This has been such a morass of a week. I mean, not this week so far, but the past 7ish days. To explain, there were some days when I didn’t leave the house, other days I didn’t shower, and most days I procrastinated past the point of reason. It’s difficult to say exactly why I fell into this funk. I can sort of attribute it to the weather, because it’s been unbearably hot here, particularly compared to the unseasonably nice days we had last month. I haven’t wanted to get anything done because just walking outside drains me of moisture and motivation.
However, the largest culprit for my doldrums has got to be the enormity of the responsibility placed on my shoulders. I am now the master of my own fate and financial success, without a familial safety net, and that scares the living daylights out of me sometimes. I’ve been living with this knowledge for over 6 months now, and it has been sinking in gradually. For an extended period of time, I was so caught up in paperwork and projects that I didn’t have time to think about the bigger picture. However, now that life has settled down, I have a lot more time to think, and consequently a lot more time to psych myself out.
It’s not like it’s that difficult, right? Eat, sleep, work, play, make money, save money, pay bills, manage employees, pay taxes, maintain my home, fulfill my commitments, plan for my future, don’t forget anything important or else my world will start caving in. Piece of cake.
No, the difficult part is just adjusting to the new normal. I’ve acknowledged the “new normal” time and again, but this adjustment has proven more difficult than I could have ever imagined. I still don’t feel empowered to make important decisions without the fear of messing up my life. So, my path has been that of inaction, which is a decision in and of itself. If I stick to the status quo, nothing terrible happens. And yet, I’m cheating myself out of new possibilities.
I don’t really know if there’s a moral to this story yet. I guess I’m realizing that I’m prone to more down periods than I ever anticipated. And I’m trying to actively build bridges over these crevasses in the landscape of my life. Sometimes, though, it seems I just have to give in to them and ease myself out gradually. It’s like when your leg “falls asleep;” it doesn’t just wake up at the snap of your fingers, it takes time.
Okay, changing topics. Fun things! Last Thursday I attended a local sorority alumnae chapter meetings, in which we packed bags for the collegiate chapter members and planned the next few months of activities. Saturday evening the girls came over for Evelyn’s birthday game night party, which was a blast! Sunday night I met up with some more recent alum friends at a bar near campus, and we caught up over dinner and a new type of cider that might replace my habit of always ordering Woodchuck. It’s called Original Sin and it’s delicious. Then Monday night, I was a sub at my neighbor’s bunco game! It was my first time playing, but it didn’t take long to get the hang of the rules. Then I stayed after to help her clean up, just because we hadn’t had a chance to talk. Tonight, after dragging my butt to the gym, Lydia and I had dinner at Panera and I helped her catch up on some her her ever-growing “to do list” items.
So, there’s been a lot of fun sprinkled in with my existential crisis. Okay, now I’m being overly dramatic. I think the biggest problem I face in all of this is that on any given day, no one is telling me what to do. I’m not accountable to anyone, except people working with me or for me (either as employees, or where I am their client, as in my CPA). I have equals and subordinates, but no superiors in my life. And honestly, that’s what stresses me out the most – the fact that I have to decide what projects to work on, how to spend my time, and how to accomplish my goals. I have to decide what my goals are.
Right now, my main goal is to have a “big picture” understanding of all my financial obligations, both on a personal and business level. Beyond that, everything else is a side project. But I’ve been very good at distracting myself with those side projects. It’s still progress, just not necessarily the right kind of progress. Last week, there was no progress at all. But it will get better with time. I imagine that I will look back on 2011 with shock at everything I’ve been through and wonder how I even got dressed every morning. I imagine that one day, balancing everything on my plate will be as easy as riding a bike. One day.