Monday, September 26, 2016

Let's Not Waste Time

I don’t like wasting time. That’s probably why I can be easily frustrated. It’s also probably why my to-do lists are always raging, and I take on more work than I should. I want it all, I want it done, and I want it now. 

That doesn’t mean I’m super spontaneous. It doesn’t mean that I don’t juggle the outcomes and make the right decisions. It does mean that I don’t pussyfoot around issues. I feel like a lot of my life – my time – was already stolen from me. 

I’m going to see the places that I want to see. I’m going to allow Claire to do and try all the things. I’m going to get the tattoos. I’m going to talk and be and experience things with people that challenge me. And I don’t have to get permission or validation from anyone else for any of those decisions. The opinions of those that don’t support me, us, my goals, Claire’s dreams … they can ever-so-eloquently suck it. 

I’ve always went after the impossible. Not in a literal sense and that could be me being a little dramatic, but in terms of what others thought were realistic or practical … that’s never been my “thing.” For example, I have a B.A. in Communication. And I distinctly remember being a semester away from graduation, visiting home sitting inside my high school’s front office listening to one of the administrators – whom I love dearly – talk about how someone we both know was “wasting his time” working on a marketing and communication degree.

"He won’t be able to support his family," he said.

"He won’t be able to do anything with that," he said.

I smiled coyly and shrugged, I wasn’t about to argue because I knew there could be some truth to that. But I was different, I'd prove them wrong. 

I’m coming up on six years of working as a freelance writer, I haven’t gone a day without work within that time. I’ve lost jobs. I’ve gained better ones. I started making only $35 a week and now I can pay our bills on my own with wriggle room. Could that change tomorrow? Yes, but it’s so worth it. The impossible and all. 

That impossible way trickles over into other parts of my life as well. I've said already that I won't be bringing a pen and paper to my next relationship. I may have a list of what I'm looking for but that doesn't include a particular job, pay scale, age, or amount of education. You can have a college degree and be a complete asshole. You can be 21 and be more of a man than the near 30 year-old I spent a decade with. You can have an amazing job and be the laziest person I've ever met. You can make money that supports your family, but not really care about your family much at all. 

Instead, if I meet a man that has never read a book and can't string together a grammatically correct text to save his life but he's kind and warm, I'll notice. Instead, if I meet a man that by society's standard is too young to handle me, but he proves otherwise by his conversation and insight, I'll notice. I'm just not looking for things that can be tangibly measured. Ambition, drive, passion, consistency, communication; instead, I'll be going by the immeasurable. 

What does all of this have to do with wasting time? Well, when you're living your life by impossibilities, every second counts. There shouldn't be a day that goes by that I'm not working toward my goals of publication. There shouldn't be a day that goes by that I lay numb to inspiration. There shouldn't be a day that goes by that I forget to infuse life into Claire's day. And there shouldn't be a day that goes by that I forget about people who matter. On the other hand, I ask that you not waste my time either. 

Recently, I again feel like my time was wasted. Reeled in and then cast aside, being single is rough. "Welcome," Cherry says. She's so in tune with how I'm feeling right now. Watching men make an effort as you brush them off and then finally when you soften a little, they're done. It's really easy to get attention, it's easy to keep that attention but it's hard to sustain the truth. 

Talking everyday. Warming up. Letting guards down. Effort shown. Shutting down. Ghosting. Ignoring. 

The pattern is confusing. It's hurtful and disappointing too when you expect more of someone. Let's not waste each other's time. I've come to learn that every minute of my life is precious and I'm tired of using it on people that don't find me worth theirs. 

Now, let's go make some pumpkin cookies.
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