Nothing endures but change ~ Heraclitus
Who knew that a Greek man born in 535 BC would utter the one statement that would define my entire existence over 2,500 years later? Although, he does have the word “clit” in his name, and, well, that little morsel of a body part has definitely played a role in some of my life’s more stupid decisions, so, I guess it’s not so odd after all.
Ten years ago I found myself in a somewhat similar situation that I find myself in on this very day – I was twenty-nine at the time, recently divorced, in a new relationship with a man that lived 800 miles away from me, worked at a night club and lived with my parents. Actually, that is nothing like the life I’m living right now, well, those parts aren’t, but this part is: I was in the midst of some severe life changes brought on purposely by yours truly as I believed it was the best way to start a new decade. My thirties, I vowed, would be different from my twenties. I moved to a new city, I started a new job, I bedded a new man, and I worked towards a new body. And ten years prior to even THAT, I did the same goddamned thing. Months before turning twenty I had broken up with my then boyfriend from high school, lived completely on my own for the first time in my life, shaved my head bald, and started dating (fucking) – heavily, which brings me back to where I am today. With just seven short months until I get to add a “4” to the front of my age for the first time, I once again have started purging myself of the things that made up my thirties in search of change and difference in my forties. A new position at a new company starts next week. I’ve started questioning if Atlanta is where I want to live for the next ten years. And my world with my significant other has even gotten a bit sticky (largely because of sheer idiocy on my part) as of late. Pattern? Ya think? But the real question is… why?
Back before my 39th birthday I wrote a post that summed up a lot about my personality. In a nutshell it goes on about my tendency to self-sabotage and my predictability when it comes to it, and I’m sure a therapist would go on about how it has to do with my inability to just let things happen organically, and about how not being in control of every situation makes me nervous and I react accordingly. But they may also delve deeper into what I believe is the root of my problems: my obsession with having to change.
There are things I fear more than others in my life, but probably the greatest of all these fears is being ordinary. Living in the mundane makes me excruciatingly unhappy. Suffering through the patterns of consistency and routine eat away at my soul like a piranha on a duck carcass. Not being, or worse, not feeling different from those around me gives me a sense of uncomfortability in my own skin and yet it seems I can go ten years before that fear ventures back to the surface. For some reason my mind is able to compartmentalize that emotion until the combination lock is opened right before the turns of my decades which is when I usually make my most drastic changes, for better, or for worse. And here I am again, forcing change instead of allowing change; making my future instead of welcoming what it could have been, and wondering once more how I should, could, or will do things differently ten years from now.
Being effed up in the head isn’t an easy job, let me tell you. It takes a certain skill and loads of character to be able to do it properly. And sabotaging your own life, well, I could be a downright mentor when it comes to that little gift, but if you’re anything like I am, know this: whatever happens in the end was supposed to happen in the beginning, so try your damndest to remember that when you’re crying alone in your darkened bedroom while Tori Amos plays softly from your IPod speakers because yes, you are the creator of your own destiny, and yes, you can change your future, but honestly, you don’t always have to, or need to, or should.
And one final quote from Mr. Hit-a-clitoris or whatever his name is:
The road up and the road down is one and the same.
So travel it, and travel it far, but know when it’s time to stop and rest, and know mostly when you’ve gone far enough.