Monday, November 28, 2011

But I do Believe Sadness is a Beautiful Color

I am on a journey to be more accepting and thus hopefully live this life more fully.  I'm looking for healthy outlets, and I definitely have things to occupy my time.  And though I do find myself feeling sadness, it is in a rich way.  I think blue is the most beautiful color.  I think sad songs are wonderful... there's something about the emotion that can keep us still, riveted for a split second in a world that is moving so fast.

Happiness is fantastic but wild, and over so soon.  Sadness can be preserved, saved, kept in our hearts much more easily than joy... and sadness can be sweet.  There's a concept in Portuguese of saudade the feeling of missing someone or something.  It's typically invoked in Fado songs which are sad songs about the past in some fashion or form.  They embrace the sadness and the feeling becomes more:  it becomes art.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Not So Bad...

I've been finding out that doing regular things sort of fills the time in a pleasant way.  I started watching the first season of "The Walking Dead" on Netflix and quite enjoyed it, though I guess I watched all the episodes too fast.  Now I have to wait for season 2 to come out on DVD!

I also bought a couple books to distract myself, and they are light and not about singular female heroins.  They are cute and realistic:  Social Q's by Philip Galanes and F**k it by John C. Parkin.  And no, the second one is not some angry person cursing the world, but a funny take on the eastern religious way of letting go, it gets a little monk-ish about letting go of everything to find peace and enlightenment.  Of course with um... western profanity.  Anyway, that has been fun along with a couple little things sprucing up my apartment.  Though it's barely any cleaner, I did buy a holiday-themed kleenex box and re-organize the bathroom sink.

Lastly, in the last exercise of leadership I got a lot of compliments and votes of confidence from peers when I led.  My experience and knowledge as a Transportation Officer are still being - erm - developed at the moment... but apparently I've conveyed my will and ability to learn.  Sounds like a valuable skill.  And now that the tiring exercise is over, I would like to just sit back and appreciate those compliments and let their true meaning sink in.  After all, shouldn't I pay attention to what my strengths are, and use that to determine what my weaknesses are?

That's only for a couple more hours, I admit that I have been quite tense and now... I ought to relax a little.  Not worry about self-improvement, tensions, stresses, worry, boys, boys who think they are men, men who indulge in acting like boys, job, finance, travel, etc. Obviously my life will never be peachy keen with absolutely no problems or worries in it... so every now and then I gotta let go of it all and just breathe.  Whew!  But really, don't want to talk about the holiday for which I am getting this time off, not until I get to my destination and my current uncertainty is quelled by a wholly enjoyable time.  Logically I know I will have a good time, it's only emotionally that I am at all bothered at the moment.  Ah, and I know I have these damn annoying emotions.  Suppose I'll write again after Thursday

Monday, November 21, 2011

Why I am Bad at Trivia

So in the wake of all these revelations and epiphanies that others have great tips for me to self-improve...

...I am also realizing the value of true self-confidence and self-comfort.  Though it is great to have gotten a lot of insight from friends, and it is important to continue to do so, there comes a time when a young woman must be able to make a decision - a poor one even - and take a deep breath and consult no one and think to herself that was the correct thing to do in spite of repercussions.  And unless this decision violates state or federal law, I think that it is important to embrace these slipshod decisions when they are made with deliberation and consideration.

I am not going to be able to do everything perfectly, and I realized today I over-apologize.  Often I am apologizing for not knowing things I've never been taught to do.  Occasionally, I'm just embarrassed to not know or not have paid attention to some random fact or skill.  This is why most of the time I'm horrible at trivia, I love big ideas or Pictionary, but ask me to repeat a simple fact and I am terrible.  I do know a bit more nature trivia than the average individual but it seems everything else - especially history and pop culture - eludes me.

