Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Ten Things I Figured Out

It's time for Ten Things Tuesdays! Here are some things everyone else probably realized when they were 17 or so, when I was off nursing a six-pack in a cornfield somewhere. Oh well. It took me awhile, and I doubt I'm going to blow anyone's mind here, but they're still things I'm glad I learned before I turned into a bitter old cat lady.

Ten Things I Figured Out

1) Your life is pretty much just a sum of all the decisions, big and small, that you make. This may seem simple but I think it's something we don't think about often enough when we're running around doing thoughtless, potentially destructive, things. Do that for long enough and this will become clear to you when you look around and realize your life is a mess (and I'd know something about this).

2) Just becuase you want to fuck someone, doesn't mean they're a nice person who will treat you well. Ride the hormanal wave if you must, but don't think it says anything about someone' s heart.

3) I've never met a woman who didn't look better after putting on a pair of heels. Believe in the power of the heels.

4) If you're spending a thousand bucks on a handbag, you need to have an ever-so-slightly broader worldview. Give some thought to the fact that women in Africa are selling their children into slave labor for 20 bucks a year. Put down the credit card and go volunteer somewhere.

5) I don't believe much of the religious dogma I heard repeatedly as a child. After study and contemplation as an adult, I believe fewer things. But I believe in them more deeply because I was able to satisfy intellectual questions that I had.

6) Embrace where you're from. I grew up in between a haystack and a chicken coop, more or less, and that -- and the fact that I moved away from it -- are part of what makes me who I am. I didn't go to Harvard, I don't come from great wealth or poverty, and I don't have a great story. But I make of it what it is in the narrative of my life.

7) Eventually, you become responsible for the pains inflicted on you in childhood and adolescence, even if they weren't your fault. If you were mistreated or raped or ignored or whatever, that sucks, and it hurts, and it changes who you are. But eventually if you want to be happy, you have to forgive for your own happiness -- not because someone else necessarily deserves it.

8) Your parents probably didn't really know what they were doing. They were just muddling along like everyone else, so cut them a little slack. It's nice to learn this in retrospect, although I think it would have served me better when I was a teenager.

9) If you're in the dumps, quit drinking, go to the gym, put on your makeup and actual clothes (boxer shorts, bathrobes don't count), see a shrink, and then wait for awhile. If you still don't feel better, it's time to get a prescription written.

10) You don't have to get married or have babies to be happy. REALLY. I promise.

What's on your list?

(Please don't say: "That Had to Move was not a philosophy major.")


Blogger Guy said...

I've learned that regardless of the amount of time I spend in it, the world will not be one iota different when I am no longer in it.

11:45 PM  
Anonymous BklynJace said...

Diet at home.

And don't buy cheap toilet paper.

12:54 PM  

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