Sunday, January 8, 2012

Resolve This!

I have been thinking a lot about New Years' Resolutions.  (And yes, I am aware that I am a week late on this post.)

Inspired in part by this article, I deactivated my Facebook account.

I love Facebook for the ability it gives me to keep up with people I don't talk to regularly (and, my life being what it is, this would be just about everyone, including my own family)... I get to see when people get engaged, I get to see pictures of their weddings and their babies and their latest adventures.  I LOVE the random interactions that happen when people I would never expect leave a comment on my wall, or a reply to something I have posted.  It can really make me feel connected, and loved, or even just entertained.  This is sort of sad, but I have actually learned a lot of breaking news from my Facebook feed, too, like Kim Jong-Il's recent death.  I also get to see a lot of priceless gems like this, thanks to people posting them on Facebook.

This might sound totally silly (and it really is), but lately I have been feeling like I spend so much time keeping up on others' reporting of their lives online, on Facebook and blogs and the like, and then I spend even more time (though not nearly as much) recording and reporting my own life online, that I have ended up feeling like I am not really living my life.

And not only that, but for all the connectedness and the happy news and the glimpses into people's lives that I would have never otherwise had, maybe just as often, seeing all that stuff makes me sad.  It makes me envious of that person's trips to fabulous places, and that person's straight-out-of-Martha-Stewart-Magazine wedding, and that person's picture-perfect, nonstop fun, ridiculous life.  I love seeing pictures of friends' kids as they grow, but then it starts to feel like every other girl I know is getting pregnant, and that is great for them and everything, but then I remember how I am racing up to 30, and there are no babies on my horizon, and maybe I really want babies, and maybe I just want to have lots of babies instead of doing all this school shit, and maybe a small or not-so-small part of me is really worried--for the first time, like actually thinking this might be a real possibility--that by the time I get through all this medical stuff and come up for air, I won't be able to have any babies.  Or, best-case-scenario, maybe I can still have one or two, but I definitely won't ever get to see them.

It is totally embarrassing that Facebook and the internet at large have taken up so many of my precious hours.  But it is way worse what they can do to my head.  

I really, REALLY want to be a doctor.  I also REALLY want to be a mom and have a big family.  And I REALLY want to be good at both of these things.  But what I am doing right now is hard work, and it can feel discouraging.  And the carefully crafted public presentation of other people's lives and careers and spouses and kids can easily, insidiously, seep down the cracks left by my insecurities and doubts.  And then I forget that other people's lives are not perfect, and they are not always happy, and no one really has it all together, despite what their timeline may lead you to believe.  

And I forget that just because I don't have a baby right now, doesn't mean that I won't have one in the future, and that it won't be an even better time for that baby to come along, because, thankfully, I am not in charge of the overall plan for my life, and I don't have to be.  But I do have to get better at remembering that, and trusting that right now, I am doing what I am supposed to do.  And I need to remember that happiness is possible right now,  no matter what else is going on, and that that IS within my control.  So, in that spirit, I decided to get off Facebook, and see if it made a difference.

THEN, I saw this, talking about this, which was inspired by the same article above!

Cool.  And also totally reaffirming of my decision.

I love this Eleanor Roosevelt quote... I think it is a good motto to live by, and a great resolution to make.  And although this might make me sound pathetic, one of my things that I did one day that scared me was to get off of Facebook.  

Another day, I took my droopy tank top off and did a yoga class in nothing but my yoga pants and purple sports bra, not caring how I looked or what the people around me thought.  Again, might sound pathetic, but I think that for the vast majority of my life up until now, my self-consciousness would have made doing that not even a remotely conceivable option.  And guess what?  I totally lived through it.  In fact, doing yoga without all that extra material around was really nice--it was easier to move, I felt more focused, less distracted.  Maybe there's a lesson there: get rid of the stuff you think you just can't possibly discard, and then find that you are able to do what you want to do even better, unencumbered.  

She must have been awesome to know, don't you think?

Also, for the curious, and because I wrote them out and posted them--supposedly, resolutions made public have the greatest chance of success--the rest of my New Year's resolutions are here.

*All images in this post I found on Pinterest.

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