So today I made a poor decision, but it was after a lot of deliberation and an ignorance to the alternatives.  I brought up an awkward subject, and fumbled a lot with it, and wandered and became vague and meandering.  I really do hate that about myself.  When I am being proud and just trying to not look like a fool in a class exercise I generally pull it together and perform just fine.  When I am trying to ask a close friend something personal and potentially sensitive I seem to lose all common sense, fire, and confidence.  Who am I to ask such a deeply personal question?  Haven't I overstepped the bounds of the relationship to dare to ask about this?  And it's this hesitation in the doorway that really sabotages myself.  I really have improved on not blowing up in my personal relationships since... exactly one year ago... but I haven't gotten quite used to discussing a whole range of things with someone I'm close to.  I tend to want to stick with the good and when the bad comes around I think that I've done something wrong as opposed to accept that everything can't be great all the time.  And then there's my impatience to want to fix it... sigh... gotta just learn to let go sometimes.  It's not worth holding on to all the tension!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Caught Between Being One of the Guys and a Woman

It is difficult for me to figure out where I belong, I have a lot of artistic desires and qualities.  And by artistic I don't mean my drawing which is only average for the time being, and I'm not a trained anything really, but I have tendencies and desires.  Anyway, the point being, I'm not in an artistic community, I'm in the military community.  And I don't want to be one of the guys, but I'd like to be the kind of person who can go out with the guys.  Yet... as I get older (so slowly, I know!) I feel like it's difficult to go out with the guys and not be considered one of them.  It's as though when they realize you are a woman all of sudden it's a complicated mess that reeks of the When Harry Met Sally argument that men and women can't be friends.  So I've been staying in and just sort of rolling these thoughts around.  My situation of course is - and will probably always be - unique, at least in the military.  It doesn't help that I'm trying to figure out who I am, and in addition to being strong-willed, I'm a little wild and a little sensitive.  I don't have a lot of girlfriends, and that's just thanks to past events.  I'm not saying I've been a victim, but I've been in situations I didn't fully understand just what I did to contribute to them, and so it's a bit of a process to make new friends who are women.  Yet men are not exactly the most trustworthy of creatures... and in a man's world it is important to be able to maintain an arm's distance without being perceived as cold and standoffish.  It is a difficult lesson for me, and I feel like I'm getting so many lessons in social environs at the moment it's almost a headache.  I think it's stressful to just be comprehending this for me.  Yet I persist and I know I will find out how to improve my interactions with colleagues and friends alike.  It's not that in the last few years I haven't built some strong relationships with women, but they are further and farther apart, sometimes a half a world away - literally.  I turn to them electronically, but I am trying to better decipher these relationships as they present themselves to me wherever I am.

So, onward... ever onward.  On a quiet evening in, singing made up lyrics to real songs and trying to sew.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Momentary Motivation was Wonderful, now Confusion Ensues

If I could rest these weary arms from holding up these weapons, don't you think I would?

Some poetic words to describe my tired and confused feelings.  I am trying my very hardest to not sound whiny.  It is near impossible, but half of this battle is lowering my general self-consciousness.  The thing that calms me is that none of my faults and worries, anxieties or concerns, are so detrimental to my performance as to interfere with my ability to perform at a damn near excellent level professionally.

I am not the kind of person to freeze in front of a crowd and it's not like I'm a total social hermit.  I just have a different point of view on certain things.  And I'm intense, yes, and I should work on a couple things, and yes, blah blah blah.  Got it.  Tracking.  Roger.

Moving on?

I'm not trying to be in denial or dismiss what I'd like to work on more actively, but I'm also in no mood to be scolded.  Enough is enough.  Alright, you got someone to admit a very real flaw about themselves.  Awesome, and I'll have thick enough skin to develop myself from the honest third-party point of view.  Period.  I'm not done visiting the subject for myself, but I am not going to dismiss all my successes because I have this very real weakness.  And I know that's not what peers are trying to say.  If anything, nearly all of them say nothing, because it's rare to be close enough to me to even try to broach the subject.  And that in itself is frustrating about regular social interactions.  But with a couple new lenses with which to study life itself, maybe I can get past that... it's part of the process.  This confusing altogether overwhelming process that I hear goes on your entire life.  Ai dios mio...

