I have always been a terribly well-behaved individual… one might even say, a goody-two-shoes. I was terrified of getting caught, even when – no, especially when – I was doing something that would have justifiably earned some serious consequences. And so I rarely, rarely misbehaved. In school I was quiet and likely met the criteria for being a teacher’s pet, and at home I was a bookworm who avoided serious conversations with my parents, particularly after age 12, when I had been sexually assaulted and had succeeded in convincing myself that it was all my fault, and I would get in major trouble if they found out.
Which ended up being a theme in my life, from then to age… well, I’ll be 34 in a few months, and I still haven’t figured out how to go easier on myself. I’m desperately, constantly, almost-obsessively concerned with doing the right thing, meeting (my own) expectations, just being good enough. I would love to take it easier on myself, to let go of some – hell, let’s just toss them all – of my rules and standards for my own behavior and productivity and general proof that I was meeting that “good enough” standard. I just don’t have any idea how.
And so I hold myself to these ridiculous standards, beating myself up if I don’t accomplish that which is on my to-do list, even if it’s clear that the list in question is obviously over-reaching and unreasonable. I find and display my faults, both here and in person, perhaps so that I can take ownership of them before someone else can point them out. And I follow the rules, whether they’re created by myself or by the government or by my doctors; if I think a rule is unreasonable – which, of course, I only do if it’s a rule created by someone else, because of course all of my highfalutin rules are completely reasonable – I’ll point that out and ask for a review or change, but at the end of the day I follow the rules.
I would love to change this about myself. In fact, one of the items on my new-and-improved goals (OK, downgraded due to physical inability to meet the previous goals) on my “100 things” list is going to be something to the effect of, “Break five or more laws in a day,” just to prove that I can deliberately step outside this little box I’ve built around myself. Because the longer I stay boxed in, the harder it is to perceive myself as a strong, independent, thinking sort of woman… and until I can get back to that mindset, I don’t think I can even pretend that I have recovered from the various insults and traumas, physical and emotional, of the past year.
Hey, look, it’s Wednesday already… must be Madhouse day. Did you play along this week? Did they…?
Allison – Allimonster Speaks
Barb – Spencer Hill Spinning & Dyeing
Batty – Batty’s Adventures in Spooky Knitting
Dave – Notes from the Field
Eileen – Art Deco Diva Knits
Evil Twin’s Wife – The Glamorous Life of a Hausfrau
G – Not-A-Box
Haley – Aimless Tangents
Jennifer – Ask Poops, Please
JMLC – Daydreams and Ruminations
Kate – One More Thing
LC – LC in Sunny So Cal
LeeAnne – This is the life…
Lisa – As If You Care
Louise – Child of Grace
Marcy – Mittentime
Melanie – usually, things happen
Nikki – Land of the Free, Home of the Depressed
Peri – knitandnatter
Sara – yoyu mama