On Getting It All Wrong
They know how to get things done, why things are the way they are, even who they are, deep down.
I am not one of those people.
There are many days (most days?) when I just feel like I'm a mess.
I tell myself I will get up with the alarm (the first one, no snooze). I will not be late to wherever I am going. I will not be frustrated, overwhelmed, or lazy.
I will tackle my day and all the things without procrastinating.
My house will be clean and organized so all the chaos and clutter will not affect me mentally.
I WILL remember to feed the dog before I leave the house.
These are the things I tell myself, yes.
But then something goes terribly awry, and nothing in my day is as it “should” be.
It’s all wrong.
And that, right there, is really to root of the whole problem. My day isn’t living up to my expectations of how the day should go, and so I come to the conclusion it is wrong. And when one thing is wrong, so is another, and then everything, and suddenly I am down the rabbit hole of “I am a mess,” and “Will I ever have it together?” and I look at others and that little voice whispers, “Look! Her day went perfectly AND her house is spotless…what the hell is wrong with you?”
There are some of you out there who are relentlessly positive. The little things pop up and you crush them like a bug and soldier on buoyed by a wave of cheerfulness and positivity.
I envy you. I really do, and not in a bad green-eyed jealousy way. It’s just that by now, I realize that is not my way and I am sorta okay with accepting that.
My temperament, my outlook, my habits, and my internal voice all play a part in this, and these are things that I’m not going to have a whole lot of success changing. Mostly, “they are what they are.” I can try to work with them, little by little. I can try not to be so carried away by the gusts of anxiety, little worries, big worries, what-ifs, and doubts. But honestly, I am more Eeyore than Tigger.
I just am.
Maybe you are, too.
And, at some point, that just has to be okay. Can you imagine a world filled with relentlessly positive Energizer Bunny types, rushing around grinning and spraying sunshine everywhere? Where would be the depth of feeling? The highs have to be balanced with lows, just like light is balanced with dark, and evil is balanced by good.
It would be the same if the world only contained gloomy, dreary, grey attitudes. We’d all be like lemmings, looking for the nearest cliff to fling ourselves off.
There’s always going to be days were it just feels all wrong. We’re going to obsess and worry about those days, and all the little moments in those days, too. We might even apologize for it: “I’m sorry, I know I’m worried and a little down for what seems like no reason. I’m sure it will pass.”
And it will. There will be moments where you feel absolutely bursting with pride, love, happiness, and good. It will feel like you are the most awesome person who ever existed and you will be incredibly grateful to be living right now, in your own life. Moments like that are so needed, for when the dark moments arrive, we can remember, “Wait, what about that moment when life was awesome? Wasn’t that real? I want that again.”
I am by nature a creative, an artist. I don’t think I would be so good at it if I were just steady. If I only had a small range of feeling, from good to mediocre to okay to great and back again. I really do go from “YAY!” to “This sucks!” to “Oh, shit!” to “Woo hoo!” to “Damn it!” and everywhere in between. Sometimes all within the same hour. Maybe you do this too, and it feels like you’ve strapped yourself unwillingly into a roller coaster that someone else made you ride.
However frustrating it is in those moments, I realize that I wouldn’t be able to use that for being an artist if it wasn’t there. I write it down, I paint about it, I draw a picture, or I create a character. A musician makes a song, one that sticks in our heads and makes us feel a certain way. A dancer moves and we can almost see the feelings come to life.
The times when it’s all wrong makes it easier for an artist to connect with others. We can show that we understand, that we sympathize and empathize. We can help someone else know they are not alone.
And sometimes we feel really, really alone.
But we use our creative outlet, whatever that may be, to share how we are feeling. And if even one other person says, “Oh my God, that’s exactly how I feel, too!” then we know our art, our words, or feelings, and our lives mean something.
It’s okay for us to get it all wrong. Because then we can appreciate when it’s right, and better yet, for those of us who are artists or creative people, we can help another person see that being wrong isn’t bad, and it isn’t something you have to experience alone.
Are you Eeyore (a little gloom & doom)? Or are you Tigger (relentlessly positive)? Do you have a creative way to carry you through the days when you get it all wrong? Leave your thoughts in the comments!