Monday, November 14, 2011

Steep Learning Curves

It's never dull around here, we've completed a lot of the high graded events for Transportation BOLC (TBOLC) and the largest point allocation is somewhat a group project.  I'm trying to get my mind right for this, it will be a great learning experience regardless.

The next two weekends are going to be joyful, and I really mean it.  It's exciting to see my sister get married this weekend, I can't believe it's already here.  She's been really considerate with my time and schedule, and I'm glad to be able to be there for her!

After that a friend is inviting me to her home for Thanksgiving.  And it might be a little cheesy and cliché but there's a lot I'm grateful for including having a place to go for Thanksgiving when El Paso is so far away and it's difficult to travel so soon after my sister's wedding in Boston.  I'll be home for Christmas though..., and if I can quit being so corny, I can continue to say that I'm here.  I'm in the present.  I've been internally battling for a long time with parts of me, and it's not a fight that will ever be over, but I know what I want to be in life.  Not exactly my profession and future, I don't know if I'll be traditional or eclectic, but I know I want friends and family in my life.  I don't want to drive people I care about away from me.

Am I young?  Yeah, so young.  And sometimes it catches up to me, usually when I think I'm totally above it, my age and maturity like to trip me up.  As long as that's what I'm doing, falling forward.  One more cliché:  I gotta get back on the wagon, the horse, whatever, I need some upward and forward mobility and I need it now.  I don't wanna be sad so close to so much wonderfulness, so I'm closing my eyes and letting my mind ease up a little bit.  I need a loldog... gonna go hang out with a puppy now and hope the little judgment-free bundle of fur will make me feel better.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Is It Possible?

Sometimes I feel gripped with a madness and futility.  I don' know what plunges me into these feelings, but I don't have much to do much wait for them to pass.  I start thinking crazy, like that patience and charity would be the correct ways to deal with life.  I wish I had the patience to be a boring woman who sat and worked endlessly toward chillingly empty goals.  I wish I had a desire to do good work in a convent.  I am having urges to start adopting cats from the animal shelter.  I could get a pair of bookish glasses, because I'm not really interested in what my exterior looks are.  It's unrelated to furthering my education and blindly carrying on this life without much passion or feeling.

But I look at my messy apartment, I search inwardly and find feelings flaring and meeting and crashing.  There's music in my soul, and the music is richer for the mistakes and risks.  It's as though each foolhardy decision I make is a rising crescendo in a sultry and endless sequence that is both catchy and a cacophony.  It's beautiful how broken my reasoning is.  I feel like a cyclone dancing in a rhythm no one can hear across a flat and endless plain.  An empty desert, a chill wind like a foreign touch in such a typically hot clime, large desert storm building on the horizon.  Each dizzy turn brings my emotions reeling from dizzily happy, from certain to desperate to depressed.  And back to content somewhere in the eye of the storm.  But on the outside forever oscillating between the extremes of my emotions.  I wonder sometimes if there is no end to this?  What would it matter if this was life?  Or do I view it as a volatile part of my life that one day will be behind me.  A distance memory or a blurry photograph.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Giving the Best of Me

Things have been looking up, today I managed - through the motivation of people I consider friends and peers - to run just about seven miles in 55 minutes.

And now I'm watching Old School for the first time ever.  It's sort of depressing to be honest... I don't know how I'm supposed to feel watching a silly comedy but it's got these dark undertones.  I just don't see how any of these men in this movie are the 'good guy' and some of the humor is just downright annoying.  The overall plot at least is amusing, but it just brings up my confused feelings about 'regular' college life.  And it's an inward conundrum that leaves me wondering what exactly to do about grad school.  I'm going to take some time in germany and consider my options, and find out if or when I'm going to deploy.

