Thursday, October 12, 2006

Once upon a time

“I am more comfortable around men than women.”

“I do not have a plan for my life, I mostly wing it.”

“I don’t care about money.”

“I am a good listener.”
Those are a few of the stories I’ve been telling myself since I can remember. Some of them have defined my life in small and big ways.

What are your stories? Are they true?
My former best friend – who I blew off so thoughtlessly back in May to stay at a bowling alley, of all places – was a part of that first story. I used to take a silly little bit of pride in having a male best friend. It made me different. And it was special.

But the reality is I’m not necessarily more comfortable around men than women. I’ve just been telling myself that forever and ever to the point where it seemed true.
I’ve also been telling myself that I’m a good listener. That’s only true part of the time.

If I’m really interested in what you’re saying, I’m the best. I’ll ask questions and maintain eye contact.

But if I can hear another conversation nearby that might be more interesting, forget it. I’m distracted and rude.

It’s ugly, but true. A true story.
“I don’t care about money,” I told a friend a while back.

“You say that, but it’s only because you have it,” he replied.

I took great umbrage at the comment. Of course I don’t care about money, I thought.

He was right, though. I care about money way more than I’d like to admit. I like being comfortable. I like having nice things. And I love being able to shop whenever I feel like it.

It’s also the reason why I work so hard and try to do well career-wise.

I tell myself that satisfaction with the type of work I do is more important than my compensation but I don’t know if that’s entirely true. I certainly wouldn’t do it for free.

I tell myself that if it all went away tomorrow I’d still be blessed in many ways. But the fact is I’d be pissed off beyond belief and trying to figure out how the hell to get it all back again.
Taking a hard look at the stories of your life isn’t easy. In fact, it can be quite unsettling.

But it’s also very enlightening.

I read somewhere that an unexamined life is like an unopened letter.

Lately it feels like I found a dusty old shoebox of unopened letters in my attic. And now I’m struggling to catch up on what’s really been happening my whole life.
I am listening to: Third Eye Blind – Semi-Charmed Life
I am reading: Old letters
And I am: True