I keep looking back over my shoulder for more shit to creep up. I keep expecting the inevitable avalanche of shit that has followed me around. I wear rose colored glasses but they’re speckled with clear, harsh reality. My life hasn’t been easy, thus the reason I see so much good in little things. I clearly see the good in this world, but am prepared to fight again if the need should arise. I’ve fought all my life to get where I am, and while I deserve this good now, I know it’s one instant from being gone. I appreciate what I have but I refuse to take it for granted.
I deserve the good that has recently happened in my life because I have fought tooth and nail to get where I am.
Hard work doesn’t go unrewarded.
The pessimist in me keeps looking over her shoulder, ready for the shit storm.
The optimist says that I’m through the majority of the trials and tribulations, to relax and enjoy being where I am.
The realist says “You’re not done yet. You still have mountains to climb. You’re closer than you were, but your not there yet.”
All three are telling me that good things, better things, are on the horizon.
Several times in my life I’ve wanted to give up. When one catastrophe after another after another hits, it makes one tired. It makes one sick and tired of fighting. I joked a lot about being a ninja during those times, because it seemed that no matter what happened I was able to squeeze past the obstacle and keep going. The ninja thing came from Matt, actually . . .
A four year old Matthew B. was jumping on my couch as I stood folding clothes. Not only was he endangering himself, he was wound up as hell and driving me batshit. I told him repeatedly to stop. Mind you, this was in the midst of the ADHD/ODD diagnosis phase, so he was a pure hellion, and wasn’t listening.
“MATTHEW! Now, I’ve told you to stop. You’re going to end up hurt. . .”
And before the words fully exited my mouth, he fell in between the couch and the coffee table. . . And somehow managed to land on his feet.
“Well I was gonna say you were gonna hurt yourself, but you landed on your feet.”
“Yeah. I do everything like a ninja.” He nonchalantly responded.
I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard in my life.
Thus, anytime anyone does anything surprisingly well and avoids catastrophe, our little family says it’s ‘ninja.’ Even some of my friends got in on the joke.
Which is fine and dandy. I found a way to make light of all of these crazy obstacles I kept encountering.
But my fucking God, I was getting really tired.
I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to say fuck everything. I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to pack my shit and give it a go in a new place where I didn’t know anyone. I can’t tell you how many times I threatened to torch my car because it kept breaking down, quit my job because it didn’t pay enough, move out of my apartment because of asshole neighbors. . .
But the thing of it is, as dad once told me . . .
Wherever you go, there you are.
I wrote a whole blog post about these particular words of advice. I encourage you to read it. Written almost a full two years ago, Wherever you go, There You Are is a piece that speaks a helluva lot of truth. The long and short of it is this: you can’t run from yourself. You may think you’re running from a bad situation, but really you only have yourself to blame for where you are in life, and the cycle will continue to repeat, no matter where you go or what you do to try and run from it. You can’t run from yourself.
Things started to go in the right direction in 2016, the obstacles seemed less and less. Until they tapered out in 2018, and came to be next to nothing in 2019. No more car problems, money problems were minimal. I still have a juggling act to maintain. But at least I’m not juggling with fire anymore.
I stopped running.
I mean, I never physically packed up and ran away. As much as I wanted to and as often as I wanted to, the realist in me knew it wasn’t possible. But I put shit off and avoided shit and ignored my feelings, my gut feelings. I kept returning to similar situations in my employment, which trickled down to effect my finances. I have a laundry list of shit I kept doing that was hindering me because I just kept doing the same shit, over and over. Because of familiarity. Because I was afraid to make the next leap. Because I was afraid to be alone. Because, because, because. . .
Because bullshit. Because I was lying to myself. Because I thought by running from my problems they’d disappear.
Things didn’t get better until I got better.
And now instead of catastrophe after catastrophe, it’s success after success. I’m in a house. I have a nice car. I’m making decent money, I have amazing friends. As I’ve said, there’s sometimes a hiccup. But nothing that can’t be overcome quickly.
I still look over my shoulder though. I still wonder if a minor catastrophe is the beginning of an avalanche of bullshit.
I guess the good side of that is that when I see rocks starting to tumble, when I feel like shit’s out of sorts and out of place, that I am able to put a stop to the avalanche before it really gets going. I know that I need to get my shit together, and fast, before the rocks start raining down on my head.
And I know that while the hardest work is likely done, I also know that to keep what I’ve obtained and accomplished, I can’t stop now. I have to keep pushing forward.
I can’t say it enough. Stop settling. Stop being complacent.
And for fucks sake, don’t give up and run away because the obstacle in front of you looks like it’s gonna take some work to overcome.
Happy Wednesday. Keep pushing forward.