dastardly deeds. I’m really blessed, and appreciative for all of you!