This has been kicking around in my brain for days, though it was a planted months ago, and really it has been my whole life. Even now I’m not fully certain it will come out right. I thought about calling a friend, the priest, my psychologist, and then like the proverbial lightbulb, I remembered I have a blog.
So here goes, last spring, I’m spending a lot of time with my boss. Which is actually a positive because I love my boss. She’s kind of a mentor turned life coach who would cover my ass in a heartbeat and then tell me privately how badly I screwed up. I start pretty much every work day with the goal to not piss off my boss. Anyhow, she and I were discussing IVF and in her matter-of-fact way she said “I think you need to learn to bloom where you’re planted” and goes on to clarify her theory that people make themselves miserable because the life they want keeps them from the life they are supposed to have. Oh the secret eye roll I gave her. “She’s just lucky enough to never have to understand” I told my Mind-Body group. “We have allies and she just isn’t one of them”.
Nearly a year later, I’ve realized just how right she was.
I don’t remember a time in my life that I wasn’t always waiting for something more but probably the teenage years started with the big dreams. “If I only had a boy who liked me, I’d be happy” Only I had my first “date” with my first “boyfriend” and wanted no part of it. A week later, I was over it and pining for the next, always assuming the next had the promise of happiness. I was head over heels for Hubby from the day we met but I couldn’t appreciate that. It was all about when we would get engaged, plan our wedding, and when things get complicated, I consider walking away.
Work is no different. When the aforementioned best boss ever sends me a litany of nasty-grams, I start thinking about quitting. Not that I have any reason to honestly think anything would be different, just the fact that the answer to job satisfaction is leaving my situation. Sometimes it’s just walking away from management, the thing I did 18 months ago, but usually it’s quitting my job and becoming a yoga teacher (who can’t do downward facing dog).
Sometimes it’s geographic relative homesickness. When I was in college and later lived in Brooklyn, all my misery was that I was too far from my family and every time I went home to visit, I never wanted to go back. Now every visit to NY, I want to move back. I miss my NSLP too much. NYC is “so cool” and “open late” and “Hubby should have more time with his family”. Sometimes it’s somewhere new entirely. The week after my Dad died, I was in negotiations with a recruiter to take a 13 week contract in LA.
My fertility journey has been no different. I’ve put it on a pedestal as the thing that would make life immeasurably more satisfying. I just haven’t had the chance to prove myself wrong. I’m having gastric bypass surgery in a little over 3 weeks and as much as I really am doing it for me (and I’m of course assuming that I’ll be healthy and happy and productive when I’m thin) it’s just another hurdle to clear in the race toward motherhood.
I don’t know why what I am, what I have, where I am is never good enough. A glance at my Pinterest will tell you all you need to know. I have plans to run, cook, be organized, read and crochet…all of which I’m not particularly good at. I lied. I suck at all of those. I don’t know why it’s not good enough to walk, reheat (when Hubby cooks better than anyone else I know), and cognitive download via trash television.
I feel compelled to fill up my schedule despite the fact that the more I do, the more worn out I feel. Maybe I fear the downtime because I’m more comfortable with “doing” than “being”. I think about a time that I was asked to describe myself. I immediately stated my job. They said “That’s not who you are. That’s what you do.” I think I’m afraid of just being because deep down, I don’t think I’m good enough.
I really do have a beautiful life. My marriage is 70% wonderful with 29.9% entirely neutral, leaving only 0.1% sheer torture. I have long friendships and new bonds with great people. I have the most beautiful nieces, nephews, godchildren. All my basic needs are covered without question. I travel.
I think I know once and for all that my fight or flight response is all flight.
But how do I even begin to start to bloom where I’m planted?