I used to write on my blog every day. I posted essays and thoughts and rarely had pictures. I headed into the office I worked at as a copywriter, an ad agency in SLC called Love Communications, and the first thing I would do is write on my blog. I called it part of my creative exercises. I WAS a writer after all. My bosses knew I did it, they weren’t mad, but it was probably a bit of a gray area to be posting on my personal blog so much at work. But they were cool with whatever inspired creativity. Or at least that’s what I told myself. Sorry Rich and Preston (my bosses), sorry if it wasn’t cool. I still love you. Thanks for not firing me.
I totally took for granted the consistency that the desk job afforded me. I took for granted a lot of things that job afforded me. I was a hard worker, a good worker, and gave my all to each project, but there was just no way to really appreciate the office environment fully, because I hadn’t had that many other jobs. Sure it was a JOB, but the bosses went out of their way to make the office hip and really create a culture, and that was before “culture” was such a freaking buzz word.
Anyway. I’m the boss now. And I have an office, and for the first time in nearly 10 years I have somewhat of a regular working schedule where I sit at a desk. Like holy crap. How weird is that? I worked and worked AND WORKED, all hours, without sleep, for years, doing random things, without pay, to create something that pays. And then I created it. IT HAPPENED. And slowly what it morphed into was another job where I sit at a desk with regular hours. LIFE!
Essentially it is this blog that got me here, but the blog is not what it’s about now. And so again, I’m in this super ironic position, where posting on my blog is actually delaying what I’m supposed to be doing at work, EVEN THOUGH I’m in charge of what I’m supposed to be doing.
And maybe that’s why it sounds fun now. To write, to post, to share. Without expectation instead of “work.” Because everything I loved turned into work. All of my hobbies and passions. And now there are so many expectations. Expectations are not inherently bad or evil. They just are. They are there, even if you say they’re not. And I’m just such a perfectionist, and so intense, that living up to my own expectations is draining enough. I can hardly bare the thought of more. They weigh me down so heavily. But the more I share, which I love to do, the more expectations there are. I just have to try to move on.
I get home at night, and I spend time with my family, and finally put the kids to bed. And if I DO have time to do something non work or chore related, I’m almost at a lost for what to do. Which is SO unlike me. I’ve always had endless projects and crafts and things I want to do and learn. But everything I used to do is now work. And so if I do it before bed, I cannot sleep. And I’m trying desperately to have a healthier schedule. So I watch Ru Paul’s Drag race and go to bed too late anyway.
So I’ve been thinking about what I can do for ME. Just for me. And writing felt like fun. So that’s what I’m going to do.
One time I poured my heart and soul out at this thing where I was supposed to speak on motherhood. It was a bunch of people reading essays. Some were funny, some were thoughtful. It was a fairly awful experience for a lot of reasons that don’t matter now. Ugh it was horrible for me. I got up to read my essay, and BORE MY SOUL. It was serious and thoughtful. And really meant a lot to me, it was hard to share. And afterwards someone I knew (like in an online way) came up to me and said, “I told my daughters that you’re usually much funnier than you were tonight!” And she said it with such disappointment. Like she was disappointed the clown hadn’t juggled the knives successfully, even though he had cut off his arm in an attempt to do so.
It was one of the most offensive things she could have said. And I know she didn’t mean it like that. But her expectation was that I’m always funny. Even though I have declared NO WHERE that I’m trying to be funny. Well that’s not true, I probably cackle 100 times a day to my husband or on Snapchat that I find myself hysterical, but I’ve never promised anyone ELSE that I’ll be funny. It’s why I’m so in awe of comics. It’s also why when I hear that people like Robin Williams have killed themselves, my first reaction is, “I get that.”
Anyway this went real morbid real quick. But it felt good to write. It feels good to share.
Gretchen Rubin in her book The Happiness Project and her new book Better Than Before says, “What you do every day matters more than what you do every once and a while.”
I’ve been taking that to heart lately. And I’m trying to be more thoughtful about the things I do every day. They define our lives. And I want to make sure I’m happy with the definition.
Ok. I love you. If you’re there. If you’re not, I love you all the same.