Now I know, as conflicted as I feel about some of the humor - life is messy and I guess it would be better to laugh a little at all the stupid mistakes... I still think some mistakes are pretty unforgivable.  But that's because I'm still working on my capacity to forgive.

As I was running today, and waiting for the moment when I was going to be run into the ground (which happened on the last hill on the last mile) I was listening to the Gambler and it all goes back to balance...  What a life... balance... riiight.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Emotional, yes, but Honest

I cannot say honestly that I'm a good person, but I can say that I don't want to demean others.  I don't get pleasure from belittling people.  When I have criticism, it's usually because I see no one correct a behavior I consider inappropriate.  When I'm standoffish or seem cruel it's usually because I'm self-conscious and wary of being backstabbed as has happened in the past.

Yet the real question is where does this tendency to doubt myself so much come from?  Why do I feel responsible for the failures of my peers?  Why do I feel like a failure for my inability to successfully inspire others to better themselves?  Why don't I have a hands off approach that some of my peers seem to?  Why do I take criticism and failure so deeply personal?  I will always struggle with this in my career.  It is not a problem on the surface and does not interfere with my professional lifestyle except insomuch as it prevents me from seizing the most of my potential.

In the romantic department it keeps me from happiness.  Romantically I am a wreck.  I sway back and forth between wanting to be single and wanting a soul mate and settling for a someone.  Sometimes I feel like I have no support system in my life and I crave another human being I can be forthright and honest with.  In this world there's so little that's honest left.  A lot of what is out there is in denial and shallow and petty and scares me to death.  What's wrong with this world?

And when it comes to the path I've chosen, there is really nothing in this world I could do with a completely clear conscience.  Every single benefit comes at a price whether in time, in character, in money, or in blood.  Even in a relationship I wonder should I sacrifice stability for the highs and lows of wild romance?  Or should I stolidly force myself to love someone who would be a stable partner?  It sounds so boring and so cold.

There's only one life, I want to give it my all.  I cannot continually be wrapped around the axle about every mistake I make along the way.  Victory does not come easily to any of us.  Everyone has their Achilles Heel.  But this doesn't answer my question of love.

It isn't that I think there aren't multiple chances for love in this life, or rather the right chance will come along and a choice will be laid out.  I believe lasting love requires sacrifice it's just that women are generally better at and better suited to making this sacrifice.  I haven't sacrificed anything I couldn't get back for a man yet, and thankfully those men I've not ended up with have been not the right one.  Yet I wonder if there will come a time when that sacrifice will be asked of me, and I wonder if I will be willing to make such a sacrifice.  If I continue to guard myself, I might never let anyone in.  My tendency to get hurt tells me there is still feeling under the scar tissue of my heart.  It is not a dead muscle yet, and I know it's easy to say at the young age of twenty-one there are eons for me to find "the One."

Life comes at you fast though, and in only two months I will be twenty-two, and then in Germany and then... who knows?  Career, deployment perhaps; acclimating to a culture immersion.  The list goes on and on.  Love might not have a place in my life at this time, but if it's not something I am clear to myself I want someday, than I will never make room in my life for love.  If I really was heartless than I would be satisfied with this outcome and put myself peacefully to work towards my other goals and dreams.  But I am feverish with the desire to find a someone to spend the rest of my life with.  I do not seek someone to complete me, but someone who understands me in a way that even my family does not understand me, and who learns to love me with all my flaws in the most obnoxious joy the most wretched anger and the deepest despair.  And I know that no one can do that if I'm sitting here occupied with insecurity.  I know it's only a small - though strong - part of me that wants to hide.  But hiding is over, it's time to be open again to the shrapnel of this emotion.

Whether brief or with a surprising longevity, I'm setting my foundation of confidence.  It will not be a simple project, there's a lot of debris here.  It's like an abandoned outpost, overgrown and isolated.  There's work to be done and I'm set to doing this work.  It's no easy task.  It's just no easy task.